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Old 01-25-2014, 10:39 PM   #1
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shower walls for seasonal cottages


hello
looking for some advise on the right product to use or not to use when doing the shower walls in a 3 season cabin/cottage, unheated in the winter, so it goes way below freezing.

what is going to stand up the best to the freeze thaw cycle.

typically we will not be there during full winter so in the late fall once it freezes up it will stay that way till early spring, and consequently a slower transition from each extreme. no foundation either, just on blocks so the building quite likely moves a bit.

I have been looking at installing premolded shower walls such the
polystyrene units but i have heard they do not like the cold,
acrylic wall units which are more expensive but apparently more durable.

I have seen 4x8 sheets x1/4 of what looks like acrylic or lexan

also thinking about tiling and using concrete board as a backer. I have tiled before but not in a freeze thaw environment.

I suspect any of the wall surfaces will do fine as long as the right product is used to attach it to the walls, ie silicone, mastic, glue, mortar, thin set or grout. Something that will either be somewhat flexible and move with the temperature changes, or be rock solid and unaffected.

any advise from someone who has been there and done that.

experience is a wonderful teacher, I just don;t want to get a fail on the first attempt.

thanks for any input you can offer.

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Old 01-25-2014, 10:41 PM   #2
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shower walls for seasonal cottages


It really depends on how cold the interior gets.

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Old 01-25-2014, 10:52 PM   #3
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Manitoba, cold -40C, and if your south of the border that is still -40 F

it will basically drop well below freezing in nov and stay that way till late feb.

since the cabin is insulated, once it freezes up it will stay that way till mother nature decides otherwise.
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Old 01-25-2014, 11:30 PM   #4
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shower walls for seasonal cottages


Quote:
Originally Posted by goshdarn View Post
Manitoba, cold -40C, and if your south of the border that is still -40 F

it will basically drop well below freezing in nov and stay that way till late feb.

since the cabin is insulated, once it freezes up it will stay that way till mother nature decides otherwise.
Does not matter where you are right now, it is cold all over. And actually it is warmer in Northern parts of Canada right now, then it is down in our area.

Really though, any place if you plan on not heating it when not occupied, is going to end up with mold or mildew in it, if it is allowed to get to freezing temps. Any moisture in the building, from the weather changes heating and cooling that place, will cause any type of material to fail.

Just go with the PVC panels glued on the wall. But really if you Winterize the place and shut all heat and electricity when not there, you will find issues when you go to open it back up, that will need to be fixed.

Right now, the coldest place in Northern Canada is Resolute. It is -36f with a feels like of -64f. http://www.weather.com/weather/tenda...aps.google.com Now that is cold. The coldest place on the planet right now is Dudinka, Russia. It is -57f with a feels like of -57f. http://www.weather.com/weather/tenda...aps.google.com
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Old 01-26-2014, 03:28 PM   #5
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shower walls for seasonal cottages


thanks for recommendation of the pvc panels, they do seem the simplest solution at present. with expansion joints hopefully they will do fine.

never had a problem in over 32 years with mold or mildew. have done 3 different renovations since original build in 82 and all is well. we are in a community of 500+ other cabins all of which are shut down for the winter.
Even the drywall has survived nicely until i releveled 2 years ago. and that is just some minor joint work.
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Old 01-26-2014, 03:35 PM   #6
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shower walls for seasonal cottages


I've never had trouble with a properly set tile shower in an unheated cabin---just make sure you use powdered thinset---no organic mastic--
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Old 01-26-2014, 05:27 PM   #7
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thanks mike, that is good to know, I would sooner have the tile any way, it is no more expensive than the surrounds, more work maybe but i think looks better.
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Old 01-26-2014, 05:32 PM   #8
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I agree---one small thought---you might consider using a bath tub mixer with a spout---handy for washing beach sand off the feet--and they will self drain the shower arm---Not an issue if you open the valve when you are draining your system,however.

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