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Old 10-27-2015, 05:37 PM   #1
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Shower pan (wall and frame) caulking


Hello,

I have an existing shower with two tiled walls and other two sides the shower frame/glass/door. Iíve sketched a birdís eye view below.

I have removed the old silicone caulk (many hours of effort and lots of chemicals later) and am wanting to know the normal practise of where to caulk Ė am not convinced the original job was entirely correct.

The bits I do know, is the verticals (frame meeting tiled wall, corner where tiled walls meet) and the horizontals where the tiled walls meet the shower pan.

But is it normal to also caulk the horizontal where the frame and shower pan meet?

The previous caulking did this to just the door side, and not the other frame side (on the diagram, the right / east side was caulked but the bottom / south was not).

Also that bottom / south side of the shower pan has a raised lip / channel running along, and a small channel / inlet into the shower pan. So it wasnít caulked anywhere along that horizontal.

The right / east side also has a lip but is lower. It was caulked horizontally on both the inside of the frame and the outside too. This is the side with the door.

If my description or diagram are confusing, am happy to take photos or explain further.

Thank you all in advance, I very much appreciate the time people take to provide feedback. Apologies if the terminology is not correct.

Matt.

Diagram (click for full size view):

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Old 10-27-2015, 06:27 PM   #2
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Picture would be far better.
Any place that changes direction or meets a different material needs to be caulked.
Only place that's grouted is between the tiles.
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Old 10-28-2015, 12:51 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
Picture would be far better.
Any place that changes direction or meets a different material needs to be caulked.
Only place that's grouted is between the tiles.
Thanks Joe. I'll pop up some photos once I've cleaned out the old caulk so the situation can clearly be seen. Might be 1-2 weeks away still. I am ok with the tiled wall surface meeting the shower pan (am going to caulk that).

My uncertainty is what to do with the other two sides, where the shower frame/glass meets the shower pan. There is a very small gap between the frame and pan on one side, and a bit bigger (1/4 inch) on the other side.

I looked at some new display homes today, seems a variety of approaches. A few caulked the outside of the frame and pan, but not the inside. Some did both.

My logic says that caulking none of it will be fine if the water (of which very little should get too far out) can flow back into the pan base. And there are some difficult areas that would be good if I can avoid caulking.

Here's another diagram that may help explain in the meantime, it's a cross section showing the shape of the pan and the shower frame/glass (running vertical). Recall there is the channel on one side where that outside lip is higher, and no channel on the other side where the lip is a bit lower.

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Old 10-28-2015, 08:05 AM   #4
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As much as possible, figure out how the frame is put together and how water might drain. Overlapping joints probably would drain naturally, so don't or may not need caulking. Bottom frame would need to drain, and if there is no caulk/seal, then seal from outside. Look at how the corners are joined and this is another spot where water can drain into the frame-which must be allowed to drain into the pan. If your pan threshold is tiled, water draining into the frame can start degrading the grout and start a leak. In this case, the bottom frame may need to be sealed at the corners as well as from inside. I can't recommend silicon since I've never come across silicon that stayed long term. I use OSI quad. It is not recommended for indoors-esp because of a strong odor in the beginning. If you can vent the bath for 2 days, the smell will be gone. Even with osi, I clean the surface, wipe with acetone, min an hour for cleaning to dry (assuming all material was dry before-hand), tape, and push the caulk into the gap, surface, and feather out along the tape. Do short sections because osi sets quickly, use glove, and again, have a ventilation.
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Old 10-31-2015, 04:07 PM   #5
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I wouldn't caulk the frame ,its made so if water gets in it will drain out.i would just caulk where theres a possibility of water getting behind the wall
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