Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile Tile Monthly Magazine

Welcome to John Bridge / Tile Your World, the friendliest DIY Forum on the Internet


Advertiser Directory
JohnBridge.com Home
Buy John Bridge's Books   Buy a TYW Shirt

Go Back   Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile > Tile & Stone Forums > Cleaning, Restoration and Sealing

Sponsors


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 01-01-2009, 05:45 AM   #1
CHARIOTDRIVER
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: South MS
Posts: 17
Cleaning mildew from Travertine in shower

I knew that I did not want to proceed to clean the shower until I got some advice here as my previous idea to use "vinegar" would have resulted in a etched tiles.
We installed 18x18" Travertine in a Steam shower 9 months ago and I applied 2 coats of Duponts Bullet proof sealer to the Travertine.
In the last few weeks we have noticed a unusual "urine" odor in the shower when stepping in to take a shower. I was told not to urinate on the dry Travertine due to possible etching and I know that this is not happening as we always wait till it's wet first before urinating. Sorry about using the word "urinating" for those that are embarrassed about bodily functions, but I'm not stepping out of the shower dripping wet to urinate.
Back to the real problem, we've noticed a "mildew" looking material near the top of the shower walls and ceiling and think that this must be where the smell is coming from as we can almost guarantee that the trap below is full of fresh water when exiting the shower.
I'm almost embarrassed to say that we have not cleaned the shower at all since it was new. It did not look like it needed it as far as we could see.
What should I use to clean this so that I do not mess up the stones surface?
Thanks,.
Phil
__________________
Thanks for all the help,
Phil
CHARIOTDRIVER is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old 01-01-2009, 08:02 AM   #2
duneslider
Utah Tile Contractor
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Riverton, Utah, Salt Lake City
Posts: 2,237
My guess for the mildew is an improperly built steam shower and the lack of ventilation. You can't just shut the door and seal the moisture in. Does the ceiling have a slope to it? It should. Your shower is growing stuff because it is staying wet. Did you seal the travertine?

I would personally avoid peeing in the shower. You can't go before, or hold it?

I would try cleaning first with a cleaner made for stone. You can find one at home depot in the tile section. Let that shower dry out after uses too.
__________________
Bryan

Tile Contractor
Positive Tile and Stone
Salt Lake City, Utah
duneslider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2009, 05:54 PM   #3
CHARIOTDRIVER
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: South MS
Posts: 17
Thanks,.

I had it done correctly other than the ceiling not being sloped for drainage.
We do not get drippage during the steam time from the flat ceiling for some reason.
Lately we have been leaving the door open so that it can dry out between uses.
Mostly use it for the actual shower portion with stream use infrequently.
Will look at Home Depot soon.
Thanks,
Phil
__________________
Thanks for all the help,
Phil
CHARIOTDRIVER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2009, 09:59 PM   #4
doitright
Tile and Stone Contractor -- Moderator
 
doitright's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Mundelein, IL
Posts: 11,314
Hi Phil

The most important thing you can do at this point is to let the shower dry out. Bioorganic growth (BOG) needs moisture to grow. Akemi, MB Stone, and Cathedral Stone Products all have products to remove this element growing in your shower. Standard neutral cleaners won't work in these circumstances.

Bleach and water may due the trick, but I'm not a strong believer using bleach on natural stone.

For future maintenance, I highly recommend someone squeegeeing the shower after use. If not the door needs to be left open after use to allow some air movement to dry the stone.
__________________
John Koessler
Koessler Enterprises
NTCA, MIA, SFA
"The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of a low price is forgotten."

New to the Forum? - Check this out!
doitright is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2009, 05:49 PM   #5
CHARIOTDRIVER
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: South MS
Posts: 17
Actually I'm noticing that most of the stuff we can actually see is in the
"change of plane" joints where we used a sealant instead of the normal grout on all the flat areas.
We were told that we needed to use this material in the corners or where there was a change of direction to allow for expansion.
These joints are the only place that we see some "mold" growth, although it may not actually be "mold".
There is some discoloration in these joints but am not sure if that is where the smell is coming from.
Just hated to use the wrong stuff and damage the stones.
Thanks for the info.
__________________
Thanks for all the help,
Phil

Last edited by CHARIOTDRIVER; 01-02-2009 at 06:03 PM.
CHARIOTDRIVER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2009, 06:49 PM   #6
duneslider
Utah Tile Contractor
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Riverton, Utah, Salt Lake City
Posts: 2,237
Acrylic caulk is actually a food for mold/mildew but water also needs to be present. Allowing it to dry out should halt the growth. It would be good to remove the infected caulk and re-caulk. You can buy color matching silicone caulk that will be more resistant to mold growth. Keeping the shower dry will be your best bet. Do you have a fan in this bathroom? Leave the door open and leave the fan on for a few hours to evacuate the moisture.
__________________
Bryan

Tile Contractor
Positive Tile and Stone
Salt Lake City, Utah
duneslider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 07:52 PM   #7
CHARIOTDRIVER
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: South MS
Posts: 17
Bryan,
The guy that did the shower bought some sealer from the flooring that matched the tile ( Irish Cream ) and it was made for showers I thought.
Not sure if it was Silicone or not.
Must not be if it is messing up huh?
I will make sure that it is this time.
Thansk,
Phil
__________________
Thanks for all the help,
Phil
CHARIOTDRIVER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 09:15 PM   #8
duneslider
Utah Tile Contractor
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Riverton, Utah, Salt Lake City
Posts: 2,237
Phil,

Most caulk that is used is a siliconized latex/acrylic caulk. Not really sure what that means but it does seem to last a little better but not as good as a silicone caulk. You will most likely have to special order it. I have only used Latasil but there are other manufacturers out there that a lot of guys on here like. Hopefully they will come along and give some names out.
__________________
Bryan

Tile Contractor
Positive Tile and Stone
Salt Lake City, Utah
duneslider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 09:52 PM   #9
doitright
Tile and Stone Contractor -- Moderator
 
doitright's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Mundelein, IL
Posts: 11,314
Hi Phil

If Latasil doesn't have the color I need, I'll do all my special ordering from http://www.colorriteinc.com/colorsil.htm. Be sure to give your grout manufacturer and color, and specify Color Sil, or Poly Sil. Those two are 100% silicone.
__________________
John Koessler
Koessler Enterprises
NTCA, MIA, SFA
"The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of a low price is forgotten."

New to the Forum? - Check this out!
doitright is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2009, 07:50 PM   #10
CHARIOTDRIVER
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: South MS
Posts: 17
Thanks,
Just marked the link and will see about ordering some asap.
Phil
__________________
Thanks for all the help,
Phil
CHARIOTDRIVER is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Buy John's New Book!   Tile Your World Online Store   Contractors Direct Tile Tool Store   Stonetooling.com   Tile-Assn.com


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:01 AM.


Sponsors

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 2009 John Bridge & Associates, LLC