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Old 01-08-2011, 03:19 PM   #1
hazel03
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durock seams not taped

hi everyone,
I need a reality check from people with more knowledge on this than me!

i had a bathroom updated by a contractor and the finished product looks really good, so i am pleased with that. however, i'm concerned about future problems because he did not tape the durock seams before setting the tiles in the tub/shower surround. He applied the adhesive to the durock, left the seams dry and put the tile over the exposed seams.--so if you're looking at it from behind (we had to remove some drywall from an adjacent room for something else), you'd see the back of the durock, and in the slight seam between durock sheets, you'd see the uncoated back of the tile. No vapor barrier was used behind the durock either, but I'm not sure if we needed one?? So I'm concerned about mold, cracked tiles, etc in the future. He assured me that tape wasn't required, he never uses it, and we won't have any problems.
Should I be concerned, or am I just creating a worry here?
Any insight/advice on what to do is greatly appreciated!
Thanks
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Old 01-08-2011, 03:32 PM   #2
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Seam taping is not your big problem. The big problem is that you don't have a waterproof surround. If he didn't put poly or roofing felt behind the durock or a paint-on or membrane on top of it you will soon have water in your walls, followed by mold and other issues.

Since you're going to have to rip everything out anyway, I won't even worry about what "adhesive" he used to stick the tiles up.

Please wait for word from the pros (a bit slow since it's Saturday), but I'm just saying what I've heard them say a hundred times. Hopefully you haven't fully paid this guy.
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Old 01-08-2011, 03:36 PM   #3
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Quote:
He assured me that tape wasn't required,
Should we go check the Durock website for the installation instructions?

We must have a quick link to the install guidelines here somewhere

Quote:
He applied the adhesive
Please define adhesive. Did it come out of a bucket, or was it a powder in a bag that water or a latex liquid was mixed with?

Oh, and then there is the vapor barrier thingy, probably the least of your worries.

Sorry.

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Old 01-08-2011, 03:47 PM   #4
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Wendy- we seem to differ a bit in our opinions on what is the priority, and the sad thing is that there are a lot of improperly constructed installs that do hold up, but more of them don't. Doing everything right is always the best solution, and what we should all strive for.

Is it me or is USG's website so poor that they don't have an easily located install guideline sheet for durock?

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Old 01-08-2011, 04:04 PM   #5
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Gueuze, last time I checked, durock and wonderboard had instructions on a sticker on the board which stated that seams were to be taped. I switched to hardi, since I don't have to worry about it not holding when I accidentally have my roofing nailer set too deep.

Elmers glue adheres to tile! : )

Time to have this guy rip it out...
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Last edited by coping skills; 01-08-2011 at 04:32 PM.
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Old 01-08-2011, 04:07 PM   #6
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I don't know how much we differ since it's all kind of bad, but I guess I'd take tile falling off over mold in the walls, so maybe we do.

I found the following on the Durock data sheet:

A. Install cement board with ends and edges closely abutted, but not forced together. Stagger end joints in successive courses.
B. For flooring applications over a wood-based substrate, laminate Durock to subfloor using Type 1 organic adhesive or latex-modified thin-set mortar suitable for bonding cement board. Fasten to subfloor with 1-1/4" DurockTM tile backer screws for wood framing (or equivalent) or 1-1/2" hot-dipped galvanized roofing nails spaced 8" o.c. in both directions with perimeter fasteners at least 3/8" and less than 5/8" from ends and edges. Drive nails and screws so that bottoms of heads are flush with panel surface to ensure firm panel contact with sub floor. Do not overdrive fasteners. Prefill joints with tile-setting mortar or adhesive and then immediately embed DurockTM tile backer tape and level joints.
C. For wall application, fasten Durock panels to framing with specified fasteners. Drive fasteners into field of panels first, working toward ends and edges. Hold panels in firm contact with framing while driving fasteners. Space fasteners maximum 8" o.c. for walls, 6" o.c. for ceilings, with perimeter fasteners at least 3/8" and less than 5/8" from ends and edges. Drive nails and screws so that bottoms of heads are flush with panel surface to ensure firm panel contact with framing. Do not overdrive fasteners. Approved fasteners include: Durock tile backer screws for steel framing (or equivalent), 1-1/4" and 1-5/8" for 14- to 20-gauge steel framing; Durock tile backer screws for wood framing (or equivalent), 1-1/4", 1-5/8", and 2-1/4" for wood framing. Nails (1-1/2" hot-dipped galvanized roofing nails). Prefill joints with tile-setting mortar or adhesive and then immediately embed DurockTM tile backer tape and level joints.
D. Cement board should be cut to size with a knife and straight edge. A power saw should be used only if it is equipped with a dust-collection device. Installer should wear NIOSH/MSHA-approved dust mask.
Refer to current United States Gypsum Company literature piece SA932 for complete installation informa- tion, including good design practices. For technical assistance, call USG Technical Service at 800 USG.4YOU (874.4968).

Go here and look for the submittal sheet. It's a pdf.
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Old 01-08-2011, 04:35 PM   #7
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wow, quick responses, thanks! Sorry, adhesive was a bad word. Thinset was used,-- Pro Bond non-sag thinset mortar. So I think we're okay there? That leaves the untaped seams, and the waterproofing. I'm not sure if anything was painted on the durock before the thinset or not, but there is not any sort of membrane behind it.
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Old 01-08-2011, 04:50 PM   #8
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Well, if a paint-on membrane was used, you'd see it between the gaps in the board, and not see the thinset.

Oh- submittal sheet, ok. Thanks Wendy.

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Old 01-08-2011, 04:56 PM   #9
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So Hazel, the issues here are as follows...

1. Durock seams not taped.

2. No vapor barrier under the Durock.

3. No waterproofing over the Durock.

#1 isn't the worst problem, if that was all that was wrong I'd say live with it and the possibility of developing cracks in the grout or tile.

#2 or #3 are required for a long lasting install that properly controls the water.

At this point, I would recommend removing it all and redoing it correctly.
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Old 01-08-2011, 05:11 PM   #10
hazel03
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I don't see thinset in the seams of the durock, i see the actual back of the tile, nothing else. So it appears the thinset was applied a bit short of the seam, I would assume, or some thinset would be showing? Guess that doesn't help me with any waterproofing either.

Rip it all out--I was worried that would be the response. How long does it take for the water to start causing problems if we can't do it right away?
Also, is anything salvage-able if we do rip it out? Is it possible to chip out the grout and reuse the tiles, or is that more trouble than it's worth?

Thanks again for all the help here.
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Old 01-08-2011, 05:33 PM   #11
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You will probably not be able to salvage the tile. Only way to know for sure is to give it a try.
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Old 01-08-2011, 05:33 PM   #12
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Hmmm, only seeing the back of the tile? How much of this seam between the cement boards is exposed? 16" between studs? No thinset anywhere?

I wonder if they're spot set? How big are the tile? Non sag mortar was used. Could you take something, wooden spoon handle or something, and tap around on a few pieces and see if they sound hollow except for maybe a dab of mortar on each corner and maybe one in the middle?

Any chance you could post a picture?

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Old 01-08-2011, 06:29 PM   #13
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Durock seams should be on studs, how can you see seams?
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Old 01-08-2011, 06:43 PM   #14
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IF Durock is laid Horz. wouldnt the seems show?

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Old 01-08-2011, 07:10 PM   #15
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I have a question along the same lines:

I recently finished a tub enclosure using 1/2" HardiBacker and waterproofed with AquaDefense. There was a seam approx. 4" from the top of the side wall (opposite shower head) that I neglected to tape and mud. I was working late one night and ran out of thinset, so I intended to finish that one joint the next day. Well, time was running short so I delayed doing it.

In the meantime, I had filled this joint with joint compound when I was drywalling and finishing the ceiling. I then applied the AquaDefense as waterproofing. My intention was to go back and carve out the joint, tape and mud it, but because it blended so well I completed forgot about it. I installed 12" porcelain tile right over it. My hope was that the thinset and larger format tile would create a bond strong enough to bridge that gap with no problems.

What do you think? Any suggestions? Thank you!
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