What is happening to this marble shower? [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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Houston Remodeler
01-08-2017, 04:58 PM
A customer bought a used home 4 or 5 years ago. The marble in the shower continues to get worse. It looks as though the marble is spalling, with some sections missing. The odd part is where the spalling is occurring. Mostly just outside the shower door.

Conventional liner pan (not by me)
Glass tile mosaic walls
Brown marble curb, main bath floor 12x12, shower floor
Use of approved marble cleaner
The curb shows no signs of puffiness
Minimal grout cracking considering this is the 3rd floor

Next to bottom pic is inside the curb
Bottom pic is the top of the bench

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01-08-2017, 06:35 PM
Could just be some cheap marble. Has anyone checked the water ph? Looks like water migration is causing the deterioration in some way. If an acidic cleaner were being used you would think the damage would be inside just as much.

Houston Remodeler
01-08-2017, 06:38 PM
We have fairly high limescale in Houston. A typical vinyl liner lasts about 7 years before the weep holes fail

01-08-2017, 06:52 PM
In my experience, ordinary tap water can ruin marble. Especially if the ph is alkaline or acidic. Yours sounds alkaline. Unless the water is neutral ph I would not use "marble" in a shower. I have seen some travertine last a good while. Some not so much. I don't recognize that particular stone. Do you know what kind or what the name is of the marble?

Houston Remodeler
01-08-2017, 06:58 PM
I'm going with Emperador dark

01-08-2017, 07:09 PM
Hmm. Emperador usually has a lot of white veining. No matter. Maybe the alkaline water is eating away at the soft fissures in the stone.

Houston Remodeler
01-08-2017, 07:34 PM
Ah, for a spell when this house was being built WZ was selling it under a different name, but Emser has it as St Croix

01-08-2017, 08:28 PM
Looks like they still do. Emperador is used in a lot of showers. I googled and found a lot of pics. My guess is that the water is ruining the marble. Unless of course the owner is using a cleaner they are not mentioning. Strange how your city water is so messed up. I just had my well water tested and it came out with a 7 ph and 200 ppm tds.. Had it tested because of a yellow/red stain was showing up in the laundry tub and shower. Culligan guy had no clue. A local company knew right away it was sulfides. Gonna change the chlorine to peroxide.