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Old 11-19-2011, 02:20 PM   #1
jtubbs
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Same ole shower Dilemma

Hi All,

Been reading countless threads and need straight answers:

I have a shower being built from ground up. One wall is an inner wall and other wall is an external wall with fiberglass insulation covered with paper inside. Floor is wood-sub floor.

1) GC is using Ecolife PT wood for curb. I don't see anything about Kiln dried on label. I know Kiln is preferred, and is PT acceptable or absolutely not?

2) Hes going to use Durrock and says hes never used vapor barrrier for a standard shower. I am paying for material and his fixed labor cost is separate. No cost to him and really not time intensive. Is vapor barrier suggested or is it absolutely really needed? If I need it, can insulation w/ paper stay or do I need to buy new insulation?

2a) I noticed on the ontariotile link that this site has posted for making a bed pan, they don't hang vapor barrior in their photos!?

3) He cut the poly for the shower base a little short, just to top middle of curb and was planning on attaching other scraps to cover over the top of the curb to the front of it. Is this ok?

4) Is it ok if edge of green board meets where the glass shower side wall will be installed or does he need to trim this back so that durrock extends past glass door?

Hes planning on hanging durrock in 2 days, so quick response would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 11-19-2011, 02:37 PM   #2
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Welcome, jtubbs. Please change that permanent signature line to a first name for us to use.

1. Absolutely not unless it says it's kiln dried after treatment (KDAT).

2. There is no need for a vapor barrier in a shower unless it's a steam shower. There is a requirement for a moisture barrier behind the wallboard or a waterproofing membrane over the inside of the wallboard.

I recommend you defeat the paper retarder on the insulation by cutting vertical slits in it.

2a. Harry doesn't get that far with his shower construction in that instructional sequence for the shower pan. You can find the same article in our whirl-famous Liberry.

3. No, it's not OK.

I'm sure you don't mean poly. Determine what material is actually being used and perhaps we can tell you the proper material to splice it. But in an new shower construction he owes you a new liner, properly fitted, with dam corners and all.

4. There should be no green board or any other sorta sheetrock anywhere in the wet area of the shower. And his waterproofing/water containment system should extend beyond that glass enclosure.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 11-19-2011, 02:47 PM   #3
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1. Looks like a little discussion is gonna be needed to tear out what he started...let's hope no price increase or walk off the job.

2. Yes, moisture barrier is what I meant...so paper on insulation, cement board and thinset for tile doesn't fit the bill? So, what exactly is moisture barrier, how is it different from 40 mil pan liner?

So, just cutting the paper on the insulation in 1/2 does the job to better allow for air flow?

2a. Great, I shall take a gander!

3. Right, its 40 mil pan liner (pvc?) I tried to add a pic, will try again in a minute.

4. Ty. Another conversation I think it was tight for him as a window sill is right next to shower area with an air pipe behind the wall. Pic will show.

I'll get that name fixed, until then, Jerry
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Old 11-19-2011, 02:55 PM   #4
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2. No. The moisture barrier - minimum 4mil polyethylene or #15 roofing felt - must be attached to the studs and lap over the shower pan liner into the shower.

I'd cut multiple vertical slits in the paper maybe a foot long and staggered such that they don't compromise the ability of the paper to support the insulation.

3. I wouldn't recommend he try to seam that liner in that critical part of the installation.

You can post photos stored on your computer by using the little paper-clip icon above the Reply dialog box.

I fixed the signature.

[Edit]

Now that I see the photo, he'll definitely need to do "overs" on that pan liner.

But before he does that, he'll most definitely need to provide a proper pre-slope.

And he has no blocking between the studs for the proper attachment and support of the liner.

And I see no notching in the bottom of the studs for relief of the liner folds so the backreboard will hang plumb and not bow out at the bottom.

And the CBU and water containment must extend farther on that wall with the greenboard.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 11-19-2011, 03:14 PM   #5
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CX : Thank you! I was worried that my intuition and reading blogs was maybe more of perfect world syndrome than real life.


Moisture barrier is gonna happen! It can be very confusing when I keep seeing vapor barrier everywhere! You made this difference crystal clear!

Slits - Got it!

So "overs" for the liner is a generally accepted practice and not a good-enough work around for a mistake? He brought the liner (free from left over job) and I haven't bought any yet. Should I buy one piece and do you think the length that should be 6 inches running up the wall is enough based on what the pic shows?

I mentioned a pre-slope to him yesterday and he said that was always his intention, he just screwed in the liner as a temp thing (seems odd to bother to me)

Blocking meaning like addition stud horizontal to hang the liner so no sag occurs?

Notching, guess I'm gonna have to watch him like a hawk although I guess this is something he could do before he hangs?

water containment, GB...I thought it seemed suspect to have it go so close....

He was not going to mud/mortar with a slath over the curb, his plan is to use cement board instead. Is this ok?

He gives a 5 yr warranty on his labor...but if you dont see the mold/mildew...whats a homeowner to do?! Thanks!!
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Old 11-19-2011, 07:44 PM   #6
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Jerry, when you PM someone to look at your thread, please provide a link so they can go for sure to the one you want to discuss. Yes, in this case you have only one thread, but it still requires a search and one day you may have multiple threads.

And please ask all your questions and give all your information here on the thread rather than in the PM, eh?

Your green board is not too close, it's well within the wet area of the shower and completely unacceptable.

There is no way to use CBU on a curb for a traditional shower pan. Mud is the only real option unless you purchase a pre-made foam curb such as those from Noble Company.

It is possible to seam even that PVC liner material, but it must be done such that the seam is not in the drain area nor any place where the liner will be folded or a dam corner installed.

The liner must extend three inches above the curb an attached with fasteners only in the very top portion.

I strongly recommend you go to the Shower Construction section of our whirl-famous Liberry and read everything in there at least once before your next conversation with this fella. Y'all have a good bit to discuss.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 11-20-2011, 08:43 PM   #7
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Why would any one Screw/fasten the liner in place prior to doing a mud bed? Or was this a cover up to mistake? ( well I'm not going to do a preslope unless someone questions it............mmmmmmm )

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Old 11-20-2011, 10:13 PM   #8
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I agree on the re-do and the new hire.
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Old 11-21-2011, 10:09 AM   #9
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JTubbs,

You are encountering the exact same situation I was dealing with a few weeks back with a inexperienced contractor...glad to see you follow this forum and realized something was up. My opinion, hire someone else as others have suggested, if he doesn't do things properly out of the gate, definitely going to be doing some sloppy and corner cutting work down the road.
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Old 11-22-2011, 03:27 PM   #10
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I can't believe where I am at at this stage of the game:

BTW - My old shower by a very large builder had greenboard, no moisture/vapor barrier and a very small area of mold after 8 yrs.

Bottom line is that my GC got back to work before I could lay it all out. A preslope was done under the liner and the same day he put the top layer of mortar on. I don't know if felt or anything was put between the preslope and subfloor although I am told he did that. I don't see a moisture barrier behind the CBU.

The pan liner has "overs", the wood was still the PT (he claims is part of code) and CBU, screws and some type of silcone were used to surround the curb instead of mortar/lath which I had gone to the store to purchase the same day.

He said in 15 yrs, him and his dad have always done it this way with no issues. We plan to be in the house another 10 yrs or so. I have in writing that he guarrantees his labor but not the material. I've also talked to some other "local" plumbers who say his work is fine, they dont even do preslope or barriers.

My wife says I am OCD on this whole thing and to let it go....it will be fine... (I do OCD everything) What to do, what to do? GC has been a nice guy overall, and other than this difference of what is tried and true with the curb, has taken care of us and done some over and above "quality" things in the remodel.

Should I let it go and if water leaks, have him take care of it or rip it all out (which I am dreading). As we all know, you don't know you got mold in most cases until you really know, or you never know. At this point, do I deal with the wife and him and the $ loss? And the possiblity he walks and I have no $ to pay someone else?

Jerry
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Old 11-22-2011, 04:56 PM   #11
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Jerry, a guy who alleges to have been doing tile showers for 15 years should have some idea what his industry standards require.

I would invite him to show you what parts of the standards he's relying upon in his methods of construction.

The curb treatment is very problematic. Again, there is no way to properly construct a shower curb with traditional pan liner using CBU. You cannot comply with the requirements of the CBU manufacturer for the installation without mechanical fasteners and you cannot comply with tile industry standards with mechanical fasteners.

Your spouse is not correct in her assessment on this one. Demanding that paid contractors follow at least the requirements of their own trade is in no way OC behavior. It's just the action of a reasonable man.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 11-22-2011, 09:10 PM   #12
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What CX said plus;

'Round these parts I find most poorly built showers start to show signs of failure in years 6-8. By the time things get bad enough, the shower has been leeking slowly for so long there is rotted wood and mold.

Just because they've been doing it that way doesn't mean it's correct, or waterproof. We used to put the baby in the front seat with us, don't do that no more.
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Old 11-28-2011, 03:34 PM   #13
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I've read a bunch on outside corners...is it ok to butt the CBU behind the existing metal corner bead that is attached to drywall on the other wall of an outside corner using bullnose over top of the metal corner bead? The shower glass door will be a few inches away from the corner, thus the corner bead shouldn't get wet. <the shower head will be in the middle of the wall where the corner bead is on the side of it, thus shooting water for the most part away from the corner>
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Old 11-28-2011, 11:11 PM   #14
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Jerry, I can't see just what you mean without a photo, but in almost all cases involving ceramic tile and outside corners I would recommend no corner bead be used. And if one is in place, that it be removed.

There are other corner treatments that make much more sense, including just paper tape if the corner is protected and in a dry area.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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