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Unread 10-20-2012, 10:32 AM   #1
Celtstone Surfaces
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Hardie backer dissolves like cardboard!

I wanted to see if anybody else has tested this.
I refuse to use hardie because when it first came out it would expand and dissolve when exposed to water.

Have they made changes to the product or is it still the same waste of time and money?
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Unread 10-20-2012, 01:17 PM   #2
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I've never seen Hardi expand or dissolve. I've got a piece thats been leaning on the back side of a barn for over a year that looks fine...

Did you actually see it dissolve or is that just what you were told?
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Unread 10-20-2012, 01:56 PM   #3
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We put hardie, concrete board, wedi, and lath in buckets of water.
Try it and see what results you get.

Concrete board wins.
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Unread 10-20-2012, 03:24 PM   #4
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wedi and lath? I'm not following....
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Unread 10-20-2012, 03:39 PM   #5
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4 different products.
Hardie backer
Concrete board (permabase, durrock, wonder board)
Wedi board
And metal lath

4 different buckets of water.

I know it's overkill but it was just an experiment.
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Unread 10-20-2012, 03:42 PM   #6
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When did you do your experiment? Late 80s,early 90s?

The mock up for Hardie is a piece submerged in water.
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Unread 10-20-2012, 03:45 PM   #7
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2004
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Unread 10-20-2012, 04:12 PM   #8
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Thats a pretty long time ago. I exclusively use hardiebacker and have never seen that happen. I also have sheets of hardie laying outside flat on the ground by my shed. It has been out there at least 2 years and has went through all seasons. No dissolving.

I always use liquid waterproofing on my hardie anyway. So really, no worries for me. I love hardie and wouldn't use anything else.
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Unread 10-20-2012, 07:44 PM   #9
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I also use Hardibacker exclusively over wood subfloor. I nearly always float my tubs/showers with a few exceptions, and never had an issue. and as mentioned. Used Hardibacker for many steam shower lids without any issues ever. When Hardi backer was first introduced, it was in a container of water. I use a piece of Hardibacker stuck in the pan of my tile saw to cut down spray and it has never even gotten soft. I will have to try that test my self, but I just can't believe that right now. JoeC
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Unread 10-20-2012, 08:03 PM   #10
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I understood what you did Wes, just not why you bothered. Wedi is made of foam and metal lath is made of metal. What does putting them in a bucket of water prove?

But back to the original objection. I don't know exactly when I used my first piece of Hardibacker, but it was before I moved to NC; that was over 10 years ago and it didn't dissolve in water then... in fact the two bathrooms and kitchen I used it in are still in service, I am friends with the home owner.
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Unread 10-20-2012, 08:11 PM   #11
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You're gonna need to show us that one I think, Wes.

I've used HardiPlank for exterior siding for well over 20 years and that product, if left laying out in the wet weather when raw, will sometimes show its laminations, but I've never seen it deteriorate at all. And I've never seen it do anything once attached to a vertical wall.

The HardiBacker is a somewhat different product and I've never seen a piece of that de-laminate under any conditions, but I don't actually use it for building showers.

When we (TYW) did some testing on wicking of water by CBUs in shower construction, our Hardi samples were almost continuously wet for a full year and even then I saw no change in the composition of the product.

Maybe you had something harmful in your water?
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Unread 10-21-2012, 07:51 PM   #12
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Wes-c'mon bro,this is yer thread.Sooooo
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Unread 10-21-2012, 09:15 PM   #13
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I don't build conventional showers that often but when I do I prefer cbu.

I've seen mold growing on hardibacker when I've ripped out some showers. But never seen mold growing on cbu even in improperly built showers.

But if you are using a surface applied membrane hardibacker works great in showers. I also like the 1/4" when not using Ditra over plywood floors. Just my opinion.
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Unread 10-21-2012, 11:30 PM   #14
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This piece of Hardibacker has been outside for about 8 or 9 years, 24/7, Snow, sun, rain, in the damp drip edge area of the garage. No perceptible degradation.

While I'm not going to call you a liar, I'll say you're full of malarky.

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Unread 10-22-2012, 12:43 AM   #15
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There have been issues around here with hardy plank siding, at least in regard to peeling of the factory painted finish in some cases. Dont think it had much to do with the plank itself showing any deterioration. Were often the rainiest "city" in canada, so that likely has something to do with the paint issues.
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