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Unread 10-25-2021, 04:17 PM   #1
jerrybSNH4NB
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leaking shower

I had my bathroom remodeled about a year ago, back in june i needed to go into the crawlspace and i noticed about half gallon of water on the ground vapor barrier i look up and see the wood all wet under the shower, i called the contractor and they came and removed some loose grout and caulked a few spots. Today I was down there and there was about a pint of water and the wet spot on the wood has grown so im convinced its still leaking, the wet spot is right below the curb. I'm here looking for advice before I call him again. The wet wood is directly under the curb behind the tub. The grout in that part of the curb is cracking up under the white sill in that area also
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Unread 10-25-2021, 04:20 PM   #2
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Experts will ask more questions, but the grout falling apart is the symptom, and not the problem. The most likely thing is faulty waterproofing at the curb, which is probably letting water get to some wood, which is expanding, and breaking everything to bits. The best part (being a tough sarcastic), is that there is no easy fix.
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Unread 10-25-2021, 04:30 PM   #3
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Welcome, Jerry, but sorry you're here for this reason. Bathroom sure looks pretty though.

Tough to guess what's going on without the benefit of knowing how it was built and what materials were used. But generally speaking, if the grout is cracking, anywhere, it is due to movement of the underlying structure. As Jeff correctly points out, cracking grout a symptom.

But keep in mind the grout isn't part of the water proofing, nor is the tile for that matter. In other words, it shouldn't be leaking even if there was no grout in the joints and tile covering.

If you can give us an idea of how it was built and what products were used to build it we might be able to narrow things down. Photos, if you have any, of the build process could also be helpful.
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Unread 10-25-2021, 04:48 PM   #4
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Wish I would of taken more photos, I'll sure keep looking and I don't really know what materials were used, I trusted them and didn't want to be in the way so I let them do their thing. I seem to believe that it may be leaking from the grout cracks under the sill but am convinced from reading here it still should not leak from grout cracks. I was going to caulk under the sill myself but I was charged big bucks and want it to last a long time. I'm afraid that the wood underneath will never dry and rot
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Unread 10-25-2021, 04:56 PM   #5
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Perhaps the invoice from the builder might offer some clues as to what materials were used and, therefore, what water proofing method was employed. Well, kind of employed.

Not to be alarmist, be the water you see collecting on the plastic in the crawl space is likely only some of what is actually leaking. You might consider using a spare shower, if one is available, until you're able to get to the bottom of this.

Nevertheless, if the builder's response is to come out and re-caulk/re-grout that definitely is not the answer you want.
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Unread 10-25-2021, 05:01 PM   #6
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I can't zoom in far enough to tell but looks like screws in the curb and looks like they set your floor tile over plywood.
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Unread 10-25-2021, 05:05 PM   #7
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My invoice didn't list materials this was my first time dealing with a remodel contractor guess I'm learning. Here's a photo under the sill
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Unread 10-25-2021, 05:25 PM   #8
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Some finished pics, not looking forward to having to take it out
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Unread 10-25-2021, 05:29 PM   #9
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The floor was set over cement board osb under that, I did double all floor joist on a weekend while they were off to make it stout
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Unread 10-25-2021, 06:02 PM   #10
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My eyes are seeing screws in the curb too. I'd also be concerned about the waterproofing around that window.
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Unread 10-25-2021, 06:14 PM   #11
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The photo makes it appear the window is in the shower, its not, its a reflection from the glass, windows above the tub
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Unread 10-25-2021, 06:55 PM   #12
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Better pic without window in shower, now looks like the lights are in there
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Unread 10-25-2021, 07:50 PM   #13
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Welcome to the forum, Jerry.

Yes, I also see screws in the curb. That is one of the biggest and most classical mistakes in shower waterproofing.

You can get an idea of what waterproofing they might have tried. I'd remove the escutcheon plate of the mixer valve to see if a layer of surface waterproofing was added to the face of the Durock.....or if they used plastic or roofing felt behind the Durock.....or if they did no waterproofing at all.

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Unread 10-26-2021, 07:28 AM   #14
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I don't understand why the screws in the top of the curb would create such a problem, I mean if water was even getting there, under the sill,even without the screws I would think that its still a problem, wouldn't it it just be trapped under there? I'm going to call the contractor and need talking points. I'm thinking it needs tore out and a redo, he's most likely going to want to take a simpler way so:
1) If the tile and grout are not part of the waterproofing is it normal to have water under the tile or is it just the first defense against leaks? which would mean now there is no second defense
2)Is the only proper fix to tear it out? I don't see how the trapped water would ever dry, the OSB appears to be absorbing it like a sponge but only occasionally dripping
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Unread 10-26-2021, 08:43 AM   #15
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You have a serious leak. You said a half gallon of water, then a pint of water. That's a lot, something a little bit of caulk is not going to fix.
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