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Unread 01-11-2022, 03:22 PM   #1
Lou_MA
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Shower bench designs

Do you folks feel that shower benches where the glass is notched around them are more prone to leaks than showers where the benches are entirely contained?

I’ve had at least one situation where it seemed water was making its way under the slab bench top, past the glass, and causing bubbling on adjacent drywall.
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Unread 01-11-2022, 08:51 PM   #2
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I worry about those designs, Lou, but have never done one. I have done several with glass atop pony walls and curbs in the direct splash area without known problems, but never on top of a bench. The bench would have a much longer drain field and might act a bit differently, but I don't know that.

Is your bench well sloped to drain? All the way from that back corner?

How is your glass mounted on the bench area?
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Unread 01-12-2022, 09:56 AM   #3
Just In Tile LLC
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Hey Lou,
I usually talk people out of the glass over bench design even though visually it's more appealing. I don't like the potentials. What I do recommend is having a knee wall there so the top and front of the bench is tucked into it at least 3" or so. I like having the dam effect of the wall instead of glass there and waterproof it accordingly and have the glass ride the wall.
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Unread 01-13-2022, 09:17 AM   #4
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I have never been concerned that it would be more likely. As long as the glass installation is competent, there is nothing special about that cut that should leak, nor is there more linear feet that needs to be sealed. Shouldn't be an issue, assuming proper slope to the bench. I see no reason the bench should leak any more than the curb.
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Unread 01-28-2022, 02:11 PM   #5
davidcaswelltile
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i think the grout line that runs under the glass that rests on the bench is liable to allow water through as grout is porous, and also consider the notch under the set tile and the possibility of water flow behind it.

i think especially where drywall or (god forbid) wood is concerned be so very careful. any schluter edging used can also serve as a water channel. consider creating a water obstruction but filling a solid line of silicone under the tile, just there to stop the water, but not to replace the majority of the thin-set under the tile.

after that, eye the glass and the track it sits in (if a track is used). use a sparse but adequate amount of clear silicone, especially on the side of the track exposed to falling water.

if wood is being used anywhere on the bench. talk to the carpenter and the contractor asap. if you are lacking the courage to stand up to your general contractor on issues like wood and pre warantee you are opening yourself up to some real headaches down the road.

(sometimes it can be tempting to look the other way or just cover with ditra or redgard, especially when forced into tight shifts with intimidating staff....however, that ditra is going to have to be so damn perfect considering waterflow. and the carpenters bench might shift and wreck your waterproofing )

dry wall exposed to water should be waterproofed and covered with something that isn't drywall. in general.
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Unread 01-28-2022, 05:30 PM   #6
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First, David, let me say I'm sorry for your loss of your shift key.
Quote:
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...also consider the notch under the set tile and the possibility of water flow behind it.
Perhaps I'm misunderstanding, but there shouldn't be any serious notch areas under the set tile where the coverage is required to be a minimum of 95 percent.
Quote:
Originally Posted by David
if wood is being used anywhere on the bench. talk to the carpenter and the contractor asap. if you are lacking the courage to stand up to your general contractor on issues like wood and pre warantee you are opening yourself up to some real headaches down the road.
Again, perhaps I'm misunderstanding, but I can't imagine a shower bench with exposed wood where a glass surround would be installed. Think I'd need to see a picture of that.
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(sometimes it can be tempting to look the other way or just cover with ditra or redgard, especially when forced into tight shifts with intimidating staff....however, that ditra is going to have to be so damn perfect considering waterflow. and the carpenters bench might shift and wreck your waterproofing )
Perhaps we're confusing Ditra with Kerdi here?
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Unread 01-29-2022, 01:44 AM   #7
davidcaswelltile
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Too true. What a terrible reply. Once along time ago I had an agonizing day fixing a bench that had a cut piece of glass placed on top of it. And yes a carpenter designed the bench, and a laticrete product was used to waterproof. I think what happened there was me remembering the repair needed for that job. I used kerdi and a wedi sealant to rewaterproof the bench as well as placed a silicone line inside of the edging. O for shame. As far as I know the repair worked tho I still resent that wood was used on the bench. I think I was oversold on the laticrete and demonstrated some sort of cowardice and the presence of wood on the bench should have been challenged more than I did challenge it. It was an oof mistake.

It was my wood mistake. I must forgive myself for it. But never repeat.

The possibility of water moving underneath the tile on a bench is real. But you are right full coverage mitigates that quite a bit. Right now I’m think most specifically of schluter edging used to cover the tile edge and how that would permit some sort of run off.
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Unread 01-29-2022, 10:16 AM   #8
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Quote:
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I think I was oversold on the laticrete and demonstrated some sort of cowardice and the presence of wood on the bench should have been challenged more than I did challenge it.
Sorry, David, I'm still not understanding. You had a shower bench with wood exposed?

Or are you concerned that a bench might have been framed with wood?

Nothing at all wrong with wood framed shower benches when properly constructed, clad and waterproofed, especially in this day of direct bonded waterproofing membranes.
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Unread 02-19-2022, 12:06 AM   #9
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First, David, let me say I'm sorry for your loss of your shift key.
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