Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile

Welcome to John Bridge / Tile Your World, the friendliest DIY Forum on the Internet


Advertiser Directory
JohnBridge.com Home
Buy John Bridge's Books

Go Back   Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile > Tile & Stone Forums > Tile Forum/Advice Board

Sponsors


Reply
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Unread 07-26-2013, 10:23 AM   #1
Ryden
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 6
Water around edges of marble tile in shower

I recently installed polished Carerra marble tile in a shower.

basic installation process:
1.Cement board
2.Mapei Mapelastic waterproofing
3.Tile installation
4.cleaned any mortar out from grout spacing that was higher than 1/3 tile thickness
5.Grouted using Mapei Keracolor U

I sealed it with one type of sealer after grouting. After I noticed water was seeping in, we discontinued use, let everything dry then tried sealing it with another type of sealer (SurfaceGard - stone, tile, grout sealer)

Water is still getting in there (see attached picture). Again, we discontinued use and everything is dry at the moment. Does anyone have any suggestions for how I should go about fixing this problem?
__________________
Ryden
Ryden is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Unread 07-26-2013, 10:45 AM   #2
cx
Moderator emeritus
 
cx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Boerne, Texas
Posts: 89,796
Welocme, Ryden.

I'm not seein' no steenkin' pichers.

Use the paper-clip icon above the Reply dialog box to attach photos from storage on your computer. Despite what it says in the drop-down box, the program will accept any .jpg with a file size of 2Mb or smaller and resize it for posting.

Type marble into the Advanced Search feature and ask for Titles and you'll find a good deal of discussion of your problem. I think you'll find some of it enlightening.
My opinion; worth price charged.
__________________
CX

Y'ALL NEW VISITORS READ THIS HERE!
cx is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-26-2013, 11:23 AM   #3
Ryden
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 6
Thanks for the reply/greeting!

Attaching an image seems to be an issue with my computer. It timed out on me and the image is much less than 2mB. The imgur link to the photo is below.

imgur.com/lwjcgsx

I also tried searching before, but perhaps I was too specific in my search and it didn't produce the results I was looking for. I will try again...
__________________
Ryden
Ryden is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-26-2013, 11:32 AM   #4
Pete1972
Jack of all trades, master of none
 
Pete1972's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 991
Here you go, Ryden:

Name:  lwjcgsx.jpg
Views: 946
Size:  72.5 KB

There's been some pretty lively discussion on here in regards to Carrara marble in showers and this exact problem lately. Some will point to sealing the marble as a cause of the problem since the sealer can act as a barrier that allows water to stay trapped inside the stone. I can't say I disagree with that. It also appears your tile staining is in a framing pattern around the stone which could point to some of the compounds in your grout penetrating the stone and causing the water lock.

I think the biggest problem is using Carrara marble in a wet shower area, myself. It's a beautiful, albeit very soft and porous stone. Situations like yours are the gamble you take when rolling the dice on such a material in a shower.
Pete1972 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-26-2013, 01:11 PM   #5
MDtile
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,360
Can you give us a little more info Ryden?



1) After you grouted it, did you allow the tile work to completely dry-out until everything looked completely dry, as in the tile looked like it did before you installed it?

2) How long was that? How many days after you grouted did you apply the sealer?

3) What brand of sealer did you use the 1st time? How many coats of that sealer did you apply?

4) You say you switched to Customs Tilelab "Surfaceguard". Which type did you use, the dark green bottle (penetrating-type)? How many coats?

5) How long since you used the shower until the photo? Does it still look the same now, and how long since you took the photo? Has it lightened at all?

6) I'm not familiar with Mapei grout. Is Keracolor U a urethane grout?
MDtile is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-26-2013, 02:03 PM   #6
Ryden
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 6
Pete, thanks for uploading that for me, and for the reply.

To Answer your questions MDTile:

1. yes, after grouting we left it for a few days before sealing. Even now, after not using the shower for a few days, the tile is back to a normal color. it only becomes discolored after the shower has been used. I am assuming its because water is penetrating the tiles where they are not polished.

2. The first sealer was applied after a few days.

3. I no longer have the container, it was a smaller (expensive) white round container that was recomended to us when we purchased the tiles. I will try to find the brand name. I did two coats with this sealer and had the same problem, hence trying the second sealer.

4. yes, the penetrating type. I went over the grout lines 3 times and the tiles themselves twice.

5. The discoloration has completely dissapeared. right now the tiles look as they did before installation.

6. The Keracolor U product is an unsanded grout with polymer. It's uses are indoor/outdoor wet/dry floors and walls for joints from 1/16" to 1/8"

mapei.com/public/CA/products/KeracolorU_TDS_EA.pdf
__________________
Ryden
Ryden is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-26-2013, 03:40 PM   #7
MDtile
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,360
We can breath a sigh of relief to answer #5. At least for now. Let's keep the fingers crossed the darkening doesn't become permanent like has happened on other occasions.


I don't advise sealing Carrera in a shower. Too late for that, so I will let others take over. The grout is allowing water to enter the stone, but may be also allowing it to dry.
MDtile is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-30-2013, 08:59 AM   #8
Ryden
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 6
It was definately a relief to see it go away. Is there a way to strip the sealant without damaging the marble?

I am not opposed to removing the grout if it is required to fix the problem.

If I hadn't sealed it to begin with, would there still be discoloration from the water permeating the marble during every shower, but it would just dry faster?

Is darkening due to water on marble pretty much inevitable when installed in a shower?

Honestly, I wish I had done a little more research on using marble in a shower before I started this project. This was my first tile project ever and I was very happy with how it turned out until we used the shower for the first time! It does look beautiful when its dry, but the dark spots in it are going to drive me crazy!
__________________
Ryden
Ryden is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-30-2013, 09:25 AM   #9
Pete1972
Jack of all trades, master of none
 
Pete1972's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 991
I've never used the product before, but Custom Building Products makes a sealer and coating remover called Aqua Mix. The technical data sheet indicates that it's uses are for "natural stone (such as granite, limestone, marble, slate, and travertine), ceramic, porcelain, grout, quarry, Saltillo, terra-cotta, cement pavers, and masonry surfaces."

If you want to go that route of using a sealer remover I'd recommend trying it first on a very inconspicuous corner or better yet a leftover tile or two that you've applied the same sealer to from the project to make sure it doesn't react adversely to the stone and create a more permanent problem.

Good luck!
Pete1972 is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-30-2013, 12:44 PM   #10
MDtile
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,360
I don't believe that it is possible to remove a penetrating-type sealer.

Unsealed, the marble will uniformly darken slightly from use, and will dry-out usually overnite, returning to the dry look. A uniform look is maintained with no sealer, whether wet or dry.

In a shower, there is little risk of staining. Given the risk of water becoming trapped in the stone because of the sealer, it is less risky to not seal than to seal. This advice is for White Carrera, Statuary White, Callacatta, Nantes, and any other of the white marbles mined in Italy.
MDtile is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-30-2013, 01:04 PM   #11
Ryden
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 6
Dang, thats bad news.

I assume that the sealer would not have penetrated where the marble was polished, but likely penetrated the grout and then all of the unpolished sides of the tile once getting through the grout. Would that be correct to assume?

If there is no way to remove a penetrative type sealer, would it be a wise decision to remove the grout, then re-grout and not seal it this time? Or would that make little difference if the sealer has already penetrated the tiles around the edges?

Is this just something we will have to live with if we do not want to completely re-tile?

If it was your project, what would your next move be?

Thanks guys, your help is much appreciated!
__________________
Ryden
Ryden is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 07-30-2013, 02:05 PM   #12
MDtile
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,360
That is a really tough call to make at this point Ryden, and definitely yours to make. No one knows where it will go to from here:

Do you try to seal the grout? It is the grout wicking water and allowing it into the un-sealed sides of the tiles right now. This may also be the only reason it is drying right now though also. The marble is much denser than the grout, so I would think it is probably sealed-up good on the faces of the tile. The grout is still porous enough to be allowing water in. Would it be possible to completely seal the grout is hard to say, not in my experience.

Penetrating sealers are supposed to allow the tile to "breath"; slowing the absorption of a stain, allowing time for spills to be toweled-up before it soaks into the stone. At the same time, the penetrating-type sealer is supposed to allow the stone to breath, so that moisture does not become trapped in the stone. It is a compromise of function, but the purpose was never to attempt to "waterproof" the stone. I don't believe that anything other than some type of sprayed-on surface coater could possibly "waterproof" the entire tile/grout surface, like a clear version of Hydroban. Unfortunately, the pros and cons of surface sealers make them much worse than a penetrating sealer. Yellowing, blushing, blistering, and impossible to remove without damaging the stone make surface sealers the last thing you would want to do stone.

I think it is high time that the manufacturers of sealers get honest with people, and start warning them about these issues. It isn't a problem with most stones, but having water trapped behind sealer unable to evaporate out has been rearing its ugly head with Carrera-type marbles. It's not like it is every single Carrera install though also. I have installed many Carrera showers, most of which have been sealed, without incident. I do not seal, I leave that as a home owner choice, and also as a personal business choice, as to sell sealing services would raise my liability insurance rates. Doesn't that beat all? If I am listed as a stone "sealer", I am more likely to be sued than if I just fabricate and install stone. With that in mind, I choose not to seal. I refer customers to stone sealing specialists. All stone slab countertops have always left my shop with a coat of sealer, but it is not on paper, and customers are informed that sealing is their responsibility whether they choose to DIY or hire a sealing specialist. Sealer has been applied to tile installs when requested, but only after the customer has signed-off on a disclaimer relieving me of responsibility for any problems.

I've learned a few things over the years
MDtile is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 08-20-2013, 12:37 PM   #13
Ryden
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 6
I have an update along with a question....

We have decided to use the shower as is. It's been over a week now of daily use and of course the tiles are discoloured again, and the discoloured area grows every day, which was expected.

My question is:

If we continue to run the shower normally (2x per day on average) will we have to worry about mold forming behind the tiles if they don't get the chance to dry completely?
__________________
Ryden
Ryden is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 08-20-2013, 03:25 PM   #14
Lazarus
Texas Tile Contractor
 
Lazarus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Beaumont, Texas
Posts: 8,078
Probable return to the discoloration after use....looks good after drying.

I don't think I'd worry about mold. Probably won't happen. Dry the shower after use and ventilate. You DO have a fan in the ceiling, don't you?
__________________
Laz...

"Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea."
Lazarus is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 08-20-2013, 05:45 PM   #15
Houston Remodeler
Pondering retirement daily

STAR Senior Contributor

 
Houston Remodeler's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Houston Texas
Posts: 28,201
I think the pH of marble is too high for support mold growth. I know thinset is too high a pH.
__________________
Paul1

For when DIY isn't such a good idea...
Houston TX area Kitchen & Bath Remodeling


http://CabotAndRowe.com
Houston Remodeler is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Stonetooling.com   Tile-Assn.com   National Gypsum Permabase


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Polishing edges on marble tile Weaselboys Tile Forum/Advice Board 9 04-02-2012 03:01 PM
How does a DIYer polish the edges of marble tile? kgsd Tile Forum/Advice Board 2 09-26-2009 12:39 AM
prepping shower for marble installation + finishing marble edges rusty Tile Forum/Advice Board 2 07-02-2008 07:53 AM
Marble Tile in Shower Absorbing Water mspitalney Tile Forum/Advice Board 9 07-11-2005 05:32 PM
polishing the marble tile edges 30all Tile Forum/Advice Board 2 07-29-2004 04:47 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:26 PM.


Sponsors

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 2018 John Bridge & Associates, LLC