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I Tiled This Shower and It FAILED HORRIBLY!!!--- Find out WHY

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Published on May 10, 2019

I Tiled This Shower and It FAILED HORRIBLY!!!--- Find out WHY

When you are in business for a long time, call backs are inevitable. Sometimes they can be your fault, other times they can be from normal wear and tear maintenance issues or manufacturers defects.
This shower was installed in 2006, using the CUSTOMER SUPPLIED waterproofing membrane with their accompanying linear drain. This drain, despite using the noble seal membrane, was NOT-- I repeat, NOT A NOBLE DRAIN!. It appears to be an aftermarket product that used Noble membrane. It came with a pre-sloped foam base, the first of its kind as I recall. In our area, we always used mud bases and hot mop or vinyl shower pans. This method was completely new to me, and I told the homeowner that I had never seen a system like this or installed a system like this. It is similar to the Schluter Kerdi system, which we are now all very familiar with.
The customer called me last month to ask me about some loose and cracking tiles in the shower floor and if there was any way to save the rest of the shower. I went out for an initial site visit and my first thought was that maybe the shower door guys had punctured the waterproofing membrane and that is what caused the shower to fail. I broke a piece of the tile and dug down to the sub floor and found that the waterproofing had been compromised and the wood subfloor was wet.

This video is of the rescheduled a visit to remove as much of the floor as possible, to see the extent of the water damage, and to see if the rest of the bathroom was salvageable.

Since the homeowner had purchased the original waterproofing, and the shower was past the 10 year manufacturers warranty, he agreed to pay for whatever repairs needed to be done. He wanted to use our company again because he was very pleased with the work we had done in this bathroom and the rest of his house as well.

Upon further inspection, the shower door was not the source of the water penetration. The source was that the factory installed polyethylene flap that was bonded to the stainless steel drain body had completely de-laminated, allowing water to pour right into the wood subfloor below.

Unfortunately, the extent of the water damage didn't stop at the subfloor level, but rotted out several structural wood members including floor joists, girders, and wall studs. This bathroom and the adjacent walls will need to be completely removed and replaced.
In this rare instance, it was a manufacturing defect that caused major damage that will cost several thousand dollars to repair.

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