Shower cubicle strip and rebuild

Discussion in 'Building' started by Avocet, 10 Sep 2019.

  1. Avocet

    Avocet

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    I'm posting this in here, as it contains a variety of elements - building, plumbing, plastering, tiling, etc - so I'm not sure where to put it, but here goes!

    Our house dates all the way back to 1995. It's a pretty ordinary concrete block house with some studding and plasterboard internal walls. The bathroom has a three-sided space in it, which forms a shower cubicle. All three walls are plasterboard with tiles stuck on them. The other day, we noticed water dripping from the ceiling downstairs (some distance from the shower)! I suspected a central heating pipe, but when I cut a hole in the ceiling plasterboard, I could see that the water was running along the joists from the direction of the shower.

    I've ripped off the tiles (many of them simply "fell off")! and the problem seems to have been twofold. First of all, the shower tray is too small for the space, so there are some horizontal tiles around the base of it - clearly, water has been getting under them and the chipboard floor is wet and mushy in places. Secondly, the cold water pipe feeding the electric shower, comes up inside the studding wall, and through the tiles into the back of the shower unit. One of the unions in the pipe was leaking (and had probably been dripping for a long time)!

    I've cut (well, "punched"!) a hole in the soggy plasterboard and fitted an isolating ball valve in the copper pipe, so at least now, the leak has stopped. The question now, is what to do next? Obviously, I need to pull up the rotten bits of floor and make good. What should I do with the plasterboard? Will it dry out if left? Should I rip it out and replace? How do I go about waterproofing it PROPERLY next time?

    All thoughts, gratefully received!
     
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  3. terryplumb

    terryplumb

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    Remove plasterboards ,fit new ones in due course.
    Remove tray and examine / repair damaged flooring / joists maybe.
    If the pipe to electric shower is copper ,remove isolator and solder in new copper sections ,extending out the wall for shower connection later ,and fit an isolation valve or cap the pipe.
    You do not want horizontal tiles around the shower tray . Either get the correct size tray ,or build out the wall to correct distance to accommodate your tray.There are various products on the market for waterproofing shower areas.
    If tiling , grouting ,and siliconing are done properly that's all you need. Other people will have different opinions ,and will advocate Tanking and various other methods of " waterproofing " ,including the boards that are used in preference to plasterboard . It doesn't matter what methods you choose to go for ,Take it from me ,if the grout and silicone sealants are not MAINTAINED in good order ,ongoing ,then you will get water escaping from the shower area ,and damage resulting.
     
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  4. Aunsh

    Aunsh

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    A couple of thoughts, in addition to the advice from Terry: Find a shower tray with built-in tiling upstands. Consider using Multipanel, or equivalent, in place of tiles, and and fit it so that the bottom of the panel is inside the upstand to shed the water into the tray. Use good quality sealant, like Dow 785.
     
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  5. bobasd

    bobasd

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    Best thing to do next would be to post some pics?
    Have you investigated "Shower Pods"? They come in all sizes and some are one piece, and some three piece etc - some have the tray attached.
    They are mostly made of plastic and glass.
     
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  6. Avocet

    Avocet

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    Thanks everyone. No, I hadn't heard of "shower pods" - will look into those! I've still to get the tray out. It seems that the original builders put something that looks like a bin bag in the gap between it and the plasterboard and then filled it with concrete! I have a sort of "concrete log" between the edge of the shower tray and the mushy plasterboard... I'll get some photos and post them up when I've got the tray out.

    Is there something similar to plasterboard that is a bit more water-resistant?
     
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  8. 23vc

    23vc

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    Yep, cement board, look up hardibacker/aquapanel.
    I deffo recommend tanking it though. It’s dead cheap (I’m sure it’s cheaper now than the stuff used to be say 20 years ago) and it’s additional protection.
     
  9. Avocet

    Avocet

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    A few photos:
    20190908_203217.jpg

    20190908_203250.jpg


    20190912_133303.jpg


    20190912_133310.jpg


    20190912_133326.jpg

    I'll upload a few more piccies when I've got the tray out. I'm mightily tempted by babasd's "shower pod" idea, but they seem to need building and then sliding into the recess and as you can see, I have the towel rail in the way. I'd have to drain down the central heating system to remove it.

    The recess is fairly generous, it's 975mm wide and 990mm deep, so I guess I could just pick a slightly smaller pod and make some sort of infill for the gap between the right hand end and the wall?
     
  10. Avocet

    Avocet

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    Just another question, if I may?

    Does anyone have any recommendations as to how best to get the old tile adhesive off the plasterboard walls in the photos above, please?
     
  11. oldbutnotdead

    oldbutnotdead

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    Best method- pull the plasterboard off the wall and skip it. Tile adhesive is much stronger than plasterboard...
    Replace with cement based boards or Marmox or even waterproof shower boards (google them, the price looks high but actually isn't one you factor in all the costs of boarding and tiling)
    EDIT Once you're back to joists/bare blocks you can pack the joists out to avoid the horizontal tile nonsense
     
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  12. DIYnot Local

    DIYnot Local

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