Shower niche - not waterproof bc of gap
My name is Karen and I am new to the world of bathroom remodeling. I would really appreciate your help with the following problem.
We have had our GK put in shower niches in our shower/tub combo (we are gutting bathrooms, just not moving any plumbing around). I read up on waterproofing and saw we should have a waterproofing membrane like redgard, so we asked them to do that including on the niche. There is hardiebacker on the walls and then redgard on top of it.
The problem with one niche is that when we examined it it wasn't properly built. They used hardie to build it out, but the corners arent aligned, and one part of the niche doesnt have hardie on it. There are gaps in the corner that would clearly lead to water leaking into the walls or at the least have moisture exposure. The other niches were built properly, but not this one. You can see the plywood beneath.
They had already tiled all the walls around the niche and the back wall of the niche. I don't think it is an option to have them take the tile out and redo the niche entirely, so my question to you is, given the situation, what is the best way to minimize water leakage? When I raised the issue to them they said they would take care of it - and then they put cement on top of one of the gaps to fill the gap (not sure if that is waterproof and rather doubt it), then some redgard on top. Doesnt look as tho the Redgard is applied well either.
I am really worried about water damage and there are still some gaps on the top left and right corners of the niche. What do you recommend I ask them to do to fix this? Use a waterproof tape to tape off the gaps? Does cementing it work? Obviously the best thing would be to have them redo the niche entirely, but tile is already on the wall around it and not sure if they can just pull out surrounding tile. It hasn't been grouted, just set.
I am at my wits end trying to figure this out and know it has to be fixed now or we will be facing the possibility of water damage down the road. Any advice would be most appreciated. Thank you.
Shower niche is not waterproof because of gap in backer boards and ....
Your shower has not been built properly at all. I would assume they did not use reinforcing tape and thin-set in the corners either (not niches but where the long wall meets the two short walls).
Originally Posted by Karen K.
There is little that can be done at this point other than a do over. You may be able to waterproof the sides and bottom and perhaps use a product like Kerdi Fix to seam the waterproofing to the tile itself in the back but this will not address the front edge.
While you stress over this ask yourself this question. "Who is the client in this arrangement?"
How did you find this tile crew?
Ask them to give you in writting a warranty for any damages caused by water damage. Or ask them to reinstall the backer board as per manufactures guidelines.
How not to build a shower niche in Texas
Karen that is what I meant. If the current niche is waterproofed and you use Kerdi fix later to seal this waterproofing to the back wall tile you have five sides sorted.
The front side of course will not be waterproofed to the wall face.
This will not help you now but in the future ensure that all quotes include this in them
"All work to conform to the current edition of the TCNA Specification Guidelines."
If you ask your tile crew what TCNA stands for they most likely will say "Huh???"
TCNA = Tile Council of North America.
For my fellow country men here in Canada the email quote should read
"All work to conform to the current TTMAC Specification Guidelines"
NIches are tricky since they often fall outside any specification and most fail in the requirements for framing on the back wall.
I like the niches built with a preslope and waterproofed.
I have a new thread showcasing one of my many techniques for building a waterproof niche.
You can see this build here.
Originally Posted by Karen K.
Liquid waterproofing for shower niches
Jim I have found that three coats are required if a brush is used applying liquid waterproofing products. Applying liquid waterproofing is not hard but it needs to go on thicker than you think. I find when applying at the proper thickness requirements in two coats it just goes on to heavy and it is to hard to get an even coverage.
Think about this. When Hydro Ban is installed properly at the higher thickness range it is in fact thicker than Noble Company's Noble Seal TS. This would make it almost 5 times thicker than Kerdi. No way that is going to happen in two coats!
Failed Kerdi Board Hydro Ban Shower Niche in texas
Karen I saw what I belive to be the pictures of your niche over on the JB Forum (http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/...=103478&page=2) and I must say that this is poor way to build your shower. I would stop the job and at the very least make the installers strip away the tiles on the vertical wall surround the niche and apply redguard after installing thin-set and mesh tape.
I understand that you don't want conflict but this is poorly built.
I was email this picture a few weeks ago from a homeowner in Texas.
This picture was taken after the Kerdi band was removed from the face of the niche.
In the end the niche was ripped out and covered up. This niche installed by a "Pro" and by one of the top writers on the JB forum.
Never let a trade cut corners on your home. Ever. It is so easy to keep tabs on builders and trades these days.
Just start a new thread and watch what happens.
Waterproofing a shower niche in Houston
Yes it is.
Originally Posted by Karen K.
I'm always shocked the crap men get away with on a job site. Make them fix it or show them the door.
There is no need to be your G.C.'s buddy. No need to make tea at lunch. Tell them what you want. Specify the installation base standard (TCNA 2012 Specification Guide) and then get out of the way.
If the job is not done right they can fix it. Don't pay more for a proper build. If you did not specify any base standard or any code at all the shower should be built at the very least to local code which will require the manufactures installation system be followed.
Specifying jobs is so critical. We are working on a home in West vancouver where 4 of five bathrooms failed. 4 OF 5!!! And the homeowner could not sue the builder because everyone was inspected by the City of West Vancouver.
Had these new clients of mine specified that the TTMAC specification guidelines be followed they would not be paying me to fix the showers in their home. The builder would be on the hook for all the repairs.
These bathrooms belong to you. Your kids sleep in the next room. Your Mom uses the bath. Your kids spend hours at bath time every week.
Build them better.
You can't tile over wood in a shower???
Jim I'm sure you know all about this build. More pictures and the entire story here - http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/...t=eisa&page=19) It is well covered on the JB site. Your buddy Paul's company built this shower in Texas. I believe JB recommends this installer to his clients.
Originally Posted by jadnashua
The shower niche is a Hydro Ban niche. It was installed with Laticrete chaulking instead of Kerdi Fix. I'm assuming to save $20.00.
Good men can take corners. It is so key to follow up on the work. Ask for pictures before walls get covered up.
The red in the picture is not Red Guard but the wood stud (they are red in Texas for some reason). Had my guy did this I would let him go.
Removing a Hydro Ban niche in a Kerdi Board shower
Are you kidding me Jim. Of course that's Kerdi Board. Didn't you say you went to the Kerdi Board training? Have you ever seen Kerdi with grid lines?
Originally Posted by jadnashua
This was a hybrid shower built wrong. The homeowner did their research and called out Paul online.
They reached out to me here on Terry's site and I got Schluter's head tech to help out. Dale Kempster was very helpful and outline a number of options. In the end the client decided to omit the niche all together.
What has happened with both these niche builds is that the client has gone online and called out the builder. We have helped and hopefully saved a couple showers from failing! That's two more showers out of the landfill and two new people not going to renovate their showers pre-maturely.
Only good comes from follow up on your builder. I welcome the pictures - tell my clients to be snap happy.
I also build above industry guidelines and water test every project. I know my work is solid.
This client with the Kerdi Board Hydro Ban niche had to ask for the flood test to be preformed. Why is the client having to ask for a flood test.
Texas follows the Universal Building Code and Plumbing Code. Both code books require a flood or leak test.
It's so wrong that clients seem to know more about shower construction that the men being hired to build them.