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Thread: How much should the water level drop in a Kerdi Shower flood test?

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    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    Default How much should the water level drop in a Kerdi Shower flood test?

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    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

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    HandyWOMAN pitterpat's Avatar
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    Hi,

    The Schluter rep will typically say just the evaporation amount.

    Pat
    Pat Harris
    A HandyWOMAN Service, LLC
    "Why call a handyman when you can call A HandyWOMAN?

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    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

    Always get construction advice double checked by your local city hall. Flood Test Every Shower - Every Time.

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    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Weep holes and clamping drains are part and parcel to a conventional shower construction, and the gravity and draining on that was what was said. Except during a flood test, a shower NEVER should see pooled, liquid water on the membrane ever again (except possibly in a conventional shower's liner). The tile and grout will wick some, but because there's not a huge, thick, absorbant mudbed beneath, it dries to the surface quickly once you stop showering.

    If you take some virgin Kerdi and sprinkle some water on it, it will bead up. Eventually, it will go into the fleece. Your picture does not appear to be of a shower, but some mock up and the Kerdi is not well adhered to the backing material. Initially, the water will bead up similar to a bead of water on a nicely waxed car, eventually, it will wet the surface and then the meniscus will invert. Water will wick a little into a seam, the more thinset you leave there, the further it will wick. If your seams overlap at least the minimum specified, it will not get beyond the seam into the backing material. That is the goal, and if done right will make a perfectly waterproof shower as once the tile is installed, very little water will ever get to the membrane and certainly not enough to pool long enough to do anything. That is the beauty of ANY surface membrane.

    Once the fleece does get wetted, it also acts like the pad of a humdifier, and can significantly increase the amount of water lost to evaporation during any extended leak test. The small fibers significantly increase the surface area and lots more water will evaporate from that larger surface area. Just like in an evaporative cooler or a home humidifier.
    Last edited by jadnashua; 12-26-2011 at 09:34 AM.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

    Always get construction advice double checked by your local city hall. Flood Test Every Shower - Every Time.

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    DIY Senior Member dlarrivee's Avatar
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    All the chatter makes me want to avoid a membrane that isn't liquid... The more I read the more I don't like what I see.

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    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    The stuff works as a system, your Kerdi is not adhered to the surface properly, nor is that an approved corner, nor do you have the required overlap and there's too much thinset, where it is used, allowing the thinset to absorb moisture. If the stuff is anchored properly as if it was a real shower, you'd see different results - just like you would in a properly constructed shower. A proper seam has at least two inches of membrane overlap with a thin layer of thinset well embedded into the fleece. Mock it up as if it was a real shower pan, and you'd see different results...I know, as I've seen it. Days of being full of water and no evidence of moisture intrusion.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

    Always get construction advice double checked by your local city hall. Flood Test Every Shower - Every Time.

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    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

    Always get construction advice double checked by your local city hall. Flood Test Every Shower - Every Time.

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    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Using too much, or too dry of a thinset layer underneath any sheet membrane, especially at the seams is probably the biggest error people make. Using the proper mixing, trowel, and the proper angle and this normally isn't an issue at all. A properly mixed thinset for this application can hold a notch, but just barely and a bit of slump may be better than nice crisp notches. If you embed the fleece properly, and you should pull back a section while doing this to check, then it will not wick past the mandated minimum 2" seam. The instructions say to wait at least 24-hours after installation of Kerdi prior to performing a flood test. Then, if you use a modified thinset, it may never perform properly. It all comes back to workmanship and following the instructions.

    As I've said before, overnight, and especially over several days, in the winter particularly or if you happen to live in the dry southwest of the US, an 1/8" per day or more is not unheard of for the level to drop in a waterproof container, let alone one with fabric mesh on it that can wick a bit of moisture up into the air and significantly increase the surface area. My toilets will drop over an inch a week with the lid down while away on vacation...with the area totally open like in a shower stall...I'd not be surprised if it was more. Living in a temperate rain forrest is not the norm for most people...your results may differ. The RH in my place right now is 23%. Vancouver is likely much higher than that most seasons.

    Then, you have to consider that except during a flood test, a shower will likely never again have standing water in it. Even a poorly installed one still takes a long time for the water to wick into an improper seam - far longer than a typical cbu would take to wick up from the liner far enough to cause damage there. From a test someone did, they found that cbu tends to wick up about 6" when sitting in liquid water which might happen in an improperly installed conventional shower with a waterlogged pan. This is likely cbu brand dependent, as some wick more than others.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    Default Is Kerdi Hydrophobic? I say no. How can a material that wicks water be Hydrophobic

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    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

    Always get construction advice double checked by your local city hall. Flood Test Every Shower - Every Time.

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    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    Default Failed Kerdi Board Hydro Ban Niche Detail.

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    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

    Always get construction advice double checked by your local city hall. Flood Test Every Shower - Every Time.

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    DIY Member Justadrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JWhipple
    So two months later and still the offer of a free Kerdi Line Drain on the table not one person can upload a video of the Kerdi Vortex fold. I love how many people claim to do it and that not one person will prove me wrong with video proof. It has been almost a year or more that I have tried to find anyone that can do it.
    ...because no one cares about it.

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    DIY Member boardable's Avatar
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    John, just did a kerdi shower in my own home. Used Kerdi board and kerdi styrofoam pan with membrane and kerdi drain. Of course after the board is all in, niches cut and sealed I read about the kerdi baord. Water tested a piece and it seems to be fin even when exposing the raw edge to water. Thank god it is a stud wall so hopefully the screws will hold it in. I used kerdi fix and applied it to all the seams that will or could leak on the kerdi for the flood test. I went with a very generous 3-8 inches of overlap so that I could be really sure of sealing. I am reading this post and just not sure If you like Kerdi or not. If the pan passes the flood test I am going to redguard the seams just for extra peace of mind and lay the tile. I am not researching into Wedi and it looks like a great product. I have built many bath surrounds with CB and even shower stalls using the vapor barrier method and never had a problem. I wanted to try a totaly waterproof shower so that is why I tried kerdi. Not sure how the outcome will be. Tha major question is : Do you like kerdi or not? And am I better off next time laying up CB and painting on liquid redguard and using a wedi preformed pan? or a Kerdi pan and drain and CB and redguard. Just looking for your ultimate bullet proof shower recipe and Opinion on whether I just made the biggest mistake of my life with Kerdi ?

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    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Kerdi has been used for MANY years...if it regularly failed, you'd hear about it. As with anything you piece together, it all comes down to the workmanship. If you do it right (assuming it's a good product, and Kerdi is), it will last. Now, you could argue there may be better products. Just like there are lots of choices in life, what's best for one may not be the best for another. there are pros and cons to anything.

    The only failures I've heard of with Kerdiboard are where they either were placed where there was excessive heat (uninsulated steam pipe) or the edge was not sealed at a joint properly, or the cutting technique delaminated it from the foam (as I understand it, that was a defective batch that was recalled and the process resolved - that was several years ago just after it was introduced).
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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