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Replacing shower base

Discussion in 'Repairs & Maintenance' started by xanh, 23rd Jun, 2016.

  1. xanh

    xanh Active Member

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    Tenants have reported a crack in the shower base. Not sure how this happened but I don't think it'll make much difference.

    Does anyone know (ballpark) what it will cost to have someone replace a shower base. I understand this will mean re-tiling the bottom row etc. Messy job.

    Has anyone heard or used InnerBath? They put an acrylic one inside (on top) of the existing one and seal it all up.
     
  2. TwoDogs

    TwoDogs Well-Known Member

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    Is the base or just the grout? If the base, then there will water everywhere, and as these things take time to become visible there will be floor/wall damage too.

    It's it just grout, then easy DIY to fix so long as not affecting the membrane (assuming there is one).

    If not, can of worms. How old is the installation?
     
  3. xanh

    xanh Active Member

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    Thanks TwoDogs.

    It is a solid shower base.
    So the water that has leaked under the shower base will have nowhere to go and just stay there? I guess it would if the waterproofing is in place.

    If I just used the 'innerbath' method, will I still have problems because there will still be water sitting under the original base?
     
  4. kitdoctor

    kitdoctor Well-Known Member

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    You're looking at $1200-$1500 to pull the shower base out and replace it including tiling, removing shower screen etc. I did one in Brisbane recently. The hardest thing was finding someone to do this as many walk away, want to renovate your entire bathroom etc.
     
  5. Otie

    Otie Well-Known Member

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    In Melbourne expect to spend $3k+ to have the base and shower recess walls replaced properly. It is a 7-8 day job to have it done properly. Make sure they;
    Day one- demo (all shower tiles/sheeting have to go to get base out)
    don't let anyone retile bottom row only, it doesn't comply with code and the waterproofing is not waterproof or compliant if there is a join in it where the old and new sheeting/tiles join. Must be a seamless barrier of membrane (whole shower recess), then tiled
    Day2- install new base
    Day 3- sheet up shower recess walls, 1st coat membrane (needs 24 hours between layers)
    Day 4- second coat waterproof membrane
    Day 5- Tile shower recess
    Day 6- Grouting
    Day 7- caulking (silicone) & install screen and taps/shower head.

    Anything less and you are setting yourself up for failure, you will be repairing the leaking walls within 2 years.

    Innerbath are good, as long as the wall tiles are in good condition (no leaks in walls, grout in good condition etc).
    Any water that has leaked beneath base (if on slab) will most likely drain into the hole beneath the base where the trap is that is backfilled with sand- it will dry out.
    If on a timber floor it will have been leaking into the timber floor, timber floor absorbing it and slowly rotting, however would usually take atleast a year of leaking through the crack to cause enough water damage to warrant replacing any timber flooring, usually it would just be a water stain as each time you stop using the shower every day it has a chance to dry out until its next use.
     
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  6. xanh

    xanh Active Member

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    Thanks Otie and Kitdoctor.

    The house is on stumps so there may be leaking underneath. Hopefully the water damage won't be too bad. I guess I need to get on to it quick to limit the damage.

    I've requested quotes from the PM so time will tell...

    I wouldn't have enough spare tiles for the whole shower area.

    Forgive my ignorance, but why can't you remove the bottom row of tiles and re-apply the membrane to the area where the tiles were (right up to where the existing waterproof membrane? Like repainting a patch on a wall.
     
  7. Otie

    Otie Well-Known Member

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    The reason you can't do that is because for waterproof to be seamless, it can't have a join. You can't seal the join because there will be movement when the new part settles, the join slightly moves, causing the grout to crack, and the waterproof (paint like rubber) will also crack, waterproof must be applied in one go over the entire surface. It is a bit hard to explain, but I will do my best:)
    In your original shower, there would just have been two full sheets of sheeting, if you retile the bottom sections, there will be joins between the existing tiles you have left, and the new section you are replacing. You can't join the waterproof because the top part will have the existing tiles on it, you can try but you can't "overlap" the membrane as the tiles are there on the part you would need to overlap which would be the only way you could do a join. Water can then get through the cracked grout (it will take a few months to settle that is when the grout on the join will crack) and then the water will get through the membrane and sheeting joins. If the join was high up in the shower it would be okay, but in the lower part of the shower, water gets onto the walls as when you shower water hits your body then bounces off onto the lower walls (this is why the bottom always gets dirtier than the top). Usually insurance will cover if the crack is caused by accidental damage if you have coverage, otherwise if you can find a leaking trap or pipe they will cover it. I have rarely heard of it being covered other than accidental damage though.
     
  8. JacM

    JacM VIC Buyer's Agent Business Member

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