Leaking shower pan?

Reply

  #1  
Old 10-16-12, 07:22 PM
G
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Leaking shower pan?

HELLLLP! My wife and I built a new home 2.5 years ago and have had just a few problems with... well... just about everything. I've managed to keep up with most things, however a few weeks ago we noticed a water stain in our kitchen. Apparently a slow leak had finally shown up through the drywall. Thanks to a posting here about a shower drain leak, that is now fixed. While cleaning up the first mess, I decided to recaulk the shoddy job done by the builder. During that investigation I discovered that there had been another slow leak on the outside of the tub pan along the tile and the vinyl floor. This had led to quite a bit of damage to the subfloor, mold under the vinyl, etc... So, figuring the leak to be an issue of a poor caulk job, I removed the door frame, and all the original caulking, reinstalled and recaulked. The first day using the shower after the repair, and again found a small amount of water in the same corner.

Please see the attached pictures. I did leave the weep holes open to prevent water from traveling behind the tile and down to the floor. Please... anyone?
 
Attached Images     
  #2  
Old 10-17-12, 04:06 AM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,965
Received 6 Votes on 6 Posts
The tub base has a lip that would prevent any striking water from traveling upward. I question the gap in the door base. It must be continuous or you will have a leak. Everything must be completely dry in order for the silicone to adhere properly. The one question that will always come back is how good a repair did you make on the shower drain? Did you completely remove the drain from the base and reseal it? Where was the leak originally? Do you have access to this ceiling area now?
 
  #3  
Old 10-17-12, 12:28 PM
P
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: NC, USA
Posts: 24,472
Received 755 Votes on 694 Posts
Often with acrylic/fiberglass shower pans & tubs I'll see the drain leak if the tub/shower is not properly supported. Slight movement when someone moves about keeps flexing the drain connection and piping until something eventually starts leaking. So, next time in the shower pay attention to how solid the floor feels and if there is any movement.
 
  #4  
Old 10-17-12, 03:49 PM
G
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Dane/Chandler
The drain actually was leaking the entire time we owned the home. However, not from movement. The base seems to be pretty well supported. The drain, once I cut a hole in the kitchen ceiling, was covered in an overabundance of silicone. Apparently it was an issue at install, and they figured enough silicone would correct the problem. I undid all of that, used a new rubber washer, reinstalled the plumbers putty (which had already started to corrode) and connected everything back together. That has corrected the problem. The hole is still there, and no leaks from that spot since.

The leak that we discovered after the fact is separate, and is driving me nuts. After I tore out the shower door, and the old caulk, I cleaned everything up, reinstalled the shower door, and did a pretty good job on the caulk job (if I do say so myself). The water seems to be coming from BEHIND the tile. After my shower I checked everything with a dry paper towel. No leaks on or around the new caulk I had installed. It was just sitting in that corner between the tile and the tub pan. Is it possible that water is travling behind the tile (with my caulk keeping the water back there) and the substrate behind the tile? Can that weeping hole be the issue?
 
  #5  
Old 10-17-12, 04:05 PM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,965
Received 6 Votes on 6 Posts
From behind the tile is a possibility. In relation to the stain where is your control valve/shower head? If it is on this wall, I would take a close look at the shower arm just to make sure it isn't leaking during a shower. I know it is sometimes drastic, but do you have access behind the control valve, say in a closet? Would be nice to cut a hole to take a look while someone showered (not literally , but at the piping and possible leaks. My bet is on the shower arm.
 
  #6  
Old 10-17-12, 04:51 PM
G
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
The wall where the leak is also houses all of the supply for the shower. I was afraid of this as well, but noticed (from the hole created by the drain leak) that I could also see the supply lines going up to the control and shower head. There doesn't seem to be any water coming down those lines when we shower. Also, the leak doesn't appear when we just run the shower (as we did when I tested my new caulk job). It only seems to appear when someone is in the shower, and that wall is getting splashed.

If you feel as though it could be the supply, I can gain access to it, but only by cutting another hole in our master bedroom wall. I'm hoping that isn't the answer, and that by seeing the supply and finding them dry (from underneath) I won't have to go through that?
 
  #7  
Old 10-17-12, 06:03 PM
bish80's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Maryland
Posts: 334
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Why not try to eliminate possibility of the tile leaking first. Just tape up some plastic sheathing or garbage bags to the tile for a day or two.
 
  #8  
Old 10-17-12, 06:27 PM
G
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Bish...

That's a great idea. It sure would save me from making a new hole in a new wall if I didn't have to!

Thanks!
 
  #9  
Old 10-17-12, 08:09 PM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,965
Received 6 Votes on 6 Posts
Before you tape plastic on the walls, try pouring a bucket of water in the base only, thereby eliminating or including the drain as the culprit.
 
  #10  
Old 10-22-12, 04:11 PM
G
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Well.... The drain leak is officially fixed. Numerous buckets of water poured down the drain, and no issues with that. So, we can eliminate that idea going forward.

I then attempted to tape a larger plastic sheet (painters drop cloth) over the wall where the corner leak was found. I don't know about ya'll, but trying to seal a grouted tile wall is about impossible. There was some water getting down to the corner where the weep hole is. So, I tried using Press N Seal on just the corner where the weep hole was. About a 6 inch square in that corner. We used the shower once, and guess what?!? No leak appeared! We then used the shower again, and noticed that the leak was back!

Typically the leak was showing just a few minutes after a shower was started. Apparently the Press N Seal was delaying whatever issue there is. After the second shower was done, I peeled back the press n seal, and found that there was water sitting behind the plastic at the bottom corner of the wall, where it meets the shower pan, and where the weeping hole is. (could all of this water been coming from behind the tile? Essentially the weep hole is working, but too much water is getting back behind?) The tile itself where the press n seal covered was NOT wet. Any thoughts at this point? Running out of steam and ideas on this one...
 
  #11  
Old 10-22-12, 07:42 PM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,965
Received 6 Votes on 6 Posts
Have you eliminated the shower head stand pipe from being the culprit? Often it will leak and sometimes only drip to allow a nuisance like what you have.
 
  #12  
Old 10-23-12, 07:33 AM
czizzi's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 7,388
Received 15 Votes on 13 Posts
I've never heard of a weep hole in a tiled shower/tub. The base has a tile lip orientated in line with the back of the tile. However the front of the shower just to the left of your weep hole does not have a lip of any kind. So in essence you are filling the void with water that only has two ways out: 1-back into the shower pan or 2-out the front of the shower pan. Guess which route it is taking (actually, both). Seal up the base of the tile and your leak should go away.
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description: