Bad tile repair job or not?


Old 08-07-17, 05:40 PM
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Angry Bad tile repair job or not?

Hey everyone -- first time posting here. I recently had to have a plumber rip open my shower wall to swap out a valve and tub spout. Consequently I also had to find a tile repair person. I found someone on nextdoor who was a handyman type and sounded like he's done this type of patch job many times over. He used cement board, red guard and versabond and I was getting ready to put on my fixtures and patch up the hole on the back (in the garage where drywall was removed for access) when I noticed light coming through the tile on the back, right hand side (see photos). Note this corresponds with the left hand side when viewing from the shower side.

I then went back into the bathroom and noticed tiny little holes in the mortar he applied. Finally, upon further inspection I saw that the white mortar had been generously forced through on the left side (see photo) but on the side where I saw the light through it looks like it's not even present aside from the thin layer in between the tiles.

So, since I'm already $500 in with my plumber and $300 in on this tile repair, I'm reluctant to patch up the drywall and affix the fixtures until I'm certain this is a waterproof job.

Am I crazy to think this tile guy did a ****ty job and neglected to fully mortar around the cement board? Or is the very thin portion of mortar that separates the shower from the interior of the wall typical / safe / waterproof?

If he did a ****ty job should I call him back, or call someone else, or, per the namesake of this forum, do it myself?

He suggested it would be a pain in the ass to pull out the tile and repatch it in the future because of the redguard....


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Last edited by PJmax; 08-07-17 at 07:50 PM. Reason: reoriented pictures
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Old 08-07-17, 06:14 PM
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Inspect the caulk line at the point where the patch meats the tub. I see little wrong based on your pictures. Caulk is required where the tile meets the tub so a little area that is translucent would be expected as it is not grout (which is not translucent).
Old 08-08-17, 02:17 AM
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Fist off, the tile is the wrong color/finish so unless you provided that it;s the first issue.

It looks like you originally had a mud bed, adding cement board would be ok but it should be securely attached to studs and the joints finished with mortar and fiberglass tape to provide a strong/smooth/flat joint. Looks like he just squeezed in some on one side, it;s a weak joint and you could get cracks there.

How is it possible to have light coming through? Is that a grout line on the tile?
No way should you see light coming in through the joints, if light can pass so can water.
Old 08-08-17, 09:28 AM
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Thanks guys.


There is no caulk anywhere on the job he did. Where the tile meets the tub is just grout.


-I selected the tile knowing full well it didn't match color-wise.
-He definitely did not use tape on the joints, but the cement board was affixed to a stud (hard to show in pictures).

And yes I was wondering how the hell it was possible for light to come through as well. The grout (versabond) appears to be so thin and peppered with tiny holes that the light gets through.

Anyway, both of your comments confirm this was a bad job. I don't plan on asking him to come back to fix it since it's clear he was missing some basic training.

The question is now is how do I fix it with the least amount of effort? Can I inject some kind of sealant from the back side into the accessible edges of the patch? Or am I better off removing the tile on the edge there and jamming mortar in from the front and replacing the tile?

The end goal here is so that the shower can be used with no worry of water damage.

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