Bill V & pros: Help! Shower Crisis!

chgojudyinazNovember 11, 2012

The tile installer has just informed me that the shower wall is significantly out of plumb -- at least a half inch. He was able to fit a pencil behind it. I don't understand how this happened since they told me that it looked good when they were hanging the hardibacker. It has now been waterproofed with Hydroban -- the pan and all the way up the walls. The installer used fabric under the Hydroban in the pan, which the tile co owner/foreman had not told him to do. I could tell by the owner's reaction when he stopped by to look at it at the end of the day. The top part of the walls are just a tiny bit off plumb, but the bottom 3 feet is where the big problem is. The tile guy is suggesting that he will mud the corner and feather out towards the sides where the hardi meets the sheetrock. That will bring the shower tile out from the wall at the top in the corner where it wouldn't be noticeable, he says (there is bullnose going all the way around the top portion above the chair rail, and tile wainscoting continuing around the room). I think this would be an awful lot of mud, and think that the backplates of the shower control and showerhead will be tilted left to right, which will look odd.

Should I insist that he tear out the bottom section of hardibacker? Would he have to tear out part of the pan, too? Is that OK? or would he have to tear out and replace the whole pan in order for it to be structurally sound? I am meeting the tile co. owner here tomorrow at 8 am to discuss this, and I am afraid that he will argue to do the quickest thing, which may or may not be in my best interests. His comment about it was that they had screwed to the existing framing as it was, and that the wall studs must not be plumb. So why didn't they think it was a problem then? Please help me know what I should expect to be done at this point to make it right. Thank you!


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You paid for a quality shower. It was not delivered. I would, and you have every right to insist it be torn out and built properly.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 12:42PM
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Would the whole pan and all the hardibacker have to be torn out and start over from scratch? Or could they just remove the bottom section of hardibacker? I don't know enough about construction to know what would be structurally sound, and I don't have a genl contractor. This is a licensed tile company with a clean record that does work for high end builders. Thanks for your advice.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 12:50PM
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