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emergency need help

Posted by anita55 (My Page) on
Sun, Jul 27, 08 at 8:50

Good morning, we have a problem - hoping for some advice. We have a vacation rental house at the shore in another state. The cleaning service told us that the tiles on the wall in the bathroom inside the tub(the wall with the fixtures on it) are all loose and now there is a hole. We have tenants in there but we need to fix this quickly at least temporarily. The cleaning man said that the wall seems to be almost nonexistent behind the tiles and they are sort of hanging off. We have a handy man that we can call and a plumber. Any suggestions how we should proceed so that this tub can be used at this time? Is it possible that the tile can be removed and wallboard put up in a short enough time that it wouldn't affect the renter? Advice please. Thanks so much

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: emergency need help

First, I'd wonder why the wall is 'almost nonexistent'.
Termites, wet or dry rot or other water damage?
For a qiuck fix, I'd consider installing a tub surround kit from Big Blue or Big Orange, etal.

RE: emergency need help

hi Randy, yes I'm sure that the wall has water damage probably from a leaking upstairs tub which has been replaced and all damage repaired(upstairs). So can a tub surround be installed if the wall is not sound or will the wall have to be replaced first anyway? I'm thinking quick and temporary since we know a major overhaul needs to be done as soon as the rental season is over. Thanks so much.

RE: emergency need help

The best fix is to remove all the damaged sheetrock and replace it with blue(green) board---a sheetrock treated for use in damp areas. A tub surround can be installed----could be done in one long day or two days by a single person.

RE: emergency need help

Quick and dirty to last the rest of the summer:
Get a sheet of bathroom paneling, formica?, cut to fit the wall and glue to the tiles or remove the tiles and fasten to whats left of the drywall. Caulk the edges and it should be good for a year or five.

RE: emergency need help

Water passes through tile joints on a regular basis. If the tile backerboard has disintegrated because of this water exposure it is probably made of gypsum wall board. No other backerboard turns to mush when exposed to water.

The backerboard was probably originally water-resistant "Greenboard" so don't replace it with the same material. "Greenboard" is no longer recommended for use in wet areas by US Gypsum and they were the last holdout. The Tile Council of America questioned its use in wet areas back in 1978. In 2006 the International Residential code banned it's use behind tile in showers.

The deterioration is usually in the lower half of the wall (30" above the tub) so perhaps you can just remove that portion and install a 1/2" fiber-reinforced concrete backerboard (Durock, Wonderboard, etc.) and then tile it. I don't like Hardie's backerboard because it wilts in steam conditions. This is not a place to "walk the line" with questionable products.

It shouldn't take long if you use an organic mastic for the tile. Any temporary repair is likely to cause additional water damage elsewhere.

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