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How To Spot Hidden Shower Leaks

Tuesday, July 25th, 2017

leaky showerProfessional home inspectors know that shower leaks can be tricky to trace back to the source. Leaky showers often cause gradual, unseen water damage that progresses for some time before it becomes conspicuous. By then, structural damage may have occurred. Mold growth may be triggered in hidden areas and chronically wet wood attracts termites, as well. Be alert to these signs of shower leaks and take action ASAP to correct the problem and minimize water damage.

  • Water pooling on bathroom floor during a shower. This is often the easiest fix. If it’s a shower stall with a sliding or hinged door, a defective door seal may be allowing splashes to escape the stall. The seal is usually a replaceable item without installing a new door.
  • Dampness affecting wall adjacent to the shower stall, above floor level. Leaks in plumbing supply lines to the shower, the valve assembly or the shower arm supporting the shower head usually occur inside the wall. Wetness gradually spreads, saturating the wall and causing tile to fall off or paint to peel. This is frequently noticeable at a level higher than the floor, distinguishing it from water leakage through the bottom of the stall.
  • Stains on ceiling of room beneath bathroom. Usually, this indicates leakage through the floor of the stall. Shower stalls incorporate a drip pan or membrane underneath the unit to catch leakage through tile grout, the shower drain gasket or cracks in a fiberglass stall. Old-style drip pans may deteriorate with age and allow leakage to soak through the subfloor, rotting and deteriorating the plywood, then penetrate the ceiling below. If the shower is on the ground floor, water damage may be visible from the crawl space directly under the stall. Replacement of a defective shower pan usually entails substantial work to remove the stall. However, unlike original equipment pans installed in older homes, new flexible PVC or chlorinated polyethylene membranes have virtually unlimited service life and help prevent shower water damage for the long term.

Ask the experts at Rytech, Inc. about professional service to remediate water damage due to shower leaks.

Handle Leaks Fast! Damage Can Be Worse Than It Appears…

Thursday, April 6th, 2017

shower leaksAny water leaks inside your home can be damaging, but shower leaks are particularly insidious. A leak from a sink fixture, for example, will typically be conspicuous in the cabinet underneath the sink or as pooling on the adjacent floor. However, because of its configuration in the house structure, shower leaks often go unseen and may cause extensive damage before they’re pinpointed.

Water damage doesn’t take much time or necessarily involve a large volume of water. Toxic mold growth is triggered within 48 hours of exposure to moisture from even a small plumbing leak. Because many bathrooms are upstairs, minor shower leaks quickly migrate downward, soaking vulnerable wooden structure along the way and saturating the ceiling in rooms below.

Shower leaks can occur from several points of origin:

  • Leakage around the shower door frame, through the door channel or the gasket that seals the door may seep through the joint where floor tiles meet the shower stall. Water can then migrate through the subfloor, pool beneath the shower stall pan or penetrate adjacent rooms.
  • Shower plumbing such as soldered hot and cold water pipe joints, the mixing valve and other components are recessed into the wall cavity next to the stall. Leakage from these components drips downward into the wall cavity, where wetness rapidly accumulates and doesn’t evaporate. Mold growth and rotted building materials result.
  • The shower drain itself may leak at a joint in the drain pipe or around the gasket that seals the drain plate to the floor of the stall.
  • Sealed underneath the shower, a liner is installed to catch minor leakage and convey it into the drain line. Made of flexible waterproof material, the shower liner may eventually deteriorate with age and no longer hold water. Leakage directly beneath the shower penetrates the subfloor and structure underneath the shower, causing deterioration. Replacement of a leaky shower liner is usually major surgery that requires substantial dismantling of the shower to access the liner.

Ask the professionals at Rytech Inc. for more about potential water damage from shower leaks or other plumbing fixtures in the home.

Don’t Let a Shower Leak Turn Into a Water Damage Issue

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

shower leaksShower leaks can be the source of serious chronic water damage. They’re also frequently the source of mystery about where the leak originates. Most showers are enclosures, either one-piece molded fiberglass or a tiled surround mated with a tub, so even substantial leakage may occur covertly, concealed behind the enclosure. (more…)