A leaking bathroom floor is a recipe for disaster.
This occurs when water penetrates through the surface of the bathroom or shower floor. When a vulnerability exists on the surface, be it through loose or cracked tiles, missing tile grout, or damaged sealant, this allows water to enter the sub-floor and damage the sub-structure of the property.
As a result, water enters parts of the property that are ill-equipped to deal with moisture, leading to a number of problems – such as rotting timber, mould and mildew, foul smells, and even termites.
So what’s the solution? And how do you identify this problem in the first place? Read on.
What causes a bathroom floor to leak?
There are many ways a bathroom floor can leak. If you know how to spot the warning signs early, you can then narrow down the source of the problem, and either: solve it on your own, or hire a professional.
Whatever you choose, being informed about the situation is crucial to a successful outcome.
Below is a quick breakdown of the most common causes of bathroom floor leaks.
Loose, cracked, or broken tiles
When a vulnerability exists in the tiles, this enables water to breach the surface, and enter the sub-structure of the property.
Sometimes tiles break due to physical force. Other times, they break as the result of product failure, or natural building movement. Natural building movement occurs in response to changes to the soil conditions. As a result, several parts of the building ‘shift,’ such as the gap between tiles, wall and floor joints, and even door and window frames.
Fortunately, identifying the condition of your tiles is easy. Just perform a quick, thorough visual inspection of your bathroom and shower tiles. If you spot any signs of damage, have those tiles replaced as soon as possible, so as to prevent future leakages.
Missing tile grout
Grout is the product that helps seal the gap between each individual bathroom tile. Primarily made of water, cement and sound, tile grout is technically not waterproof; however, it does help protect the tiles and the surface below from water damage, by preventing moisture from seeping into the substrate.
Over time, though, tile grout will degrade and require replacing or topping up. This can occur naturally or, in more severe cases, happen as a result of poor workmanship or low-quality ingredients.
Either way, any signs of missing tile grout should be immediately addressed. Depending on the condition of the remaining grout, you may need to strip it all out and replace the entire lot. However, you may also be able to get away with topping up what is currently there.
By far, your best bet is to enlist the help of a professional. When you choose a company like Shower Sealed, you can be confident that the job will be done right the first time, every time, while saving plenty of time and hassle.
Our highly skilled technicians use the latest products and techniques to effectively replace and reseal your tiled surface. The result is a beautiful, highly durable finish, one that is both seamless and built to last for a long time. You also get the backing of a 12 year satisfaction guarantee.
Damaged waterproof membrane
Now, this problem is a bit more serious than the above two symptoms. How so? Because, unlike broken tiles or tile grout, the waterproof membrane in your bathroom exists beneath the surface. This means the waterproof membrane is inaccessible to you, until you remove the tiles first. So, how do you know if your membrane has failed, if you cannot visually inspect it?
The best way to know if your waterproof membrane has failed, is to rule out all other possible avenues. Have you fixed your tiles, replaced the tile grout, and had your plumbing checked for leaking pipes? If you answered ‘Yes’ to all of the above, then, there’s a good chance your waterproofing has failed.
Of course, the only way to know for certain is to book an inspection. On a convenient day and time, a professional tradesperson will visit your property. To test your waterproof membrane, they’ll use what’s known as the EFVM® leak detection system.
This system enables the tradesperson to test the surface for leaks, without having to remove the tiled surface first. It’s fast, efficient, and highly accurate. And there’s no risk of damage to the surface or membrane either.
If the report indicates a failure with your waterproof membrane, from there, the team will recommend a professional waterproof installation service. Before any work begins, your tradesperson will explain the process to you – in clear, easy to understand terms – and specify the timeline and price estimate. There is, of course, no-obligation to accept this offer.
Shower Sealed has over 25 years of waterproofing experience. For a free price estimate on bathroom and shower repairs, call 1300 519 133 or complete the online form. One of our friendly, local tradespeople will be in touch to give you a quote.