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Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms

 
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Old 02-07-2010, 01:25 AM   #41
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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Originally Posted by Mike Finley View Post
Why would anybody care if you are nailing CBU to curbs, walls, ceilings etc...?

Unless you can build the entire shower underlayment behind the tile and waterproofing out of 1 solid injection molded material, what difference does it make? You've got penetrations all over it, including huge ones at every seam in every corner.

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Originally Posted by Mike Finley View Post
Let me clarify, cause I think we are talking about 2 different things. If you are screwing or nailing through your membrane that's wrong. If your membrane is over nailed or screwed CBU that's not.
Your original comment was regarding "why would anybody care if you are nailing cbu to curbs". I say in order to do so, you have to penetrate the shower pan liner which is wrapped over the rough curb framing. This procss causes leaks.
I'm not sure which membrain you're referring to since neither one should have any screws or nails through it.
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Old 02-07-2010, 11:19 AM   #42
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


Paul,
You are correct in saying no nails through the liner and I know all agree if the shower is done that way. Mike is talking about surface applied membranes which don't utilize a pan liner, so you can nail/screw the cbu to the curb since the membrane will cover it all.
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Old 02-07-2010, 12:52 PM   #43
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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Originally Posted by Shawn Prentice View Post
Paul,
You are correct in saying no nails through the liner and I know all agree if the shower is done that way. Mike is talking about surface applied membranes which don't utilize a pan liner, so you can nail/screw the cbu to the curb since the membrane will cover it all.
Interesting double speak, considering all the to do about double vapor barriers and trapped moisture.

My understanding was Mike was referring to nailing cbu to a curb with pan liner wrapped over rough frame and under cbu. I dont' recall his stipulating otherwise, and stated that "the same technique applied to curbs as did to walls", which I entirely disagree with.

As far as I am concerned, anyone who has to nail cbu to the top or inside of a curb is begging for failure.; it's a highly inferior method to mudding a curb with mortar, and an indication that the installer doesn't possess the resources or knowledge to create a completely watertight curb without it. IOW's, I wouldn't put all my trust in the liquid membrane as the end-all-be-all to creating a waterproof curb, when it can be done entirely without the use of liquid membrane, nor would I fully trust 100% moisture blocking from any surface preparation in a steam shower.

Furthermore, in the event a radius curb is required, forming with cbu would be a complete nightmare, whereas forming/pouring a solid mortar curb would be little more work than for a straight/grid configuration. The OTHER downside to relying on liquid membranes to waterproof curbs is the mil thickness achieved (earlier discussed) and the multiple layers required to achieve 100% waterproofing (dry time per layer (24 hrs) (73 mil thickness earlier discussed). In effect, it would take 3 days to build and waterproof a curb with liquid membrane (according to manufacturers warranties and applications guidelines) vs 12 hrs wait time for a pour/formed curb configuration.

In most cases, the hacks I've seen who are nailing cbu to a curb aren't even waterproofing over it, they don't seam joints with fiber mesh tape, and tile straight over a nailed piece of durock. Their rational for nailing the inside of the curb is that they only nail at the top. What can I say.... other than.... it's job security.
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Old 02-07-2010, 01:27 PM   #44
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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Interesting double speak, considering all the to do about double vapor barriers and trapped moisture.
Please show me where I've done that. To the contrary, there is no double speak or double vapor barrier. The way I do it using SA sheet membranes, which is the way many here do it, doesn't allow any moisture that infiltrates the grout joints to ever touch the mud bed or the cement board. I understand surface applied membranes because that's what I do. I also understand what you do using pan liners, pre-slopes, mud curbs, poly barriers behind the cbu, etc. because I've done it that way as well, as have many others here.

You keep talking about liquid membranes, but many here don't use them on shower floors,curbs, and some not at all due to the possible error factor. I don't use them for anything. Sheet membranes (Kerdi and Noble), which many here use, have been around for a long time, have been extensively tested, and have a slim chance of failure if installed properly. And any competent installer will install it properly. Most failures in tile assemblies occur not because of product failure, but as a result of faulty installations.

You keep talking about "hacks", but you should know there are no hacks here. And we all understand your point because we have all come behind installers like that to fix their work, as have you.
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Old 02-07-2010, 02:22 PM   #45
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


Paul,

This is the system many of us use, http://www.schluter.com/media/brochu...ndbook2008.pdf. Hopefully, it explains more clearly what we have been talking about. Out of personal preference, I don't use the preformed pan or curb. I make my own mud bed and mud curb, then wrap it all in kerdi. But, either way is effective. Schluter also says you can use drywall behind their system and many do successfully, but again by personal choice, I always use cbu under the kerdi.
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Old 02-07-2010, 02:36 PM   #46
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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Originally Posted by Shawn Prentice View Post
Schluter also says you can use drywall behind their system and many do successfully, but again by personal choice, I always use cbu under the kerdi.
Question. And I'm not picking on you, just more of a poll. Why use CBU behind Kerdi? Isn't that, in a way, saying you don't trust the Kerdi?

Again, no offense. Actually aside from myself, there's only 1 other installer on here that doesn't use CBU (that I know of).

Curious....
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Old 02-07-2010, 03:19 PM   #47
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


No offense taken and it's a fair question. A couple reasons: 1)The way I see it, kind of like Paul does on the poly behind the cbu with redguard on the front, is that there is a weak link to every installation. I do trust the kerdi to a point, but in the unlikely (but not impossible) event that I had a failure in the kerdi wall, I'd like to think the shower wouldn't be a complete loss as it would with drywall. Although, my thought process doesn't work in the event of a failure in the pan kerdi since I don't back that up with a liner , and 2)out of habit. In any case, I am very careful to follow the installation instructions exactly for the kerdi, as well as, every other product I use. Though, the kerdi instructions do spec cbu, probably for those too stubborn (me) to do it like they recommend with drywall.

So, were you saying that you still use cbu with the kerdi, or you don't?

Add: Even though I know you can lap the seams any which way as long as the proper overlap is maintained, I lap everything away from the water source and shingle style from the pan up the wall. My attempt at even more protection.

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Old 02-07-2010, 03:42 PM   #48
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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Originally Posted by Shawn Prentice View Post
So, were you saying that you still use cbu with the kerdi, or you don't?

Add: Even though I know you can lap the seams any which way as long as the proper overlap is maintained, I lap everything away from the water source and shingle style from the pan up the wall. My attempt at even more protection.
I use DensArmor, not drywall. While it's not as moisture resistant as CBU, it is a lot more resistant than straight drywall. Another benefit to using DensArmor is I don't have to seam it to regular drywall outside of the wet location. I use it for the entire bathroom.

Funny, you mention the shingle style lapping...I do the same. I know it's not necessary. I guess I do it more out of common sense more than anything else.
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Old 02-07-2010, 04:01 PM   #49
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


Densarmor, now that's a thought. About as much in cost as cbu, but less weight, plus it does have some moisture resistant properties. Funny, I hadn't thought of densarmor under kerdi even though I'm hanging some in a bath remodel I'm doing right now (existing shower stays, so I'm only tiling the floor.) I may just try that on my next one.

When I seam cbu to drywall, I make sure my seam hangs back from the tile edge a few inches, then thinset/mesh tape the seam. I like idea of not dealing with that.

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Old 02-07-2010, 06:18 PM   #50
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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Originally Posted by angus242 View Post
Question.Why use CBU behind Kerdi? Isn't that, in a way, saying you don't trust the Kerdi?
I cant use drywall because i have inspections and they require cbu not drywall, I use easyboard.
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Old 02-07-2010, 09:00 PM   #51
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


SO I'm the only one here who installs poured curbs? (shocking)

SO now I'm curious... what did you do before they invented Kerdi?

Also, let's say you're remodeling a house that's 100 yrs old and the subfloor and curb rough in is severely out of level. How do you compensate with the kerdi system if the curb formation would naturally follow the subfloor level?
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Old 02-07-2010, 09:19 PM   #52
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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SO I'm the only one here who installs poured curbs?
I do, I do Seriously, I do all my curbs poured. There is more flexibility, as you noted, than using the preformed. Plus making your own is much cheaper. I think the preformed foam one for kerdi goes for about $40+ for a 4 foot section, around here.
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Old 02-08-2010, 10:12 AM   #53
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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Originally Posted by StoneHorseTile View Post
SO I'm the only one here who installs poured curbs? (shocking)

SO now I'm curious... what did you do before they invented Kerdi?

Also, let's say you're remodeling a house that's 100 yrs old and the subfloor and curb rough in is severely out of level. How do you compensate with the kerdi system if the curb formation would naturally follow the subfloor level?
There aren't a tremendous amount of tile setters on this site. You're getting a skewed response just based on that. The vast majority of tile setters I know build curbs with mud. Change comes slowly, the guys you are seeing on here are the guys who are ahead of the curve but certainly aren't the majority.
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Old 02-08-2010, 12:10 PM   #54
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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Originally Posted by Mike Finley View Post
There aren't a tremendous amount of tile setters on this site. You're getting a skewed response just based on that. The vast majority of tile setters I know build curbs with mud. Change comes slowly, the guys you are seeing on here are the guys who are ahead of the curve but certainly aren't the majority.
To be honest, my initial thoughts were that I'd find the majority of union-like tile contractors on here (Contractortalk) that are familiar with things like mud curbs, mud walls, mud floors and so forth. I came from one of Atlanta's oldest and most respected tile companies and worked alongside some of the finest, highly skilled tile and stone masters in the industry. They were old schoolers. Everyone worked in synch, too... where one setter could follow another's methodology, from mud bedding, to pod setting stone, to mosaics, etc. We had contract on quite a number of the Marta Transit Stations prior to Atlanta's Olympics Games.

I find most union-skilled setters from places like Chicago and New York have similar knowledge base and I tend to raise an eyebrow when I read of people who rely on products that are newly available on the market, not that those products aren't worthy, but .... I just didn't need them. For instance, Kerdi came out somewhere in the 90's, and while I'd heard of DitraMat, the only Schluter product I'd ever trusted was their transition strips. I wouldn't use DitraMat for floor prep, BTW, nor EasyBoard. I'm not sure where I'd use EasyBoard, Period. It's flimsier than a piece of sheetrock. LOL...

But back to my original comments about building curbs: What I have found is that an enormous number of installers I have run across are nailing CBU over a rough curb that is wrapped with a PVC shower pan liner, thus creating a sieve effect. I've literally repaired a shower pan on a job that I lost the bid for, where they NAILED durock to a shower pan and curb and then layered two sides of the shower floor with multiple layers of durock to create what amounted to a saddle configuration instead of having a level border. It was the most ridiculous thing I'd ever seen. OH, BTW, they DID at least have the decency to use RedGuard over the bottom layer of Durock, but that failed with the prolonged exposure to water, as well as they mistakenly cut their pan liner all the way to the subfloor and did not patch it. (WTF)

Our new home market was what was widely affected with the curb/CBU /sieve practice, and my experience has been that no waterproofing is utilized. I would agree though, that there are not a lot of tile setters on this site, so there's not a good cross-section to draw from.
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Old 02-08-2010, 12:29 PM   #55
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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SO I'm the only one here who installs poured curbs? (shocking)
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Old 02-08-2010, 01:15 PM   #56
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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???????????Flame??????????????

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look into the kerdi system.

www.schluter.com
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No vapor barrier with kerdi, once you usethe kerdi especially in steam rooms you will never look back, they are coming out with kerdi panels like wedi panels even faster as you only need to do the seams and screw heads.
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I cant use drywall because i have inspections and they require cbu not drywall, I use easyboard.
All indications suggest no knowledge or use of poured curbs.

I can't comment on Kerdi because I've never used it, although I will look into it. Seems to me it works just like Noble Seal, but for less. I've built solid poured curbs in every shower I'v ever constructed and for all intended purposes, there has never been a problem. Takes 1 hour at the end of a day, and next morning, I'm ready for tile. I can't see any reason why I would change course.
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Old 02-08-2010, 04:49 PM   #57
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


So from 3 posts from me you have determined I cant pour mud curbs even thought the thread is about waterproofing?

no one here is trying to change your mind about anything other than there are more than one ways to skin a cat and just cause you dont use one doesnt mean the rest of us has no idea what they are doing.

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Old 02-08-2010, 05:32 PM   #58
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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So from 3 posts from me you have determined I cant pour mud curbs even thought the thread is about waterproofing?

no one here is trying to change your mind about anything other than there are more than one ways to skin a cat and just cause you dont use one doesnt mean the rest of us has no idea what they are doing.
What I have determined is that you seem bent on flaming my post's. For instance, there could be a reply regarding how to compensate for severely out of level subflooring. And honestly, I don't know what you're capable of, Im going on what you're posting, but if you're using EasyBoard.....
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I cant use drywall because i have inspections and they require cbu not drywall, I use easyboard.
.....to build curbs, that speaks volume. Keep it up- I need more work! I can push my finger through EasyBoard; it's less resistant than sheetrock. OK, so it's lighterweight-that isn't going to stop it from giving in when enough pressure is being applied to it.

AS far as steamers, I'd reassert that even if someones swearing by Kerdi waterproofing, they're betting the ranch that every single millimeter of surface is covered and protected, and my only comment is that regardless of whatever waterproofing is used, a vapor barrier is added insurance against a leak, vapor lock, notwithstanding.
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Old 02-08-2010, 05:38 PM   #59
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


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To be honest, my initial thoughts were that I'd find the majority of union-like tile contractors on here (Contractortalk) that are familiar with things like mud curbs, mud walls, mud floors and so forth.

I find most union-skilled setters from places like Chicago and New York have similar knowledge base and I tend to raise an eyebrow when I read of people who rely on products that are newly available on the market
I can only speak from personal experience but almost 100% of the union tile jobs I see around here (Chicagoland) and complete junk! I have a friend that does commercial construction and says the union installers he sees working on hi-rise building in the city are terrible.

I'm not impressed because of someone's affiliation(s). I'm impressed when someone does a quality job. I rarely see one (tile). Regardless of what trade you do, there are tradesmen and then craftsmen.

A tile discussion seems to inevitably turn into and old school/new school debate. While I don't ever think the new school guys try to diminish the quality of a floated floor, wall or ceiling, it doesn't mean it's the best or only method available. Is a cabinet maker that uses a CNC machine any less talented than one that cuts by hand? (Gus and Leo are not allowed to comment ) Does a trim guy have less talent because he uses pneumatic gun instead of a hammer? Is a plumber lacking because he uses PEX instead of cast or copper?

This discussion is specifically about waterproofing. As I have already mentioned, the biggest difference between a floated shower and a sheet membrane one is the mud shower allows water in and then deals with it. I've already mentioned the holes (pun intended) in the vapor barrier theory.

Funny thing is all this conjecture wouldn't make a bit of difference if the floated shower was waterproofed before tiling. If that was applied, now the discussion becomes substrate only. At that point we could talk all day long about the skills needed to float a wall or a curb. I don't think anyone wouldn't agree, it's a very good method and a dying art. The discussion begins on whether it's the only method or not.

I say not.
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Old 02-08-2010, 06:06 PM   #60
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Re: Vapor Barrier In Steam Rooms


Ok last time, I use easyboard on WALLS, covered with kerdi, which is what my post your quoting is confirming.

curbs are either mud or preformed curbs from schluter.

your assupmtion that kerdi needs a vapor barrier speaks volumes about your experience with kerdi, i have done mud showers and kerdi so I can say which is better for me, you however cannot attest to kerdi so....

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