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Reliable way of sealing around the bath.

(23 Posts)
hiddenhome Mon 29-Dec-14 22:16:31

We seem to be destined to have this problem throughout our entire life. We had it in the last house, even when we had the bathroom done.

We've moved into a new build and the bath seal is starting to crack and leaves a small gap between the bath and the wall. It must be when the bath is full of water and an adult is sitting in it confused

Dh redoes these seals and he does use decent quality materials and he's very good at DIY, so he's not messing them up, yet they continue to break down and end up cracked and messy looking. He's even tried flexible, rubber type sealant, but it still comes away.

I always make sure the area around the bath is well dried after people have bathed or used the shower hose, and I'm not scrubbing it with harsh cleaning materials. Nobody is allowed to shower after he's done it to hopefully give it a good chance to dry.

Can anybody recommend a technique or material that would end up with a better result and preferably last longer than a few weeks?

windchimes23 Mon 29-Dec-14 23:26:57

I buy the best quality sealant/adhesive I can get at the builders merchant. I clean the old sealant off using a Stanley knife and a scrapper (it's hard work but as with all things DIY prep is the most work). I make sure it is all gone. I am retentive about this.

I put the fan on in the bathroom, load the bath up with heavy weights (last time 250kg of DHs weight lifting weights) and then seal. I always leave it a week to fully cure. Never had a problem and the seal lasts for years.

Every house I've bought has had crappy seals and I've fixed them all.

ralgex Mon 29-Dec-14 23:28:57

Crikey that's impressive, Real. Shows commitment.

windchimes23 Mon 29-Dec-14 23:51:23

I'm a freak when it comes to sealant. I also have a sealant teaspoon in my toolbox which I use to achieve a perfect smooth finish grin

BlueBrightBlue Tue 30-Dec-14 00:08:38

OK can help with this one.
Remove all old sealant with a sharp knife or scalpel.
Remove any dust and wipe down and dry.
Fill the bath with water.
Apply appropriate silicone sealant and smooth it down with a little spatula or a wetted finger.
Leave to cure.
By filling the bath with water you will lower the level of the bath ( as happens when you take a bath)so there will be no " pull" on the seal IYSWIM?

BlueBrightBlue Tue 30-Dec-14 00:09:44

It should cure in a few hours.

hiddenhome Tue 30-Dec-14 09:39:16

Thanks for these smile

specialsubject Tue 30-Dec-14 10:37:09

that's the most important thing - the seal goes on with the bath full and then is left like that for at least 24 hours.

guessing the builders skimped.

roneik Tue 30-Dec-14 11:54:56

I have fitted several bathrooms , when fitting the bath in position the mistake that people make is not fixing to the wall at the feet end of the bath at the wall behind the length ways . The other mistake is not whack top grade sealant along the inner edge of the the whole length of the bath. To re do the sealant cheap sealant does not last the course. Remove all old sealant and make sure the surface is clean and dry before re sealing.The next trick is not spreading as you smooth too much as this gives a thin layer of sealant that is easily damaged. The bath needs to be loaded before doing the sealant.You also need to do a final check with the adjustment of the frame or legs supporting the bath if it's just been installed .
If that really awkward to fix screw and bracket at the wall side feet end is not run into the wall with a meaty long screw ,you get problems with movement and sealant drifting from wall .

JohnTheBuilder Tue 30-Dec-14 11:55:18

All the comments made are sound, however, there's one additional thing to look for that may be causing the difficulty. If the bath drops more than a 1-2mm when full then the seal will never hold up because the bath probably isn't supported properly against the wall and/or doesn't sit on a stable floor. There should be battens set along the wall for the rim on the bath to rest on, done right and the bath will not drop when full. Floors sometimes can use reinforcing too, particularly for large baths or when setting a bath onto floorboards, sitting the bath legs onto a sheet of plywood will distribute the weight placed on the floor, ideally done when fitting the tub but you can sometimes retrofit some plywood beneath the feet of the bath by adjusting their height upwards just enough to slip some plywood beneath. With regard to sealing, there's many useful youtube videos that can show the best ways to apply to get a good finish.

roneik Tue 30-Dec-14 11:57:09

Should read don't spread to much as sealant leaves thin edge easily damaged

specialsubject Tue 30-Dec-14 11:58:33

top tip we had was belt and braces bath support; the legs, the battens against the wall and also expanding foam on bricks underneath. Installed two baths which definitely do not move.

took out the first bath to find it sitting on chipboard that had been damp and had split. How there wasn't a sudden descent through the ceiling is beyond me. So when you are checking out a house, take off the bath panel!

roneik Tue 30-Dec-14 12:03:05

Unibond Sealant I have found is the best, it cost more but is very good stuff

roneik Tue 30-Dec-14 13:58:52

Also remove vendors false teeth if fitted,kick away any walking sticks used by the vendor to stay upright, then move onto the pantry and scoff anything that looks tasty. After a general dismantling of the vendors house, move out onto the driveway and kick the vendors car tyres whilst asking them to accept 35% less than asking

roneik Tue 30-Dec-14 14:12:23

ooh and that's in addition to special subjects remedy removing the bath panel.

specialsubject Tue 30-Dec-14 16:34:19

oh dear, day release again for Roneik.

I was thinking AFTER you bought it. Although most panels can be easily removed, surveyor probably won't bother. You could also ASK the vendor.

roneik Wed 31-Dec-14 16:17:48

Firstly John the builder without a blanket , recommends a total rebuild of the house including the rafters to ensure the seals are tight and snugly. Then we get special subject telling us to whip off all vendors bath panels

Quote " So when you are checking out a house, take off the bath panel!"

I mean lets not hold back, lets forget it's someone else s house.
Let us go forth we are all British subjects whether we have a blanket handy or a crowbar to remove the bath panels
I say rejoice, show no empathy and "get in there" If he has a wife remark on how ugly she is , tell him about his dandruff problem

roneik Wed 31-Dec-14 16:32:27

then follow the directions I gave in the earlier post, and if you brought your dog along to the viewings try to time it that the dog empties it's bladder up the vendors leggrin

Purplehonesty Wed 31-Dec-14 16:49:02

Jeez...Pants too tight today?

ClaudiaNaughton Wed 31-Dec-14 16:58:53

Way too early for Roneik's day release. What are these doctors thinking of?

roneik Wed 31-Dec-14 17:34:52

My pants are not any old pants , M&S

Special subject do you recommend a lump hammer on the bath panels, or a pick axe?grin

roneik Wed 31-Dec-14 17:39:31

Just askinggrin

PatterofaMinion Thu 01-Jan-15 08:35:52

Steel baths are the answer, they don't move so much. Saying that are you fixing to tile? You should always fix to plasterboard and tile down to it leaving gap of about 3mm.

grout to bottom of tiles but not under them, then seal with silicon along the bottom edge where they meet the bath.

Also batten along wall under the rim of the bath and attach bath to that and the wall using silicon first.

If you try and seal a bath to a tiled wall you will have problems.

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