Caulk SOS did I do it wrong!?

Discussion in 'Shower & bathtub Forum & Blog' started by CherylS, Jul 15, 2012.

  1. CherylS

    CherylS New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Location:
    Missouri
    OK guys. I think I screwed up....

    I just caulked my new shower door, about three hours ago. Taped the frame and tile at the seam, ran my bead of caulk, then smoothed it out, then removed the tape! I was supposed to remove tape and THEN smooth the bead, wasn't I!!???

    The caulk fills the seam...barely. Looks good but I'm concerned that it won't be a good seal. Please advise ASAP. I need to be able to use this shower in a day or two.


    thanks!
  2. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    Messages:
    4,167
    Location:
    North Vancouver, BC
    I tape the space.

    Run the bead of silicone.

    Smooth with my finger in both directions (creates better bond).

    Remove the tape.

    And re-smooth in a downward motion.

    The last step removes some of the ridges created by the tape line.

    JW
  3. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,350
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    When you smooth the caulk, use a wet finger. Wipe finger and re-wet as needed.
  4. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    100% silicone is not water-toolable. Use mineral spirits, or denatured alcohol.
  5. CherylS

    CherylS New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Location:
    Missouri
    Ok, I am now in the process of removing the caulk..... new shower doors, brushed nickel. What can I use to get the residue off the door frame before I re-caulk?
  6. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    Messages:
    4,167
    Location:
    North Vancouver, BC
    I just wipe my finger on a rag. I've never had good luck with spirits or thinner and silicone.

    With a latex chaulking I like to finish with a wet finger but with silicone I find a dry finger best.

    JW
  7. dlarrivee

    dlarrivee New Member

    Messages:
    1,172
    Location:
    Canada
    I think you just learned the hard way that silicone is the toughest caulk to remove...

    You probably would have been fine.
  8. chefwong

    chefwong New Member

    Messages:
    710
    Location:
    District of Columbia
    Ya'll must have some magic fingers when tooling silicone.

    Tape
    Chaulk
    Let it set for about a minute.....then tool it with finger dipped in mineral spirits.
    Remove tape
    Viola
  9. CherylS

    CherylS New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Location:
    Missouri
    that's what I did and it looked good, but was a little don't know how to explain other than to say an edge to it...I was concerned that water would get under there....
  10. CherylS

    CherylS New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Location:
    Missouri
    that's what I did.....but had the ridges, or an edge. I was concerned that water would get under there?? Anyway, any suggestions for what to use to get the residue off?
  11. dlarrivee

    dlarrivee New Member

    Messages:
    1,172
    Location:
    Canada
    Where did the H come from?
  12. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    Messages:
    4,167
    Location:
    North Vancouver, BC
    An old school flat razor blade - the kind you buy for old fashioned razors. Paint stores sell them in 3 - 10 or 100 piece packs. First you gently cut the silicone with the tip of the blade where you want your edge to stop. Then with the razor flat you slide it along the glass to remove any film.

    We drag the edge of the blade across or finger nail to ensure there are no burns in the edge.

    Pick up an old mirror or scrap of glass from somewhere and practice. The key is not so much pressure you mark the glass and ensure when using the blade on the long flat side you keep it full contact with the glass.

    You need to weigh the risk reward here. One screw up and you have a permanent scratch. Does it really bug you that much?

    Not sure what you paid for the product and installation but I'd practice a bit before you jump in. And practice with the glass vertical like it is now not flat on the table.

    "Perfect Practice Makes Perfect"

    "One test is worth a thousand expert opinions"

    You only need to screw up a job or two before this point is really driven home.

    Good Luck.

    JW
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