Melamine Tile Board problem

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by naboosh, Jul 19, 2005.

  1. naboosh

    naboosh New Member

    Messages:
    5
    I bought a condo in Lake Tahoe that was a fixer upper. Everything went
    > great but the shower. The shower was old and disgusting. It had that
    > Melamine Tile Board for walls that were installed with the correct inside
    > and outside corners. The shower pan and shower door were disgustingly
    > filthy as well. I didn't want to do anything special, I just wanted to
    > replace what was there.
    >
    > So I took everything out and bought new products. I bought new Melamine
    > Walls from Home Depot, the correct corners, a new shower pan(32"), a new
    > shower door that I cut to fit.
    >
    > I put the shower pan in first, it went in perfectly and as easily as the
    > old one came out. I put the GREEN sheet rock back in it place, which it
    > overlapped the flaps on the shower pan. SO FAR SO GOOD.
    >
    > I cut the Melamine shower walls. These walls are not plumb by any means so
    > I made two good cuts and one bad one. I went back and got another 4x8
    > sheet and re-cut. Came out good. I put up the walls, put in the corners
    > and edges, then started on the shower door.
    >
    > The shower door came out perfect. It was a snug fit and worked great. Then
    > I caulked everything, Inside and out. I used that 100% silicone. Went
    > through a few tubes. I left the shower to dry for the week and came back
    > the next weekend.
    >
    > SO HERE IS WHERE IT ALL GOT FRUSTRATING: We take a few showers and
    > everything seem fine. My wife takes a long hot shower an couple weeks ago
    > and all over the Melamine Walls there is blistering and bubbling.
    >
    > I called the manufacture that makes the shower walls and they say to let
    > it dry for awhile and put Turtle wax on the walls. After we let the walls
    > dry and before we waxed the blisters went down considerably. So we put two
    > coats of wax and let it set for a few days.
    >
    > I was there on Sat, we took a couple showers and it blistered again, this
    > time in more spots. We think it is the steam that is doing this because it
    > is in the middle of the walls, not on the joints. I don't know what to do?
    > Can you help?
    >
    > I figured if I could get someone to tile it I would lose the money I spent
    > on the shower door(being tile is thicker then the Melamine the door can be
    > cut a little smaller) and the shower pan. But tile contractors are three
    > to four months out. So I would have to do this work myself.
    >
    > Any suggestions? :confused:

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jul 25, 2005
  2. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    I am familiar with the melamine board you are speaking about. I was not aware that any code anywhere allowed it to be used in showers. It has other applications, but I would NEVER use it in a shower. There are other materials which are inexpensive and easy to use.
  3. naboosh

    naboosh New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Where can I find these products?

    Jimbo,
    What kind of inexpensive products? Where can I find them?
  4. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,359
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    It seems to me you are trying to make a decent fixture out of crap. I know you have already invested some money in this project, but I think by the time you replace and redo everything, you'd better off to rip out that junk and get a new one piece fiberglass shower stall. This is rather typical of lots of DIY jobs after some time goes by and the poor work begins to show up.
  5. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    At the home stores they have tub or shower wall sets made of fibreglass or acrylic. Manufacturers are MAAX, Swan, American Shower and Bath, et. al. 100% not affected by water. The masonite-based stuff is cooked at the slightest crack or leak at a seam.
  6. naboosh

    naboosh New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Thank you

    I cant seem to find a 32" shower wall kit, but I will check special order.
    Nick
  7. naboosh

    naboosh New Member

    Messages:
    5
    I have received a few suggestions

    I have been told to use Turtle Wax and/or polyurethane spray to coat this product. It is suppose to be steam resistant. Any suggestions or comments?
  8. RioHyde

    RioHyde Plumber

    Messages:
    339
    Location:
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Well........you said you used two coats of wax on it and it blistered again. Seems to me that should answer the question.
  9. lowes and home depot

    the guy from Melamie was just blowing smoke up your ass.

    If you dont want to tear out that shower, I have an idea....

    if you are looking to just rig something up to get you
    out of a jam, go to Lowes and look back in their paneling
    section...

    their should be some 4x8 sheets of plastic -fiberglass wallboard
    that are virtually indestructable...

    they cost about 25 per sheet... you

    can cut the stuff to size with a pair of yellow matal snips

    then liqquid nail it right up over that crap already on the walls...

    it works very well as either a temporary or pernament fix.

    I have used it to panel over walls in many different situations

    including morgues, and embalming rooms with no one ever

    complaining. Lol


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------
    another idea

    I doubt you can find a shower surround kit anywhere, but thats
    something else you could slap up over your problem.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    What I dont understand is you dont want to spend the money

    to re-do it right , but you bought something you call a "fixer-upper" in

    LAKE TAHOE????
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2005
  10. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,831
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    shower

    You do not have to lose the pan if you tile the walls. Just remove the material you put on, and tile over the greenboard, although it really should be cement board, but anything will be better than what you have now.
  11. thezster

    thezster New Member

    Messages:
    251
    Location:
    Fort Collins, Colorado
    Didn't know "code" allowed anything other than marble total surrounds in Lake Tahoe :) :) :)
  12. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,143
    Location:
    New England
    I wouldn't put tile over greenboard in a shower....read too many horror stories on www.johnbridge.com about that. Best (quick) fix is the waterproof panels. Best long-term fix that will increase the value of the home is a tear-out and rebuild with tile done right. Kerdi from www.schluter.com would allow you to save the greenboard and tile. My unprofessional opinon.
  13. naboosh

    naboosh New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Well the Melamine company has agreed to compensate for this job to be re-done. I did find a company that installs Onyx shower walls and I also found a shower wall kit from American Bath and shower(Masco) that is cut to fit for unplumb walls. I looked into the remodel (two piece) Lasco shower units but it wont fit into the condo. I did try to contract a tile contractor but they are all 6 to 8 months out.
  14. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,143
    Location:
    New England
    If you are handy but a little apprehensive about tiling something, check out www.johnbridge.com They have a bunch of people that can help you do a custom shower yourself.
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