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Question DetailsAsked on 8/1/2012

Is repair required for 2-3 tiny hairline cracks in fiberglass shower floor, visible with magnfiying glass? Shower stall is 2-seat unit.

When scrubbing shower floor I noticed 2-3 barely visible hairline cracks close to drain in my large-unit 2-seat fiberglass shower floor. I see no obvious evidence of floor moisture when viewing from under house. Cracks may be approximately 2-4 inches in length. Cracks are not connected to any other crack or edge of drain. Surface remains smooth.

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2 Answers

0
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remove the tub and repair it from the bottom with fiberglass repair of your
choice, if your paying someone you might as well go ahead and replace it but a d.i.y could patch it and use it for years if it isn't too brittle.

Answered 6 years ago by jeff_b_1988

0
Votes

These type of cracks can be caused by inadequate or uneven support under the shower floor (causing floor module cracking), by floor settlement, by high heat (common in steam showers), or by defects in the material.

Shower floors are built 2 general ways - with a flexible liner or metall or plastic pan or mud slab under them that drains to the shower drain also as a backup to tile flooring leaking through the grout joints, or with just a bare wood floor with the shower liner put in above it. If you have a liner or pad under it, then that could be catching what water gets under it and routing it to the drain - probably no issue in that case, as leakage will be minimal at that size crack.

Try kneeling around different places in the floor and see if the cracks open and close or if the two sides move up and down relative to each other as weight is shifted - if so, they will leak. If they are just stress cracks that have not gone through the full thickness, then if they do not flex when you (or a helper) move around on the shower floor, they may not leak at all.

IF really concerned about it, there are ways to repair fiberglass, though if done from the top will not be a perfect match. Some plumbing outfits have someone trained in doing it, otherwise auto body shops and glass replacement companies sometimes do this - you get a kit from the manufacturer to match your liner.

There are also clear fiberglass repair kits that look like a two-syringe injector that will inject small amounts of catalyst and resin into a crack to seal it - that might work for you, then use a singlke-edged razor to carefully remove any excess ssticking up, because you would be doing more of a bead than a crack filling, unless the cracks open up under weight.

I presume this is not new enough to be covered under warranty, either from the manufacturer or the installer ? I would check if your brand has a recall or repair program for known cracking problems.

If you have no indication of leakage, I would NOT go to the expense of taking it out and repairing it, especially since it sounds like it is over a crawlspace, not another room.

I would take a watch and see attitude- take a look every month or two (if you can under the house easily) and watch for any sign of leakage - staining, drips, drip marks on the concrete or dirt underneath, corrosion of the drain pipe (which I presume you can also see from underneath), etc. You could even put a pan or bowl of sheet plastic under it and buy a $10 water alarm to put the sensor in, to let you know if it leaks significantly through the floor - batteries last a year or more in more types of alarms - get the type with wired remote sensor so the alarm itself does not get wet.

One step further,which I would probably do if it was my house, is CAREFULLY drill a hole in the plywood floor with a milling bit (flat faced with no point sticking out), just barely going through the plywood without nicking any liner or pan or the shower floor, so any water making it through the cracks would have aqn immmedite oplace to run out and into the pan with the water alarm.

Answered 5 years ago by LCD




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