Shower tile/grout leaks

Have come across a high number of leaking showers in a certain new development in my area. A very high percentage of these homes I have done in the last month have had leaks ranging from small to huge.

In every case it is a decrative shower with floor type tile and a sanded grout. Some of the homeowners have had the grout professionally sealed, others have not. Generally, there are not voids or cracks visible to the naked eye, and the moisture seems to be seaping through the grout. There obviously seems to be a flaw with the way the tile contractor did things.

I am not a tile speciaist and wondered if someone knows what the contractor may be doing wrong. Is there an additive that is needed in sanded grouts to prevent this? As I said, simple sealing of the grout after the fact did not seem to prevent the problem. But I know I have done many home with this type of shower with no leaks.

In each case I am referring the clients to contact specialists, including mold remediation specialists to oversee the repair and certify the home as “clean,” but would like to have a better understanding of what may be “wrong” when I am talking to the client.


BTW, if local inspectors want to pm or email me I will share the development name so you can be aware of it if you work there. But I do not want to put it on a public forum.

I wonder if they ‘forgot’ the liner between the tile and the foundation?

One more clarification:

The tile in question is on the walls/seats. The showerpan is actually a fiberglass premade type.

How old are the homes? Are they still building in the neighborhood? Can you find one in-progress and look?

Sounds as if they didn’t seal the walls, use backer-board, or seal the seams.

One year inspections. Could possibly find one in progress, but have not at this point.

Kevin, check this out to see if it helps.

Marcel :slight_smile:

Now, if they really want to do it right they could use this this stuff is awsome.