If you’ve been following along on my Instagram, you may know that the upstairs bathroom project – which I started in a loose, lazy way in late fall – was thrown into warp speed about two weeks ago when our downstairs shower failed.
See: for some time, the floor had been sort of…bubbly. Warped, kind of. I was pretty sure my poor caulking job around the edges had created some tension that was now lifting the floor off…whatever base it was on. (Totally unclear when looking up from the basement.) Maybe four weeks ago, I found a tiny hairline crack at the edge of one of the bubbles. I caulked it, and got more serious about the upstairs bathroom, finally ordering the tile and making some decisions on waterproofing.
Well, reader, given that it is both a) 2020 and b) this house, which never fails to frustrate, of course that hairline crack failed in a big way before the upstairs bathroom was done. I noticed when I was showering that all of a sudden there was a weird geyser spurting out from the caulk. So I stooped showering immediately and ripped the caulk off and water came gushing out of the crack.
So…I had to rip it open much further with my stomach turning itself inside out. I did run downstairs and there was not a hint of moisture coming through, much less the gushing I would have expected.
Luckily for us, it turned out that the downstairs tub was a cheap Bath Fitter thing over…an actual porcelain tub. WTF. And WHEW. So, I ripped it up quite a bit more and closed the dehumidifer in the bathroom. Crisis averted there: no leaking, no disaster other than a now totally-unusable shower. The white you see in the center of the ripped-up tub is the original. The discoloration is the glue that held the Bath Fitter down. Someday I’ll rip the whole thing out and see if the tub is saveable. That would be a nice intermediate step before the total gut of that bathroom that is scheduled for someday.
On the day the bathroom failed, this is what the upstairs bathroom looked like. Plastering was done, but not really anything else.
Stay tuned for the next part…