removed sealant from bath - now bigger problem!

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Hi there decided to DIY the new sealant as no one seems to want the job. It's awkward to do as the bath is fitted at far end of very narrow bathroom so sealant needed at far short end and down one side. Removed at far end and there is almost 1 cm to fill - also it looks like what is behind the sealant is very black and damp. It looks like grout or tile adhesive has come away with sealant. Should I try and 'pack' it in some way before I reseal it? I can just see the sealant disappearing into the hole and ending up black. The positioning of the bath also means I have to do it with my swimsuit on in order to half-fill the bath with water as I have to actually get in it to reach the edges. Not a pretty sight! Any tips please?
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  • keystone
    keystone Posts: 10,916 Forumite
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    The gap is far too big to fill with sealant. Yes pack it our first. I use Gripfil but any similar adhesive will work. Whatever is coming out (be it grout or tile adhesive) was put there at installation tp pack the space out. The fact that this is black means that the sealant has either failed or was not done properly in the first place.

    You should NOT be getting into the bath to do this. The bath will be flexing as you move about and that will destroy any chance you have of getting a proper seal. If you cannot reach then you need to get someone who can. Irrespective of the size of the room it should be possible to reach all the work area without getting into the bath.

    Cheers
    The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits. - Einstein
  • Mrs_Thrify
    Mrs_Thrify Posts: 1,673 Forumite
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    melb wrote: »
    Hi there decided to DIY the new sealant as no one seems to want the job. It's awkward to do as the bath is fitted at far end of very narrow bathroom so sealant needed at far short end and down one side. Removed at far end and there is almost 1 cm to fill - also it looks like what is behind the sealant is very black and damp. It looks like grout or tile adhesive has come away with sealant. Should I try and 'pack' it in some way before I reseal it? I can just see the sealant disappearing into the hole and ending up black. The positioning of the bath also means I have to do it with my swimsuit on in order to half-fill the bath with water as I have to actually get in it to reach the edges. Not a pretty sight! Any tips please?

    Hi Mel. If the wall you can see is black and damp it needs sorting out and not just recovering! I would look in the local paper to see if you can get someone around for a look and a quote.
    If winter comes, can spring be far behind?
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  • melb
    melb Posts: 2,878 Forumite
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    thanks for replies. It would be impossible for anyone to reach the far end without getting into the bath. They would have to be able to reach the full length of the bath which I think is 1600 mm. I thought you were supposed to half-fill and then get in it to replicate what happens when you have a bath so it doesn't move when you have a bath? I can't bear the thought of taking all the expensive travertine wall tiles off and starting again. I'm going to clean it off and dry it really well. When I was talking about packing I was actually meaning cardboard. My OH suggested using that adhesive hole filler gun but I thought I might just create more mess. we've asked 2 bathroom fitters and none would do it. Our decorator did it and made a complete pigs ear - he mustn't have removed the existing silicone and it lasted about 6 weeks before it started cracking and going black.
  • keystone
    keystone Posts: 10,916 Forumite
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    melb wrote: »
    thanks for replies. It would be impossible for anyone to reach the far end without getting into the bath. They would have to be able to reach the full length of the bath which I think is 1600 mm.
    Can you upload a pic?
    I can't bear the thought of taking all the expensive travertine wall tiles off and starting again. I'm going to clean it off and dry it really well.
    No reason why you should have to.
    When I was talking about packing I was actually meaning cardboard.
    Well it might work but its not an optimal solution. It won't be stable when you try and apply the sealant on top and with you moving about it the bath its got no chance really.
    My OH suggested using that adhesive hole filler gun but I thought I might just create more mess.
    Sort of what I meant. Tube of gripfill in your sealant gun.
    we've asked 2 bathroom fitters and none would do it.
    Why not?
    Our decorator did it and made a complete pigs ear - he mustn't have removed the existing silicone and it lasted about 6 weeks before it started cracking and going black.
    You cannot put new silicone on top of old - it doesn't stick!

    Cheers
    The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits. - Einstein
  • melb
    melb Posts: 2,878 Forumite
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    I've found some gripfill in the cellar. How do you get it smooth before you apply the sealant on top please? Also how long do you recommend leaving it to set before you put sealant on top? Oh how I wish I'd left this job til after Christmas - the kids presents are still occupying nearly all my thoughts! thanks for any help
  • keystone
    keystone Posts: 10,916 Forumite
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    melb wrote: »
    I've found some gripfill in the cellar. How do you get it smooth before you apply the sealant on top please? Also how long do you recommend leaving it to set before you put sealant on top? Oh how I wish I'd left this job til after Christmas - the kids presents are still occupying nearly all my thoughts! thanks for any help
    Don't bother about getting it smooth because you are NOT going to fill the gap to the top of the edge of the bath. Leave it 3 or 4mm BELOW the level of the edge of the bath. It doesn't matter if its a bit uneven the sealant will cover it. About 24 hours if its a 1 cm gap.

    Where (ish) are you based Mel - there might be someone on here local to you that can offer on site advice.

    Cheers
    The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits. - Einstein
  • melb
    melb Posts: 2,878 Forumite
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    sorry mine clashed with yours - I'm sorry I don't know how to upload a picture but if you imgaine a long narrow room of 1.1m wide that's our bathroom with the corner type bath wedged (not literally) into the far end of the room with the widest end at the far end and then tapering round to a point at the end nearest the door. the extra little bit at the side is boxed in with tiles and there is a shower-screen fitted on the side of bath. When I said about taking the tiles off I was referring to the other poster who said I should get it sorted out properly rather than just covering it up
  • melb
    melb Posts: 2,878 Forumite
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    I'm in leeds (ish)
  • keith969
    keith969 Posts: 1,571 Forumite
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    Unfortunately the fitters probably didn't want to do it as they know it will be difficult to get a good finish...

    You need to get whatever is damp/mouldy out and get everything completely dry before filling the gap and then applying the sealant. If its not dry the sealant will not stick properly and water will get behind it and you will be in the same position again.

    It might also be worth seeing if you can raise the level of the bath a little to reduce the gap - might be possible if the pipes have a little give in them. Some plywood shims might do the trick.

    Another approach would be to use some plastic quadrant shaped moulding to cover the gap, then seal around the edges of the moulding where it joins the tiles and the bath.
    For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple and wrong.
  • melb
    melb Posts: 2,878 Forumite
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    I've just realised I haven't explained my self properly. the 1cm gap is between the bath and the wall tiles - it is as if the tiler has cut the wall tiles about 5 mm too short and they don't reach the edge of the bath. The bath itself is positioned fairly close to the tiles on the other wall (the long side). The wall tiles actually overhang the edge of the bath by probably about 5 mm (they are travertine and about 1 cm thick). I realised this when I was reading your advice about how to use the gripfill
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