What You Need To Know About Shower Waterproofing
When it comes to bathroom renovations, a lot of homeowners tend to focus on the aesthetic side of things. People usually want beautiful glass screens, pure white tiles and sleek sinks. While these features can certainly improve the desirability of your home, they’re by no means the most important.
One aspect that should never be overlooked is shower waterproofing. Though it’s not glamorous, it is an essential part of your bathroom and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Without it, you’re putting your health and the entire structural integrity of your property at risk.
In this article, we’re going to discuss why waterproofing is important and what can happen if you ignore it. We’ll also outline the Australian regulations that you need to adhere to when waterproofing your bathroom.
Why shower waterproofing is a necessity
Shower waterproofing prevents moisture from seeping into other parts of your home. By containing the water within the shower room, you’re reducing the likelihood of leaks and water damage around your property.
In addition, it can also prevent swelling, warping and termite infestations. This means your walls and floors will remain firm and sturdy, maintaining the overall structural integrity of your property. In the long run, this can save you thousands of dollars in repair and maintenance costs.
With good quality shower waterproofing, your home will remain in good condition for years and years to come.
Before anything else, it’s important for the walls and floors of your home to be primed and prepared. Any loose particles on the walls and floors could affect the effectiveness of the waterproof membrane. Because of this, the surface should be smooth and devoid of debris and dirt.
In most waterproofing projects, a waterproof membrane is laid in between the walls and floors of your home and the tiling of your bathroom. Depending on the contractor, water-resistant plasterboards, silicone water stops and polyester reinforcement mats might also be used.
The membrane should cover any aspect of your shower water that can potentially seep through. This includes the corners created by the walls and floors, the corners of the shower recess, the gap between the shower hob and the floor, and the space around the drains.
Two coats of waterproof membrane are ideal. The first coat will need to be dry before the second one is applied. Generally, it takes one to two hours before you can apply another coat.
To increase the effectiveness of the membrane, the two coats are usually applied in different directions. For example, if the first coat was applied horizontally, the second one should be applied vertically.
All waterproofing jobs must meet the requirements of the Building Code of Australia and the Australian Waterproofing Standards (AS 3740-2010). According to these codes, here are the areas that need to be waterproofed:
- The entire floor within the shower recess
- The area 100mm above the shower hob or step down
- The area 150mm above the shower floors inside the shower walls
- At least 1800mm in height along the shower walls themselves
If the entire bathroom floor is made of absorbent material like timber, it will need to be waterproofed as well. Additionally, if the bathroom is on the first floor or higher, the entire floor will also need to be waterproofed regardless of the material.
Since there’s a lot that goes into the waterproofing process, most Australian states only allow waterproofing jobs to be completed by licensed waterproofing professionals. There are, however, slight regulation differences between states and territories. Please check your local government’s website for more information.
Hopefully, this has helped you understand just how important shower waterproofing is. It’s a process that should be taken seriously when you’re renovating your house, remodelling your bathroom or building a new property. If you have any questions or concerns, we recommend that you contact your local renovation and/or waterproofing specialists.