How to Fix Leaking Shower Without Removing Tiles – A Detail Guide

It’s awful and frustrating to see your shower leaking out. Leaky tiles can often create dampness and mold within surfaces behind tiles, and can even endanger the structural integrity of walls, so it’s necessary to solve the problem at the first sign of leakage. 

Well, you don’t need to fancy pulling up the entire bathroom tiles to repair it. Because the leaking shower can be sealed without removing tiles.

Sealing the leaking shower floor is as easy as painting color onto the tiles and grout with a paintbrush. You can do this all by yourself with the help of supplies available at your local hardware shop. You don’t need to remove any tiles and fill any cracks in the surface with grout.

If that sounds easy, then take a look at the simple steps on how to fix leaking shower without removing tiles. 

Why Does Shower Leak?Why Does Shower Leak

There are some likely issues that cause a shower leakage. The most obvious cause for leaking the shower is damaged grout, that passes water within the layer. It forms a hollow among the tiles and the floor from where water leaks. Plus, it destroys the sealing membrane behind the tiles.

Another common reason for leakage in the shower is a damaged drain. If the drain doesn’t work correctly, and the sealing is damaged, water leaks rather than passing through the drain. So, it is compulsory to learn how to seal shower tiles leakage.

How to Fix Leaking Shower Without Removing TilesFix Leaking Shower Without Removing Tiles

When you are sure about shower floor tiles leakage, you have to take quick action. Because after a certain period leakage could damage the surface so terribly, that you can’t fix it without removing the tiles.

Tools that you need: 

Optional tools (if grout requires replacement):

Steps to Repair a Leaking Shower Floor Tile:

1. Remove the Old GroutRemove the Old Grout

To start repairing your leaking shower, you need to clean the old grout. You should also clean other moldy or decayed sealants.

For a much professional shower look, you should remove all of the old grout. Don’t just focus on the deteriorated spaces. Ensure to remove all the grout as it may be beginning to leak beneath the surface though it doesn’t seem severe.

For removing grout you will need a Rotary tool, A tough, dull blade, and a Flathead screwdriver.

 If you are ready to remove the old grout take a look at the mini guide below:

  • Wear safety glasses.
  • Turn on the rotary tool and move the blade up and down of the grout. Keep your hand steady and don’t press so hard. Ensure to keep the rotary tool away from the sides of your tile.
  • Free any stubborn pieces of grout with a flathead screwdriver. You can also do it using a tough, dull blade, to take off stubborn pieces of grout.

2.   Clean Between the TilesClean Between the Tiles

After removing the old grout, you should clean between the tiles. Clean all garbage elements and excess dust using a Vacuum cleaner, Hand broom, and dustpan.

If you are not sure how to do it, take a look below:

  • Sweep up big bits of grout using a hand broom and dustpan.
  • To clean the smaller bits of grout and dirt from between the tiles you can use a vacuum cleaner.

3. Regrout and Replace Broken Shower TilesRegrout and Replace Broken Shower Tiles

Once you’ve removed and cleaned the old grout, you will have to apply new grout. Before that, You can remove any damaged tiles from the walls and floor as needed. It is not mandatory but anything damaged is always deserving of a fast replacement. 

After removing the old grout, you should wait a few days to apply for the new one. As a result, the shower wall can get enough time to get dry. It also helps to destroy any mold and decay in the wall.

Now, for a premixed grout, take the white cement powder and mix it with water. You can get the recipe from the manufacturer’s instructions. Make the mixture a little bit thick to increase the stability of the sealing. If you don’t want to use a direct grout mixture, you can apply grout spray. You can find these in the local market.

Make sure the shower wall is dry before applying new grout to inhibit increasing decay and mold. Regrouting tiles sounds difficult. But this can be done easily with the help of Pre-mixed grout, Grout spreader, and Grout shaper. Follow the mini-guide here that will help you out:

  • Wear safety gloves.
  • Spread some grout over the grout spreader. Move the spreader near the groove within the tiles. Pass it with large strokes, it will allow the grout into the grooves.
  • Use a wet sponge to wipe any grout that spreads over the tiles.
  • If the grout has set lightly, pass a grout shaper over it in a single easy movement.
  • Block any gaps with extra grout and remove the leftovers using a wet sponge.
  • To regrout repeat above mentioned steps on all the tiles.

4.  Remove Waste SubstancesRemove Waste Substances

After regrouting the tiles, wait for them to dry fully. Once the tiles are dry, wash the surface of the tiles with clean water. Dry the bathroom completely before proceeding to the following step. To speed up the drying process, keep the bathroom window open or use a fan (do not use the heater).

Clearing away waste materials is super easy. Get a bucket of hot water and a sponge and you’ll be good to go! Check out our mini-guide:

  • Clean the shower using hot water and a sponge. Move the damp sponge over the shower tiles in circular motions to clear trash and garbage elements.
  • Wait for the bathroom to dry thoroughly before continuing to the next step.

5. Seal the Joints Using SiliconeSeal the Joints Using Silicone

After drying the shower, you need to seal the joints with silicone. Additionally, the internal floor waste should be sealed with silicone. 

Applying silicone is very simple. You just need to buy a good-quality bath fixture silicone tube from the market. 

For a professional look in the bathroom, the silicone lines need to be straight. Because curvy silicone lines will make it look less professional. So, if you are anxious about keeping the hand steady, you can use masking tape. Because using tape helps you to clean odd applications.

Apply two lines of masking tape above and below the groove, where the silicone should sit. Thus, if you go outside the line, you can easily wipe it off. 

Silicone normally gets fixed on tiles quickly. Therefore, you don’t need to wait for hours.

Take a look at the steps below to be sure how to seal the shower:

  • Place one masking tape line above the groove and the other below the groove. (Optional).
  • Begin at the edge. In a smooth stroke, press the silicone across the groove.
  • To make sure that there are no air gaps, push your finger down across the range of the silicone.
  • Apply a second layer on top of the first steadily.
  • Get your finger wet using a silicone wipe. Smoothly run your finger over the silicone line for a smooth polish.
  • To seal repeat above mentioned steps around all the joints and the interior floor waste of tiles.
  • Wait until it gets completely dry and then go for the next step.

6. Apply Two Coats of Clear WaterproofingApply Two Coats of Clear Waterproofing

This is the last and most important step of the entire process. This step will secure the useful waterproofing of your shower.

After finishing applying silicone to the joints, clean the shower. When the shower is dry, apply two layers of clear waterproofing. With clear waterproofing, your shower will remain spot-free for more than 10 years!

For waterproofing, you will need a Paintbrush, a paint roller, and a Clear waterproofing sealant.

To perform this significant step, We’ve laid out all the details you need to follow. Take a look at them below:

  • Soak the paintbrush with a clear waterproofing sealant. 
  • Apply the sealant to the walls and floor of the shower just like painting walls.
  • Wait for the coat to dry.
  • Once the first coat is dry, get the sealant on the roller. Carefully run the roller over the tiles of the floor and walls.

Can You Waterproof Over Existing Tiles?

Yes, you can. But it depends on the situation of your tiles. If you have a swanky new bathroom then you don’t need to regrout. You can simply pass the waterproofing sealant all over the existing tiles.

On the other hand, for waterproofing over old tiles, you need to ensure the following facts.

  • The tiles should not be loose and should be tightly attached to the underlayer.
  • The tiles should not be broken or scratched.
  • No gaps between tiles.

How to prevent the shower from seeping between grout?

Generally, an old shower seeps between grout. Also if the existing grout is not sealing the tiles, the shower seeps water gradually. To waterproof a shower while the grout is damaged, you have to reapply the sealant on tiles.

How to repair a ceramic tile shower leakage?

Both tiles and ceramic are constructed from clay. But, the method of construction is not the same. But for waterproofing bathroom tiles, you can follow the same method for both of them. To repair a ceramic tile shower leakage, follow the steps we have explained above.

Final Thoughts

Shower leakage can be painful. If you don’t have it done quickly after notice, it may force you to further serious problems like repainting the ceiling or even redoing some of the floorings.

Fortunately, It is also possible to repair a shower leakage without removing the tiles. We hope in this article you have found the best method to do so.

If you follow the above-mentioned steps carefully, you can smoothly waterproof your shower without removing tiles. The process is manageable, and you don’t need to call in a plumber. However, carefully perform every step to avoid unwanted problems. Moreover, you should take professional help in complex steps if necessary.

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