Saturday, February 25, 2006

Brown Stains

Now it needs to be said, up front, that our house is in a pretty good state of repair and décor apart from the lack of flooring in kitchen, loo and laundry and general state of bathroom. The flooring will be sorted hopefully after I’ve had another confrontation with Magnet. (One day I’ll blog the whole saga of our kitchen, suffice it to say, for now, that no one, absolutely no one, not even people who work for Magnet, not even their shareholders, not even people who are masochists, not even people who have been brainwashed by the ‘Magnet are Good’ religious sect should ever be so stupid as to think about selling you a kitchen let olone darkening their door.)

Anyway, the bathroom. It’s a bit of a shit hole, it has to be said. We chose not to have it renovated when the rest of the building work was done because we didn’t know if one day we would get a loft conversion; a fact that is still true today. It turns out that logic was mistaken. You see having been forced into doing a bit of investigative archaeology it turns out that the original tiling work was the usual 2 foot’s worth around the edge of the bath and that the rest (for those who don’t know our bathroom the whole room is covered in horrible white tiles) was done later. It would seen the original work was of a reasonable quality. It would also seem that the rest was put up by a person who cannot tile using flour and water as adhesive and grout.

The investigation was prompted by the fact that dirty great brown patches are appearing on our hall ceiling and they are spreading. So this afternoon A and I undertook an intricate scientific experiment. Our hypothesis – water from the shower was getting behind the tiles and soaking the floor under the bath. Method – I took off the board along the edge of the bath (watching carefully for spiders) and peered at the wall while A squirted water from the shower at the wall. Observations – water pissed all over the floor under the bath. Our conclusion – water from the shower was getting behind the tiles and soaking the floor under the bath. Bugger.

So I quickly nip to Homebase to pick up some grout and tools and some spare tiles rushing back in time for the rugby (great match, crap score) and then proceed to scrape what’s left of the grout away. Finding a tile that was held up by, well frankly nothing more than the power of prayer, I pull it away to see the plaster behind it absolutely soaking, having the consistency of damp sand than of hardened plaster. Bugger. A couple of other tiles shortly follow to reveal that, where the plaster is dry, it’s in an ok state.

So what to do? An insurance claim could be filed, FFS that’s what we pay £40 a month for but what should we do if they cough up? New bathroom in a place that will probably become the stairway to a new loft? New set of tiles around the shower zone? I dunno it’s all a bit too recent to have thought it through.

So for now we have decided to let the whole thing dry out and ban showers and exuberant bath play (by the kids). But I need some advice please. Is that a good plan or is the plaster shot and I’m just wasting my time hoping that drying out and then re-grouting is going to somehow work.

Comments on the back of a £50 note or by email please.

1 comment:

Danny said...

Hey mate

Finally caught up with your blog. I've been pretty crap at catching up with my own! Too much going on at the moment (see blog!).

I reckon you should patch up the tiles first. You are only going to risk serious or even permanent water damage (obvs, I know!).

I assume your bathroom would be located in the loft, once converted? (If so, where would you shower in the interim? - I think I'd have to avoid you if you started to smell like two of your students... you know who I mean!)

Take care bud... see you Monday!