Today Sandy writes:

Dear Diva,

I am having problems with moisture in my bathroom. We have bathroom tile in the shower and on the floor. Yet in both instances, there are signs that we are seeing moisture problems developing. The tile was in place before we moved in, do we need to re-tile if the damage is significant or can we simply repair it with a chemical then reseal it again?

Bathroom shower tile moisture problems are a tricky thing. How much work you end up spending on dealing with an issue like this depends on how it was installed in the first place. For instance if the tile was sealed the first time, chances are the moisture damage you are dealing with is largely superficial. On the other hand, if it appears that the damage is visually substantial, you may need to pull the old tile and even any board behind the tile to get to the farthest reaching parts of where the moisture leaked to.

This is one of those instances where one would need to be there to give you an accurate assessment. Anytime I am dealing with moisture problems however, if I can see visible damage throughout an area, I assume the worst and remove it all. Tile, any backer-board used, the works. The last thing I would want to do is have a mold problem later because I tried to merely clean the tile, then apply sealer over that.

For my money, if you see damage throughout, start over, re-tile and then seal it with a quality sealer from your local big box store. While this can cost more up front, it may very well save you a lot of heart ache down the road. The only exception to something like this, is if you are considering doing a bathroom makeover only a short time from now instead.  I would also entertain the idea of getting a mold test regardless of which option you decide to go with.

Do you have questions about the selecting or the installation of: tile, carpet wall treatments (window blinds, etc)? Then email me your tale of woe and perhaps I will be able to answer your questions right here at the Home Makeover Diva Blog!

Written by Amanda Hartley