When tiling in wet areas such as bathrooms, showers, wetrooms, and pools, it’s vital to make the correct product selection to avoid costly failures.
Ensuring your wetroom, bathroom, or shower installation is fully waterproof is perhaps the most important part of any tiler’s work, because tiles, tile adhesive, and tile grout on their own will not inherently protect against water damage.
BS 5385 Part 4 states that the use of a ceramic tile together with an impervious tile grout and tile adhesive are not a substitute for a tanked or waterproofed bath, shower, or wet room installation. The effects of water damage are well known and documented.
Therefore, using a suitable waterproofing (or tanking) product – such as new BAL Waterproof 1C – is a prerequisite for a wet room installation, either within the building structures or ideally on the substrate surface prior to the application of ceramic of natural stone tiles.
Waterproofing on the substrate surface is often ideal as this ensures water is prevented from tracking through a screed for example into other areas. In a wet room, waterproofing should be specified on both walls and floors.
Available now, BAL Waterproof 1C is a ready-mixed tanking solution that can be used without priming on most common substrates* and is ready to tile after only two hours. Formulated with fibre-strand technology for improved strength, it can be applied in one-coat on walls and floors with a brush, roller or 4mm notched trowel. No additional tapes or matting are needed as it is crack-bridging from 2-3mm.
This new product is lightweight with easy-to-apply rheology and provides excellent coverage of up to 6sq m, making it suitable for domestic shower rooms, bathrooms or wetrooms. BAL Waterproof 1C also has sustainable benefits with low VOC and using 40% recycled materials.
BAL Waterproof 1C applied as one coat with a minimum 0.8mm dry thickness provides complete protection against water ingress, protecting backgrounds from water damage and erosion Before waterproofing a background always ensure that it is flat, clean, dry, sound, and free from contamination.
For example, you may need to render walls, or on floors use a floor levelling compound such as BAL Level Max or BAL Level Fast to ensure SR1 surface regularity (3mm under 2m straight edge) as per BS 5385-5.
When checked with a 2m straightedge with 3mm feet at each end, any gap underneath the straightedge between points of contact should not exceed 3mm. With some waterproofing products it may be necessary to prime the background first (although this is not necessary on most substrates with BAL Waterproof 1C).
Make sure that all corners, junctions, penetrations, and cracks in the substrate are adequately covered with scrim tape – this stops the waterproofing coating from seeping into the background or substrate. Apply the waterproofing coating as advised; BAL Waterproof 1C can then be applied with a brush, trowel or roller.
Once applied, leave the waterproofer to dry – this can be anything from two hours with a product such as BAL Waterproof 1C, or up to 24 hours with alternative products.
When selecting the right tile adhesive and tile grout for your wetroom, shower or bathroom, a number of factors need to be considered including the substrate, type, and size of tiles and the environment.
*Priming is only required on plaster, cement boards and BAL Board on the tiling side. Where priming is required in these three instances, then prime all surfaces with one coat of neat BAL Primer 1C and allow to dry for 15-30 minutes.