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Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-22-2006, 12:27 PM   #1
 
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Totally Enclosed Shower

I'm considering extending the glass by the shower all the way to the ceiling. This would help the two problems with that shower:

1. We keep the room cold, so there's a lot of weiny-shrinking cold air around when showering.

2. There's a lot of condensation, tending to cause mold, in that bathroom.

Anybody's shower totally enclosed (I don't mean 100% air tight).
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-22-2006, 01:28 PM   #2
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

Sorry about your weiner, Al.

Another out-of-the-box suggestion. Install an over-the-shower medium volume, low sones vent fan with an integral infrared heat lamp. I'm thinking that the enclosed shower is still going to be a major source of moisture for you. You do have to come out eventually

Depending on local codes, you may be able to vent this through an exterior wall or run a piece of flexible duct to an eave, soffit or gable vent rather than have to vent it through the roof. Depending on code you might also be able to join the vent to an existing stack.

Should run you under $200 and depending on how your code requires you vent it, a couple of hours to a couple of days (part time) to get it in place.
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-22-2006, 01:35 PM   #3
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

We don't need no stinkin' code... :

Since most DIYers just vent to the attic, which I DO NOT recommend, venting via gable, soffit, or fascia eliminates punching through the roof, and you can blame any code violations on the previous owner... :P
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-22-2006, 02:16 PM   #4
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

I dont do code either, but Al is a very upstanding citizen.
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-22-2006, 07:13 PM   #5
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

Hi Al,

I've done this 3 times in 15 or so years and I like my present layout best of all. Its a 48" square Jacuzzi brand shower base tiled to the ceiling. The ceiling is tiled with the same tiles but turned 45 degrees. Picture squares on the wall and diamonds on the (vented) ceiling . It looks great.

DW wanted a glass door but I held out for a plain shower curtain. A few years later and the curtain has been replaced a few times. It always looks nice and is easily cleaned or replaced. Doors are a pain to clean and trap moisture and soap and hair :P
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 06:59 AM   #6
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

Bum I'm the same way about glass door, grew up with them and hated them. Now I can change the decor of the bathroom in the time it takes to change the shower curtin.
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 07:50 AM   #7
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

We just redid the girl's bathroom. They had a standard sized tub with shower and fiberglass shower enclosure. Both my girls take really looooong showers and were lax on running the vent. As a result mold and mildew were a problem. On top of that, water would escape outside the curtain and hit the wall causing causing damage to that wall.

When we remodeled we had ceramic tile run along both sides of the shower enclosure to protect the wall and extended the tile close to the ceiling. I also had a shower door installed.

We used bullnose tile along all the edges of the floor instead of regular trim, too, so that when the floor is washed we wouldn't have to worry about the trim getting wet.

I also had tile ran half way up the wall behind the sink and toliet because that was another area where mold would accumulate.

Basically, the girls did a lousy job of keeping up with their bathrooms. Very disappointing. I threatened to collect a damage deposit when I did the remodel if they didn't do a better job.
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 09:56 AM   #8
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

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Bum I'm the same way about glass door,* grew up with them and hated them.* *Now I can change the decor of the bathroom in the time it takes to change the shower curtin.
It's a lot less painful to bang your elbow against a shower curtain than a glass door, too...
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 10:13 AM   #9
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

And you should try washing a ~100lb dog in the shower with ya when all he wants to do is run in circles around you while you're doing it...

One of these days i'm going through the shower door, or he is...

But seriously, the GFCI heatlamp/fan option worked great at my wifes old house. She was always chilly in the morning...well, I think I can omit 'in the morning' and had some mold and mildew problems. I think I paid $80-90 for the unit at home depot and her brother put it in. Took about an hour and I think 3 decent curse words.
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 10:14 AM   #10
 
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

There is a fan right near the shower (see photo), but the idea of a second fan with a heat lamp is a good one. *I could vent it with the original fan, or through the gable end.

I figure I would dry off inside the shower, then just quickly step out and shut the door. *Presumably the mold problem would be worse in the shower itself, but at least it would be restricted to a smaller area, and more treatable.

But I'm still looking for the answer to the question, does anyone have a totally enclosed shower?
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 10:49 AM   #11
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

Living in the dry western US, moisture is actually desired so no vent fans are needed. The shower moisture helps keep the house from turning into a pile of splinters and helps with splitting fingers in the winter.

I would think that unless you vent the shower it will become a mold and mildew magnet and will require a lot of cleaning up high since that will collect a lot of moisture due to condensation.

We use a squeege on the glass shower door at the end of each shower and it really keeps it a lot cleaner. The door is clear glass so it shows everything that sticks to it. Curtains suck into the shower and I hate a cold clammy shower curtain wrapping around my legs. Yuck!
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 10:55 AM   #12
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

Quote:
Originally Posted by ()
She was always chilly in the morning...well, I think I can omit 'in the morning' and had some mold and mildew problems.
Isn't there a Lotrimin product for that?

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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 11:03 AM   #13
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

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Originally Posted by TromboneAl


But I'm still looking for the answer to the question, does anyone have a totally enclosed shower?
We don't either. But it sounds to me what you are looking at is a lot like a steam shower, which would keep you nice and toasty warm, and is fully enclosed. http://www.stewart.cs.sdsu.edu/0myst...teamshower.pdf
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 12:33 PM   #14
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

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Isn't there a Lotrimin product for that?
Oh crap, I stepped on a mine.

And after Nords short circuited a certain attempt just a few days ago...its just not fair.
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 12:42 PM   #15
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

just out of curiosity, what are the problems with having a bathroom vent into the attic? My old condo had vent fans in both bathrooms, and they just vented into the attic. My Grandma's house has a bathroom fan that just vents into her attic, as well.

When they do it that way, does it allow too much moisture to build up in the attic, or something? And then, I guess you could have mold problems?
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 06:13 PM   #16
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

Thats exactly it, moisture build up in the attic. During the winter time, even in very cold climates, moisture build up inside of a home actually travels upwards and becomes trapped in the attic. If you have decent attic venting, this is dissipated. Some people try venting their clothes dryer into their house to recapture the heat or vent a stove, water heater, or vent fan from a stove or bathroom into the attic and figure "it'll get out somehow".

In the case of the internally vented clothes dryer, you'll recoup a dollar or two worth of electricity in exchange for a humidity bloom that if it exceeds 50% will sponsor mold growth and associated potential health and allergy problems.

In the case of venting directly into an attic, your insulation will get moist for starters. The more moisture thats applied to insulation, and the longer its applied, the weaker the insulative value. Molds and mildews will develop in the attic, along with other fungi and dry rots. Metal duct work, your furnace if its present in the attic (mine is) and other fasteners such as roofing nails etc. may also be exposed to excess moisture causing rust and premature failure.

In the grand scheme of things, you probably wouldnt notice any difference in a few years. After ripping my wifes 50 year old house apart, which had just about the worst attic ventilation you could possibly come up with short of carefully engineering it to suck, I got a good long term first hand view. An extension was built onto the house that had a 100% unvented roof. The soffit vents had been stuffed with insulation. There was one operative gable vent and one small roof 'mushroom' vent. Not much. The insulation was shot. A lot of rot, dry and otherwise in the walls and in the attic. We had to replace a number of studs and the bottoms of the framing holding the roof up had started to crumble, so we had to saw off a quarter to a half inch from all of them to settle the roof back to level.

In short, a mess. Avoided by maintaining good attic venting year round.
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-23-2006, 10:50 PM   #17
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

Quote:
But I'm still looking for the answer to the question, does anyone have a totally enclosed shower?
This has come up before, but we have something similar to this:


The shower area is in the foreground, soaker tub behind it, drain in the floor. I.e., the whole room is a shower/bath. Great for washing dogs, too. With a ceiling-mounted hot air heater/dehumidifier for protection against wienie shrinkage in winter,and against mold year-round.

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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-24-2006, 09:11 AM   #18
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

Now that I think back on it, my condo attic did have a ridge vent, plus an attic fan (fan didn't work, but there was still a pretty big hole for hot air and moisture to get out) and it had good soffit ventillation. My dryer vent actually went all the way to the outside, so that wasn't a problem. It was just the two bathroom vents that fed directly into the attic.

It was a pretty tall attic, too. The condo itself was about 26x42, but the peak ran across the shorter dimension. I'd say it was about 9-10 feet tall at its peak. So with all the volume, perhaps moisture wasn't as much of a concern?

It's been awhile since I've been up in my grandma's attic, but where the bathroom vents, it's probably close to 6 feet tall at the peak. And it's also fairly well ventillated. No ridge vent, but the soffits and side vent work pretty well I guess.
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-24-2006, 09:13 AM   #19
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

I wouldnt count on passive ventilation to resolve direct vented moisture.

That having been said, nothing bad will likely happen for the term most people own the home. The mold legacy will be left for the next owner, or the one after that.

In a warm dry climate during the summer, probably not an issue. In a cool or cold environment, most of that moisture is going to condense directly within the attic before any passive ventilation will remove it.

I'm pretty interested in the solar attic vents. Pretty expensive right now though...
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower
Old 01-24-2006, 10:19 AM   #20
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Re: Totally Enclosed Shower

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I'm pretty interested in the solar attic vents.* Pretty expensive right now though...
The 800 cfm fans are getting cheaper all the time.* I think they were $400 per unit last year.

If you know how to drill a hole in your roof then you can save most of that "expensive" on your labor nickel.
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