The good news is that a shower cap is a simple task and it won’t take long to fix a faulty or dirty dam. It’s also a job that can be done at the same time as grouting tiles if you’re updating them as well. Take part of the weekend for an easy-to-clog job.
How to block a shower
If you already know how to seal a bathtub, you’re all set. If you’re showering with tiles for the first time, you’ll likely need to learn how to seal your shower as well. All you need is a little patience, some handy tools and a few handy tips. Keep in mind that you won’t be able to shower until the tampon has healed, which may take a day or two.
You will need:
1. Surface preparation
It is best to work on a completely dry shower, so after using it, open the window to allow any moisture to escape from the room. Wipe surfaces thoroughly with a rag or paper towels and allow them to dry completely overnight if possible.
If you are in an area with hard water, limescale may build up around your joints. Put on your protective gear and deal with this first by soaking paper towels in vinegar and leaving them in place for about half an hour – cleaning with vinegar saves you having to buy more chemical cleaners. Check several times while you wait in case the vinegar damages the surface. Rinse and wipe dry.
2. Remove the old plug
Next, place a sheet of dust in the bathroom to catch the old clog and make sure it doesn’t go down the drain. This will also ensure that your shoes do not scratch the bathtub. To remove the old stopper, use a sealant remover. Apply it to all previously blocked areas—inside and outside of the shower—following the directions on the package, wait for the recommended time (which can be up to three hours) and then use a plastic scraper to scrape it away.
You can also treat the old clog with a utility knife, box cutter, or razor scraper, but you can aim the knife carefully to avoid cutting into surfaces, or use the plastic razor we recommended above. Pull out any remaining bits with pliers or tweezers or if they are quickly stuck, loosen them with sealant remover and scrape off with the smoothest tool. Finish the process with a non-abrasive cloth or on delicate surfaces with a cloth dipped in denatured alcohol (methyl spirits).
3. Preparation for caulking
If there is any mold or mildew along the joints, this will come back to haunt you, so wash a cloth with a bit of bleach mixed with water and apply it, then rinse. When dry, wipe all joints with denatured alcohol on a rag. To make sure you can apply the sealant accurately, tape strips of painter’s tape along the joints with a narrow gap between them to run the sealer.
4. Squeeze the shower
The scab area must be completely dry. Trim the tip of the silicone sealant cartridge. Carefully cut the nozzle at a 45-degree angle. “Start by cutting a small amount,” says Beth Pearce, B&Q’s Building & Interior Category Manager. (Opens in a new tab). You can always cut more afterwards if you find that you need a larger grain.
Screw the nozzle into the cartridge and insert it into the caulking gun. “Using a gun with sealant is easy, but you may want to practice a little first to get a flat grain of sealant,” Beth says. A few presses on the handles and you’re ready to go.
Run the sealant along the joints, pressing the handles evenly to release it. Run the smoother along the seam or, using a finger dipped in dish detergent, remove the paint strip. Although it forms skin quickly, silicone dam may need more than one day to fully cure. Follow the instructions on the package when you can use the shower again.
What happens if you clog on old paste?
If the bathroom is old and has not been taken care of in the past, there may be lumpy, lumpy layers of caulk. This may have loosened up in places where water could collect and could harbor areas of mold and dirt. Covering it up is a bad idea. It is best to peel off the old caulk, giving a flat, clean surface for the new caulk.
What should be used for sealing around the shower?
The most suitable caulk for the shower or bathing area is silicone. This sealant is waterproof – essential for the shower area – but it also means that when applied the surface must be completely dry or the silicone won’t stick. For an original result, choose a silicone stopper that is rated for bathroom use and will also resist mold.