I have 1 1/2 inch cracks in my bathroom tile. What would cause something like this?

Asked by Veda
Grand Rapids, MI

Approximately 9 months ago I had my bathroom renovated. I had a tub and shower put in with a porcelain tile put within the tub/shower enclosure and on the floor and on two of the walls. I had three soap dishes attached to the corners of the tub/shower. Six weeks ago I noticed that the far corner of the wall tile and the soap dishes have all cracked like 1 1/2 inches apart throughout this one corner all the way down to the tub area.


Scott Grieves, CPM, CEA

Answered by Scott Grieves, CPM, CEA

Kissimmee, FL

Kissimmee Utility Authority

February 25, 2013

Couple of question could have some merit.

  • Do you fill the tub up regularly? The weight could cause the tub to settle causing some separation if it wasn't properly supported over a wood floor.
  • Who installed the soap dishes? Was it the original contractor? Reason why I ask it could have merit on your 1 year warranty clause if it was given to you in your contract.
  • Do the soap dishes appear to be attached correctly? If they are not, water could penetrate behind the soap dishes causing expansion and contraction on an exterior wall that is not insulated correctly or the dura rock behind the tile was not installed correctly and the water is dripping behind the tub and causing some saturation of the the flooring; which will cause expansion and contraction of wood; which could be the cause of the separation you are experiencing with the tile.
  • How does the tile job look? If it was not properly installed this could be an issue too.

Really hard to tell without looking at it up close. I recommend you contact your renovation contractor before it gets any worse, and limit using this tub/ shower.

I hope this helps.

Regards, Scott

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