DIY Waterproofing Bathroom Guide

June 11, 2022
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When renovating a bathroom, many of us forget one vital, practical element to the design—waterproofing.

Some homeowners might skip this step, favouring tiling or painting over the existing plasterwork. Does it reduce costs? Yes. But it also has a lot of risks.

Tiling without the waterproofing membrane could easily backfire. Which means you’ll be calling the professionals and spending more money on repairing tiling and plasterwork if the water leaks all over the bathroom floor.

If you are on a budget and do want to save a bit of money on this job, the good news is that DIY bathroom waterproofing project may be an option for you, and you don’t need any special expertise.

The good news for anyone on a budget is that there is a way to save costs when waterproofing a bathroom, and that’s to do it yourself! Read on to learn more.

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DIY bathroom waterproofing priorities

Before you start, take note of all the areas in the bathroom floor where there may be risk of leakage. These points can be:

  • Drainage line openings through the floors and walls
  • Hidden water lines
  • Buried PVC or GI fittings
  • Pipe joints
  • Floors and wall tile joints
  • Shower walls
  • Bathroom door jambs and threshold fittings
  • Joints adjacent to a bathtub or shower tray
  • Connection points to sink

When you’re doing the waterproofing, you’ll want to pay special attention to these domestic wet areas, ensuring they are properly sealed.

In an average sized bathroom, there is even more risk of water spreading faster.

how to design an ensuite bathroom

DIY waterproofing steps

Step 1

This is a phase that must be completed completely. Clean the bathroom’s walls and floor, removing all dust and debris. Then double-check that the bathroom is entirely dry, with no wetness on the walls or floors.

Step 2

Purchase a high-quality waterproofing kit for your bathroom. If you’re not sure which one to get, do some research online and go to a few different hardware stores. The following items should be included in a DIY bathroom waterproofing kit:

  • Tanking membrane
  • Waterproofing acrylic primer
  • A tube of neutral core silicone sealer
  • Edging tape
  • Gloves
  • Brush

Step 3

Take the silicon sealer tube that came with the DIY bathroom waterproofing kit and run a bead along all of the internal corners of the wall as well as the floor, completing it properly with your fingers. Remember to use gloves while doing this.

Step 4

Apply a liberal coat of the tanking membrane to all of the inside corners with the paintbrush. Make sure that you paint on both sides of the membrane and that the patch is around 200mm wide.

How to Clean Grout in Your Bathroom

Step 5

Smooth the edging tape along the length of each corner to bury it into the moist waterproof membrane. Make sure the tapes are at least 150mm apart.

Step 6

Apply a second coat of waterproofing membrane over the clogged drains, around the taps, and any other wall or floor penetrations.

Step 7

Paint the whole surface of the bathroom, including the walls and entire bathroom floor, with a waterproofing acrylic primer. A paint roller works well here. Use masking tape to distinguish paint areas.

Step 8

Apply a second coat of acrylic primer in a 90-degree angle to the first coat.

Step 9

Allow it to dry for at least 24 hours before proceeding.

Bathroom leakage prevention

You can take further care to avoid bathroom leakage once you’ve completed these steps. When you waterproof a bathroom, you want to make sure you’ve done it right. A bathroom renovation takes a lot of work, but it pays off in cost.

Aside from waterproofing, make sure the bathroom floor slopes towards the drain to avoid water gathering elsewhere, which can lead to water leaks.

If you wish to paint the bathroom, make sure to use waterproof paint for the ceiling and walls, and instal a vent or fan to remove damp air.

Excessive steam can cause moisture to accumulate on the walls, eventually seeping through and causing algae to grow.

bathroom renovation fittings

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Author bio:

This article was supplied by Justin Jersey and re-edited by Isabelle de Braux.

Soho is your expert team in Australian real estate, offering an innovative platform for effortless property searches. With deep insights into buying, renting, and market trends, we guide you to make informed decisions, whether it's your first home or exploring new suburbs.
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