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How to Caulk a Shower

A Simple 5-step Demonstration of How to Caulk a Shower

Water is leaking from your shower and ruining your perfect bathroom; you need to caulk it. This article takes you through the process of re-caulking your shower for a leak-free bathroom.
Geeta Dhavale
Last Updated: Mar 12, 2018
Nothing is more annoying than having leaky holes in your bathroom walls. They not only make your bathroom wet and spoil the decor, but also cause structural damages to the adjoining walls and bathroom cabinets. The cracks in the old seals allow water to enter which can result in costly bathroom remolding affairs. Caulking is widely used not only for aesthetic purposes, but also to prevent water seepage. You must re-caulk the shower at least once a year to cover the fine cracks in it which can cause the water to seep in. The good news is that caulking a shower is inexpensive and not time-consuming.
Replacing the caulk in a shower is quite easy. You can use the sealant under or around the bathroom tiles where they join the bathtub or the shower pan. You can also use it on the joints where walls meet. In short, caulk is like a glue and you can use it on any joint in the bathroom that is susceptible to leaks.
Step #1
First, you need to identify the leaky caulk. For this, you have to observe the bathroom and shower very carefully. Check all the joints where the shower pan meets the wall and look for cracks. For example, if you want to caulk a shower stall, then the base of the stall and the wall that it's attached to should be sealed. It is advisable to re-caulk the entire seam instead of topical re-caulking.
Step #2
Once you identify the joints to be sealed, start removing the old caulk with a scrapper or razor blade. Now clean the area thoroughly, as the sealing compound cannot adhere to dirty areas tightly.
Step #3
Now carefully apply a thick line of caulking compound on the entire seam or joint. Make sure that you do not stain the surrounding wall or tiles too much. Seal the compound immediately by running your wet finger across the line to spread and press the caulk down. If you want to caulk a shower door then apply the sealant where the outside edge of the door meets the shower and seal it against the frame. For a shower head, use the same process.
Step #4
After sealing the caulk neatly, take a damp sponge and use it for wiping the extra compound on the seam. Make sure to do it gently without removing the sealant. The extra caulk will come off on the sponge, which you'll need to remove occasionally.
Step #5
Now check for any remaining gaps. Apply the caulk again and see that all gaps are sealed from both sides. Make sure that there are no bumps on the seam and it is completely even and smooth. Once all the joints are sealed neatly, leave it to dry thoroughly. It is advisable to keep it for 24 hours so that it adheres strongly.
It is also essential to choose the right kind of sealant to get lasting results. Silicone and latex caulks are the most preferred for showers. It is suggested that you consult your plumber to help you select the right caulk for your bathroom.
Worker puts silicone sealant
Worker smoothing silicone
DIY Caulking
Removing Silicone
Contractor fixing shower