You probably don't think too much about your shower—that is, until it's no longer working. If your shower is leaking, you may be able to resolve the problem on your own. Read on for some instructions on repairing a leaky shower.
Confirm the shower is the source
Remove your bath panel and have a flashlight to hand. If your shower head is moveable, turn on your shower and move the water across your tiles until you see the water coming through. If nothing shows up, the source is most likely an adjacent sink or appliance using the same pipe stack. If the shower is the source, you can begin to look for the specific cause.
Check the silicone
Over time, particularly with overly vigorous cleaning, the silicone sealant around the top of the bath tub and in the corners between walls can begin to pull away from the tiles, leaving space for water to run through. Your first port of call when evidence of a leak has been found is to closely examine your sealant. If the problem lies here, you are in luck: simply purchase a tube of bath sealant from your local hardware store and run a bead along all the edges of bath and all corners, ensuring complete coverage. If the silicone is fine, then the problem may be with your grout.
Examining the grout
Old or poor quality grout can wear away over time, allowing water to seep through behind tiles and cause significant damage to yours or your neighbours' properties over time. Look closely between all the tiles to ensure that grout is intact. If the grout and sealant are both intact, you may wish to call in a professional plumber to look more closely at the shower itself. If cracks are found, you will have to regrout your tiles.
Repairing damaged grout
Thankfully, this is a relatively simple job that is well within the reach of even novice DIY-ers. A small grout removal tool, a grout float, pre-mixed grout and a sponge are all you will need for the job, and all are readily available from any hardware store. Simply scrape along the grout lines with your grout removal tool, removing all grout and ensuring a clean finish with no leftover residue which would compromise adherence for the fresh grout.
Scoop some of the pre-mixed grout onto your grout float and begin sweeping across the tiles, pushing the grout into every gap and crevice. Once all the gaps are full, dampen your sponge in cold water and run it over the surface of your tiles to remove excess grout. Once the tiles have dried, there will most likely be a small amount of powder residue left over. Leave the grout to set according to the directions on the container. Once this is done, give the tiles a final wipe down and your bath and shower will be watertight once more.