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Old 10-01-13, 01:06 PM   #1
Daox
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Default Enclosing my shower

I've been wanting to enclose my shower stall for years now... I don't know why I haven't yet, so I'm posting a thread to get my butt in gear.

Here we have the shower. Exhaust fan above it. Fairly run of the mill.






The general idea isn't perfect, but it is fairly simple. I have a piece of 3/8" lexan or plexiglass (I forget which is which all the time). I will mount it above the aluminum shower door frame.





My main concern is the moisture on the ceiling and painted wall surfaces. Is there something I can paint them with? I'd rather not rip stuff apart to add more tile and what not. I do like the idea of having the exhaust fan in the shower stall to suck air through it.

Ideas, thoughts, and suggestions are welcome.

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Old 10-02-13, 12:21 AM   #2
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My question is, why?
Are you trying to achieve some kind of chimney effect by sealing the top part so that all the moist air to be concentrated towards that ventilating fan?

*curious*

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Old 10-02-13, 08:53 AM   #3
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Sorry, should have included that in the post. Enclosed showers are more comfortable, more efficient, and also don't let as much moisture into the house.

More info: http://ecorenovator.org/forum/ecoren...efficient.html
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Old 10-02-13, 09:10 AM   #4
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make sense. Thx.

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Old 10-02-13, 09:30 AM   #5
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The bathroom normally sees that moisture load on its painted surfaces anyway. If you are concerned about what is left over if you turn the fan off as soon as you walk out of the shower, you'd either want to leave the shower door open after the shower or get a bathroom fan timer that keeps the fan on for a certain period after you flip the switch off. Also, if you ever need to replace the bathroom fan, you could get one with a humidity sensor and then it would be automatic.

The timer idea would be fine too if you left the fan off to keep the warmth while taking the shower and then as soon as you exit the shower to have the fan run until the bulk of the moisture is pulled out. Just keep in mind that you'll want a gap somewhere to be sure that you are actually moving air out of the shower area through the fan rather than just creating a useless suction with no flow. It looks like the space between the shower panes is probably enough but I can't tell what the depth is through the pictures.

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Old 10-02-13, 09:42 AM   #6
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As it is now, most of the time I don't even run the fan. I just leave the bathroom door open all day long. The mold/mildew does grow, but not obnoxiously fast. I have to clean the ceiling once every few months because mold spots appear. I would think that the problem will get worse in the shower area once its enclosed (and obviously better outside the shower area). I was just concerned that the wall paint would not be enough and wouldn't hold up. I've seen bathrooms where paint is peeling around the shower area and I'm not looking to incur any painting or maintenance work if I can avoid it by doing a bit more up front.

There is plenty of gap, I'd say at least 1/4" between the panes, and around the same on the edges.
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Old 10-02-13, 01:05 PM   #7
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Daox, did you ever move the dehumidifier from the basement into the bathroom? I did a google search for something and found an ER thread. I would think an in-ceiling dehumidifier to replace/work with the fan would be your best option. What's above that ceiling, anything like an attic or crawl space?

As far as an automatic thing, you could put your Arduino skills to work here. They have a device to tell you the moisture content of soil (good for your garden ), you could use that to tell the board to send or not send a signal to a relay connected to a dh/fan. (Maybe they have a better tool, but the idea is there.)

Another thing to consider is a personal pet peeve of mine. I hate getting out of the shower and it is freezing cold in the bathroom. I have to keep the door closed to keep the bathroom at least at a comfortable temp. In your area, this is going to be even more crucial, especially during the winter! You have to consider what an enclosed shower will do to the rest of the bathroom and what it will do to your comfort level.

Side note, funny story. On your pic of the bathroom, there is an ad attached (sorry, not a super-duper awesome supporter) and it's an LG with lots of clouds that move up. It makes it look like steam is coming from your shower!
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Old 10-02-13, 02:20 PM   #8
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No, I never did try the dehumidifier thing.

The bathroom fan is buried in cellulose in my attic above the shower.

I'm not really worried about the fan being automated or not. Its just on a switch now and it works fine.

I've thought about the being cold after getting out of the shower thing. I guess I'll deal with that after the fact. At some point you have to go back to room temperature, hopefully without shock to your body haha.
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Old 10-02-13, 07:29 PM   #9
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I found that spending about 8 minutes in the winter when the house was 50 degrees that getting out of the shower and walking around the house right after doesn't really feel cold as long as the shower you took was warm/hot enough. The leftover warmth lasts about 5-10 minutes so if your house wasn't as cold as mine when I was keeping things on the cold side a few winters ago, it probably isn't an issue unless you like your showers at a minimum temperature.
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Old 10-03-13, 09:04 AM   #10
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I have also noticed this. I guess we shall see. I typically take a shower in the morning before work. My setback is 60F, and I don't turn the heat on for the 1 hour in the morning I'm awake getting ready for work.

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