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Bathroom Fitting Question
Bath panel cracked
I installed a brand new MDF bath panel and within a week, the top edge has cracked and the MDF has blown in places. The panel had not been cut. I have been told by the store I bought it from that I installed it incorrectly as I didnt apply silicon sealant along the rim of the bath and the top edge of the panel. They told me that this allowed water to pool and seep through the lacquer into the wood. I was going to seal it but I had a couple of jobs to finish off so needed access from under the bath. I had applied tape though along the edge for a small amount of temporary protection.
So my question, is an MDF bath panel likely to crack and blow so easily without this sealant? If so, then surely MDF is the wrong material to use in a bathroom is it not? It seems that it is really not fit for purpose if a bath panel cannot sustain a bit of water.
The panel has been sealed with high gloss paint and lacquer by the manufacturer i.e. there are no raw edges. The store is saying that not using silicon sealant between panel and rim of bath is the problem.
I had to fit a mdf panel at home due to the way the bath had been previosusly fitted I pva it and then painted it. It has been on for 5 years now and is still as good as when I fitted it. Mdf should not crack within a week I would go back again and complain.
Hope you get it sorted
Answered 30th Sep 2013
MDF should not be used in areas likely to get wet/damp, in my experience, even when sealed as the store suggest, water will eventually find a way in, and in your case, the panel needs to remain removable for maintenance purposes, although there is a moisture resistant MDF on the market, this also eventually acts like a sponge.
I would always recommend a plastic bath panel.
Answered 29th Sep 2013
I do not like using MDF panels for a bath but you did not seal the edges. If you had sealed the edges then the water would not have been able to reach the raw edges to penetrate. I don't think a bit of tape counts as adequate protection.
Sorry for the problems you are having and I take on board the product has not been cut, but the best I can say is to say again I do NOT like using MDF panels on a bath. DM Interiors say the same but as they are quite a common product, good luck with your claim of not fit for purpose. (I would not be holding my breath if it were me.)
Answered 29th Sep 2013
Your problem is if the manufacturer's instructions state using silicon! If they don't, the store should refund you as the product is not fit for purpose!
Personally I don't use MDF, acrylic or styrene panels are better; but my preferred would be a frame, covered in cement board and tiled, they look great and last!
Hope it all goes well for you
Answered 3rd Oct 2013