Plumbing in the Home/Caulk for Shower

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Question
QUESTION: I'm confused as to which caulk to use in my shower.  I need something that is mildew and mold resistant. There are many products out there, making various claims. I would appreciate your recommendation.

ANSWER: Hey Steven,
This is one of my favorite sites and it does a really good job explaining caulks, I hope it answers all your questions:

http://www.naturalhandyman.com/iip/infxtra/infcau.html

*Latex Caulk*
Is easier to apply than silicone caulk.
Can be painted.
Cleans up easily with soap and water.
Has less of an odor than silicone caulk.
Is easy to remove when it needs to be replaced
Weakens and loses flexibility in direct sunlight and temperature extremes
Does not last as long as silicone caulk (under most circumstances
Can be applied on porous or non-porous surfaces
Better suited for gaps that stay constant.

*Silicone Caulk*
Is more difficult than latex caulk to apply. Needs meticulous surface preparation.
Cannot be painted.
Requires mineral spirits for cleanup.
Has more of an odor than latex caulk.
Is more difficult to remove when it needs to be replaced.
Is more flexible and durable than latex caulk. Holds up well in direct sunlight and      temperature extremes.
Lasts longer than latex caulk (under most circumstances).
Works best on non-porous surfaces.
Works well in gaps that expand and contract.

The classic method for applying caulk is with a gun, into which you place tubes of caulk. Some caulk is also available in squeeze tubes or in aerosol cans with narrow tips - both of which eliminate the need for a caulking gun. The squeeze tubes work well for small jobs, but for large areas it is easier to draw a good caulk bead with a gun. The narrow-tipped aerosol cans are particularly helpful for caulking in tight areas.

I hope something here helps and good luck!
~Carolyn~



---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you for the information.

My problem is that I'd like to find the best caulk to resist mold and mildew.  There are a number of products (such as Lexel All Purpose Sealent; Polyseamseal Tub and Tile Adhesive Caulk; or mildew resistant etc.) and I don't know how to choose.

Answer
Hey Steve,
I have never used this one but it offers an amazing warranty but a lot of contractors use Dow Corning 786 Mildew Resistant Sealant http://www.sealantengineering.com/catalog/item/7123679/7261657.htm

So between these two I would go with the 7 year replacement that Sashco offers.  I hope this helps and good luck!
Carolyn

Features
•7-year replacement warranty, including labor costs
•Maintains a watertight seal
•Scrubbable – won’t get damaged by abrasive cleaners, bleaches and other common household cleaners
•Elastomeric with powerful adhesion – Won’t pull away or crack
•Stretches and stays flexible
•Low VOC
•Paintable
•Water clean-up

*Cured sealant is mildew resistant. 7 year guarantee: MildewFree Sealant* is guaranteed for 7 years to prevent mildew growth on the sealant. If mildew growth occurs on the sealant (not on soap film)**, within 7 years of purchase, Sashco will replace the product and provide a contractor for reinstallation. Proof of purchase is required. Warranty applies to single family residential use only. No other warranties expressed or implied.

**Note: clean regularly to prevent soap film build up and mildew growth on soap film.

http://www.sashco.com/products/mildewfree/  

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Carolyn

Expertise

I have worked in Electrical Engineering for 30 years in power distribution and am now a Senior Electrical & Instrumentation Designer, but I am a handy homeowner more than anything else and have a lot of skills when it comes to home repairs. Bathroom remodeling, flooring, painting, reconditioning old wood items, plumbing, car repairs and troubleshooting most problems. I think of myself more of a teacher than someone that is going to tell you exactly what you have to do, but I will share as much info as I have to help get your problem fixed, so if you are not interested in learning then don't ask me a question or rate me if you don't like my answers. To me, it is all about the journey so lets share the trail for a short ride and see where it takes us! I also want to give thanks to both my Mom, who has passed and my Dad, who raised us with the "Can Do" attitude and instowed such confidence in not only my life but everyone that ever came in contact with them. You can do anything that you set our minds too if only you can break it down into pieces and just tackle one piece at a time, for the rest will fall into place.

Experience

My greatest accomplishment was finishing my first bathroom upgrades in my first home which helped me to sell my home is less than 3 days by myself with a For Sale By Owner sign and no more. Plus I got $10,000 more for it in just 4 years of owning it, now that is great equity.

Organizations
I am CEO and founder of Spirit Heart Therapeutic Riding Center, inc a 501c3 Non Profit for Rescued Horses and At Risk Kids. It is because of my own Mother intervention, who stepped up and shared her own love of horses with me as an at risk child myself that she planted this seed. So this program was created and is her Legacy that I have been so guided to share with those in need. We teach natural horsemanship to both horse and child and I get to watch some pretty amazing things happen. The kids learn to overcome fears, gain confidence, self-esteem and leadership skills where the horses have a chance at a life where they are trained, loved and respected and become a part of something that saves a child looking for a place to belong. If you support my Dream in bringing this program to life then please Donate to the cause and know that you are touching so many lives by doing so. God Bless You!

Education/Credentials
Nursing School, 1 1/2 years of a 2 year RN program, 1976 US Army, Intelligence School, Image Interpreter, 1977 Thomas Nelson Community College, Mechanical Drafting, 1980 Newport News Shipbuilding, Designer Training Program, 1981 School Of Hard Knocks

Awards and Honors
Honorable Discharge from US ARMY, Certificate of Achievement for Graduating with Honor's from Military Intelligence School, Ft Huachuca AZ. Award from Planning Research Corporation for a Job Well Done, NASA/Langley. Hand Selected to be an Internal Auditor for an ISO 9000 Certification Program for one of my longest employers, Lockwood Greene, ATL, GA. Multiple Letters of Appreciation.

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