Just bought a house, and during the inspector noted in his report that the "shower step" (the door frame on which glass door rail sits) has a slope the wrong direction, causing water to accumulate against the rail, and probably infiltrating in the "step".

He said that if underneath it's concrete straight (it's in the basement) there is no cause to worry, and that I could probably just redo the silicon. When he inspected, he measured the humidity on the outside of the shower step, and it was at 100%. (using a General Tools & Instruments MMD5NP Pinless LCD Moisture Meter or somethign that looked like that.)

What I was planing on doing is:

  1. Buy such an instrument.
  2. Measure the humidity as a benchmark.
  3. Redo the silicon
  4. Wait a few weeks
  5. Measure again and compare.

If the humidity stays the same, consult someone to help me with fixing the step, if the humidity drops, leave it like that and keep an eye on it.

My question is: Is that course of action viable, or I'm just wasting time and money?

  • 2
    If it is on a basement slab and there is no water outside the shower why fix something that is not broke. Concrete can pick up water from the ground level this may be the true source of the moisture.
    – Ed Beal
    Sep 14, 2018 at 20:51

1 Answer 1


Water penetration is usually destructive, such that damage is detectable without fancy instruments. The tile grout on the outside of the curb would show signs of being wet and/or you might see efflorescence from evaporating moisture. As well as loose tiles, wet floor, etc.

If the shower curb is indeed sloped towards the outside of the enclosure then it was not designed correctly, which is a concern. Put a level on it. In the end, if it's been like that for some time and there are no signs of damage, it may not be something to worry too much about. The detector is not the "be all end all", a few years back inspectors did not even use them.

  • 1
    I would add that if the curb is sloped wrongly, you might have a reason to be suspicious of the rest of the installation as well, so give the whole shower a close inspection for cracked grout and maybe even do a fill test. But if that passes, re-caulk the door frame and be done with it --- you don't need any fancy moisture meter.
    – Paul Price
    Sep 15, 2018 at 0:26
  • It's very very slightly slanted. But you have to use a good level to see it. The rest of it seems nicely done. @PaulPrice For the fill test, would you put water above the curb, up to the side of the door rails to see if water can slip between the rails and the curb?
    – Tipx
    Sep 15, 2018 at 2:08
  • No, the fill test is something normally done on a shower pan to pass code. A temporary plug is inserted in the shower drain and the the pan is filled up to just below the curb, the inspector makes a chalk mark then comes back to see if the water level dropped. Sep 15, 2018 at 2:29
  • Ok, ok, so it's to check the rest of the shower's pan for unknown problems, but not the calking between the rail and the curb. Thanks! I'll do all that!
    – Tipx
    Sep 15, 2018 at 2:39
  • The only reason I mention the fill test is that we had a lovely tiled shower that did not pass it: after filling the pan, it was raining downstairs. The test may not be necessary and certainly isn't urgent, but it's relatively easy to do and it may allow you to discover problems before they become PROBLEMS.
    – Paul Price
    Sep 16, 2018 at 20:30

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