A Modern Master Bath, Built to Last
Mold problems prompted the remodel of a not-so-old master bath. Contemporary sensibilities yielded great results.
Synopsis: First there was the odor. Then there was the mold. Finally, the bathroom was just plain worn out. Those were the reasons why the homeowners decided a remodel was in order. The entire bath was gutted and the roof torn off so that moisture-control measures could be taken, including closed cell spray-foam insulation and two bath fans on timers. The master suite’s abundant yet awkward closet space was annexed to expand the bathroom, which now accommodates a freestanding tub, a large walk-in shower, and a water closet for the toilet. The room’s centerpiece, though, is a concrete double vanity.
When you decide not to sleep in your bedroom in the summer because of a mystery smell emanating from the bathroom, you know it is time to look into what’s wrong. This was just one of the reasons why our clients contacted us. They also wanted our firm to address other issues, which were no less important to them: clumsy storage, an awkward layout, and worn finishes. But when they described that odor, we knew right away that a moisture problem was our top concern.
No matter how big or small, fancy or basic a bathroom is, one thing should remain the same: good ventilation for moisture control. In this case, the dormer had no venting through the valley rafters to the ridge vent, and no airspace between the fiberglass insulation and the roof sheathing. This combination allowed condensation to form on the bottom of the plywood roof sheathing — and the plywood, the insulation, and some of the framing lumber above the master suite started to grow mold. The homeowners decided to remove the entire affected area instead of having the mold abated. Once we knew that we’d be gutting the bath and tearing off the…