Let’s keep moving along! And sometimes, your bathroom floor and walls like to do the same thing. Those movements are minute, but nevertheless significant.
Vertical and horizontal planes in a building are subject to small movements, between cooling and heating seasons. This is particularly true for old buildings. Cracks in your old plaster wall are often the evidence of such movements.
The greatest stress from those seasonal movements often occurs at the plane change, i.e. from floor to wall, or at a wall corner. This may be evident by cracked grout lines along the corners in the bathroom environment. This in turn can lead to durability issues because water can now infiltrate behind the tiles.
Rather than fighting the cracked grout lines, or the fact that there may be some seasonal movement, we have taken a flexible approach – literally!
We have used the corner profile by the bathroom product company Schluter. These profiles get mortared into the corners, but have some flexibility to them thanks to their concave profile. They basically absorb the small movements that otherwise would lead to cracked grout lines.
Another common and more economic approach is to use silicone caulk along all plane changes. The caulk would perform the same function as the corner profiles, i.e. absorbing small movements. But the caulked corners also have the tendency to get grimy over time. And once mold or mildew sets in, it may become difficult to clean them.
What I like about the corner profiles is that they are super easy to clean. We’ve had them now for a number of years in our 1st floor bathroom, where they have done a splendid job of absorbing movement and keeping the job of cleaning easy.