How to build a shower correctly?

marys235February 1, 2013

I am meeting with a tile guy tomorrow to get an estimate on tearing out my shower and rebuilding it, and re-tiling my bathroom. It will be torn out to the studs, I imagine. I was told that the pan is not sloped correctly, leading to water pooling around the edges, which has led to a lot of mildew. Knowing my house, I expect it was not built correctly to begin with, and no telling what they will find when they tear the tiles out.Can anyone point me to a simple explanation of how a shower should be constructed, so I can tell if this guy knows what he's doing? I know a lot of showers are not built correctly, like my current one. I know there is a Kerdi system, that some people use, but some people don't like them. And the pan has to be sloped correctly, and water runs down the walls, into the mud bed to get to the weep holes. I've read so much, now I'm just confused. Also, does using a solid surface shower pan change things? I know you set a solid surface pan in mortar instead of using mud, but how does the water from the walls get to the weep holes? Please forgive my ignorance, I am just not good at home improvements.

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Go over to the JohnBridge Tile Forum. There is a thread on shower construction and pictures/diagrams of a properly built shower. One thing to remember, is that there MUST be a slope under the the shower pan membrane. Many plumbers/tilers will put it flat on the floor and that is WRONG. Water will get through the tile and grout to that waterproof membrane. If it is not sloped to the drain the water will just sit on that flat surface and stagnate.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 8:19PM
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Schluter kerdi, schluter ditra. Fool proof.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 8:40PM
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You don't use Schluter DITRA in a shower. No method is foolproof if not executed properly. Do go to the john bridge forum. You'll see that Kerdi doesn't use a pre-slope, and there are no weep holes in the Kerdi drain. A solid surface pan is nothing more than a shallow bathtub. There are no weep holes, as there is no flexible liner to clamp in the drain. There is, however, a proper way to waterproof it. You're getting confused between the different methods of constructing a shower. Choose the method you would like to use, and learn about that one.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 10:27PM
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Hello dear,Prefer for a experienced plumber.i suggest some information about stand alone to barrier free, to shower/bathtub combos, your entire array of shower needs will be met.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 7:04AM
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The OP is tiling the shower AND the bathroom. That is why Pharaoh said "Schluter kerdi, schluter ditra"

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 10:46AM
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thanks neilaz!

I remodeled my own shower. Used ditra on the bathroom floors for marble tile.
Used kerdi tray, drain and kerdi membrane on the walls. It is a solid system. If done right, it will never ever leak.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 11:50AM
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In my experience, DON'T use a plumber to work the shower. Get a GOOD tile technician to do this for you. As was said, try John Bridge dot com for answers. Go to the "Professionals Forum" and ask your questions, put in your name and location. Someone will be there to help you.....

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 6:12PM
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