How-to guide

How to Install a Shower Pan

A shower pan is the installation beneath the floor of your shower that catches the water before it drains away. It is used to prevent damage by water to your walls. If not installed correctly, it can leak and cause a lot of problems. For this reason, correct installation of a shower pan is important for any bathroom. The tricky part of installing a shower pan correctly is that much of the pan is often hidden or unseen. Professional contractors are usually best equipped to install shower pans, but if you have some knowledge of plumbing and bathroom construction, you can try doing it yourself too.

Here are some useful tips on how to install shower pans in your bathroom:

Before installing a shower pan

Do not build the walls of your shower first. They should be built after the shower pan is installed to allow for proper sealing in required areas. Begin with a slide wood or concrete floor. Apply a layer of roofing felt, and then pour a cement mix.

There are a few important things that you should keep in mind. The concrete mixture must be made meticulously with the correct proportions for the setting time and consistency to be perfect. Also, the cement fixture has to be correctly sloped so that water will flow towards the drain outlet. If this is not done right, adequate drainage will not take place.

Installing your shower pan

Next step is the installation of the shower pan. The shower pan should be placed properly over the concrete base. Next, wrap the sides up the wall. Seal adequately and ensure there is no leakage. An alternate method could be getting leak-proof shower kits and eliminating the use of mortar completely. Many professional kits such as these are available in the market now, wherein you do not have to go through the trouble of using mortar at all.

Fiberglass or acrylic liners, which look good and are high-quality, are also available these days. But these can be quite expensive.

The sub-floor under your shower must be done properly. It should not be flexible or movable, as that is a definite invitation to cracks and leaks. Use a sheet of plywood, along with bracing. You can even use two sheets of plywood for extra stability.

Check everything

After the complete installation is done, test for leakage by checking for cracked or damaged grout, displaced tiles, and any plumbing issues with faucets, pipes and taps. Go through all areas of the shower pan thoroughly and ensure that everything is perfect. If you do find a leak, seal it using a temporary sealant; if the leak stops, you will know that you have identified the source of the leak correctly.

You can use these simple tips to install your own shower pans. Once you are done, you will be able to revel in the feeling of accomplishment that you get on completing a task cost effectively and to perfection.