How to Build a Shower Base for a Walk-In Shower
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Walk-in showers are a simple shower style that makes a great pick for small bathrooms where space is limited. A walk-in shower can be easily installed in the corner of a small bathroom, and it makes a great addition to a guest bathroom.
When adding a walk-in shower, an important component to install is the shower base. The shower base is where water is caught and drained.
Before picking out a new shower base, homeowners should prepare the space for installation. The following guide will outline what it takes to build and install a shower base for a walk-in shower.
Before You Get Started
Prior to installing a new shower base, take note of the following points:
- Always read the instructions that come with your shower base before beginning installation.
- Confirm that the model of shower base you have chosen will fit in the intended location and that the plumbing fixtures are located where required.
- Make sure that the adjacent walls and subfloor are solid, plumb, and square.
- If the installation surface is not level, use a leveling compound or mortar bed for proper installation.
- Use a drop cloth to protect the shower base from damage during installation.
- It is recommended to have at least two people for installing a shower base.
Additionally, before installation, gather the following tools and supplies:
- Plastic sheath
- Phillips screwdriver
- Tape measure
With the right tools and supplies on hand, the following step-by-step guide will walk homeowners through building and installing a shower base for a walk-in shower.
Make sure that the walls surrounding the shower base are plumb and that the floor is level. Place the shower base at the desired location and mark the location of the drain. Make sure to level the shower base in all directions, and mark the height of the tile flange on the wall studs with a pencil. This will make it easier to secure the shower base at the time of installation. Then, remove the shower base.
Rough in a 2-inch shower drain pipe. Clean the floor area of any debris and place a piece of plastic sheathing on the floor. Cut out the area where the drain protrudes and install the shower drain as per the drain manufacturer’s instructions.
Next, pour a mortar bed under the area where the shower base will be installed, keeping the mortar bed two inches away from the perimeter, as well as the drain area.
Set the shower base at the desired location, and use the pencil marks on the wall studs as a guide to level the shower base. Double-check using a level and secure the shower base to the wall studs using the appropriate screws.
Make sure the shower drain is properly connected to the drain pipe.
Allow the mortar bed to completely cure before applying any weight to it. At this point, it is OK to proceed to install the wallboard and tile.
Use silicone to fill the gap. There must not be any flexing or movement of the shower base once installed. Be sure to let the mortar dry for at least 24 hours.
Shop Kingston Brass
For homeowners looking to add a shower base to their walk-in shower, Kingston Brass offers the perfect quality options. Our extensive catalog of shower bases spans many designs and styles. Homeowners can pick from simple single shower bases or shower bases with built-in seating. Shop our shower bases today.