Shower Floor Pans – Often Made Mistakes
Shower floor pans consist of several layers all working together to keep water where it belongs. Make one of several mistakes and the shower leaks and the repair bills mount. Here are some common errors.
1. Shaky Base
Tile cracks if installed over a base that moves. That goes for shower floors too. The sub-floor below the shower should be braced and rot free or the shower mortar moves and the whole structure self-destructs.
2. No Slope On Mortar First Layer
Some tile installers see no reason to slope the mortar under the liner. That works for awhile. Eventually what happens is the whole shower base stays wet and creates a perfect environment for mold. Mold begins in the mortar and spreads through the whole floor, completely turning the base to a big mold bed. Symptoms of that are signs of mold in the grout lines that just keep coming back no matter how often you clean.
The first mud layer should be sloped to help water exit the base.
3. Faulty Liner
Shower floors leak. Grout will not stop water and neither will some kinds of tile. A built in waterproof liner membrane serves as the barrier past which not one drop of water should pass. The liner most often takes the form of a vinyl sheet especially made for the purpose. Leave it out or fail to get it sealed to the drain and disaster waits. The liner truly is the layer that keeps water in it’s place.
Really all parts of a tile shower exist to properly support the liner and the drain. They are the critical pieces.
4. Drain Problems
Tile shower drains contain drain holes at two levels. One you see in the floor. The other lies buried and sealed to the lower drain base. That special drain is key to a waterproof shower. No substitute will work the same.
5. Not Containing Moisture
Water vapor goes everywhere around a shower. Even if the floor remains waterproof, walls can become mold harbors. Vapor barriers behind tile shower walls keep water in it’s proper place instead of feeding mold in walls creating a terrible mess.
Shower floor pans constructed the right way keep water where it should be for many years. Make any of several basic errors and the shower fails and water damage results.