Drain installation in acrylic shower base

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by rjm, Mar 27, 2007.

  1. rjm

    rjm New Member

    Mar 27, 2007
    I'm a little confused about the proper procedure to test and install an acrylic shower base. What is the proper sequence to test the drain for leaks? Since the base must be installed in a bed of mortar, do I first install the base dry, attach the drain to the drain pipe, and then if no leaks, redo again over the mortar?

    Also, the instructions that come with my kit state that a 2" PVC drain pipe should be cut 1" above the subfloor, and then trimmed after the base is installed. Does anyone suggest doing it this way and what tool would I use to trim the PVC flush with the top of the drain?
  2. rjm

    rjm New Member

    Mar 27, 2007

    Pro help needed. Thank you.
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  4. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Aug 31, 2004
    San Diego, CA
    Would need to see the specs for your drain, but at 1" above the subfloor, I dont see where it would need to be trimmed again. Is the drain a no-caulk type ( gasket driven down around the pipe from the top) or a glue up? If it was necessary to trim it, a Dremel with a thin saw blade, or something like that, would work.

    In either case, this is a one-shot deal. Get the pipe and drain ready, get the mud ready, and put it in place. After the mud sets up, install the drain seal if appropriate and then do your leak tests.

    I have seen it done where a very thin plastic sheet was laid on the subfloor, and then also laid on top of the wet mortar. The idea is that if and when it is time to take it out, the mortar will not be bonded either to the pan or to the subfloor. Seems to make sense, but I probably would ask the manufacturer of the pan if they had any issues with this method.
  5. rjm

    rjm New Member

    Mar 27, 2007
    Drain installation

    Before going any further, let me add that the instructions that came with the kit call for the drain to be assembled before placing the base it in the mud, using plumbers putty and a neophrene seal, and for the drain pipe to extend a minimum of 1" above the sub-floor and then trimmed later.

    I still would like to know the best way to check for leaks:
    1. Do you find it necessary to test for leaks before installing in the mud base?
    2. Do you cut the pipe to the finished lenght before installing the base?
    3. Why is it a one-shot deal?

    Thank you.
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