Fiat Shower Pan / Drain Leaking - Need help identifying model and repair advice

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by RevisionX, Dec 8, 2018.

  1. RevisionX

    RevisionX New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Location:
    Georgetown, TX
    Hi.

    My home was built in 1996 and recently water started leaking from the base of our upstairs shower (through to the downstairs). It's a Fiat (the metal grate has that stamped on it) but that's all I know. I'm having a hard time identifying a model or how this is assembled.

    In the image, there was some beige silicone that I pried out from between the shower pan and the drain pipe. There looks to be another black seal below the silicone, but I have not tried to pry it out or go farther.

    I've never really seen a drain like this before, it looks like these seals are all that stand between the shower pan and the downstairs drywall. The downstairs drywall is not damaged, so I have not cut a hole out to look - turn on the shower and water starts dripping out around the edges of an air vent directly below the shower pan.

    I need help identifying this mess and some decent advice on fixing it. My gut reaction is to clean it out as best I can and break out the silicone sealant.

    Best regards and thanks in advance,
    Scott...

    fiat_drain.jpg
     
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2004
    Occupation:
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    Location:
    New England
    It's possible it's not the drain at all, and could be a seam above that the shower spray is penetrating. FWIW, water can flow a ways before it shows up. I might try filling a bucket with water and dumping it in the pan without splashing up the walls and see if there's a leak seen below. If none, it's probably not the drain and could be from the walls or wall to pan junction.

    It's hard to tell for sure, but some drains similar to that rely entirely on a compression fit between the rubber gasket and the edges of the pan. If it is that type, silicon is not a required item. Some use a big nut on the underside to wedge the seal against the pipe. WIthout seeing the bottom, I'm not sure how yours is designed to seal. Someone else may.
     
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  4. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Occupation:
    Plumber
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    That drain uses a "push in" rubber seal around the pipe. They usually are a very tight fit and have to be hammered in place, so they do not usually just start leaking.
     
  5. RevisionX

    RevisionX New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Location:
    Georgetown, TX
    Hi, that's probably the black seal that was below the silicone that was put on top. You can see a big chunk of the silicon in the bottom left of the image. I will fill around it with water and see if it "disappears." It is a 20+ year old seal. If so, should I just look for another push-in seal? I found a few online that would fit, but still hard to say without seeing it in person. If the shower wasn't directly above our living room, I would have just cut a hole in the drywall by now. Sigh.

    Thanks!
    Scott...
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 17, 2018
  6. RevisionX

    RevisionX New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Location:
    Georgetown, TX
    Hi Jim,

    Thanks for the reply. I'll start testing all of the areas around the pan to see if this is the case. It was a decent amount of water - not just a few drops, and I have dumped several gallons down the drain pipe, so not seeing leaks there. I'll fill around the seal and see if the water gets by, otherwise I think I'll silicone the mess I made and start looking for other possibilities.

    Scott...
     
  7. personalt

    personalt New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    In showers were I have this type of pan I think the pipe sits below the seal.. so water running down hits the seal and naturally runs down in to the pipe. As HJ said, those seals are really tight. I think your pipe height might be a key part of the problem and creating a place for water to pool. Since it has a ton of siliocn on this already I might fill that crack with silicon until it is just above the pipe. At least you get rid of that cavity where water can collect.

    This is assuming that wouldnt get in the way of the drain cover.
     
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