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speedster1 01-28-2010 06:25 AM

Older basement shower needs remodel. Questions about showers and concrete blocks.
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The house a recently purchased has a full basement with an extended front entryway on the first floor. Underneith that front entry is open space in the basement that the previous owner used to install a mud shower. It's about 4ft deep by approximately 8 feet wide. I've included a diagram.

The shower itself is a fiberglass surround that is not level and is just half-assed. The concrete blocks are covered in that fiberboard paneling that looks like fake tile. The seams are poorly sealed and in general it needs totally gutted. After I gut this I'll be left with a complete bare cubby hole with concrete block walls and a drain in the floor.

I'm looking for ideas on how to finish this properly and make it a nicer more inviting shower. I've thought about completely tiling everything, or maybe even installing a composite floor plan and then tiling upwards from that. I'm just not really sure how to attack this. Can I put cement board right up against the exterior block wall and then tile onto this? The reason I ask this is because if I fur the wall out and install greenboard and hardie I'm afraid I'm going to loose too much of the interior room (width). The house has a french drain system and shows no signs of water penetration into the basement and doesn't have a sump. I'd also be open to replacing the surround with another prebuilt surround but making sure this time it's level and done right.

Just wondering what kind of ideas you guys may have.

Ron6519 01-28-2010 11:20 AM

It would help if you posted the state or city you live in. Many answers will be regionally specific.
I would build stud walls in a basement location. The front wall can get moved to give you the space you need or the bath can be reconfigured.

speedster1 01-28-2010 12:17 PM

I'm in West Virginia. I can't really change the walls because they are concrete blocks on a poured foundation. I'm trying to figure out what my options are if I want to reuse the space that is currently configured as a shower

Ron6519 01-28-2010 01:00 PM

What's on the other side of the wall the supply pipes go through? Is that also a block wall? Can that wall be taken down and what's above be properly supported?
Pictures would help.

speedster1 01-28-2010 01:51 PM

I believe the current fiberglass shower is 36"x36". There appears to be a built up wall between the concrete blocks and the shower surround. It is covered in that nasty fake tiled panelling. I'm not sure whats behind but I do know that the hot and cold supply lines come down into that built-in area where they connect to the shower manifold. There appears to be no access to it. Maybe the previous owner decided he'd rip out the panelling if he ever needed to get in there. Basically when I gut this cubby hole I'm going to have a roughly 4'x8' room with block walls and a shower drain located on the left side of the floor. I need suggestions on what kind of shower system I should put back in there. This is not a bathroom with toilet/sink/etc. It's just a downstairs shower.

Ron6519 01-28-2010 02:04 PM

Pictures would help. I don't know why you can't just remove the water control wall and the wall you show behind it (in your diagram).

speedster1 01-28-2010 02:55 PM

1 Attachment(s)
I don't have any pictures of it.

The diagram is just to show what it looks like right now. I plan on gutting the room. I will definately rip out the framed wall behind the shower. What I will not do is bust out a concrete wall that supports my house.

I'm not necessarily looking for a floor plan. I'm looking for information on methods and building materials necessary to build a nice looking shower in a concrete block room.

This is what it will look like when I gut it.

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