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Old 07-22-2008, 10:22 AM   #16
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


Are we all actually sure that that really is the shower?

Could actually be a wet vent IMHO.

I've seen before where builders instead of leaving a box in the concrete for the shower trap, they just build gravel up and leave only 1/8" of concrete over the top of where the trap will be installed to be chipped off later to allow for connecting the shower.

If that 2" line is in the wall, it really possibly is a vent, unless the toilet vent is somewhere else that she knows of.

I would not hesitate for a second (since the builder says the trap is already installed) to dump a quart of water down that puppy and take a flashlight to see if water is standing, before I do anything else.

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Last edited by Alan; 07-22-2008 at 10:26 AM.
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Old 07-22-2008, 11:31 AM   #17
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


hm..... I never even thought about the height, -- poor planning. It is an issue now. We have a tray ceiling built in the bathroom to cover all the ducts. At where the drain corner is, the lower tray is only 7'3" tall. I have a vent built right above the shower place. The shower enclosure top frame may end up with only inches from the tray and guys like KC would bump into the shower heads. Would that be acceptable artistically and practically? I might have to change plan to have a bathtub which requires less height, maybe?
Thank you for all your time and precious knowledge.
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Old 07-22-2008, 11:44 AM   #18
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


Wow, I am getting more.

The call to the builder (he found that builder through yellow page) was really not that reliable. I will go home and pour some water to verify if that is a vent. If it is a wet vent, could I still use it as a shower/tub drain? If I could, what things other than building a trap would I have to consider?

Thank you, thank you,
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Old 07-22-2008, 11:51 AM   #19
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


Where ya located?? I would 'borrow' you my 20#rock hammer IF you think you can run it. It comes complete with pipe handle that really really bites when you swing it over your head and smack some solid 'crete. Dont 'member where I ever got it,,,BUT I was definitely 'younger' then!!LOL. Lots less time and swings when that thing gets hummin!!

I remeber NOT so fondly of trying to break some front steps off a house in 105 degree heat index for about 4 hours one night. Found out somebody poured a full set of concrete steps over another set of concrete steps and it was a TOUGH go,,but "Big Bertha" won!!(I was 30 years YOUNGER then!!)

this is NOT pertanent to the thread at hand,,but it works,,,I dont think I can get enough 'postage stamps' on "Big Bertha" to send it your way"!!!LOL. I wish I was small---again!!!Good luck--d-
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Old 07-22-2008, 12:48 PM   #20
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


Don, 30 years experiences?! I am a southern girl/woman, in Hotalanta. It is tremendously appreciated but I would not go that far to borrowing tools from you kind helpers. I still need to make some decisions:

1. If it is a wet vent
2. A shower or a tub
3. Break the concrete or raise the frame
4. Hire professionals (I would put this as the last option when all other means prove to be impractical)
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Old 07-22-2008, 01:19 PM   #21
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


First I have to say what no one else has said so that other DIYers who read this thread will not repeat your biggest error:

Always do the rough plumbing First!!!!!!!!!!! When you said you were almost done and oh, how do I hook up the shower - my jaw dropped. The very first thing to do is figure out the rough plumbing.

OK, for you that's in the past and hopefully you won't have to undo too much to correct it.

I would not recommend a raised shower that drains above the existing concrete to the existing pipe (if it indeed is a trapped shower drain as you believe). My humble opinion is that it would be hard to deal with should it become clogged. The snake would have to zig zag considerably. I prefer to keep the p trap located directly under the drain. This might even be code.

Before you do anything make sure you understand what you have. It's not in the pictures but I take it you have identified the vanity drain. How did you differentiate between the vanity drain and the shower drain? The vanity drain should have a vent continuing upward - does yours?

As others suggested you can verify that what you believe to be a shower drain is indeed a shower drain by removing the cap and checking for the p trap which should be directly below where the pipe leaves the concrete. After pouring in water and looking down the pipe you should see that the bottom is full of water and doesn't drain away and virtually none of the bend in the pipe is above the water level. If that's the case then you have a P trap or a clogged drain. Pour in more water and look again - if the water level has gone up it's a clog, if the water level is the same as before that's your shower drain.

Once you've identified the shower drain, you can remove the concrete and move the p trap to the new drain location. Make sure you have the right slope on the drain and that the new drain location isn't too far from the vent.
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Old 07-22-2008, 01:23 PM   #22
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


ok even if you have to step up the base to 6 inches that will give you 6-9 to the top.You will only need 4 inches at the top If you put a vent fan in the shower area( it could be out side the shower) and run the vent duct along the top floor joist to the outside.Check it out when you get home along with the wet vent deal.To bad your that far away if this dont work out I know where you could get a great deal on a real nice soaker tub that you could put up on a raised platform that would be real nice too
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Old 07-22-2008, 01:52 PM   #23
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


I am really humbled in front of all you guys. jogr is right, poor planning comes back and bites you, badly. He is alos right at the vanity drain like he read my plumbing blue print. I do have a vanity drain with the vent continuing upward. It is a little thicker, 2 1/2", about 3 feet to the left of the toilet drain but in the wall. I should have posted the pics to begin with.

I am a diyer, a first timer, too. This is my first post and I have learnt a lot. I was almost in tears when I realized that there are so many expert-level guys are landing their helping hands to a help-needed-girl like me.

I thought it would be just a simple concrete-or-not question. But now I think I would have to keep this thread a couple of days more. I will post some pics of the tray ceiling, the 1/2" water pipes, the vanity drain... before I really start hammering.

You guys are giving me the confidence that help is OUT THERE. You are awesome,
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Old 07-23-2008, 10:17 AM   #24
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


I cut open the pipe and poured 1 and half gallon water in. At first I could not tell if it is “standing water” because the pipe is so deep. I then used a 29” long copper pipe that reached the bottom of the drain pipe. I rubber band a piece of tissue around copper pipe and did again. It showed 4 - 5 inches of “standing” water. If this is the trap, it is very deep. The water level is 22” below the surface.
If I break the concrete, it would involve a lot of dirt digging effort. We’ve decided to go with clasact’s recommendation to raise base. The bath venting fan has already been installed and the lower ceiling is actually 90” so the height is well enough.
We will start this weekend, any tips and guidance for building a raised/customized shower base would be mostly appreciated. Love you guys!
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Old 07-23-2008, 12:41 PM   #25
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


OK so all is looking good for this project.Look into the Kerdie system for your shower the system is pretty fool proof and easy to use.If you do a search you will find they also have a video of how to do it.I really like their waterproof membrane and its not that expensive but I didn't use the drain and pan parts since it wasn't the size I wanted but if you watch the vid it will give you a good ideal of what to do also I know if you search custom showers on here you will find several threads.When you get started dry fit you pipe so you know where you want the drain then frame it all in.Keep us posted and we can help you through it when your done you will love it
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Old 07-23-2008, 01:17 PM   #26
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


Thank you, clasact and all,
I am about about to start searching and buying. I will definately keep you guys posted. I am sure that I will be nudging you for ideas and help, soon.
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Old 07-23-2008, 01:27 PM   #27
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


personally I like the natural stone but KCtermite did one in slate that looked real nice you can check it out he has pic posted but thats getting ahead of yourself.Lets get it all framed up the shower floor in ,the backer board up and waterproofed first oh and lets not forget the plumbing it always help in a bath.We are all glad to be of help,By the way how did this go over with hubby
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Old 07-23-2008, 05:23 PM   #28
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


Can you design the shower base so the drain is near the existing drain/wall - maybe out 6 inches. Then you could bust out just a little crete, dig down a foot or so and use a couple 45s to offset the drain pipe over 6". This way future snaking will be easier. Maybe I worry too much LOL.
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Old 07-24-2008, 03:28 PM   #29
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


Guys,

I did not know Kerdi could be used on drywall. Do I still need to add a backer board between Kerdi and the green board? I have the rough plumbing of 1/2" copper pipes but I still need to sweat the mixing valve and the threaded shower head pipe. I thought I would have to tear down the wall board. I am thinking that I may get away with it by knocking out a hole that is big enough to support the blocking for the shower head pipe. I have access to the back of the wall studs.

Jogr, I think I can go with the 6" off the wall. We want to see what would look like to frame the pipe above the crete. If the raise up does not work, we will break the floor. No, you are not worrying too much, your point is well backed, I am laughing with you.

clasact, he is kind of lost right now. We both are easily persuaded away kind of people. Break... not to... .....
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Old 07-24-2008, 04:28 PM   #30
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Do we have to break the concrete floor for a shower drain?


Mechelle,

Ive been away for a few days and just saw the thread. I know you have been around and around about this, but I have to urge you to reconsider your decision to build a raised shower. While this may seem like the easiest solution, it just isn't that big a deal to break the concrete. You can rent an electric jackhammer or chipping hammer from most Home Depot stores here in the Atlanta area and I've had some pretty small guys use them with no problems. The main thing is to take small bites.

The biggest problem with the raised floor is that you are creating a running trap which is much harder to clear if it gets stopped up. You also have very little head room. Since most shower heads are installed between 80" and 82", you don't have much room for a platform. While your stature may allow you to make the shower head lower, this might impact your resale value when you need to move.

One other option that would allow you to at least minimize the amount of jackhammer is to use a prefab shower base with the drain on the end. Sterling makes one designed to replace a standard bathtub.

http://www.sterlingplumbing.com/onli...d_num=72141110

This would still require a little concrete removal and digging, but not nearly as much. The drawback is that it is only 30" wide compared to 34" for a "standard" shower base.

I hope this helps.

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