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tmpyankee 07-13-2010 04:33 PM

Failed shower pan in old tiled shower
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Hi there. I'm putting this in plumbing because I don't know where else to put it. Hopefully I'm in the right place.

I have an old tiled shower, and the home inspector said that the joists and subfloor beneath (in the crawlspace) show water damage--the shower pan has failed.

I've attached a photo of the shower and the bathroom. The picture makes it look awful--it's actually a very cute bathroom, and that blue tile is everwhere throughout the bathroom--floors, half way up the walls, shower curb, shower opening, etc. You get the picture. I'm trying to save the tile. I'll be re-selling the house after renovations. But I need a solution to the leaking shower floor.

I had the idea of getting a one-piece (maybe custom fabricated) shower pan, removing the lower course or two of tiles inside the shower floor, fixing any rot, and inserting the new pan. I know there's more to it--I would likely need to install some sort of membrane or whatnot, I think.

Maybe i'm overthinking it and there's a better solution. I'm sure this is not the first time this problem has presented itself. Thanks!!!

oh'mike 07-13-2010 06:20 PM

What size is the rough opening for the pan? That original tile job was not done by a pro--(poor layout on the back wall)
You may open a big can of worms trying to save it.

What kind of backer on the walls?(remove a faucet trim) --If it's gypsum ,it wall may be to fragile at this age to remove the bottom few courses of tile.

It is a charming little shower---I just wanted to prepare you for the worst--Mike--

Shower Construction Info (a collection of posts) - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile

tmpyankee 07-13-2010 08:04 PM

I agree, oh'mike--it is a poor layout. But it's one I'm gonna have to work with. My alternative is to re-route my HVAC intake (in a small closet adjacent to the shower), and I just don't have anywhere else to run it.

In the back of my mind, I am prepared for the possibility that the structure beneath that tile is too far gone to work with. The rest of the house's walls are finished in plaster (although I doubt it's lath-and-plaster; it's probably rock-and-plaster; I haven't dug that far yet). So I have no idea what's behind that little shower.

At the end of the day, the whole thing might have to come out, but it'd be a shame.

It only confirms that I want a one-piece shower pan when we build our new house (selecting builders right now). Every single tile shower I've seen (new and old) has failed at some point along the way. I'm not sure it's always poor installation. I think that it's just inevitable.

Thank you for the link to your how-to postings. You certainly are a refreshing wealth of knowledge--thanks for sharing it with me. I only wish you lived in the Charlotte NC area--I'd "let" you come take care of this project for me. ;)

oh'mike 07-14-2010 06:43 AM

When you are doing a new shower--consider a precast pan--they are usually made by the folks who make cast marble vanity tops--come in whatever color they make cultured marble counter tops.

Look nice and hold up well.---Mike---

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