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Old 01-05-2013, 11:58 AM   #1
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Leaky Shower Drain


I thought i had this fixed, but apparently not. Last night my wife was showering, and water was coming down in the pantry in the kitchen below....

I have attached a picture of the shower floor. I tried to put some silicone caulk around the "gasket" on the shower floor. I call it a gasket, but it is a plumbing fixture that has a ring that sits on top of the shower floor, and a 1.5 in pipe attached sits on top of the drain out. If I press down on the floor near the gasket, I can see where the gasket and the floor separate, thus allowing water to leave through a different avenue than what we want.

I have the pantry area opened up, so I can see the P Trap for the shower. I watched the water running down the side of it last night while the wife showered, before I ran upstairs and told her to end the shower! I am thinking of cutting a board and putting it under the trap, and having it end on the shelf below (about 18 inches). If I make the board 20 inches, and jam it in there, hopefully it might push the arrangement up in the shower. If I can do that, what should I put under that ring? Plumber's putty? Silicone? Should a rubber gasket or something else be under there as well?

Thanks for reading.
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:05 PM   #2
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Leaky Shower Drain


What is under the base of the shower floor? It shouldn't just sit on the subfloor. I usually pour a bed of concrete or mortar mix. It keeps from giving it play. Try changing out the drain assembly if you have access. Several kind out there that should satisfy you. Some have a tool you stick in the top part of drain the tightens down the gasket. I believe it's made by Oatley. Home Depot/Lowe's should carry it. Good Luck

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Old 01-05-2013, 12:49 PM   #3
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Leaky Shower Drain


1. The floor of the shower pan should not flex up and down. Open up the ceiling and support it properly.

2. The Shower pan should have a steel well (Cup if you will) into which an EPDM Donut is pressed down around the pipe. If yours does not have this, you need a good EPDM gasket between the top flange of the drain outlet, and the flange of the shower pan. and a way to pull down on the gasket. Threaded Tail Piece? I would even coat the gasket with butyl cut off sealant on both sides of the gasket and clean up with alcohol. The problem is going to be building up the drain inside the shower.

Your main problem as I see it, is pumping of the shower pan. This must be stopped to ever get a good seal. A fernco rubber trap would help, because its flexible, but you have to secure that pan.

The problem with gluing is that many of these pans are made of (Chlorosulfanated Polyethylene) CSPE not PVC, and gluing is not an option.
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Last edited by jagans; 01-05-2013 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:46 PM   #4
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Leaky Shower Drain


I agree with preventing the shower pan from flexing. Since you have the ceiling open see what you can do to spread some thinset under the pan.

Or possibly some non-expanding spray foam.

Can you provide a picture of the trap area where it is leaking?

An away view and a close up.
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:22 PM   #5
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First thing I would do is replace the drain assembly. IF YOU CAN. Is the drain molded to the shower pan, or does it have a nut on the bottom that will come off and release the drain?

Cut the pipe out and install one of these : http://www.siouxchief.com/Drainage/R...ckRabbit.RJIIE

I would use this drain every time, but my boss only likes them to be used on repairs.

Secondly, I notice the shower has been painted. Is that something that was done by you, or was it like that when you moved in? Possible reasons for that = covering up old failed gelcoat. If you say the floor is flexing like that, it very well could be trashed already. Hard to say for sure without looking at it.

Lastly, after replacing the drain assembly and re-installing the piping, make sure the drain line has good grade on it and by all means put some kind of support on the p-trap (use a solvent weld p-trap on 2nd floor) even if it's just a piece of plumber's tape wrapped around it and screwed into the joists. Something to keep it from dropping out, because this does happen quite frequently.
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:37 PM   #6
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The jack rabbit's cool- a good choice.
The only thing I'd do different is use a solvent weld drain. My reasoning is if all the deflection is not dealt with, the drain will flex at the gasket and may eventually leak. If the ptrap is allowed a slight amount of movement, the deflection will transfer down from the glued drain.
Ideally though, the base needs to be stabilized.
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:41 PM   #7
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I agree with everyone else that you should replace the drain altogether, but I'd stay away from any drain that uses compressed rubber or neoprene to make the seal around the tailpiece. Those are (in my book) solely for those instances where there's no access from below to put in a socket welded (i.e. - glued) drain fitting - such as a shower on a concrete slab; or if you don't really care about what's underneath (like a crawlspace with dirt floor).
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:41 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by TheEplumber View Post
The jack rabbit's cool- a good choice.
The only thing I'd do different is use a solvent weld drain. My reasoning is if all the deflection is not dealt with, the drain will flex at the gasket and may eventually leak. If the ptrap is allowed a slight amount of movement, the deflection will transfer down from the glued drain.
Ideally though, the base needs to be stabilized.
New idea for sioux chief. Make a brass jackrabbit drain with a plastic female solvent weld insert (similar to FIP x CPVC fittings).


I would buy them and so would everyone else's mothers.
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:49 PM   #9
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I already emailed them

If you see this on the market within the next year, i'm famous.
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Old 01-05-2013, 05:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan View Post
I already emailed them

If you see this on the market within the next year, i'm famous.
I'm replacing a drain next week. Its between a joist and a heat duct. I was researching online for the latest and greatest drain tool and I swear I saw a plastic drain like the jack rabbit. I'm going to resume my search
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Old 01-05-2013, 05:07 PM   #11
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http://www.plumbingsupply.com/wing-t...wer-drain.html
not exactly what I thought it was.....
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Old 01-05-2013, 05:12 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by TheEplumber View Post
I'm replacing a drain next week. Its between a joist and a heat duct. I was researching online for the latest and greatest drain tool and I swear I saw a plastic drain like the jack rabbit. I'm going to resume my search
Yeah I much prefer a brass drain any day of the week.

Thread officially hijacked.
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Old 01-05-2013, 06:39 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan View Post
First thing I would do is replace the drain assembly. IF YOU CAN. Is the drain molded to the shower pan, or does it have a nut on the bottom that will come off and release the drain?

Cut the pipe out and install one of these : http://www.siouxchief.com/Drainage/R...ckRabbit.RJIIE

I would use this drain every time, but my boss only likes them to be used on repairs.

Secondly, I notice the shower has been painted. Is that something that was done by you, or was it like that when you moved in? Possible reasons for that = covering up old failed gelcoat. If you say the floor is flexing like that, it very well could be trashed already. Hard to say for sure without looking at it.

Lastly, after replacing the drain assembly and re-installing the piping, make sure the drain line has good grade on it and by all means put some kind of support on the p-trap (use a solvent weld p-trap on 2nd floor) even if it's just a piece of plumber's tape wrapped around it and screwed into the joists. Something to keep it from dropping out, because this does happen quite frequently.
Gonna try and un-hijack this thread!

It looks like the drain is molded to the shower pan, but I will pull off the baseboard in front of the shower to see better. Hopefully this will give me more info.

I did some tests, and the flexing is so minimal, that I can barely get a razorblade between the drain and floor of the shower, now I am not convinced the flexing is my trouble.

If I go into the kitchen and grab the ptrap and try and move it, my wife says the shower drain moves from side to side a little, but if I push up on it, no movement (I was hoping pushing it up would allow me to add more silcone under it, but not gonna happen.

I wonder if the trap, like you said "dropped out". This was no minor leak last night while my wife was showering, this was probably 3/4 gallon a minute coming down the drain pipe.

I did not paint this, so it might be - as you said - someone's effort to cover up an already failed shower. When we bought the house, the ceiling in the pantry area was already opened up, so they knew they had a problem. I thought I had fixed it by putting some calk around the drain, but I don't think that's done it.

It almost looks like the molded drain portion of the shower is just sitting on the drain pipe when I look at it from the top. May be time to call a plumber......
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Old 01-05-2013, 06:50 PM   #14
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How can it be a molded drain yet as you say- moves side to side?
Is the pipe moving or the drain body itself moving?
Is there a large nut under the shower pan?
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Old 01-05-2013, 07:00 PM   #15
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How can it be a molded drain yet as you say- moves side to side?
Is the pipe moving or the drain body itself moving?
Is there a large nut under the shower pan?
^^^ this.

Betting it's just a loose shower drain assembly. In that case it's a really easy fix. Thank your lucky stars and buy a jackrabbit.


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