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Old 11-18-2014, 04:07 PM   #1
wakeboy
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Best way to level sloped shower subfloor for Kerdi

I have a shower that is 32x60 that I am updating. My plan is to use Kerdi shower system.

The one issue I have is the house has settled and I have a slope along the 32 side that makes the shower out of level by 1/4" what is my best method for leveling this? The subfloor is tong & Grove 3/4" osb with joists at 16"o.c. running parallel to the 60" side of the shower.

Option 1: Thin set 1/4" backer board then use self leveler over the top. Thin set Kerdi pan to that.

Option 2: add 1/2" plywood shimmed and screwed to joists. thin set Kerdi pan to plywood.

Option 3: Use something like Quick-pitch and mud bed for the pan and cover with Kerdi.

Any other ideas would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks,
Scott
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Old 11-18-2014, 04:27 PM   #2
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Welcome, Scott.

4. Put down some roofing felt or polyethylene sheeting, staple down some 2.5-pound expanded metal lath, and use deck mud to make your sloped shower floor.

I would not recommend the use of any sort of plastic dividers in your deck mud.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 11-18-2014, 04:31 PM   #3
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In my bathroom remodel, we (my tile setter and I) poured SLC (self-leveling cement) where needed. We used Mapei products...be sure to put down a primer if called for by the manufacturer.

For the shower stall, we just thinsetted the Schluter ramp right to the SLC and floor (part had flowed there) and applied Ditra-Heat to the rest of the bathroom floor...also partially plywood sub-floor and SLC.

We just got the floor tiles installed.
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Old 11-18-2014, 05:59 PM   #4
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Thanks for the input.

I am a little concerned of doing a mud bed without some slope guides since I have never done one before.

What about if I used Felt, metal Lath to make a level bed for the Kerdi Pan, any issues with something like that?
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Old 11-18-2014, 06:29 PM   #5
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Only if you make it at least 3/4" thick at the thinnest part.

Make yourself a test box in the garage and practice making a mud bed. You'll be surprised how simple it is. You can start your practice with just damp sand, don't even need to add any Portland cement. Get a feel for it.

We've had lots and lots and lots of newbies make some very fine mud showers through this forum. You can be next.
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Old 11-18-2014, 07:33 PM   #6
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I will second the suggestion to do a mud bed as well as the encouragement for a newbie to give it a try. First of all it is a *lot* cheaper than the kerdi shower base - you could get an awful lot of practice doing mud beds in your garage for the cost of a kerdi pan.

I was a total n00b and I obsessed about the mud bed probably 2x as long as it took to actually do it.

Looking back on my experience, my advice to a newbie would be:

1. Spend a few hours practicing before you do the real thing. This gets suggested fairly often, but I fear people don't follow the advice. I didn't, and it was dumb not to. Cost isn't an issue, only cleanup and time. The benefit is that you get the kinks worked out and build your confidence when there aren't any consequences.
2. If you don't think you have the time to do a test run first, then you don't have the time to do the shower right in the first place. Sort of like laying out a floor before you set the first tile...false economy not to put a little extra time in up front.
3. I would probably slope my floor slightly more than 1/4" per foot. This is another thing that gets said a lot (minimum of 1/4" per foot slope) but I wonder how many people just go with 1/4"..that's what I did, and it doesn't leave much margin for error. Mine turned out fine, but if I were to do it again I would probably go go with 5/16" - 3/8" per foot. I'd feel better about it.

I do understand the inclination to use a pre-formed pan - I'll let the pros continue to comment on the best way to go about getting your floor flat for that purpose...(what I would be likely to do is likely to be strictly verboten)

Good luck with whatever you do. Take your time so you can do it right - you will be proud of the results.

FWIW it probably took me 2-3x as long as I expected it to (and that's after I padded my estimate with 50% overage factor)

-Steve
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:21 PM   #7
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Scott, I've done a whole lot of mud beds for the Kerdi drain, and I still cheat a little.

I rip the 1 1/2" edge off a 2x4, about 3/16" thick. Enough of them to do the perimeter of the pan. After the drain is set, I use a level and tape measure to set my perimeter screed point at 3/8" per running foot, then I set those strips of wood at that height, level around the perimeter, attached to the studs with trim nails. I let one end of my screed boards ride on those strips, and the other end on the drain flange. I get a perfect level perimeter every time.
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Old 11-19-2014, 10:26 AM   #8
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I think you guys are all correct... make a sandbox and play! Thanks for the push.

Kevin, thanks for the tip I like that idea.
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