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Old 03-26-2014, 07:25 PM   #1
Jimmy Miller
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Incorrect installation of Shower Pan Liner?? PLEASE HELP!

Hello All,

A friend of mine recently had their shower pan liner installed and I was going to help him with the tile installation. When I arrived he told me he was very unhappy with the installation of the shower pan liner. He told the plumbing company that he didn't approve of the install, but the plumber told him it's customary for showers to have ripples and wrinkles in the pan liner. The plumbing company also told him that he wouldn't replace the pan liner because it was nothing wrong with the install.The plumber said he wouldn't replace the pan liner unless it was leaking and if he re-installed the pan liner it would more than likely turn out the same way. I have attached a picture of the pan liner installation.

My friend believes it is necessary to replace the pan liner before floating the mud. I never seen a pan liner with ripples and wrinkles after it has been installed. I told him that I didn't have enough experience to to make an educated decision on this matter. I told him I would ask my friends So I have a few questions; Can anyone answer these questions? It would be greatly appreciated, and help ensure a lasting shower life.

1) Is replacing the pan liner a necessary evil to ensure successful job?

2) I noticed that he didn't have blue board (sheetrock) installed behind the shower pan liner that is installed up the wall. He wants to put the sheetrock over pan liner that's installed up the wall. Is he using the correct application?

3) He is planning to install metal lath and doesn't want to overlap the area where he is using floating strips to mud the walls. I'm assuming he doesn't want to overlap the areas that are six inches from the corner of the short and long walls. I thought you should have an 2" overlap on all areas, no matter what? Is that correct?

4) He also stated that after he drained the water from the water test, the floor puddled a little in two spots. 3ft off the short wall (1ft off long wall towards the drain) and the same on the opposite side coming towards the drain. I told him we can make up the difference in the final mud bed before thin-set because the water made it off the perimeter walls. Is that correct?

5) Lastly, he doesn't plan on putting sheet rock on the rough jamb and wants to install lath and mud to the rough jamb opening of the shower. Is this the preferred application?
I can provide more pictures if needed. Shower floor size is 3ft by 7ft. I know I have been long-winded, but I really want his shower installation to go smoothly. I don't plan on helping twice. Thanks in advance for your help.
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Old 03-26-2014, 08:36 PM   #2
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No pre slope underneath the membrane. Put the brakes on this project. Numerous problems.
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Old 03-26-2014, 08:42 PM   #3
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He installed deck mud pre-slope. Under the pan liner.
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Old 03-26-2014, 08:46 PM   #4
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1- Can't tell from that one picture. Got more? include the curb and shots from several angles

2- Since he is mudding the walls, the drywall goes under the liner. Waterproofing ?

3- I'm lost. But that's nothing new.

4- Was the pre-slope at the proper 1/4" per foot all over ?

5- Yes more pictures please.
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Old 03-26-2014, 09:01 PM   #5
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Okay, I will send more pictures shortly.
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Old 03-26-2014, 11:36 PM   #6
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Here are the additional photos that were requested. His framing skills weren't the best but the walls seemed pretty plumb. Also his pre-slope from the perimeter walls seemed pretty good with exception to the two puddles. That pan liner just had a lot of ripples and wrinkles as shown on the first photo.
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Old 03-27-2014, 12:47 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmy
Also his pre-slope from the perimeter walls seemed pretty good with exception to the two puddles
While I am encouraged to hear for the first time in my life that a plumber attempted to install a preslope mortar bed, if it puddles it is not pretty good.

The purpose of a preslope is to allow the water that gets in the mortar bed to go to the weepholes. If it puddles it does not work as designed.

And like Paul said, no drywall on top of the pan liner, and don't screw any holes into either.

You also are going to have a problem at the top inside corner of the curb. The pan liner manufacturer make a special outside corner for that area. HD sells them.
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Old 03-27-2014, 07:50 AM   #8
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The plumber didn't do the pre-slope. The plumber installed the drain lines, drain, pan liner. My friend installed the pre-slope prior to the installation of the liner.

Issac you said the pan liner manufacturer makes a special outside corner to address the problem at the top inside corner of the curb. Would you happen to know the name of the material(special outside corners) we should use?

Are you suggesting that my friend needs redo his pre-slope from scratch or add deck mud in the low spots?
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:42 AM   #9
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Incorrect installation of Shower Pan Liner?? PLEASE HELP!

Ok, the radiating wrinkles in the liner are not necessarily a problem, as the final mud slope will push the liner flat. If wrinkles are causing pooling that isn't good.

It sounds like the pre slope came before the drain was installed? Maybe the drain height is wrong. The liner will usually pucker when the drain is low.

The liner is way high up the walls, but if you will be mudding the walls, you can overlap the rock over the liner down to where it is 3" above the curb. If the liner will cause excessive flaring of the rock (more than 1/8"), you should furr the studs above the liner to compensate.

And you need pan liner to 3" above the curb. Either use outside corners or flat patches overlapped and glued down.

One-coat mud walls is the preferred method in my area, and is my standard. Much mo' bedda to use Denshield instead of green rock however. Don't skip the WP paper or roofing felt behind the lath, and don't skip nailing off the lath; some guys think they can just staple wire to the rock skipping the mechanical attachment, which places them squarely into the category of HACK. That has always perplexed me: how can a guy that knows how to one-coat be so stupid (or lazy) that he won't nail-off?

Ps: no nails below 3" above the curb when nailing-off the lath!!! I'm sure everyone knows that, but just in case

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Old 03-27-2014, 09:47 AM   #10
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Dam corners.
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Old 03-27-2014, 12:51 PM   #11
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From my understanding the drain was set first and sloped from the perimeter walls to the drain. It seems to be a few dips in the pre-slope.

Can he fill in the pooling areas with deck mud or does he have to demo the pre-slope and start from scratch?

Can he nail the sheetrock to the studs and attach the liner to the sheet rock?


I have added more photos to show the pooling areas and wrinkles to help you offer the best suggestions for our problems.

Thanks again
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Old 03-27-2014, 01:26 PM   #12
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Welcome, Jimmy.

If you start over with the pre-slope you can probably solve your pucker problem by making the pre-slope flush with the top of the bottom section of the clamping drain. I'll wager you'll find your pre-slope is higher than that at the drain and that's what's causing the wrinkles to form when the top portion is bolted on.

The pre-slope must slope a minimum of 1/4" per foot from the farthest corner from the drain and be flat to the drain. A little more slope than that is good insurance that you'll get good drainage.

Your pan liner can then be properly fitted (maybe requiring a new piece of liner) to the shower floor and curb. The area at the ends of the curb where it meets the jambs is the single most common area of first failure in those traditional shower pans and you really want that part done correctly.

We have always used plain white drywall for the backing for one-coat mud applications, but you might wanna check with your code compliance officials to ensure that's still OK in your area. Some inspectors have been known to got completely afield and claim the wall mud is part of the bonding mortar and say the drywall is not an approved backing.

There must be a moisture barrier over the backing that extends down over the vertical pan liner before the lath and mud are applied.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Old 03-28-2014, 09:45 PM   #13
Jimmy Miller
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I appreciate the replies that you guys have taken the time to post.

I'm still a bit confused as to what I need to do to resolve the problems with the wrinkles and slight pooling in the two spots I have shown.

CX stated that by making the pre-slope flush with the top of the bottom section of the clamping drain I can solve the problems with the wrinkles.

Is CX saying that the plumber has left too much play or has too much liner going over the edge of the bottom section of the clamping drain? Is CX saying that by tightening the bolts with material extending past the edge it's causing those the liner to pucker?

Or is CX saying the deck mud needs to removed and a new pre-slope needs to be created?

I also mentioned that when my friend did the water test, the water drained great with the exception of two spots? Shoud those spots be filled in with deck mud, so it won't pool in those spots? If not, what should be done to ensure the finished shower floor wont pool in spots?

Your replies are appreciated!
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Old 03-28-2014, 10:15 PM   #14
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Like CX and Marty says, the wrinkles are caused from the preslope being higher than the bottom flange or too much slope on the preslope. Looking at the pics, I'd bet the preslope is too high. I've mudded over wrinkles like that many times without an issue. I can't see the bolts having anything to do with it. If you want to pull the liner back and fill the bird baths with thinset, that would be fine.

He needs to overlap the lath anyway. Sounds like he is afraid of the overlaps in the lath causing the mud to be too thick. If that's the case, have him apply a scratch coat first, then the next day he can mud the walls as much as needed to get them plumb. No need for sheetrock if he applies a scratch coat.
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Old 03-29-2014, 11:01 AM   #15
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What Davy said. Detach the liner around the walls, pull it back, fill the low spots in the pre-slope with thinset, then spread the liner back out and re-attach it.

I would suggest you lower the overall height of the liner up the walls to 3" above the curb, all the way around. Then sheet rock down to there.

You've got to ask yourself (or your buddy that floated the pre-slope rather) if he is up to floating mud on the walls? Mud is a beautiful thing, it can correct the most out-of-plumb walls, square-up and make dimensionally correct any aspect of the shower you chose to mud. But in the wrong hands, it can make the most screwed-up mess you have ever seen. Sorry for the bluntness, but a pre-slope is extremely easy to mud compared to the walls. You may want to switch to backer board. At least you know you can tile it.
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