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Unread 04-24-2021, 10:06 AM   #1
DanLN
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Newbie Shower Drain Confusion

Hello All,

I’m a newbie working on a a shower renovation in my basement. I’ve completely gutted the bathroom and removed the previous mortar bed, which appeared to be installed unprofessionally (No pan liner, drain not centered, uneven slope, etc.). Looking at the remaining drain assembly, I’m confused about why it doesn’t look like the drain assemblies I’ve seen in videos online (Which are all threaded to adjust the height and have clamping rings). I’ve included photos for reference. The only explanation I can think of is that whoever created the shower used a drain meant for solid pans, not the tiled shower floor that was previously installed, but that could be totally off-base. Will I need to break up the concrete around the drain and install a new one? Otherwise, how will I have space for the new mortar bed? My apologies if I’m not using the correct terminology on some of this. We are located in Northern Virginia if that makes any difference. I greatly appreciate any insight and advice!
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Unread 04-24-2021, 03:29 PM   #2
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Hi Dan,

Yeah, you'll have to chop the old drain out and get one with a clamping ring that will accept a pan liner. You'll have to chop a hole about 8 to 10 inches in diameter to be able to do the plumbing. You can later fill around the new drain with mortar.
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Unread 04-24-2021, 05:14 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply John! Am I correct in assuming that a jackhammer is the best tool for the job? Also, with the drain being about 4 inches off center in the shower, would it add an extensive amount of extra work to move the drain 4 inches while I’m in there? I’m not sure if it’s worth the extra effort, but the drain being off certainly irks me.. I greatly appreciate the help!
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Unread 04-25-2021, 07:49 AM   #4
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Welcome, Dan,

While we often see drains like that in Florida they don't seem to be too common here in NoVa. How old is the house? Since we're lookin at PVC I'd guess it's not too old, or the previous owner already had their hands in there.

Ideally, you'd want the drain centered both front and back as well as side to side. Since you need to remove what is there, which does mean breaking up the concrete, it might not be all that much more work to move the drain to where you want it.

While creating a traditional pre-sloped mud bed/liner/final mud bed shower pan is certainly an option you might also consider employing a single, sloped mud bed covered with a water proof membrane and matching drain assembly. The benefit with that is the height of the shower floor will be lower, with a corresponding decreased height shower curb.
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Unread 04-25-2021, 01:26 PM   #5
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Thanks for the input! That seems to be a better option, I will certainly explore that! Moving the drain over a few inches to be centered width wise seems like a relatively simple task. Do you think moving it the extra 2 feet or so to center it both width and length wise worth the extra hassle? What is the advantage?
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Unread 04-25-2021, 02:52 PM   #6
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Plumbing code calls for a MINIMUM of 1/4" per foot slope to the drain. While not a requirement, aesthetically, most people prefer the bottom row of tile to be equal and level all around the shower. So, using round numbers, say the shower was 4' wide, and the drain was 1' from one edge. TO meet the plumbing code, you'd need 3/4" from the drain to the far side, but only 1/4" to the short one. If you wanted the tile to all be even around the bottom row, in that one foot, you'd have to rise 3/4", which can start to get slippery on tile when wet.

So, it's best to center the drain, or have a single slope with a linear drain on one end, or maybe a two-slope thing where that linear drain is in the middle of the shower.
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Unread 04-25-2021, 05:31 PM   #7
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Gotcha, makes sense. You all have been incredibly helpful. Thank you for taking the time to help a newbie out!
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Unread 05-07-2021, 10:10 AM   #8
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Shower Drain Relocation: Does This Look Correct?

Good Morning All,

I recently posted here about my shower remodel which now includes relocating a drain since whoever created the shower did not center it. After digging through the slab, I think I have a good idea of what needs to be done to move the drain, but I would love an extra set of eyes to confirm for me since I am not a plumber. I’ve attached photos of the drain in its current state. Photo 1 shows the current drain, photo 2 shows the location that I’d like to move the drain to and photos 3,4 &5 show P trap positioning that I intend to use to get that placement. To accomplish this, I’m planning on cutting the long piece of PVC that currently runs to the p trap and putting the new p trap on at an angle. My main concerns are whether or not this angle of the Issues p trap is acceptable or not and whether there is anything I am missing. I greatly appreciate any insight you all. might be able to provide!
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Unread 05-07-2021, 10:20 AM   #9
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Dan, it'll help if you'll keep all your project questions on one thread so folks can see what you're working on and what's been previously asked and answered. A moderator can give it a more generic title any time you'd like to suggest one.

I can tell for sure in you last photo, but it doesn't appear you're centering the drain in the shower footprint. Is that the case? And if so, why not?
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Unread 05-07-2021, 10:24 AM   #10
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CX,

Noted on the single thread, thank you for moving. It actually is centered on the shower. It’s a small (48x30) shower. Where my toes are is about where the curb will be. Planning on using a kerdi 60x38 tray and cutting it down to size.
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Unread 05-07-2021, 10:40 AM   #11
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I really wish you'd reconsider using that foam tray and cutting it down that much. Far too easy and inexpensive to make a mortar bed to precisely fit the shower footprint and drain location while keeping a proper slope and level perimeter, none of which you'll have with the costly foam tray.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 05-07-2021, 10:50 AM   #12
DanLN
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Thank you for that insight. I was going with the foam tray for the ease of install, but will definitely reconsider once I get to that step. For now though, any insight on the drain setup would be greatly appreciated!
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Unread 05-07-2021, 10:55 AM   #13
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You can technically angle that P-trap in any direction you need for proper riser placement.

My opinion; worth price charged.
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Unread 05-13-2021, 03:27 PM   #14
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Thank you for the info. I realized after installing the drain that the p trap I am using is meant for sinks and places with access to plumbing. Since this trap will be under my shower in the concrete, do I need to cut it out and redo with a solvent welded p trap?
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Unread 05-13-2021, 04:20 PM   #15
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Alternatively, could I epoxy over nut joint and then wrap the whole thing with a pipe repair bandage?
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