Home Plumbing Installing a Shower Drain

Installing a Shower Drain

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Installing a Shower Drain

Installing a shower grate is really easy to do, and will eliminate that unpleasant water-like odor that can accumulate in the bathroom. In addition, a standard linear shower drain will not provide enough capacity for a bathtub. Installing a shower grate is a relatively simple project, however, it may seem difficult to install a shower drain, especially if you are used to installing slabs or brick and mortar floors for bathroom walls.

A floor drain is simply a low slope drain that can be installed above a floor. The drain is designed to collect any standing water, like in the tub, and then direct it away from the house so it does not damage neighboring property. Typically, a shower trench drain is not installed under the floor. A floor drain can be installed under the kitchen sink to collect bath water for later use, but this is not an ideal placement.

Shower drains and grates work well for most bathroom installations. If you have a bathtub installed and a bath curtain installed, a new shower drain can be installed into the existing bathtub and sewer line as well. If you are building a new bathroom from scratch, it is a good idea to consider a floor drain rather than a bath drain.

If you have ever installed a shower trench drain, you know how much of a pain they can be to install. A shower drain must first be excavated beneath the floor slab, then sloped onto it, before it can run through the existing floor to drain the excess water.

The reason for this is because of the pressure gradient from one floor to the next: when you run a bathtub below a lower floor and the water is higher, the pressure gradient is more of a straight line, which creates a higher water table, and when the water is above a higher floor and the water is lower, the pressure gradient is more of a sloping curve, creating a lower water table. A basic understanding of physics and a handy contractor orplumber will help you install a drain that will work for your floor and plumbing needs.

The installation of a floor drain also requires a solid concrete foundation for the drain, as the drain will be installed into the floor slab. If you have a slab that is un-finished, this will need to be taken care of as well. You will also need to set the drain in position and then connect the drain lines to the outlets for the shower drain grates, as well as flush the pipe joints that will be used to join the grates to the drain.

Once all of these components are in place, it is time to install the shower drain. A slope is built up from the floor drain and attached to the shower grate and drain. An invisible join is made at the drain to join the grates to the drain, and then the horizontal pipe joints are filled with cement.

Finally, the surface pipe joints are sealed in place to prevent leaks, and then a flood curtain is installed to prevent water from pooling on the floor. A new strip of plywood or MDF can be used as a shower screen and shower curtain to complement the new drain and the shower curtain. This type of enclosure is not only functional but aesthetic as well.