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Thread: Installing Shower Base

  1. #1

    Default Installing Shower Base

    I am choosing a pro plumber to install a Jacuzzi shower base in a 2nd floor remodel.

    Should I ask him to add a bag of mortar underneath the pan for extra stability?

    The spec's say if your floor is level, no mortar is necessary, but a couple of plumbers suggested that they throw a bag under the pan for extra support.

    I am choosing between two plumbers today. One didn't mention the mortar and says my job is simple and straightforward and is significantly less expensive.

    One is more expensive and talked it up like my job has "details." My tile guy thinks the job is straightforward.

    Job consists of : Roughing in the shower valve (raising the shower head a few inches), changing the hardware and corresponding valve on a jacuzzi tub, and installing the shower base. This is all existing plumbing remaining in the same layout.

    Any thoughts and advice welcome!!! I didn't realize I would have to become so informed to hire the job out! thx, jgv

  2. #2
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    New England


    Most shower pans will last longer if you bed them in mortar. A few are stiff enough where it isn't a problem. It never hurts and shouldn't cost much extra - you'll usually be happier; the floor will feel solid and if there are minor imperfections in either the pan or the floor, the mortar bed will solve them - 100% support is ideal. My unprofessional opinion.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  3. #3
    Plumber RioHyde's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Cincinnati, Ohio


    I'd add the mortar base. It isnt going to hurt anything and will make for a very solid surface when standing in the shower.

    In addition, pay attention to those "details" before you're elbows deep into the project. You'll save yourself time, hassle and expense in the long run.

    I could jump on my soapbox about the tiler saying the plumbing portion was straight forward, but I wont other than this.....I wouldnt ask a mechanic his opinion on a tonsilectomy.

  4. #4

    Default thanks guys

    I chose the more expensive, more professional plumber who rec mortar.

    I won't waste the server describing what a pain this portion of the project has been--I appreciate your help!



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