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Thread: I think the plumber screwed up.... What is my best fix option?

  1. #16
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona


    quote; When they say "thick wall", they mean a wall that is already finished with tile, stone, etc. But in either scenario, the plastic disk has to be behind the inside of the wall.

    That is almost completely wrong. With a "thin wall which means the side of a modular tub or shower, there is enough latitude that the plastic ring CAN be behind it with the wall clamped between the disk and the trim ring, but that is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT than a "thick wall where the ring MUST BE even with the finish wall, NOT "behind the inside of the wall". IF you do it that way you can be almost positive the valve will be installed to deeply to finish it without an extension kit.

    WE were installing the plumbing in a house for Jack Ruby's brother. It had 10' deep basement walls. In order to keep the ground from freezing they threw straw into the basement, then it rained, and finally it froze. Then they installed the first floor deck over the basement which kept the sun from shining down there. It was still frozen 3 months later, and it was like trying to chop plywood because the straw kept the frozen ground from "breaking up" when we used a jack hammer. WE also had to get surplus army "Arctic boots" to keep our feet from freezing, and even then we could only work so long before we had to come out and warm our feet up. He also installed a "hot pitch" roof, which was a lot hotter than tar, so the roofers threatened to go on strike.
    Last edited by hj; 11-10-2011 at 01:57 PM.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  2. #17
    DIY Junior Member gremlin!'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    DC area


    Thank you, hj!

    I'm glad I wrote about what I was told, because it's been my experience that the product sales "experts" rarely know anything about the products they sell.

    OK, with that knowledge, I looked at the installation guide again, and it looks like they want the plastic guard ring (which is kind of clipped onto the permanent ring) flush with the finished wall. By finished wall, do they mean the edge of the tile or stone I will finish it with? Or do they mean the edge of the durock?

    If it means the tile/stone edge, then I would account for what will go on top of the durock: thinset, kerdi, thinset and 1/4" tile. How much should that be all together- a little less than 1/2"?

    I'm attaching a shot of the "thick wall installation" section.

    Thank goodness for you guys.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by gremlin!; 11-10-2011 at 04:45 PM.

  3. #18
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    New England


    Finished wall. Now, I highly suggest that you momentarily attach the trim and see how things fit. Some of the Kohler stuff is VERY precise, and if you're off even 1/16", the trim won't fit. Most have more leaway. You won't know until you actually attach it. Then, there is probably an acceptable range, and you may not like it t at the min or the max, so to get the handle where you really want it, and so the trim will actually fit...do a test fitting. The thinset, Kerdi, and tile will probably end up about 1/2", but again, it might behoove you to do a mockup of that as well, especially if the valve/trim you have is one that is very critical on their placement.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  4. #19
    DIY Junior Member gremlin!'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    DC area


    Thanks, Jim.
    The trim arrives tomorrow, so a dry run is the plan. It will be interesting to see how much this "twist" in the valve will affect things. With the way things are going lately, I will hope for the best and expect the worst. I'm thinking I will slap another piece of 1/2" drywall or durock over it and then fit the trim, so it will mimic all of the layers that will be on top.

    Thank you so much again for everyone's input!

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