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Thread: showpan info

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member showerpan's Avatar
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    Default showpan info

    Hi, new here, not the best handy man, but trying to learn.

    I have a shower that is on a concrete slab. The tile is stone, which I sealed upon moving into this new 5 year
    old house. I am cleaning the shower for the first time (we wipe it down after every use). I noticed that the strainer would
    rotate and when it did I heard water dripping into the pipe. I unscrewed the two screws holding the strainer
    down and then rotated counter clockwise on the pipe that was loose and could rotate. I unscrewed it completely
    off. I have since learned that this is known as the strainer body? I see some black mold on the concrete once
    I removed the strainer body and I smell mold. Is this normal? Should the strainer body be on tight and not rotate? Should
    caulk have been applied by the builder between the strainer body and the tile/grout? It was not. I was thinking of pouring
    some bleach on the concrete that was hidden beneath the strainer body, being careful not to get any on the
    stone tiles. I think there is supposed to be a way for water that gets on the shower pan to go down the drain,
    but I don't understand how that works and I don't want to do anything that prevents that kind of operation and
    causes a big mold issue.

    By the way, I do notice some moldy looking grout lines around the strainer and I am wondering if water has been collecting underneath the tiles and molding causing mold to seap up from below on the grout lines?

    Any help will be definitely appreciated!
    Last edited by showerpan; 07-03-2013 at 09:02 AM.

  2. #2
    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    Can you post some pictures of what you are seeing?


    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

    Always get construction advice double checked by your local city hall. Flood Test Every Shower - Every Time.

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member showerpan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnfrwhipple View Post
    Can you post some pictures of what you are seeing?
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    DIY Junior Member showerpan's Avatar
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    Default

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  5. #5
    DIY Junior Member showerpan's Avatar
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    If I stick my finger down the pipe the strainer body screws into, I notice there is an indentation in the upper part of the pipe (all the way around), where perhaps
    water is supposed to be able to flow down?? Perhaps the builder clogged this whole thing up?

  6. #6
    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by showerpan View Post
    If I stick my finger down the pipe the strainer body screws into, I notice there is an indentation in the upper part of the pipe (all the way around), where perhaps
    water is supposed to be able to flow down?? Perhaps the builder clogged this whole thing up?
    Can you feel the rubber liner?

    If you noticed water dripping when you spun the strainer then the weep holes must not be working all that well.

    Perhaps you can improve the speed at which the water weeps away from the clamping portion of the drain. Would some candle wick fit into the two notches on the drains base and not embed the strainer screwing back in?

    I wonder as well if you could cut in a slot along the threads of the strainer top to further speed up the weeping process???


    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

    Always get construction advice double checked by your local city hall. Flood Test Every Shower - Every Time.

  7. #7
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Usually, after the mortar and grout, it's hard to impossible to unscrew the strainer of a shower drain. A clamping drain is made up of four parts: base that connects to the drain line which also has the flange for the liner, the upper part of the clamp that holds the liner - sandwiching the liner with the base (this part also has weep holes to let moisture drain that got to the liner), then the adjustable top part and finally, the decorative grate to keep bigger things from washing down the drain. Functionally, the fact the upper part is somewhat loose isn't catastrophic, since (assuming it's all installed properly) it is above the liner, and everything still will flow down the drain. If you can buy a small package of the grout that was used, you could mix that up, put some around the bottom of the upper part of the drain, screw it down, and the grout would both support it and fill the voids between it and the tile. The water dripping may have been from the gaps around that strainer assembly, and the weep holes are working (they're lower down). If you took John's idea, you might cut a vertical slot or two into the threads then maybe stick some string in there to act like a wick, then screw it down into the new grout. The string would act like a wick until it rotted away, then leave a channel. If when they built the shower, they did not install a pre-slope, then you will likely have a saturated mudbed since there's nothing to direct the water to the drain. A preslope provides the required slope, then the liner, then the setting bed, then the tile. The waterproofing layer is the not the tile, but the liner, and both need to be sloped to the drain to minimize water buildup in the pan.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  8. #8
    DIY Junior Member showerpan's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies. Would either of you happen to have pictures of what a properly done shower pan/drain should look like, or a diagram? I do not see a liner, but having a diagram would help me with where to look. Those two gaps in the screw threads on opposite sides is to let water drain, right? Is it possible for mold to seep up from below on the grout, or do you expect that is mold stain from above? What about the musty/moldy smell? It sounds like it is ok to caulk between the strainer body and the tiles to seal it up? Any issue with pouring some bleach in there to kill any mold growth? One more thing, during the build process they put the wrong tile in originally and they ended up ripping that up and re-doing. I doubt the replaced the shower pan. Thanks!

  9. #9
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    The 'standard' that describes the approved methods to build a reliable shower are found in the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) handbook. This has a lot of good info as well http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/...ead.php?t=5434
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  10. #10
    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    Good instructions here from Noble Company.

    http://www.noblecompany.com/Portals/...ons%200211.pdf

    Looking closer at your diagram it looks like the top collar is in fact flipped and because of this the sides of the top go down and will most likely be blocking your view and finger tips for inspecting for the liner.

    Not sure if bleach is the best product to use. You might make things worse.

    What about an regular house hold cleaner?

    Stronger cleaner's need to be neutralized with water (Acid based) and pouring bleach or strong cleaners into the bottom side of the tile sounds like a plan that might back fire on you. JW


    jfrwhipple@gmail.com - www-no-curb.com - 604 506 6792

    Always get construction advice double checked by your local city hall. Flood Test Every Shower - Every Time.

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