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Thread: bathtub to shower conversion

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member slapappy's Avatar
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    Default bathtub to shower conversion

    I'm going to be converting a tub to a shower enclosure. The tub drain line is 1 1/2" copper. I'll be using the Kerdi Shower kit, which is designed for a 2" drain. Any workaround? I have to tear up part of the subfloor anyway to move the drain to the center of the shower base, but where the 1 1/2" drain line ties into the
    3" pipe, the access is very tight. Is the only option to cut the tee out, and replace with a 3 x 3 x 2 tee? I know that keeping the 1 1/2" drain and using a reducer where the shower drain ties in is not the best option, but will it work? I've torn apart many old showers that functioned properly, that had 1 1/2" pipe. And since copper or PVC drain better than galvanized steel, will it be a problem to use 1 1/2"? If I can use 1 1/2", where is the best place to make the transition, right between the trap and the shower drain flange? There's no permit for this job, so an inspection is not the issue. I want it done right, and to not have any callback. But budget is an issue for my customer.

  2. #2
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    For years the 1.5" drain was fine for showers. And that was when shower heads used more than 3 gallons a minute. In Canada it still is code for one shower head.

    In a retrofit, I like to make the move in size between the p-trap and the shower drain.
    Treating it like a funnel into the p-trap.

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member slapappy's Avatar
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    Thanks, Terry. I didn't think it would be a problem, but wanted to make sure. My main business is home remodeling, and while I do quite a bit of plumbing, it's not my full time job. Good to get feedback from a pro!
    John

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    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    It all depends on your local plumbing inspector...since you're opening things up, he may require you to change things out to 2". Then again, he may not. It would be a pain to move things in 1.5", then the inspector says it has to be 2". Functionally, as long as you don't have a bunch of showerheads, it should work at 1.5". Have you got enough height to convert to 1.5" and get a coupling on? The Kerdi drain is not the deepest, but it's not the shallowest drain out there, either.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  5. #5
    ACO Shower Drain Sales johnfrwhipple's Avatar
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    Post(s) removed by John Whipple
    Last edited by johnfrwhipple; 03-18-2014 at 07:04 AM.


    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.

  6. #6
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Schluter does make a metal drain, should that be required for your local codes.
    Stainless Steel KD2/E/FL
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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