Experiences with Shower Panels?


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Old 07-13-14, 10:40 AM
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Experiences with Shower Panels?

I have a leaky shower faucet that can no longer be serviced. So, I need to replace the entire valve assembly. When doing some research on a replacement I came across "shower panels". It seemed an intriguing value, especially looking at the price. Granted, most panels come from brand names I did not hear before (Vigo, Fresca, Blue Ocean, Décor Star). Does anyone have experiences with such panels?
 
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Old 07-13-14, 11:49 AM
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Are you having to remove the wall portion to access the valve? Is there not an opposing wall behind the valve to where you can just do a sheetrock repair after it is all over? Just trying to help save some time and money.

I have not used panels for tub/shower enclosures but once a very long time ago. It will also depend on how rigid your wall backing is once you remove whatever is covering it now. If the sheetrock is pith, then you will need to address the backing at that time. What is covering the walls, now?
 
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Old 07-13-14, 11:55 AM
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The shower panel has tiles. I believe that I need to cut an access whole from the other side of the wall to remove the old valve. The other side happens to be in the laundry room which works out well. There is maybe an other option if I use the shower panel to remove some tile as it could be covered by the shower panel.
 
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Old 07-13-14, 01:18 PM
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Shower panels are usually to be used with a specific shower base and designed as a unit in multiple pieces. This allows transport into an already finished building that has walls and narrow doors.

Go the route of the access through the laundry. You can purchase remodel trim that will cover up any existing holes in the tile and still provide you with a new shower valve. They make flame retardant sheets that you use in tight spaces so when you solder the pipes you don't damage the wall studs or overheat the tile and backer.
 
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Old 07-13-14, 01:19 PM
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Fill me in....."the shower panel has tiles". Is it in a tile decoration, or real tiles? If you have real tile walls, I would opt for the laundry room approach and save the headache of replacing anything in the waterproof area of the shower.
 
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Old 07-13-14, 06:05 PM
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The shower panel has no tiles. It is a regular shower setup. The shower is tiled and has currently a Kohler shower valve and a shower head. The valve has to go regardless as it is leaking and can not be serviced further. Most likely in any case I will need to cut the drywall on the other side to take it out. If I do a shower panel there is maybe a small chance that I can remove some tile that is going to be covered by the shower panel.

Just to be sure we are talking about the same thing. A shower panel example:
Shower Panel System with Round Rain Shower Head
 
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Old 07-13-14, 06:44 PM
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If the tile in the shower is in good condition then replacing the valve from the back side makes the most sense. I did mine, cutting through a closet wall, in a few hours. Replacing the same piece of drywall I cut out took another hour or so and finishing the drywall repair took three days although only about 20 minutes per day, the rest of the time was allowing the drywall mud to harden. I have a "knock down" texture on the wall and duplicating it took maybe an hour, again, mostly waiting time for the texture to slightly harden before the finishing knock down.

I'll add that I DETEST drywall work and I am not very good at it so it took much longer than a pro would take. Nonetheless, I defy anyone to find that patch.
 
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Old 07-13-14, 06:59 PM
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OK, we're talking apples and pears. As Z intimated I thought we were talking of enclosure panels, which by their own description, are poor replacements. YOU are speaking of a control valve panel. Looks good. Hopefully you can install it with minimal tile removal, and it will hide most.
 
 

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