Shower pan mortar misbehavior

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  #1  
Old 11-18-17, 07:19 AM
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Cool Shower pan mortar misbehavior

Hey, y'all,

I'm new here. I'm doing a master bathroom renovation. I've poured my shower pan on my vinyl liner using green stripe quick set. I saw on YouTube where I was to use warm water for mixing it up so I did. It mixed easily and the consistancy was good. I poured (shoveled) it in. (I guess I should mention this is on a slab.) When I was shaping it up all the water cooled and condensed on the top of my mortar. Ahhhhrghh! So I was left to try to shape up the mortar mix with an inch of liquid water on top! Not fun. It dried and overall I'm happy with the slope. It's not perfect, but 3 of four sides are good and the other side at least slopes toward the drain some. Not as much as I wanted, but I don't think water will sit in the bottom of the shower. So...here's the problem: My mortar is just so, so "chalky." It is very dusty. I shop vac it to try and get the grit off, but more comes right behind it. I poured it 7 days ago. You can walk on it and it's solid, but the top layer keeps gritting off. My HOPE is that the thinset will hold it together. My concern is that the thinset won't be able to bond through the chalky/gritty junk to hold fast to something. Thoughts?
Thanks!
Brett
 
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  #2  
Old 11-18-17, 11:05 AM
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Bed mortar is usually mixed extremely dry and from the sound of it, yours was way to wet. In theory, you are supposed to have a preslope which the liner is place on and then a second slope to accept the tile. Drain bodies are multi part and have an inner drain that takes care o water that gets to the liner and the visible drain that you see from above when finished. Without a preslope, water goes to the lowest point which is not necessarily the drain body You could therefore have water pooling in a corner.
 
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Old 11-18-17, 04:25 PM
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I try not to use fast/quick set for anything. You had way to much water no matter what, as mentioned before. That's common if you don't mix concrete/cement regularly. Now that 7 days have passed, you just have to wait unless you want to remove it & use a plastic shower pan.
 
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Old 11-18-17, 06:45 PM
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Thanks for the answers. The slope that's there SHOULD work. I don't think water will pool in the corner, but I'm not 100% on that. I guess by wait you mean wait until it's fully hardened and then lay tile? That's probably what I'll do. I guess I could remove it. I will research a plastic shower pan. The thing is I've already got all the backer board up and a tad of some puttying to smooth out the boards. Removing the floor and the lowers layer of boards would be a lot of back tracking, but if that's what I have to do to get it right I guess that's what I'll have to do.

I looked at one dude on YouTube and he absolutely said, "Do not dry pack and do not pre-slope." After my experience I tend to think a preslope would've been great and drypacking a lot easier. LIVE AND LEARN I suppose!

Thanks again, guys.
Brett
 
  #5  
Old 11-18-17, 06:53 PM
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But about the grittiness...

If I do go ahead and lay the tile, will the grittiness be a factor? Will the thinset go ahead and grab hold of the mortar or is there a product to more or less "bind" up the mortar I should use prior to thin setting???

Thanks,

Brett
 
  #6  
Old 11-19-17, 02:42 AM
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This is why I always use and recommend a Kirdi/Ditra system including the foam pan. SOOOO easy!

https://www.doityourself.com/forum/a...1&d=1511088146
 
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Old 11-19-17, 06:13 AM
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Yes, by wait I meant until it's hardened & you no longer see the "grit" that you mentioned. A full cure can be up to 28 days. I don't expect you to wait that long but be patient. You still have the choice of removing & using a plastic pan. E L Mustee has some good choices. Although they are very helpful on the phone, you will have to order through a plumbing supply.
 
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Old 11-21-17, 11:48 AM
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Thin set question

So I've been looking at this thing for a bit and thinking on it: I think I'm going to press on with what I've already got. The shower pan is NOT level...it at least has a slope down to the drain. It's not the same all the way around, but it is at least all the way around. There is one side in particular (the east side) that is closer to level than the other three. What I would like to do is lay the tile thin set a tad thicker in that area to try and "artificially" build a tad more slope in to the shower drain. I'm not talking crazy - like trying to put down 1/2 inch thick of thin set - but maybe like 1/4 inch on that flatter side. I've read and read and it seems there is at least SOME merit in that direction of thinking. Any glaring holes in my plan??

And again...thanks to all the responders! I sure appreciate it.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING
Brett - Georgia
 
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Old 11-21-17, 02:31 PM
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Will the tile on the 1/2" side be even where it meets the 1/4" side?
 
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Old 11-21-17, 06:00 PM
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I think so. It's all one surface. It is decently smooth across the whole span.
 
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Old 11-21-17, 06:25 PM
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You can do what you want on the top side to make those tiles behave like you wish. My concern is the lack of a pre-slope. While you make think that tile will e impervious to water and will flow toward the drain, The failure will be in the water setting under the tile degrading the bed that you set it in, which you already have noted as marginal based on too much water being used.Tile, grout and thinset are not waterproof, Gonna punt on this one if you move forward, can not give my seal of approval.
 
  #12  
Old 11-24-17, 06:27 AM
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OK...I hear ya, czizzi. And you're right, of course. So I'm going to tear it all out and start over. Marq1, I like that product....ESPECIALLY the foam pan portion. What I'd like to do is bust out the pan, cut (CUT) out the Oatey PVC liner and leave the backer board up in place. I'm trying to avoid having to tear out the backer board if I can. (It took me a long time to cut that stuff and place it. [Although, it'd probably go faster now that I know a little bit more how to do it.]) I also would like to try and avoid busting out the concrete I poured around the PVC waste line at the bottom of the shower. Based on my research, the Kerdi shower pan system requires a non-standard drain installation to make it work. (Seems like there's always some sort of inconvenience to deal with.) If I could go back in time I would simply just go KERDI all the way. But since I'm in the middle of this thing I'm hoping there's a way to simply re-do the bottom of the shower - the pan - and not have to go all the way back up the walls 6-12" and reinstall a fresh PVC liner (those things are $50 BTW). Anyone have any suggestions? Or...should I just bite the proverbial bullet, rip it all out, and start over? Again: My goal is just to be able to re work the pan only. No backer board de-construction and reconstruction and no busting out of concrete around the standard 2" PVC waste line on the slab.
 
  #13  
Old 11-24-17, 10:00 AM
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Nevermind...

You know what....never mind. I think this is just one of those things you have to go through to learn the right way to do things. I'll poke around HD and Lowe's and look at the KERDI shower pan. You can cut those to fit, plus they're pre-sloped. It'll be a bit of cost to get the KERDI Drain ($100 ish), but that route ought to work. If I don't think that's something I can do I'll remove the backer boards and re install a new PVC liner on top of a pre-slope bed I'll build from scratch. Old school. It'll get done....somehow. Thanks again, y'all.
 
  #14  
Old 11-24-17, 03:45 PM
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Ned, if you can't find a pan there, take a look at E L Mustee. You can't order directly from them but they will talk to you on the phone. They are very patient & helpful.
 
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