New shower pan not level- What now?

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Old 08-24-17, 09:08 AM
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Unhappy New shower pan not level- What now?

I had a devil of a time getting this shower pan set in mortar. I had it in and out a couple times because the amount of mortar seemed too much. I finally got it in, but it is not level. Measuring from left to right it is about 1/4 "- 3/8" out. I still have a grade toward the drain. It is just that everything I read says it must be level.

Do I have to rip the cement board and pan out and start all over again?
 
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Old 08-24-17, 06:21 PM
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Based on what you said so far, it's probably ok. However, we could use some more info. What kind of pan & shower is it? Is the job complete?
 
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Old 08-24-17, 08:43 PM
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Did you do a preslope? Tell s more of how you constructed your pan and mortar bed. Traditionally, you set a preslope first, then lay the pan liner and then do a second slope on top of that. More information is needed.
 
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Old 08-24-17, 11:59 PM
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Yes need more info. Sounds like a regular prefab shower pan to me. I wouldnt worry about it if your only 1/4 " off.
 
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Old 08-25-17, 04:25 AM
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Hello,

Sorry I was not specific. This is a 3' x 5' American Standard preformed base. The current status is the base and plumbing is installed. Shower walls have the backerboard up in preparation for tile,

The reason why I knowingly continued installation knowing the base was not level is probably because I was fed up with it by then. Ever do that? But now as I prepare to do the tile I am having second thoughts and want to be sure I will not be ripping out tile because of this.

 
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Old 08-25-17, 09:25 AM
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Make sure you level the top edge of the first course of tile by cutting them to fit. Otherwise the out of level base will cause problems up the wall.
 
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Old 08-25-17, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Handyman663 View Post
Make sure you level the top edge of the first course of tile by cutting them to fit. Otherwise the out of level base will cause problems up the wall.
Yes. Will do. I had thought about the tile. The drainage. The shower doors have some adjustment available that should compensate.

Is there anything else I am overlooking?
 
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Old 08-25-17, 12:25 PM
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Yes the bottom course of tile will need to be trimed. In my experience you start at bottom and work up..
 
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Old 08-26-17, 02:21 PM
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Will do. Working on that now. Thank you all for the help!
 
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Old 09-13-17, 07:20 AM
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OK. the shower pan is in and tile set. That all worked out fine. As I was setting the tile I noted some creaking in certain areas of the shower pan. From what I can gather the pan is flexing or moving in those areas just enough to make the noise and be annoying. I am embarrassed to bring this up to you guys, but did not know where to turn for ideas to eliminate the noise now that everything is set in stone (almost literally).

One of the creaking areas is near the drain which I have some access from the crawlspace. I had thought I might be able to get some mortar in that area or even use expanding foam. I know the expanding foam thing sounds like a joke, but I saw a few videos on youtube where expanding was used in place of mortar to set tubs.

If you guys have some better ideas I am all ears.
 
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Old 09-13-17, 10:53 AM
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I was once able to squeeze mortar into a tight spot like that with a rigged up pastry bag like this:

 
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Old 09-14-17, 04:33 AM
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That's the sort of thinking I was looking for! I suppose the mortar mix needs to be pretty thin to push it through that? Any concerns for shrinkage?
 
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Old 09-14-17, 04:56 AM
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It's been over 20 years but I made a slurry and opened up the nozzle wider and put a piece of garden hose on the end to give me greater reach.. Gave it plenty of time to cure before any weight was put on the floor . . . . and I don't remember any movement//squeaking afterwards..

Still best to load up the location with mortar before placing the pan.
 
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Old 09-14-17, 05:03 AM
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Thank you, Vermont. The hose idea is also something that I could use to get me in to those tight locations.
 
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Old 01-31-19, 06:23 AM
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I have a similar shower pan to SJMaye, except my drain is in the center. I am level on the front, back, and left side. The right side drops maybe 1/8 to 1/4" from back to front. (the front is lower than back)
I am having water run out the front right corner when using the shower.
What is the best way to correct this? I am using the shower walls, not tile walls.
Could I use epoxy in the front right corner to build a dam to stop the water? Or am I going to have to get it level?
Any help of advise would be greatly appreciated.
 
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Old 01-31-19, 08:08 AM
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I would wait for one of the pros. Maybe they can help. After my fiasco I would say the only way to fix mine correctly would have been to pull the pan and start over. I did not do that and I am living with the consequences. I am lucky my only issue is the runoff to the drain is not as fast as I would like.

I hope to see someone post new idea on how to fix this.
 
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Old 01-31-19, 09:24 AM
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What is the best way to correct this?
Get a better level. I would assume you have a little operator error in reading the level as you go around the edge. Rather than checking it 4x... check your diagonals. (2x) If you have a straight 2x4, cut it to length so it fits diagonally on the shower pan. Then set your level on that. If you get the 2 diagonals to BOTH be level, it's likely that all 4 sides will be level. After you get both diagonals level, check all 4 sides.

If you are using a torpedo level, that may be the problem.

Plus, an inaccurate level will do exactly what you say... look level on 3 sides, but the 4th is out of whack. That's the level telling you that its level when its actually going downhill slightly. If your level reads "level" then you flip the level end for end and set it back down and it's not level... you might as well throw that level as hard as you can out the window.

You obviously should want to install it level, and you shouldn't go any farther until it is.
 
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Old 10-17-19, 07:13 AM
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I have the same shower pan. 30x60 American Standard. I am installing the shower surround walls not tile. The pan is set in mortar. I checked and it is 100% level on the long side. But on the 30 inch side, it is off by half an inch. Is there any way to fix this? Does it need to be fixed? My thoughts are that the shower walls may not match up correctly? And to have the ends be and appear level I would need a half inch of silicone on the one corner...?

Help? Please?
 
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Old 10-17-19, 07:38 AM
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I am the OP for this thread. Mine was not out of level as much as yours and I opted to leave it and work around it. After 2 years now I really regret it. Due to being out of the level the water does not drain well. It does drain, but very slowly. Now I have tiled walls up and all that would have to be torn out to level it. I will live with it until the next renovation.

My recommendation would be to take it out and reset it. If not, at least pour small amounts of water on the pan at different locations and watch the water drain. Then make a decision.
 
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Old 10-17-19, 07:57 AM
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Thank you. I kinda thought as much. My thoughts were if the pan cracks coming out, I'd rather be out $200 now as opposed to thousands later.

Can I do mortar over mortar or do I have to try to remove the mortar as well?
 
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Old 10-17-19, 08:20 AM
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Can I do mortar over mortar or do I have to try to remove the mortar as well?
Personally I would try to get the old out and start all over, but I am a DIYer. Maybe one of the pros will come on with some qualified advice.
 
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Old 10-17-19, 08:23 AM
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Obviously I am not a professional either.
Thank you!
 
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Old 10-17-19, 08:27 AM
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Hey, it is unfortunate things like this that teach us valuable lessons. I set a tub/shower combo and one of these shower pans in mortar. Both were a pain in the butt for me. In my fear of the mortar shrinking because I mixed it too wet I mixed both too dry and had to fight to get them in and level. Being such an absolute pain is what drove me to leave it in there slightly out of level. Felt good at the time not having to redo it, but I think about it every time I take a shower and see the water oh so slowly making it's way to the drain.
 
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Old 10-17-19, 07:05 PM
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Thought I would let you know, I talked to the manufacture of the 4 to 1 mortar I used. They had a product that could be applied directly over the 4 to 1. I came home from work, removed the shower pan, applied the new mortar, re-applied shower pan which is practically dead on level now. I feel much better about it and am glad I did it. Thanks for talking me through this today. I greatly appreciate this!
 
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Old 10-18-19, 05:16 AM
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Well, that really is cool. Thanks for letting me know about it. Good luck finishing out your shower.
 
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