6 Tips on Installing a Shower 6 Tips on Installing a Shower
If you are planning on installing a shower in your bathroom because you want to replace an old one or are building a new bathroom, you might find a few tips will make the installation a little easier. Therefore, here are some time saving (and frustration preventing) tips to make your DIY shower installation go smoother and faster. Let's get started.
Always Measure and Level - Twice
One of the biggest problems first time shower installers have is not properly measuring or leveling fixtures when installing a shower. So, always make sure to measure or check the level on your fixture installations twice. This will help you to avoid having to make unneeded additional cuts of pipe and also help you avoid wasting fixtures.
Keep Plenty of Plumber's Tape On Hand
When you are at the hardware store shopping for fixtures and couplers that will be needed to install your new shower, make sure to pick up several rolls of plumber's Teflon tape. Teflon tape is much easier to use on fitting connections than pipe joint compound and is perfectly acceptable for the semi-permanent type of connections made when installing a shower. Teflon tape is also in the lot easier to remove it you have to repair leaks in the future.
Learn What Dielectric Fittings Are
If you don't know what a dielectric fitting is, you should definitely wait before you start installing a shower—at least until you know how to use one. A dielectric fitting is a special type of connector that is used to connect pipes of different types. When installing a shower, you will probably be connecting PVC pipe to copper water lines. Therefore, you'll need to make sure you know how to properly install a dielectric fitting.
Don't Force Pipe Fittings or Stop Valves
When connecting tubing or pipes that are attached stop valves with a compression nut fitting, always make sure that you properly align the tubing and compression nut. It is very easy to install a compression where the angle is not perfectly straight by forcing the connector onto the end of the tubing or pipe. When you do this, however, you create a bad seal in the fitting, which will almost always result in a leak. So when attaching pipe fittings to stop valves, always do so slowly and make sure they are properly aligned.
Replace Old Shower Drain Traps
If you are replacing an old bathtub or shower with a new shower installation, always remove the old iron pipe or metal pipe drain trap and replace it with a more modern PVC P-trap. The newer PVC type traps are easier to clean and are also more effective in filtering out dirt and sediment.
Always Check Local Building Codes
Of all the tips in this list, this one is the most important. Before installing a shower in your home, you should always check with the local building inspector in your area to make sure you are aware of plumbing and building codes that will be applicable to your project. Although you may be able to install the new shower without the inspector ever knowing, you should always request an inspection to make sure you do the job right.