Install a Shower Enclosure

Bathtubs and showers are among the most important fixtures in any home and installing a new shower or tub enclosure is a great way to bring new life and beauty to even the oldest and most traditional home. A contemporary shower enclosure can do a great deal to update the look of the home, and bathroom remodeling is one of those few home improvement projects that can actually pay for itself in the increased resale value of the home.

While installing a shower enclosure is a project that is well within the skill set of many homeowners, consider your own level of expertise when deciding whether or not to hire a professional contractor to do the job. Doing the job yourself can save you a lot of money, but it is important to consider what you need before getting started.

1. The first step, of course, is to determine what type of tub or shower enclosure is right for your home. There are a number of different enclosures on the market, so you should shop carefully. It is also important to consider your own lifestyle, and that of your family, before making a final decision.

2. After you've chosen the new enclosure, make sure the shower is properly waterproofed. Modern shower trays now come with a so-called "tile trim" lip, which is incorporated into the wall edge of the tray. This is know in the industry as the "tiling upstand tray." This lip is essential; its job is to prevent water from the shower from leaking between the tiles and behind the shower. This water leakage can lead to mold, foul odors and other problems, so it is essential that the area be waterproofed. Look for the presence of a tiling upstand tray when replacing or adding a shower enclosure.

3. When installing the new shower enclosure, mark out and trim away the plastic lip on the tiling trim in order to make space for the wall jam before it is mounted to the wall. Be sure to apply plenty of silicone to that cut out portion in order to waterproof it properly.

4. Mark out a 10 millimeter space inside the edge of the tile tray. This will allow space for the silicone to be added. The silicone can then be added as a waterproof sealant before the doors are put in place.

5. Use a level to make sure that the wall of the new enclosure is level. While using the level, mark out three drill holes. These drill marks will mark the spots where the profile will be mounted. The profile will support the shower doors.

6. The next step is to ensure that the shower door is lined up properly with the shower tray. In order to do that, slide the fixed shower door on the fixed wall profile, with the door parallel to the shower tray. Repeat this step for the other side.

7. After the door is properly lined up, the next step is to join the doors and apply any finishing details. Make sure the doors are held between the wall profiles, then join the top and bottom corner blocks. After those blocks have been lined up, the shower doors can be lined up and screwed together. The so-called "vanity covers" can then be added to the top of the wall jambs and inside the shower enclosure.

8. The final step to installing a new shower enclosure will be to apply a good quality silicone sealant. A silicone gun can be used to seal the shower doors, making sure to seal completely around the outer edge of the shower door. After the silicone sealant has been applied, allow it to set for a period of 24 hours before using the shower.