Going Green: How to Build a Wheelchair Accessable Shower Pan Liner
The shower pan liner is a big help when it comes to waterproofing the tiles in your shower. These are created from either polyvinyl chloride or chlorinated polyethylene. Shower pans used to be only made of lead but these did not have a long life span. The kinds nowadays are more resistant to chemicals and water exposure. Any do-it-yourself enthusiast can easily create a shower pan liner as long as you have the proper instructions and tools to do this. The question posed in this article now is how to create one that is wheelchair accessible. Even people who are not wheelchair-bound are susceptible to accidents that can happen in the shower so those bathrooms used by the handicapped must be fitted with extra precaution. You must take proper care to preserve the integrity of the structure by preventing the shower liner from weakening.
Step 1: Create an Allowance for the Drain Assembly
The subfloor of the wheelchair accessible shower stall has to be 1.5 inches deeper compared to the subfloor in other parts of the bathroom. Cut a hole in the middle of the subfloor to place the drain assembly on. It is better to begin with a small hole and just make it bigger with a utility knife if you need to.
Step 2: Place a Slipsheet
Before anything else, you need to create a slipsheet for the shower liner. You can opt to use a plastic garbage bag or a sheet of polyester. Staple the slipsheet and the mesh onto the subfloor.
Step 3: Build a Pre-Sloped Slab
Use sand mix to build the pre-sloped slab with. From the outside area of the shower pan, there should be a slope going towards the drain so that moisture can freely flow towards the drain in case it gets trapped within the liner.
Step 4: Lay out the Drain Base by the Opening.
See to it that the liner is not interfering with the weep holes of the drain. If you are sure about the fit, you can take some adhesive silicone caulk and secure the sides of the liner with it, especially the part that is in contact with the drain. But be careful that it does not interfere with the flow of water into the drain.
Step 5: Create the Hole for the Drain on the Liner
Feel around for the drain and cut the liner on top of it.
Step 6: Prevent Debris from Accumulating
To prevent clogging with debris or cement, put some washed pea gravel on the drain holes. You can also place some duct tape on the drain base to keep debris at bay while you work on the drain.
Step 7: Fold Shower Pan Liner into the Corners
The liner should go up to the walls of the shower above the floor around 9 inches or more. The covers should be closed up to make sealing easier.