How to Build Your Own Shower Niche How to Build Your Own Shower Niche

What You'll Need
Reciprocating saw
Drill and appropriate bit
Mold resistant caulk
Niche insert
Tape measure
Safety goggles
Utility gloves
Pencil or grease pencil
Proper saw blade: ceramic or wood
Damp rag

If you have installed your new shower and notice that you need a shower niche for your soaps and shampoos, you can install a niche yourself. Cutting a hole in your shower wall and inserting a shower niche requires tools and a little skill, but the do-it-yourself homeowner can do this job with little trouble.

Step 1 - Determine Where to Install Niche

Stand inside your tub and determine the best height for the niche. Consider all the people who will be using the shower. A niche that is placed properly for a 5'10" person will not accommodate a 6 year old child very well. Ensure that your placement is proper for all to be able to reach safely. Many inserts come with a template to mark the area to cut for the niche. If yours does not come with the template, you can make your own by setting the niche insert on a piece of paper and trace around the complete edge of the niche. Cut the center of your template leaving a hole in the paper. Attach the paper to the wall and trace the size onto the surface to be cut. If your bath is tiled, you may wish to mark the niche to align with the grout because it is easier to cut.

Step 2 - How to Cut for the Niche

Put a piece of tape on the center of the area to be cut. Leave a flag from the tape by folding it onto itself and leaving adhesive at each side of the flag. This will help you remove the area after cutting. Once you have marked the area for your niche, put on your goggles and gloves. Use the drill to create guide holes at each corner of the mark. When the guide holes are drilled, put the saw blade on your reciprocating saw. If you have tile you are cutting through you may need a different type of saw blade to cut through it. Start at 1 guide hole and saw to the next 1 either vertically or horizontally. Turn the saw or remove it from the surface and re-insert it to saw the next edge. Once all 4 sides have been cut grab the tape flag and carefully pull the cut material from the hole.

Step 3 - Install the Niche Insert

Once you have finished cutting, inserting the niche is the easy part. Put a generous bead of caulk around the opening of the niche hole. Put caulk on the lip edge of the niche insert. Gently push the insert into the space you've created. Make sure you are pushing it evenly into the hole. Secure the niche insert to the caulk. Remove the excess caulk that has oozed out. Make another even bead of caulk around the edge to leave a finished appearance. Follow caulk instructions for curing.

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