Top 10 Tips to Install a Shower

Written by: Editorial Staff

September 8, 2011
Filed Under Home Improvement 


Top ten tips to install a showerContributed by Lindsay Shugerman, Top 10 Guru

If you’ve decided to install a new shower, or to remodel an existing one, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

Here are the top 10 tips to install a shower with a minimum of headaches.

10. Decide what kind of shower you want

Top ten tips to install a shower

There are different types of showers available. You can choose a prefabricated shower enclosure that comes in one piece, a shower constructed of interlocking plastic panels, a tiled shower or even a shower with stone or cement walls. Look through magazine, go through model homes and look at options at your local home store before you decide.

9. Make sure the plumbing is in the right location

Top ten tips to install a shower

Many a bathroom remodeling or addition project has been brought to a standstill because the plumbing was not in the right place for a planned shower or bathtub. Before you start demolition, make sure the existing plumbing, including both water lines and drains, is in the right location. If not, consult with a plumber and a contractor to get an estimate on the cost of relocating plumbing lines.

8. Do your homework

Top ten tips to install a shower

Look at what’s below the new shower location. If you’re adding a bathroom at the same time, make sure the structure of your home is right for bathroom fixtures. Tubs, shows and toilets can be heavy, so have a structural engineer take a look at your plans before you begin ripping existing spaces apart.

7. Measure, measure and measure

Top ten tips to install a shower

If it’s a prefab, make sure it can fit up any stairs, around corners and through the door. The last thing you want is to get to installation day and find out that your prefab shower unit won’t make it up the stairs, through the hallways or into the bathroom door. Measure and measure again, to make sure there is room for the width, height and depth of the unit before you buy.

6. The right product

Top ten tips to install a shower

If it’s tile, make sure you select sealed tiles for the walls. Unsealed Mexican tiles may be pretty, but on a shower wall they can spell cleaning disaster. Make sure the bathroom tile you select is meant for high moisture areas, and are well sealed to prevent build up of soap, mildew and mold.

5. Make sure floor tiles aren’t slippery

Top ten tips to install a shower

Sure those glossy marble tiles are pretty, but once they get wet, your new shower could become a hazard. Select shower floor tiles that have some texture to give wet feet a safe surface. Do make sure they’re sealed, too, for easy cleaning. If the tile you selected is too slippery, be sure to use a traction finish before using the new shower.

4. Select the right shower fixtures

Top ten tips to install a shower

There are shower fixtures to match every décor, so don’t just grab the first chrome fixture set you see at the home store. New styles in copper, brushed metal, or even black give you a chance to turn an ordinary shower into an elegant addition to your home’s appearance.

3. Consider custom sizing

Top ten tips to install a shower

Make sure the shower head is at the right height for your family. If you have a tall family member, make sure the shower head is placed high enough to allow them to wash their hair without bending over. If your family is more petite, place the shower head lower.

2. Don’t cut corners

Top ten tips to install a shower

Install a shower pan and liner even if it’s a ground floor shower. Some people think that shower pans are only needed on upper story showers. The fact is, every new shower should have a pan and liner installed before the tile, panels or prefab unit is added.

1. Plan for time to have the water off

Top ten tips to install a shower

Make sure everyone in the house knows when the water in the house will be off for the work on your bathroom remodel or addition. While it may be only an hour or two, problems with plumbing, adding fixtures or installing the unit could easily stretch that out to a full day. Make sure you don’t start this project when someone will need to get ready for a critical meeting or job interview.

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