If you’re looking for a way to make your bathroom more accessible and safer for elderly or young family members, a curbless shower might be the solution. Traditional showers with a curb can pose a tripping hazard, but a curbless shower eliminates that risk.
In this article, you’ll learn how to build a curbless shower on your concrete bathroom floor. By making the level of the shower area lower than the surrounding floor, you can create a seamless entry and exit without the need for a curb. Keep reading for step-by-step instructions and helpful tips on how to install a shower drain without a curb.
How To Build A Curbless Shower On Concrete: It’s Easier Than You Think
Building a curbless shower on concrete is an affordable and easy way to give your bathroom a modern look. In this article, we will go over the best method for building a curbless shower on concrete in 5 simple steps.
Step 1: Put A Moisture Barrier
To start, you need to make the concrete floor waterproof by painting it with latex paint. This paint also acts as an anti-fracture membrane to prevent sudden cracks on the concrete floor. Carefully paint the floor with a paintbrush or a paint roller to ensure full coverage.
Step 2: Lay Wire Mesh
Once the paint is completely dry, lay a layer of wire mesh, also known as chicken wire, over the concrete floor. Staple the wire mesh down into the concrete floor to create a bonding agent for the floor. This will allow the floor to hold onto the layer of mud.
Step 3: Put A Layer Of Mud
Next, put a layer of mud on the concrete floor. This layer of mud will create a gentle slope from the corner of the shower area to the shower pan drain. The thickness of the mud layer should be ⅛ inch around the drain area and gradually increase to ½ inch at the corners of the shower area.
Step 4: Install A Shower Pan Liner
When the first layer of mud is almost dry, install a shower pan liner on top of the sloping bed. Flatten and stretch the shower pan liner over the mud layer and staple it around 6 inches up in the wall studs. This will ensure that the shower pan liner is watertight.
Step 5: Put Another Layer Of Mud
Finally, put another layer of deck mud on top of the newly installed shower pan. The thickness of the new mud layer should be 1½ inches at the corners of the shower area and reduce to ¼ inch at the drainage point. After the final layer of mud is dried up, your curbless shower is ready to be used.
By following these 5 simple steps, you can easily build a curbless shower on concrete. Proper drainage, waterproofing, and level subfloor are essential for building a curbless shower. Make sure to use backer board or cement board for the shower walls and tiles for the shower floor. Use a linear drain and grout the joints properly to ensure proper drainage. With these tips, you can build a beautiful and functional curbless shower on your concrete slab.
5 Benefits Of A Curbless Shower:
1. It’s a Modern Design Trend
Curbless showers have become a trendy design element in modern bathrooms. They are commonly found in both residential and commercial buildings. By investing in a curbless shower, you can elevate the look of your bathroom and stay ahead of the design curve.
2. Brings an Open Feel to Your Bathroom
Installing a curbless shower eliminates the need for a separate door or glass wall for the shower area. This creates a more open and spacious feel to your bathroom. You’ll enjoy a sense of calm and relaxation in your newly designed space.
3. Improves Aesthetics
Curbless showers are a popular choice among interior designers and architects because they add a stylish and modern look to any bathroom. They enhance the overall appearance of your bathroom and make your time in the space more enjoyable.
4. Provides Easy Access
Without a curb or additional door, access to the shower area becomes much easier for everyone. This is especially helpful for those with limited mobility or disabilities. Children also appreciate the lack of tripping hazards.
5. Easy to Clean
Curbless showers are much easier to clean than traditional showers with curbs. Their seamless design reduces the growth of mildew and grime. Additionally, without glass walls or doors, there is less cleaning required in the bathroom overall.
Investing in a curbless shower offers numerous benefits, including improved accessibility, aesthetics, and ease of cleaning. It’s a trendy design choice that can elevate the look of any bathroom and provide a more enjoyable experience for all users.
Commonly Asked Questions:
Is Installing a Curbless Shower on Concrete Difficult?
Compared to regular showers, installing a curbless shower requires extra effort in the floor area. However, it is not rocket science, and anyone with common sense can do it with proper guidance.
How Much Will It Cost to Build a Curbless Shower on Concrete?
For a standard-sized shower area, you can expect to spend around $2,500 to $5,000 in the USA. The cost may vary depending on the quality of the materials used in building the curbless shower. Additionally, you may need to add another $500 for building a curbless shower on concrete, depending on the quality of the tile and the area of the shower.
Do You Need a Shower Bed to Build a Curbless Shower on Concrete?
Yes, you need a shower bed to build a curbless shower on concrete. Shower beds are the foundation of curbless showers, and they protect the concrete floor underneath from moisture while working as a base for the tile. Although plastic-made pans are available as an alternative to concrete shower beds, a shower bed made from concrete is the best possible choice. It can last a lifetime and save you a lot of money.
What Should Be the Depth of a Curbless Shower?
According to experts, the minimum depth of any curbless shower should be 36 inches. It is appreciated if you decide to make your curbless shower even deeper, up to 48 inches. The flush transition from the bathroom and the shower floor demands a lowered subfloor in the shower area.
How Many Slopes Should a Curbless Shower Have?
According to the International Plumbing Code (IPC), the slope of a curbless shower should be ¼ inch for each foot. That much slope ensures a seamless installation of curbless showers. If the slope is sharper than ¼ inch for each foot, it will be difficult to walk on them. On the other hand, if the slope is less than the mentioned measurement, the flow of water will not be directed to the shower drain as intended.
How Do You Keep Water in a Curbless Shower?
You can keep the water in a curbless shower by installing shower corner splash guards. They work as water stoppers at the corners and the space between the walls and the floor. The main task of the splash guards is to restrain the water from leaking out in all the corners.
How Do You Waterproof a Curbless Shower on Concrete?
To make a curbless shower waterproof, which is built on concrete, you have to paint latex waterproofing on the concrete floor. Using a paintbrush or a paint roller, carefully paint the whole concrete floor with point-on latex waterproofing, which you can find in any hardware store. The latex paint also prevents fractures in the concrete floor.
In conclusion, building a curbless shower on concrete requires extra effort and expense, but it is worth it in the end. The seamless transition from the bathroom floor to the shower is not only aesthetically pleasing but also practical.