No matter the size or configuration, this how-to guide makes building a shower simple! Check out our helpful trade secrets before you begin!
Preparing a Shower with the Schluter Shower Kit
- Begin by removing any existing tile and drywall by chipping out the grout with your chisel and hammer set. Then begin pulling off the tiles by forcing the teeth of the hammer behind the drywall and pull the boards down. It is recommended to have your water shut off to the shower and protect any fixed surfaces, such as the existing floor tiles. If you are working with a new surface, mark out the new shower enclosure location.
- Locate the correct position of the shower drain and purchase the correct Schluter Shower Kit for your application.
- With any high moisture application, it's in your best interested to replace the original drywall boards. In this case, use 1/2" concrete board with the appropriate screws and Kerdi membrane. The screws should be placed every 8 inches into the studs.
- If not already, increase the floor to 1 1/4" thick by adding plywood boards. If this is a concrete floor, make sure it is level by applying a self levelling mortar where necessary.
- Check the fit of the Kerdi pan. If necessary, cut the pan down to fit the location. Clean and prep the surface! It's important that the floor is level and clear of dirt prior to installing the Schluter Shower Kit. If necessary, level the floor with a levelling mortar and allow 10-12 hours to dry.
- Begin to mix the unmodified grey mortar in your mixing bucket according to the manufacturers' instructions. It is advised to ware a dust mask, goggles and gloves when working with mortar as it is caustic. Apply the mortar to the subfloor with a 1/4" or 3/8" Notched trowel. Place the Kerdi pan into the mortar and press down.
- Install the Kerdi Shower Curb into the same mortar along the exposed outer edges where the shower door/glass will sit.
- Apply the mortar along one section of the surface, beginning with the walls, covering the diameter of the Kerdi membrane, about one metre, pulling the trowel at a 45 degree angle. Cross over the mortar 2-3 times to eliminate air bubbles. Apply the sheet(s) of Kerdi membrane always working from the top of the wall and smoothing it out with a grout sponge along the way. Repeat this process throughout the shower and let the waterproofing dry for 12-24 hours.
- Apply the same mortar along the top of the Kerdi pan. Install the shower drain flange into waste line and press firmly into the mortar. Use the Kerdi Band and Corners to waterproof the seams of the base and shower walls. Apply the supplied Kerdi Pipe Seals over your water supply.
- Finally, install the Kerdi membrane over the Kerdi pan and leave to dry overnight.
Preparing a Shower Wall for Tile with Kerdi Board
- Begin to mix the appropriate mortar for your installation in your mixing bucket according to the manufacturers' instructions. It is advised to ware a dust mask, goggles and gloves when working with mortar as it is caustic. Always begin with the walls and ceiling, leaving the floor to last. Over Kerdi Membrane, you are to use unmodified mortar regardless of the type of tile. Use white adhesive for stone and grey for porcelain or ceramic. Use the notched trowel, generally a 1/2" or 3/8" square notch for larger tiles and 3/16" V-Notch for mosaics, and spread the adhesive on a 2-3 square foot surface at a time. Hold the trowel at a 45 degree angle with the teeth of the trowel touching the surface. Simply drag the adhesive across and be sure to cross back over your previous application to smooth out any air bubbles.
- Apply a small amount of adhesive to the back of the tiles using the same technique as on the walls, but with half the amount of product. Lay the tile(s) on the surface into the adhesive and apply pressure to create a bond. Apply your next tile in the same fashion with spacers in between the tiles. Remove any excess mortar from the tile face and grout joins as you go and check to ensure each tile is level. Repeat this process across the shower walls. When you approach cuts, it is best to cut them as you complete each row and keep the excess for the opposing wall.
- To create cuts, measure the surface and create a mark on the tile you intend on cutting. Use your tile cutter, preferably a wet saw, to cut along the marked line. It is advised to wear goggles when cutting any tile.
- Repeat the installation directions from earlier with the shower floor, leaving all cuts to the end. To cut mosaics, measure the space remaining and cut the sheets down slightly smaller. Spread the mortar and install the smaller sheet, checking the size and configuration before installing. Fill in any small voids with individual pieces. This takes more time, but will provide a professional appearance.
- If you've decided to use a stone shower threshold, install this product with a white unmodified mortar in the same fashion as the tiles. Measure is advance and check before install for fit and to make sure the surface is level.
- Once the surface is dry, begin applying the grout. Mix the grout according to the instructions, or until it has reached a peanut butter consistency, in your mixing bucket. Apply to the dry tile surface using the grout float in a cross sweeping pattern, held at a 45 degree. The grout should be pushed over the tile joints in 2-3 directions to ensure they are appropriately filled in.
- Begin removing the excess grout 5-10 minutes after application. You'll be aware of the appropriate time because the grout will begin to show a white haze. Fill a clean bucket with water and use your grout sponge remove the grout by washing the floor. Be sure not to use too much water or wash in a spiral motion. For the best effect, pull the grout downward in a dragging motion. This may have to be repeated once or twice with glossy or textured tiles.
- Use a clean, dry cloth to buff the entire surface clean of any dry particles.
- Seal any necessary surfaces, such as grout or natural stone tiles, 3-5 days after applying the grout.
- Install any fixed elements, such as the shower head and mixing valve, over the newly installed tile. Put a thin bead of bathroom silicone along the base of the tiles and in the corners of the walls.
- Notched Trowel
- Grout Float
- Measuring Tape
- Grout Sponge
- Tile Cutter
- Mixing Bucket
- Mixing Bit
- Dust mask
- Hammer and Chisel
- Be sure to use your safety tools (goggles, gloves), tile debris can be quite dangerous!