We are continuing to work on our big master bathroom remodel and I am excited to show you a little more of our progress today! Last week I shared our demo process with you (check out the details here) and today I am going to show you how we Prep’d for a new Shower Pan Installation and how we moved our PEX plumbing! We did all of this in preparation for our awesome new shower we are building!
We are excited to have the opportunity to remodel our master bathroom. It is the largest DIY project we have ever done! And because every project is different, the prep we needed to do might be different then any prep work you might need to do if you undertake a similar project. But we learned a lot and so I want to share with you a few important things to consider while you are prepping your space to install a shower pan.
Prep for Shower Remodel
Know Your Shower Size
Due to our particular layout and space, we are actually expanding our shower just a bit! This meant that we needed to change the location of our shower plumbing prior to installing a shower pan so that our new plumbing would be centered in our new larger shower. Once we knew our shower size, we marked where all of our new plumbing needed to go.
Move Your Shower Plumbing
Before we moved any plumbing, we turned off our main water line. We had already marked where the new plumbing would go, so we got to work moving it!
Because we had a fiberglass shower originally, the builders did not install the PEX plumbing to sit behind the wall, it was sticking out on top of studs. Which works fine with fiberglass panel up over it, but it does not work for a tiled shower.
So the first thing we needed to do was to re-route our PEX plumbing behind the walls. In a couple locations we actually needed to drill a hole into a studs to in order to re-route our plumbing properly. We had to get a little creative but it all worked out fairly easily.
Know Your Plumbing Type
There are several types of PEX plumbing connectors so it is important to know what you have and what you may need to buy. Our existing PEX plumbing had Pro-PEX expansion fittings which are mainly used by professional plumbers. The tool that is required to do this, and the fittings were not available at our local hardware store.
Our local hardware store carried copper crimp fittings so we used these to reroute and connect new PEX plumbing. These fittings required a crimp tool to install which was about $80 to purchase, but we were able to rent it for $8 instead!
We will soon be installing a new shower mixer valve so at this point, we just capped off our PEX until the new mixer valve arrives. Don’t worry, I will show you how to do that too! But for now, our plumbing is just capped off.
Move and/or Install Your New Drain
The Tile Shop sent us an easy to assemble shower pan kit that came with a new, 3-piece shower drain. We installed the new drain so that the top of the base rested on our sub floor, and the bottom of the base was glued to the PVC drain pipe below the sub floor.
In order to do that, we had to remove a large portion of our existing sub floor around our drain (back to the closest joists.) After the sub floor was removed, we cut the old drain off after the drain trap and then we installed a new drain trap which allowed us to center the drain to the new shower size. Then we glued the bottom of the new drain to the PVC drain pipe below the sub floor.
Prep Your Sub Floor
At this point we had a large hole in our sub floor since we had removed it in order to both replace and center the new drain. We then installed new sub flooring in our shower with the base of the new drain resting on top of it. We did this by using two pieces of sub flooring and installing them around the drain pipe.
This gave us a beautiful, clean and proper surface for us to move onto the next step of our remodel: Building the Shower Pan!! (details coming soon)
Check Out Our Master Bathroom Remodel Series:
How to Install new Bathroom Mirror Frames (in about 10 minutes!)
Please note that I am not a professional. I am just sharing what worked for us. As always please use all proper safety precautions and read and follow all manufacturer instructions. Please note that I am not responsible in any way for any outcome if you try this yourself. I am not liable for any injury or additional cost or expense incurred. I always recommend consulting and hiring a professional if needed. And always be sure to check with local building codes to obtain all permits needed for any DIY project.