How to Figure the Drain Height for a Tile Shower

If it’s the tile shower is going to be installed onto a concrete slab or wooden subfloor, the top layer of the shower drain has to be even with the surface of the floor tile. Shower drains are installed and attached to the drain line during the rough-in phase of the project, when access to the under-slab or under-floor region is available. Follow a basic procedure used by professionals to figure the height to get a tile shower drain.

Measure and note the thickness of the tile to be installed on the bathtub floor. Typically, ceramic tiles are approximately 1/4 inch thick, and marble, sandstone or paver tiles may be around 1/2 inch thick. Minor deviations in thickness are paid for by using less or more thin-set mortar when installing the tiles.

Determine the thickness of a mortar bed where it satisfies the shower drain. Mortar beds are sloped for drainage, meaning the outer regions are thicker. Standard slope for a shower floor is 4 percent, or 1/2 inch every 12 inches from a wall to the drain. Based on a 2-inch thick mortar bed, the thickness of the bunk bed in a drain that is based in a 48-inch square shower is going to be one inch.

Blend the thickness of the floor tiles and the mortar bed where it matches the drain. For this, add 1/4 inch for the paper and cable substrate for the mortar bed, and 1/8 inch to get thin-set mortar. The result is the height of the drain from the surface of the concrete slab or wooden subfloor.

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