How to Build a Walk-In Shower (Part 1: Wedi Shower Pan Install) — by Home Repair Tutor
So you might be wondering why I’m sitting
in a walk-in shower. Well the reason why is this is easily my most favorite room in our
home. My wife and I, we saved up our money to remodel this bathroom. It turned out phenomenal.
And we have that opportunity for you today to see how to build your own walk-in shower,
and it starts out with the shower pan. So today we’re going to show you how to install
the Wedi Ligno shower pan. It will make your walk-in shower base completely 100% waterproof.
It’s easy to install. So if you’re a DIYer or a professional, you can definitely do this
on your own. And here’s the deal: Walk-in showers are way safer than stepping over a
bathtub or a curb shower in the morning. So if you’re looking to build a walk-in shower,
this is a great video to start with, all right? So let’s dive into it right now.
Today we’re going to show you how to install the Wedi Fundo Ligno shower pan. They come
in a lot of different configurations, but we’re using the 48” x 48” x ¾” thick
pan. What you need to do first is dry fit it over top your wood subfloor. That’s what
Steve is doing right here. He’s going to mark out the position using a pencil and then
pull the Ligno pan up off the floor and cut down the subfloor. So the way that you’re
going to cut down the subfloor is one of two ways: either with a Sawzall, like Steve is
showing you here. He’s just using a demo wood blade by Diablo. Or you can use a circular
saw. But the nice thing with the Sawzall is you can use the blade to guide your cut along
any 2’ x 4’s. So he’s just going to cut out a small section. It’s like a 1’
x 48” section then use a wonder bar or pry bar to pull up that small section of wood
to expose the joist. He’s going to use a bigger pry bar to do the exact same thing
with the bigger portion of the OSB. So here you go. Now all your joists are exposed.
Pull any nails that are on top of them. Place a level on every single joist and also across
the joists to make sure that they are level because the Ligno won’t drain properly if
it’s not the case. You can shave down joists if they’re a little bit boat up. Or you
can sister 2’x material to them to get them nice and level.
Now in this case, what Steve is doing is applying liquid nail to a 2’ x 4’. He’s going
to place that 2’ x 4’ ¾” below the existing joist. The top of the joist he’s
got a ¾” OSB template that he put on top of it, and he’s tacking it in place. Now
the reason why he’s doing this is we’re going to be putting OSB or you can put plywood
over top those 2’ x 4’s and in between the joists such that now you’ve got a subfloor
that’s ¾” below your subfloor within the rest of the bathroom. So you can see all
those 2’ x 4’s are tacked to the joists. Now we’re ready to install the OSB.
So Steve is going to slide the OSB underneath any existing 2’ x 4’ bases. We want the
OSB underneath the existing framing because we’re going to apply thinset to it, and
you don’t want the thinset to ooze out between the framing and the new OSB. Now in this case,
we’re dealing with the stairwell framing. We had to tack on more 2’xs, and then we’re
going to put the OSB on top of that. Now Steve is going to apply liquid nail to it. I’m
showing you this because you may run into this exact situation, you may not. But again
the reason why we’re putting the OSB nice and tight to the frame is so the thinset won’t
ooze out in between those two joints. Now if you’ve got drywall underneath the
joist—so for example, a ceiling—you want to put in your plumbing first even before
you put those nailers in. So get all your plumbing in place before you put the nailers
in and before you attach the plywood to the nailers. Steve is applying liquid nail to
all the nailers, and then he is going to put his OSB on top of that and slide it underneath
the 2’x framing and tack them in place using a nailer. You can also use decking screws
and an impact driver to do this if you don’t have a nailer. So what we’re doing here
is providing a really nice, sound structural platform that is ¾” below the existing
wood subfloor, and we’re going to put the Ligno on top of that, which we’re going
to show you here shortly. But again, this is nice, strong structural base for the Ligno.
You’re going to dry fit the Ligno again and then draw a hole marking the location
of the drain because the bottom of the Ligno needs to fit down through that hole. So we
need to cut a 6 ½” in the OSB here. So that’s what Steve is doing. He’s measuring
out from center, from the center of that drain location, a 6 ½” hole. You pre-drill using
a spade bit, and then you can cut that out using a jigsaw. And when you get done with
it, you’ll have a nice 6 ½” hole for the Ligno to fit down through. And that’s
very, very important that you get this set up before you apply the thinset to the OSB.
The next step is to attach 2’x material to the back of your framing because we’re
going to be installing your plumbing. And what we’re using here is a Delta mixing
valve. This is a rough in valve with integral stops that’s critical if you don’t have
shut off valves. We’re also going to have a diverter valve attached to that because
that diverter valve is going to going to run plumbing to the shower head, to a handheld
shower, and then also body sprays. So you want about 14” between your rough in and
that diverter valve to allow for enough space for the escutcheon. So the escutcheon will
fit around that rough in valve, and you want tile to be between the rough in and the diverter.
Now in the case of a Delta rough in, you want the 2’x material to be flush with the back
of your framing. That way when you go to secure the rough in valve to that 2’x material,
the rough in and the diverter will be flush with your ½” Wedi that’s going to be
going on the wall. And that will allow for a really good look when you put your tile
onto the Wedi. The Ligno shower pan by Wedi requires latex
modified thinset. In this case, we’re using Mapei’s Kerabond and Keralastic. The Keralastic
is the latex additive. You need about ½ a bag of the Kerabond for a 4’ x 4’ shower
pan. So that’s what Steve is doing here. He’s adding the Kerabond to the Keralastic
and mixing it up per the Mapei directions. Now in this case, we’re using a ¼” x
¼” square notch trowel. We’re going to use that to embed the thinset onto the OSB.
The first thing you want to do before installing the pan is to actually install the drain assembly.
And what you need is the Wedi caulking that comes with it. This is actually a sausage
container cartridge for a sausage gun. And this just gives you about twice as much as
a regular caulking gun, but they do sell it in regular caulking tube forms. So the drain
is pretty simple, pretty standard. It just has a slip ring, a tightening lock ring, a
plastic slip ring, then a rubber gasket at the bottom. So what you want to do is first
apply some Wedi caulking to where the drain piece is going to sit, and be generous with
it. And what I always do is just go around in the inside of the drain assembly as well
just to make sure that there isn’t any missing. So you just sit this in place. And around
the back side you put the rubber gasket on first, plastic slip ring, and the locking
nut. You don’t need any pliers or wrenches or anything like that. This is all just going
to be a stiff hand tighten this to it. And there’s an excess sealant. Just wipe off,
and that’s all there is to it. So then we’ll be able to thinset this pan in. We got this
in place. So since Wedi is a waterproof shower system,
you have to use all the components that go with it. And the Wedi waterproof caulking
that is specifically made for this product must be used, especially for the drain assembly
and any joints that you use. The thing with this foam products is that you’ve got to
be careful with not using any harsh chemicals. Anything that’s not basically used in the
system: no liquid nail, no silicone, nothing like that. Just use the caulking. And the
caulking is pretty amazing stuff. It has a real flexibility to it, so it never completely
hardens. And that’s why when you use it in the joints and in the corners and stuff,
it’s going to last forever and not have any cracking. Always use the products that
are within the system. That’ll guarantee the waterproof system.
First thing now that we have the drain assembly put on, you just want to dry fit this again
and make sure this is going to fit in the proper location before you do a thinsetting
down. Because once your thinset is down, especially the Ligno pan, it gets very difficult to pull
back up because that thinset’s really just suctioning this to the floor. So just dry
fit it. Make sure it fits. Make sure that drain is sitting down in correctly. Yeah,
so no banisters. Everything’s sit flush on there.
Now we’re going to go ahead and thinset this pan down. And what I always do is try
to take a damp rag and wipe down the area that you’re going to be thinsetting. This
is on any tile installation on plywood. You kind of just clear off the dust. Moisten the
plywood a little bit so that the thinset doesn’t get dried out too quickly. Notch a ¼” square
notch trowel, and burn the thinset ino the plywood. Do that first and then you’ll notch
it out. In this small space, we’re going to go ahead and back butter, back trowel our
pan because we’re not going to have much room to put this in prior after I do that.
So we’ll go ahead and back butter the pan. Whatever way you trowel marks, run it the
same way on the pan. The idea behind that is to allow the hinges to collapse and remove
any excess air. Okay, so with that back buttered, we’ll finish our pan here. Okay.
That should get good adhesion on it. Since we have a little bit of customary shower pan
size with this back wall, we should go ahead and just make sure that our back wall receives
the ½” panel tightly. So any thinset that comes up through your dado joint here, you
want to wipe out clean around the pan. And that’s definitely going to happen if you
have good thinset coverage. So wipe that clean because you’re going to be using the Wedi
sealant, and that sealant needs to seal to this foam. So make sure all your edges are
all clean. After the pa is thinsetted down, you want
to put some weight on the pan itself. So extra pieces of piles of tile work pretty well for
that. For the first 30 minutes at least have some weight on there. And then once you get
some of these side panels in, you’ll be able to take them off.
So hopefully you saw how easy it is to use the Wedi Ligno shower pan. Now we’re going
to have a second video for you that’s going to be a part two. We’re going to show you
how to install the Wedi building panels on your framing, and that will make the walls
in your walk-in shower 100% waterproof as well.
So if you enjoyed this video, give us a thumbs up. If you’ve got a question, ask it down
in the comments section. If you’re looking for more advanced training on how to remodel
your bathroom, you can check out BathroomRepairTutor.com. So again, you can go to BathroomRepairTutor.com
to check out the advanced training for bathroom remodeling. That’s where Steve and I also
give support for DIYers who want to do a bathroom renovation on their own.
So again, thanks so much for watching today’s video. You can check out part two here soon
on how to build your walk-in shower completely using the Wedi building panels and the Wedi
Ligno shower pan. All right, so again, thanks for watching. Take care. We’ll talk to you
soon. I don’t know about you, but the bathroom
is one of the only places in my house where I can get some peace and solitude. Don’t
tell my family. This is where I hide.