Shower pan mortar installation for shower pans made of concrete

Shower pan mortar second layer before tiling

The second layer of the shower pan mortar is the final layer of the shower pan before the bathroom tile gets applied. This needs to be a smooth surface when it’s finished.

shower pan installation

We can put the adjustable drain barrel and the strainer back in to the drain assembly. Before we put the last layer of mortar on we need to put a small amount of pea gravel or similar sized stones around the weep holes.

This helps keep the weep holes open so that moisture between the two mortar layers can escape.

mixing mortar

Back to making mortar again. This is the same as before with the same amount of latex additive.

Make sure the mortar gets mixed thoroughly. It’s especially important to have the strongest mortar possible when shaping the shower pan curb because it’s a fairly thin layer.

shower mortar

The second layer of mortar slopes downward from the walls to the drain.The mortar level around the drain needs to be precise. It’s OK if the mortar is slightly high, but if the mortar level is too low, the drain will protrude above the level of the floor tile.

If you’re going to use mortar for the curb or step instead of cementboard, you’ll want to secure some mesh wire to it.

mortar bed

The slope is really important here also. The drain assembly can be raised or lowered by turning it. Make sure the drain isn’t too high. Water doesn’t drain well when the drain is higher than the tile.

You will need to know how thick the tile is that you will be using. I try to get the mortar level right around 38-inch from the top of the drain. That leaves room for thin set mortar adhesive and the tile.

shower curb

Try to use your best cake decorating skills here.

The curb needs to be done along with the shower pan so it can dry as one piece.Try to make the layer of mortar at least 1-inch all the way around the curb and shape it with a trowel so the tile fits good.

top of page

Back to main tile page