Tag Archives: shower niche
November 12, 2014Posted by on
Because this bathroom remodel project was so big… I decided to post about it in phases. The shower phase is essentially the second phase of the project, but there was some overlap. If you are interested in the other phases, here they are broken down (I will link to the other phases as I post them):
This is a picture of my starting point that was taken before we moved into the house. We had actually replaced the shower hardware with oil rubbed bronze hardware… but had not done anything else to the shower.
After getting the arch built, hung and drywalled… it was time to gut the shower. I was definitely nervous gutting the most used shower in the house and taking it out of commission. Fortunately, we have a guest bathroom right across the hall that we could use for the time being. If you really want to test your wife’s patience… take the shower out of commission. I have to admit, that tiling the shower took longer than I wanted it to, but my wife was pretty patient.
The first thing I needed to tackle before I could do anything else was to put in a new shower pan. There are lots of good videos on YouTube on how to do this and I would suggest you watch several before trying this yourself. Also, take your time and do your balloon test… you don’t want to mess around with water getting through your shower pan.
I also added 2 niches to hold all the shower items. This is pretty simple. You just build a box out of 2×4 to hang in between two studs. The only thing you need to ensure is that the bottom of each box has a slight slope downwards so that the water drains down the wall after a shower. I started adding niches to all my shower remodels and have really liked not having a hanging shower basket in each shower/bath. I had actually wanted to add two “banks” of niches to either side of the shower head, but there was just too much plumbing and electrical in the way to do it. I certainly didn’t want to turn the shower part of the project into a 6 month adventure.
I used small 2″ tile on the shower floor and finished up the cement board on the rest of the walls. I didn’t get a picture of it, but I also used RedGard on the shower walls for the vapor barrier. This stuff is not cheap, but it forms a water proof seal if you install it correctly. I also took extra precaution to seal the shower niches because they are a prime spot for water leakage. Water proof silicone was used after installing RedGard anywhere there was a change of plane (corners).
I wasn’t very happy with my work (and the look) of the small tile on the shower floor so I made a quick trip to Lowes to buy some larger tile so I could see what it would look like.
As you can tell, I decided to rip out the small tiles and replace them with bigger 6″ tile. You have to be careful when using larger tile on a sloped floor to ensure that there are no tile edges to catch you bare feet on.
We definitely planned on replacing the brass shower door with oil rubbed bronze but wanted to upgrade from a framed shower door to a frameless shower door. I thought my only option would be to have a custom one made but the best quote was for $1500! It was very nice, but I didn’t want to spend that much. After a little research and comparison, I was able to find a pre-fabricated frameless shower at Home Depot for less than half the price. This DreamLine Unidoor looked almost identical to the custom door. The only difference as far as I could tell was that the glass for this shower door was not quite as thick as the custom door. It is still very solid and heavy, so I was fine with it. The install was a little difficult (pay attention to the instructions where it says you need 2 people!) but it came out looking very nice (and solid).
The last thing to do before I could call the shower done was to texture the arch. I don’t do enough texture to warrant owning a professional grade texture sprayer, but I found a Wal-Board sprayer from Home Depot that even works with a pancake compressor. I can tell you it does a pretty good job, but I wouldn’t want to spray a whole room with it.