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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    2

    Default Advice needed on removing shower base please!

    Hi all,

    I have a polymarble shower base on chipboard flooring. Cracks and other irregularities have appeared in the base around the drain and so I need to replace the base.

    What is the best way to remove this shower base without destroying the surrounding tiles, etc. in the process?

    Any advice appreciated...Thanks in advance.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Kuranda, paradise, North Qld
    Age
    60
    Posts
    5,650

    Default

    First off, why is it cracking? It sounds like the subfloor may be moving enough to cause problems. If there are water leaks and you have rot in the joists than you may be replacing more than just the shower base, especially since you have particle board flooring. If the base has been installed correctly then the wall sheeting/tiles will be overlapping the lip. If this is the case you will most likely have to remove the wall sheeting. If it hasn't been done properly, well, you're probably going to need to rip it all out anyway. More information and pictures may help.

    Mick
    "If you need a machine today and don't buy it,

    tomorrow you will have paid for it and not have it."

    - Henry Ford 1938

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    722

    Default

    Sounds silly but they smash pretty easily with a hammer! Then you can take it out in peices. Really depends how it was installed. I guess if you are lucky maybe it wasn't supported properly around the drain ... hence the cracks. But if you have been using it like that then there is probably water damage that will have to be fixed anyway.

    Assume a big job ... anything less will be a bonus.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Sydney, NSW
    Posts
    307

    Default

    This sounds like no simple task.

    When you mentioned the base is cracked.

    Are the cracks going all the way through to the flooring or is it more like a craze and you would like to replace it for ascetics?

    If it is cracked all the way through I would be investigating why.

    Anyway to remove the base use a bolster chisel.

    As for the tiles hmm, if they are on a brick wall smash the row around the shower base, and try and get some matching replacements.

    As the tiles should over lap the base.

    However the chances its not brick are very high in which case the whole sheet of fibro cement needs to be replaced on which the tiles a glued.

    This made not be a simple task, nothing ever is.

    Good Luck

    Pulpo

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    2

    Default

    Thanks very much for the replies so far.

    More info...the crack is more like a fissure in the surface coating that has lifted up (including some of the polymarble below) where the base slopes down slightly around the drain pipe. It curves part-way around the drain, and there seems to be another developing slightly further out as if in concentric circles. The crack does not go all the way through and would only be maybe 5-10mm deep. To my untrained eye it appears that the area surrounding the drain has not been supported properly.

    I've had a look under the house and cannot see any water marks on the chipboard. It is a new-ish house (4 years old) and I've seen no evidence of movement elsewhere.

    The tiles do in fact overlap the base slightly, so I imagine they would have to be destroyed.

    I guess I will try the hammer-smashing technique and hope for the best. What should I use to cement the new base in once I've got the old one out?

    Thanks.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Mooroolbark VIC
    Age
    77
    Posts
    148

    Default

    showerbases are generally supported with a slurry of cement and sand. When you put that in make sure that the new base is absolutely level in all directions, so that the built-in slope towards the drain hole works properly. If this isn't done properly you will always have water sitting in one of the corners. Also make sure that the new base fits into the checked-out areas of the studs. You might be able to get away with just removing the bottom two rows of tiles and cut the fibro, then refitting a new strip of fibro with the proper overlap on the base, then re-tile. The surrounding tiles shouldn't be a problem, if there is any old silicon or caulking there clean it off and refinish with grout. Having said all that if your house is only four years old you should be able to claim through the guarantee fund, which I think runs for seven years. At least thats the case in Vic.

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