how to install a shower


If you’re sick of having a shower and bathtub combo, you’ve come to the right place. In this DIY guide, we’re going to show you how to install a shower the right way. Learning to install a shower frame on studs is fairly straightforward and easily done by any do-it-yourself person with a little know-how. The beauty of shower frames, also known as surrounds, is that they are a unit that fits in new and existing construction. Usually, there are two or three panels that interlock to create a watertight seal. So, let’s dive right into the steps!

Note: These instructions, while useful, should go alongside the manufacturer instructions provided with your kit. 


Prep The Site

Before installing the new shower unit, you need to prep the job site. The most important thing to check before getting started is that the corners of the walls are plumb and level. You can use a four-foot level to check this. If there are any issues, you may need to perform repair work before tackling this project. 

Once you’ve made sure everything is plumb and level, measure the shower opening to ensure you’ve got a properly-sized shower unit. Next, check the floor with your level. Finally, rough in the plumbing and drain lines to make sure everything’s in the right place. This includes the shower controls and showerhead. 


Check The Fit

Now, you need to check that your new shower fits the opening. Snap the side panel into the base, and put it in position. Use a level to check the base and use shims to ensure it’s level. After that, you need to make holes for the shower control valves so you can check the fit in the front. 


Install The Base

Once you’ve confirmed everything fits, it’s time to install the shower. First, you want to start with the base. You can use some masonry cement to fill any low spots in your subfloor to ensure the base is level and even before installation. 

Place the base into the space over the top of the shower drain. Then, use silicone to seal the gap inside, where the shower pan and drain meet. Seal the underside of the drain flange as well. Screw the pan onto the drain but be careful not to overtighten. Once the flange is on, screw the drain strainer onto the drain. Finally, drill some pilot holes in the flange and attach the base with roofing nails. 


Attach Side, Back, and Plumbing Panels

Once the base is fully installed, it’s time to attach the side, back, and plumbing panels. Seat the back panel on the shower base and attach it to the studs with screws. Then, seat the side panels into the base and attach them both to the studs. Once the side walls are installed, you can install the plumbing panel. Fasten the panel on the studs as you did with the other panels, and be sure to read the manufacturer’s manual. 


Seal Everything

After you finish installing the shower control knobs, showerhead, and other cosmetic assets, you need to seal any necessary areas with silicone caulk. To be safe, it’s best to check the manual for specific areas that require sealing. 


Want The Pros To Handle It? 

Installing a shower enclosure is rather simple. We get it, though. Sometimes you just don’t have the time or resources to do the job yourself. At Autry Plumbing, we are plumbing and bathroom experts. Give us a call, and we can schedule a shower installation for you today!