When to Replace Your Shower Tray

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I was talking to a friend recently who sells bathroom accessories from an excellent company called Merlyn in the UK. I think my shower has developed a leak as I have noticed water around the shower after using though I am very careful to make sure the curtain is in place. I asked my friend if I should replace the base, and how do you know when to change it? The following post is what I learned from our conversation.

Over the years everything goes through what’s called normal wear and tear, meaning that even the sturdiest of tools will eventually need fixing or replacing. Well your shower pan is no different. While concrete trays will last you a bit longer than a plastic one, both can break down.

One of the first signs that your shower tray might be failing is small cracking and lines within the material. Within a home there is always going to be movement, and with movement come vibrations and more moving, thus causing cracking. Concrete shower bases are able to take small cracks without any real side effects. However anything more than a hairline crack can cause some serious issues. With plastic shower pans however, even the smallest crack can cause you a slew of problems.

When checking for leaks, it isn’t always obvious where the water is coming from. If you see water on your floor, it might not be shower pan, but the caulking on the door or the rim of the shower that needs replacing. However any rooms below the bathroom are leaking, this is almost always caused by a cracked or faulty shower tray and will to be replaced to fix the leak. Thankfully these leaks are often easy to spot if you are able to climb beneath the room that you suspect to be leaking.

Remodeling, heavy construction, even just kids being kids and running in the house can cause a slight disruption to your shower base. Years of movement tend to add more and more stress to the old shower pans and can sometimes cause them to crack or even break. While both types of shower trays can withstand a lot of movement over the years, concrete is certainly more stable over longer periods of time. While plastic often tends to give out over a couple of decades.

Deflection occurs when water damage has caused your tray to shift or become unstabilised. Causing the water to hit and then fly out of the base, into areas you do not want wet. While not detrimental in the short run, water deflection over a couple years can cause rot and start to hurt the foundation of the structure itself.

So remember should you ever find a crack, see a leak, find signs of rot, or even think there may just be too much movement of the house, you may need to consult a specialist to get this fixed. There is never a better time to get it replaced then when you know something might be wrong.

See for quality shower replacement parts and accessories by Merlyn.