How to Install a Shower Base

Materials Needed:

    • Shower base
    • Measuring tape
    • Electric drill
    • Hole saw
    • Thin-set
    • Bucket (for mixing thin-set)
    • Mixing paddle
    • Bathtub drain (and components)
    • Level
    • Screws

Step 1:

Prepare the area. We removed the existing shower tile and shower base. We added Wonderboard Lite on the entire bathroom floor, including the shower.

Step 2: Measuring and Cutting the Drain Hole

We use a Stanley Fatmax tape measure.

Neal measured the shower base and as shown in the picture below is measuring from the wall where he will need to cut the hole for the shower drain. We use a DeWalt electric drill and a hole saw bit to drill the hole. Below shows the new drain hole.

Step 3: Install the Drain

We used plumber’s putty to make a ring which will seal the drain once screwed into place.

Neal installed the drain.

Step 4: Mixing Thin-set and Setting the Shower Base

We used an electric drill and mixing paddle to mix thin-set in a Home Depot bucket. We ❤️ Home Depot buckets. Neal spread the thin-set where the shower base will be installed. This is done to stabilize and level the shower base. We put the shower base in place and then checked on all sides and each end to ensure it is level. Once it is level, we installed the shower base to studs using screws. Here is the final shower base after we installed the shower tile. Click HERE to see how we installed the shower tile.

Let us know what you think or if you have any questions by posting below.

Author: Suzanne

Blogger and DIYer with my talented husband Neal. I share about our projects and life lessons following Christ.

21 thoughts on “How to Install a Shower Base”

    1. Sammy,
      Thank you for your kind comment. We are pleased with how the tile looked too. Stay tuned for the blog post on Neal tiling the shower. We will show you all the steps.

  1. Pingback: Bathroom Remodel
  2. This is just the answer i was looking for. Combining the prefabed shower pan but using tile for the walls. My customer and his wife love it. Thanks so much for the great idea!

  3. Hi, thank you for sharing this. Any chance you can add any pics of the overlap of the wall board to the shower pan? Would like to see how that transition looks. Thank you

    1. This is exactlet what we are going to do and I wanted to see how blue board goes up. I thought it went in first ??!!

      1. Hey Rebecca,

        I am so glad this post helped you. HERE is our post about installing the tile. This may help you to see the steps we took.

        Let me know if you have any more questions. We plan on doing this same project again for our guest bathroom.

        Thanks for visiting my blog.


  4. In your arrival you stated that you placed Thin Set under your shower pan, however you never stated how much Thin Set did you place under the floor base/pan?

    1. Hey William,
      Thanks for your comment. We used about half of a 60-lb bag under our shower base. How much you need may vary depending on how level (or not) your floor is. I hope that helps.
      Thanks for visiting our blog!

  5. Your pictures/ steps only show the thin set ‘globbed ’ out and not spread prior to installing the base. Is the thin set spread to level? Is a notched trowel used like for tile? Or, just troweled level?

    1. John,
      Great question! We basically globbed the thin set using a scoop (either trowel would work too), spread it a little, but then placed the shower base to squish it in place. We used a level on the shower base to ensure it was level. The thin set under the base helps to get the shower base level. I hope this makes sense.

  6. Was excited to see this how-to, but it is really pretty vague. Wish you’d included more pics with the actual steps, (hence the above questions from others wanting specifics). It could have been a really informative article.

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