Shower Tray Installation A Tale Of Woe

Shower trays installation was promised to be a simple matter by our plumber – a sage old man who wanders around the house muttering ‘Bello’, ‘Grande’ and ‘Buono’ seemingly at random and to himself. The reality of our experience fitting a new shower tray was a bit different and went as follows.

I am disabled and require a bigger space and stronger platform than most therefore we were already focussing on a quality product and not the usual bog-standard (if you’ll excuse the pun) bathroom fitting. In consultation with our local builder’s merchants we chose a Kaldewei enamel steel shower tray or shower tub carrier as it is sometimes called. The size I chose was large but not the biggest; 1.2m x 1.2m and it was made of thick white enamel steel. As a result we were quoted over €400 and a delivery period of 4 weeks.

About 2 months later, the shower tray finally arrived and we took delivery of it. We had left a suitable space in the floor of our bathroom but had not been able to plumb it in as we weren’t certain of the location of the drainage holes in the floor of the shower tray.

We opened the huge cardboard box and removed the steel tray. We were surprised to see that it had wires attached to it but later reading of the rather confusing instructions suggested that we need to ask our electrician to earth this surface. So, now we had 2 builders men waiting to finish the bathroom, a plumber waiting to fix the shower tray and an electrician earthing it.

On top of that, the shower tray came mounted on a huge chunk of polystyrene which we assumed was packing (and rather wasteful at that). It turned out that this was to be embedded in the floor of the bathroom around the pipe work and the shower tray mounted on top of that. The instructions from Kaldewei leave a lot to be desire – multilingual they may be but they are completely confusing in any of the ones we understand. I’ve got them in front of me and, even though we now know how it all works, the instructions don’t seem a whole deal clearer!

After many man-hours of swearing, arguing and, finally, sweating, we got the shower tray fixed into place and tiles laid around it to protect it and to keep water from going underneath it. If it works as well as it looks, it will have been worth it.

We’re now waiting for the plumber to put the silicone sealant around it and then I can use our Kaldewei shower tray.

All shapes and sizes of shower trays are available from Traditional Bathrooms Limited:

http://www.victorianbathrooms4u.com/Shower+Trays.819

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