The shower drain allows waste water collected inside your shower pan to enter into your homes drainage system. The shower drain is connected to a p-trap below the floor, with the help of water pressure and gravity, waste water pushes through the drainage pipes leading out and into the city or municipal sewage system. Your choice of shower drain will depend on the type of shower pan that you choose to build or install and the materials that are currently already in use in your homes drainage system.
A shower drain can be manufactured of different types of materials, ranging from PVC, ABS, and cast iron. Each material type requires a different kind of adhesive to bond the shower drain to the already existing drainage pipe. During the plumbing inspection process, you determined the material type of your drainage pipes, which will help you to choose the proper shower drain.
An important factor to consider when choosing a shower drain is the application it fits into. Your shower drain must meet the needs of the type of shower pan you intend to build or install. A shower pan that is built will need to take into consideration the waterproofing method applied and water resistant barrier that is chosen in order serve the right purpose. For an installed shower base or bath tub, use a manufacture recommended shower drain.
Most building codes require a shower drain to be a minimum of 2″ in diameter in size. For shower pan applications, this is to allow for faster water drainage where flood levels are lower, in comparison to a bath tub. If larger amounts of water can be removed out of the shower pan, then it is less likely to overflow and cause damage.
Different manufacturers produce a wide variety of shower drains to meet your shower pan needs. A multi-piece shower drain will allow for each layer of your shower pan to remain secure and help protect from water penetration. A 3-piece shower drain, in a PVC or ABS material, is most commonly used with a pan liner or sheet membrane to secure below and above the water resistant barrier and allow for different thicknesses of tile. A 2-piece shower drain, in cast iron, is most commonly used with a hot mop application, where the water resistant barrier is secured in between the bottom and top parts of the shower drain. A 2-piece shower drain, in PVC or ABS, can be used for an installed shower pan or bath tub.
The weep holes that are built into the shower drain help support the flow of water leading into the drainage pipes and prevents water pooling. A built-up shower pan will absorb water during normal use, as it reaches the water resistant barrier and with the help of gravity, it will make it’s way into the shower drain through the open weep holes.