How to Build a Walk-In Shower (Part 2: Wedi Panels)(Step-by-Step) — by Home Repair Tutor

How to Build a Walk-In Shower (Part 2: Wedi Panels)(Step-by-Step) — by Home Repair Tutor


If you want to learn how to build a walk-in
shower, then you’re in the right place. This is my walk-in shower. I personally love
it because it’s easy to clean. You just walk right in. There’s no tripping over
curbs or tubs. It’s phenomenal. It’s our dream bathroom that we saved up to remodel.
Now here’s the deal: In today’s video, you’re going to see how to build a walk-in
shower using the Wedi building panels. They go on your framing, then you put your tile
over top of that. And the reason why we’re showing you this is because we feel like you
can do this yourself. If you’re a DIYer or if you’re professional, we know that
you can use the Wedi building panels. So we’re going to show you how to build
out the walk-in shower today. If you missed our first video, you can watch I right here.
That’ll show you how to install the Wedi Ligno shower pan, which is pre-sloped and
easy to install. So right now, let’s dive into this video. We’ll show you how to build
a walk-in shower step by step. We did this in less than 6 hours, and we know that you
can do it yourself. So let’s do it. Okay, so our back wall with our bench is 5’
¼”. So we’re going to have to go ahead and cut this first panel around the bench.
You just want to measure down to that dado joint off the top of the bench. So I got 20”.
It will measure to 12’ 3/8”. So I always just cut my cut mark here. I just use a chalk
line. Just score this with a knife. What we do is we fill this dado joint with the Wedi
sealant, and be very generous with this because that’s going to be your major waterproof
area here. So you basically just squeeze that into place.
You want to put your first screws from the bottom of the pan. You want to be about 12”
away from the bottom. And the main reason for this is keeps this joint nice and tight.
Because you don’t want to screw this in and have this deflecting in and then pulling
away from your dado joint. So about 12” is usually pretty good for that first row
of screws. And then after that every 12”. And you want to tighten these washers to the
point that the washers indent into the Wedi, just kind of like a drywall screw. You want
to just have it recessing. One nice thing about the Wedi: If you miss
the stud for any reason, you’re just going to be able to apply some sealant over that
hole, and it’ll be waterproof. So about every 12”. And then when we do the next
panel, we’ll be pinching them both together with the washer.
One thing that I did want to mention is there is no front and back to the Wedi building
panel. But when you see the Wedi wording on it, that gives you orientation. So we’ll
show you the top and the bottom, the left and right. So when you make a cut, if you
see the Wedi wording on the front, at least you know the right orientation of your cuts
and whether or not they are on top or on the bottom. Now what Steve is doing here is applying
the Wedi sealant on the top of the first panel. That’s critical to create a waterproof seam.
Now he’s puncturing the back of that first panel to indicate where the hole is for the
pipe coming out of the wall and then cutting that hole using a 1” spade bit. We kind
of forgot that the pipe was in the wall, and we applied the sealant. So we had to apply
the second time to make sure that that seam is 100% waterproof.
So yeah, so that really makes it easy to be able to figure out where your hole is just
by puncturing back the membrane and then cutting a hole. So now you have the pipe sticking
through here. Now you can just flash this with the caulking to make it seal around this
pipe. But we’re probably going to end up doing that once we get all the tile in and
figuring out exactly how deep it has to be with our tile work. Okay, so when you put
the next panel in you just pinch the two together with one washer, and that makes a nice, flush
transition. I meant to mention that these building panels
are meant to be on 16” centered walls. So make sure that your framing is 16” on center
or close to it. Now let’s go ahead and smooth this out.
We’re going to be going back over this. We don’t want this stuff setting up.
So we do have a niche here. And what we did we marked out the bottom of the niche. Go
inside here. We’re going to cut this out. So we have 34’ 9/16”. And we put our level
marks for where we’re going to cut this. Steve used a level to mark out the position
of the niche, as you can see there. And then what he’s doing is cutting out the niche
using a Fein Multi-Master multi-tool. You can also use a utility knife, but using the
Multi-Master is way quicker and saves you tons of time. Now what you’ll do is you’ll
pinch the screws about 1” from the edge of that niche. You can use a chalk line to
cut out the rest of your boards. And wherever Wedi meets Wedi, apply a generous amount of
Wedi sealant. Only use Wedi sealant. Then you can apply your next board to the top of
that Wedi sealant. Put it in place. And then again pinch the screws between adjacent boards.
This will save you screws, it’ll save you time, so on and so forth. From the edge of
the top, you’ll always want to put a Wedi screw about 1” away from the edge on either
side. As you can see, that’s exactly what Steve is doing here. And only use Wedi screws
and Wedi washers when applying Wedi to your framing. And smooth out any sealant that oozes
out between the seams. Again, Steve is marking the position of his niche and cutting it out.
So for the niche, we’ll go ahead and cut a bottom sill first. Okay, and you want to
make sure that your sill is actually draining into the shower. So if any water hits the
back of the niche, if it gets underneath the tile, make sure that it’s level to pitch
on the shower. You don’t need much. It’s roughly say ¼” per foot, just like the
shower pan will be good enough. Just make sure you have Wedi caulking to the bottom
building panel. And we’re just going to seal this bottom together. That’s just the
Wedi sealant. So just make sure that you have enough sealant around the perimeter of the
niche. And then wherever Wedi meets Wedi make sure you have… This is the most important
joint I’d say here at the bottom here, making sure you have a good caulking joint. We’ll
smooth this out for now. We’re going to go over this on the final sealant stage.
So what our recommendation possibly for the niche if you want to get a little bit deeper
of a niche, is to use the real thin board. This is 1/8” thick Wedi, so you’ll be
able to do this in the back and give yourself at least another 3/8” in depth. So it’s
always an option. Wherever Wedi meets Wedi, you want to put
a nice caulking joint, especially at the bottom, and then going up the side panel as well.
So let’s set this panel in place. That just makes a nice, flush cut on that.
Apply a generous bead of Wedi sealant to the back of the niche and to anywhere where the
Wedi meets Wedi. In this case, Steve is applying it on the blue part of the Wedi panel, putting
in his small piece for the niche. And then using screws and washers 3” from the top,
3” from the bottom, and right at the center of the small portion of the panel. Smooth
out the Wedi sealant, so it doesn’t gunk up on you. We are going to apply a second
layer of Wedi sealant later on. But as you can see, Steve is applying a nice, generous
bead to anywhere where Wedi meets Wedi. Now one thing we did want to mention is you can
buy a pre-fabricated Wedi niche. In this case, the niche is so small that they didn’t make
a pre-fabricated one at the factory. So we had to build it using excess Wedi panel. So
you can do the exact same thing that we did for a customized shower niche. This only took
Steve about 20 minutes for Steve to do, so it doesn’t take all that long.
Okay, so the most important part of this system is making sure that you have a sufficient
amount of sealant in your dado joint before you adhere that panel into the channel. So
be very generous with the amount. And that’s what also is nice is to have some blocking
behind here. Now we recessed this pan below the subfloor. So I mean it’s your bottom
plate allows it to just squeeze up against that. But it’s a good idea just to fill
this entire joint with sealant. All right, in where the corner where Wedi meets Wedi,
you want to make sure you have a nice joint. You can see the way that’s oozing onto that
joint. That shows that you have a good amount of coverage in there. We’re going to be
going back over this, but you don’t want this to setup and be all clumpy in the corners.
So again about 1’ from the bottom and then every 1’ after that. Notice that Steve is
positioning the washers on the Wedi panels, then he’s going to back and screw them into
place. You can also draw a vertical plumb line on the Wedi panel using you level and
a pencil or just a chalk line. We have a port here for a handheld shower,
so we’re just going to demonstrate how you easily be able to find where that location
is. So you usually have an area where that’s at. So that makes it pretty easy to find.
Okay, so that dry fits well. So wherever Wedi meets Wedi, put a good caulking joint.
Wherever two panels meet, you can pinch them together using a screw and a washer. Wherever
two screws meet in a corner, you always want to stagger the screws. And then you’ll see
here that again Steve is just puncturing the back of the Wedi panel and then cutting it
out using a utility knife. That is so much easier than using a cement board, which can
lead to you have to measure and cut it out. So wherever Wedi meets Wedi, you got to use
the Wedi sealant. Apply it to the blue portion of the board. To the corner, like Steve did
there. You’ll see many of the principles that we’re showing you right now, we’re
using over and over again throughout this video tutorial, like pinching the screws,
putting them 1” from the top of the framing or the edge of the board, and so on.
So after you have two walls put in, you have over half an hour of time. You can take off
the weight out of the shower. Okay, so against the bench, we’re going
to end up Wedi-ing this entire bench and tub surround. But for right now, we’re going
to just go to the edge of the shower, and we’re going to just notch out the Wedi so
that this sets down into the dado of the shower pan. So if you’re not going to waterproof
the entire tub surround, you definitely want to come out a good 2’ to 3’ outside of
the shower area and seal this down. We’re going to make sure that it sits tightly to
our subfloor here. Sits well with that dado channel. Again, fill this joint with the Wedi
caulking. Again, make sure you clean out this joint of any thinset or any debris, and make
sure that you could get adhesion to the actual foam pan. You don’t want anything hindering
this sealant from making contact with the actual Wedi. Wedi the corner. And what we’re
going to here we’re actually going to use the Wedi caulking on the main subfloor as
well. Now there will be a waterproof heated cable system that we’re going to be using
on the outside of here. But we’re just going to seal this Wedi panel to the subfloor. Tehn
we’ll show you how we’re going to complete the waterproofing of the edge of that.
On this bench material, we’re just going to be screwing a washer about 1” away from
the top of the edge, and we’re going to stay within 8”-12” from the bottom of
the panel. So just like your other wall panels, you just want to make sure that you’re at
least 8”-12” away from the bottom of the panel. And every 12”.
Okay, so on this bench any horizontal surface that you put Wedi down, you don’t want to
use the washers and screws and screw in horizontally. So we’re going to thinset this board down
instead of using any of the fasteners. ¼” notch trowel. Again, either flat side your
trowel and burn it into the substrate first. Where the Wedi is, you want to wipe that thinset
off and get down to the blue because you’re going to want to seal the Wedi to the Wedi
with the sealant, not the thinset. So with the sealant, too, you don’t have to worry
about it being wet. It’ll seal itself to the membrane even wet, even with a little
bit of water on it. We’re also just going to back butter the back of the Wedi as well.
So yeah, anything Wedi to Wedi make sure you have a good amount of sealant. Wipe the excess
sealant. Smooth for now. Hopefully when you’ve framed it, you sloped it as well. You always
want to make sure that your bench is sloping into the shower, so when you tile it, if any
water gets below the tile, that you’re waterproofing double the drain that water. So here we got
about ¼” per foot. So that’s about what you want. Yeah we’re pretty level that way.
So just double check. You can always possibly build up the thinset and get that slope if
you needed it. Wherever Wedi meets Wedi, apply your generous
bead of Wedi sealant. In this case it’s up against the framing as well, where the
bench seat is going to be, and then up the wall. And this is really important because
in this particular shower, the sprayers are going to be hitting that back wall possibly.
Now water goes everywhere in a walk-in shower, so you have to make sure that you’ve got
100% waterproof panels. In this case, the Wedi system really helps you do that. Again,
what Steve is doing is placing the washers about 8”-12” up from the bottom, and then
smoothing out any of the Wedi sealant that oozes out between the panels. And also going
12” in between the screws and then up the wall again. Many of the principles that we’ve
already showed you with the other panels we’re using with this wall as well, all right? So
just continue to follow these general principles, and you should be good to go. So this is your plumbing wall. I also meant
to mention that you can install this panel. It doesn’t matter whether the lettering’s
on the front or the back because each side is waterproof. So it really doesn’t matter
which way you install the panel. So we’re just going to use our panel. Puncture the
center. I’m just going to use a 3” hole saw for my dial. You can obviously just cut
this out with a utility knife, too. But this looks a little bit nicer. Okay.
So make sure you clean out that joint before you go installing some new dado. Then our
Wedi meets Wedi. So then in the corners you want to offset your washers. So you don’t
want to put the washer next to a washer in the corner and have that big void all the
way around that corner. What we’re doing now is prepping for the
Wedi sealant. We’re applying a generous bead of Wedi sealant against the framing.
And then Steve is marking out the position of the joists on the Wedi panels so that he
knows how to attach the screws through the panels.
Okay, so we put our sealant around the edge of the perimeter of the shower where Wedi
is going to meet Wedi. So the biggest difference we do in a ceiling is the spacing of your
washers. You want to go every 6” rather than every 12”. And we’re actually going
to be putting another little piece here, so we’re going to put these two together. It
just requires a lot more fasteners. To make life a lot easier with the ceiling,
you can place your washers in them every 6” like Steve is doing here. Sometimes it just
makes it a little bit easier to place the washers first then drill the Wedi screws through
them. It’s up to you. Whatever you want to do is fine. But in this particular case,
sometimes it’s nice to just have the washers in place and then screw them.
So as Steve mentioned earlier, we had to place a little piece of the Wedi panel up on the
ceiling there. Not a big deal. Just screw your washers in about 1” from the edge.
And then pinch your washers and screws in between the adjacent panel.
Okay, so now that we have all the building panels up, we’re going to go ahead and apply
the Wedi sealant to all our screw washers, all the joints and all the corners. Two tools
that are really helpful: Wedi actually sells a corner putty knife. This makes it tremendously
easy to have a nice joint in the corners, keeping you from scraping out the sealant
in the corner. So definitely get yourself one of these. And this is just a standard
4” putty knife. And the rule of thumb is pretty much getting 2” of coverage on a
joint. So 1” on either side of the corners. So that’s kind of what you’re looking
for. But it’s a very simple process. Let’s show you how to go across. You just have a
nice, thick bead of the sealant. You know, I’ll do this whole wall first rather than
going back and forth with the putty knife. But you want to just dot every one of your
washers. And then the corners. Just put a generous amount in that corner. That’s where
the sausage gun is really helpful because you have a lot more caulking in this tube.
You get a lot more done than just a regular caulking gun.
Okay, so your corners. So a corner putty knife really makes a nice, sealed joint in that
corner. So that makes a nice corner joint there. As you can see I have some of my washer
there. So you just want to make sure that each washer is completely covered. That’s
where the flat putty knife is helpful with that. So anywhere you see those washers. And
really anywhere you missed the Wedi screw, make sure you just apply that sealant over
that joint as well. Anywhere a Wedi panel meets a Wedi panel or
you have a screw hole or a washer, make sure you apply generous amounts of the Wedi sealant
because this after all is what will make the Wedi panels 100% waterproof. So be generous
with the Wedi sealant. All right, so around the niche you just want
to fill in—you don’t have to worry about the blue being exposed necessarily, but you
want to be able to coat this entire joint that we have between the side panel and the
front panel here. Because even if this blue is exposed, it’s still waterproof. This
is actually the waterproofing. So you don’t actually necessarily have to have that all
covered, but you probably will be having it all covered once you spread out the sealant.
Be generous with the Wedi sealant where our vertical building panel meets up with the
pan because this is where you want to make sure that it’s 100% waterproof. Keep in
mind that the building panels are sitting down into the ¾” dado joint and already
have sealant on them. So this is really a second layer of the Wedi sealant. Now in this
case we’re applying more of the sealant on the bench because this is exposed to the
sprays and the shower head. And also the corner between the vertical board and the shower
seat itself. And then smooth out all those joints, ensuring that you get that 2” band
within the seams. So one of the things that I absolutely love
about the Wedi system is, you know, a lot of times you do this waterproofing before
tiling. And you have other contractors coming in and working on the place. And it’s just
very easy for somebody to puncture the membrane. And what I wanted to share with you—this
is just one of the washers that we have. Now imagine if you used a different type of system
that was only just a surface membrane, and if you were to step on this, you could easily
just puncture a membrane. But with the Wedi system, this is ¾” thick. So as long as
whatever you drop, say even a utility knife that falls into this pan, as long as it doesn’t
actually penetrate all the way through the pan, you’re safe. It’s going to be waterproof.
So that’s one of the features about the Wedi system I absolutely love. You don’t
have to be as nervous about dropping a tool or dropping something that could possibly
puncture the top of the surface because you’re still waterproof underneath that as long as
it doesn’t go all the way through the pan. And that’s a very common time is between
having other contractors coming in and doing different work before you do the tile. If
you did a sheet membrane of some sort, it would be very difficult for you to tell where
something was dropped and potentially where something was compromised with the waterproofing.
But with the Wedi, I mean even if you dropped a good size hammer hole, you can just fill
in this hole with some Wedi caulking and be good to go.
Okay, so with the Wedi shower pan, it’ll come with these little ½” pieces of Wedi
that is made to fill in anywhere that the shower is going to be curbless. And it’s
really important to use this between the subfloor and the main floor. And you’re just going
to seal this in just like you do everything else with the Wedi sealant. And it seems a
little silly to have such a small piece, but the main important part about this is that
if you just fill that with sealant, it’s not going to have the strength it needs for
say if you have smaller mosaic tile, there’s going to be a little bit of a flex. So you
want to make sure you have this little piece of Wedi embedded into this joint.
Okay, so we’ll fill that just like all the other dados. Just apply a normal 1” layer
sealant on either side of this. And then what we have is a Wedi subliner. And what you want
to do is… So in this situation, you always want to have
waterproofing going outside of your curbless entry, at least by 3’ or so, and wrapping
up the sides of the liner up the wall about 4”. So this is prior to obviously before
we’re going to be installing the drywall, and then you have this against the Wedi. Always
go 4” up above your corners, and then 4” past your seam of your shower. So you want
this subliner coming into the shower. Now in this particular situation we’re actually
going to put a heated flooring system outside the shower. So this subliner will go over
top of that heating system after we have that installed. But I just want to reference that
if you were not going to install a heating system, you just put this straight down over
the plywood by thinsetting this and wrapping up by 4”. And then you just simply cut the
excess of the doorway and allow this to flap over and into the shower.
Okay, so that’s it. That’s installing the waterproof Wedi shower system. And what’s
awesome about it is that that took about a half a day to install this entire waterproof
system. And I can actually get started on tiling here. Basically after you seal all
the joints, about 30 minutes after that you can start tiling. And if I wanted to do a
flood test on the floor, which I do recommend, you can go ahead and flood test this shower
floor two hours after having it installed. So really there’s no other system that can
be that quick. It’s really incredible. A traditional way of doing this, you’d be
set back two, three days easy. So that’s one of the major reasons I love Wedi. And
all of that, just the simplicity of putting everything together.
So I hope this helps you out. I really feel that anybody can do this. You just follow
these tips and the way to install it, and you’ll definitely have peace of mind that
you have a waterproof shower. So thank you. All right, so that’s how you build a walk-in
shower. Remember if you missed the first video, you can watch that right here. It shows you
how to build out the Wedi Ligno shower pan. If you liked today’s video, give us a thumbs
up over here on YouTube, so that people can find it. And then finally, if you’re looking
for more advanced bathroom remodeling videos, you can check them out over on BathroomRepairTutor.com.
So you can go to BathroomRepairTutor.com. That’s where we have support for DIYers;
we got extra videos. Actually we have over 100 different videos for you to watch on tiling
the floor, tiling the shower, putting in waterproofing for your floor, and so much more. So again,
you can check that out on BathroomRepairTutor.com. Thanks for watching today’s video. We’ll
see you in the next one. Take care. Have a great day.

100 thoughts on “How to Build a Walk-In Shower (Part 2: Wedi Panels)(Step-by-Step) — by Home Repair Tutor

  1. Looks great and easy for a DIYer versus a poured base. The drain attachment looks to me to just be a slip joint with a rubber gasket held in with a screw in collar. Is that all? I get nervous about gasket seals but I'm very confident with PVC or ABS joints that are glued with the proper cement. Maybe the Wedi system like the "slip" joint to allow some flexing between pan and plumbing. What do you think about my concerns? I have lower/crawlspace access so I could easily cement a ABS joint.

  2. This board comes in various thickness. What is the preferred thickness for a shower wall? I am remodeling our tub/shower wall surround.

  3. Great demo. The Schluter -Kerdi shower base is thicker than the 3/4" Wedi (1-3/8: for a 72 x 48 shower pan). If my concrete base is 1-1/2" deep around the perimeter can I use a dry pack mortar to build it up 1/8" to 1-3/8" depth for the curbless shower base for a S-K shower base? If not, what should I use?

  4. Been a tile setting for 22 years and I've seen things change over the years but one thing I will say about this method is I don't like the way the pan works. Two pieces that click together at the bottom of the shower floor and walls and then caulked. I would recommend using noble seal pan material on top of your preslope and always wrap it up the walls at least 8 inches and fold it in the corners never cut it so it works as a bowl so to speak. That way there's no way it ever leaks.

  5. Has anyone noticed that we've made Leaps and Bounds technology-wise in the plumbing industry. It takes half the time that it did 15-20 years ago. a guy would take 3 days for days to do that same bathroom and as good as the guy was something went wrong Five Ten Years Later now we have the materials to do a bathroom just like this one and one and a half days but the plumber instead of reducing his price he lines his pocket. he saves money by spending less time and then has time to take on another job

  6. Pride and tile guys is a unbelievable thing. Mud pan, Kerdi,Wedi,…all work if done correctly. Not having experience with one method does not make your preferred method the only correct one. It just means your uninformed. To all homeowner's this video is spot on example of a great install. As well there is some spot on examples of kerdi and custom pour pans on youtube.
    If you want a curbless " the reason the floor was dropped" shower using wedi this is your video. This system is just as good with a curb and may be easier for diy'rs. On a side note not all the pans are 1200. They range from 500 to 1300 in my experiance.

  7. Awesome video series!! Right up there with Sal. Thank you for posting. Can Ditra heat be installed over wedi panel? I'd like to run heat into the shower pan as well as the entire bathroom. Thanks again!

  8. If we all were given a penny each time the words "Generous" and/or "Wedi" we would all be billionaires !!!

  9. Good stuff, Jeff. Still drinking the orange Kool-Aid with Schluter, but I like the lower profile of the Wedi for curbless shower.

  10. I was half-way through the video, and I thought to myself…Steve's accent sure does sound a bit Pittsburghese…at that point I noticed the 412 area code on the back of his TShirt. As a born and raised Yinzer…now Floridian…separated by 25+ years of military service…it added to my enjoyment of the video. : )

  11. Those are rabbets not dados. Dados run across grain and have a shoulder on each side. Rabbets have one shoulder and grooves run parallel to the grain with a shoulder on each side.

  12. Why didn't you rest the wall panels on top of the shower pan? Wouldn't that make it impossible for water to run down into the structure?

  13. I thought when blue touches blue use glue? You forgot to make the notches exposing the compressed blue styrofoam where you are supposed to apply the Wedi sealant.

  14. Enjoy your videos! They are very informative. I'm doing a master bath with a Wedi one-step shower pan and noticed my stud walls near the entrance aren't quite square. To make a smooth transition between the bottom of the building panels and the top lip of the one-step shower pan, can the Wedi panels be wet shimmed with mortar?

  15. I'm confused about why this video (part 2) pops you to part 3. I thought at the end of this video he said it's ready for tile, but popping to video part 3 shows I'm still needing to seal up corners and seems?!?

  16. Than you can't make water test because first you must install temporary threshold? If yes don't forget make video of how install temporary threshold for your viewers. I used schluter almost 27 years in Germany before . About gypsy comment, I just don't like see how one guy working hard and another as takes all profits from someone work.

  17. nice informative video. One thing I have to say though: I'm scared to watch the 3rd video. I think I'm waaaaay over the recommended daily dosage of the word WEDI…

  18. price of wedi products are way to high if they would lower the price they would still make a fortune becource it would be mass sold/bought!

  19. When tiling on the Wedi shower pan, can you use any size tile? We would like to use a 4”x4” tile but I don’t want to compromise the pre-existing slopes that are already fabricated into the pan.

  20. Do I need to use Wedi drill , Wedi saw, Wedi toilet … such and such? Because I have a Wedi feeling , if I don't use Wedi fullset, my shower will leak Wedi bad.

  21. If I used the Wedi ligno for a curbless shower, would you guys see any problem with using goboard instead of the Wedi board? There is a large price difference between the two.

  22. oh so complicated already have the drain water etc from a huge corner tub, don't want a square shower, one that will set very nicely in the corner like the tub

  23. So the magical wedi sealant is what makes this setup 100% waterproof?? Seems legit, too bad it costs an arm and a leg for everything..

  24. Anyone catch the brand name for this system. I didn't hear them say it. It would be nice if these DIY videos would tell you the name of the product more often.

  25. On the bench, he puts the wall panel on top of the seat. For the floor pan he Doesn’t put the wall panel on top of the floor but rather in the dado crack. That doesn’t make sense at all

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