Running a Shower Pan Test (Will it Leak?)


A shower pan is a lead or vinyl waterproof barrier placed under the shower floor to collect water that may seep through the tiles, grout, and mud mix and direct it down the drain. Plumbers are advised to perform a shower pan test before installing the tile because replacing a shower pan in a tile shower can be very expensive. If you’re buying a house, it’s always good to have a sewer water test and a shower pan test done, as that can save you a lot of money down the road.

How To Do a Shower Pan Test

A shower pan is quite simple to perform. You’ll need a 2-inch test ball (most shower pans have a 2-inch drain), an air hose, and a pump to inflate the test ball.
  • Connect the air hose to your test ball and tighten it to ensure it won’t leak.
  • Remove the grate and stick the test ball way down the drain. You need the test ball down the drain to test both the shower pan’s waterproofing and the drain connection.
  • Inflate the test ball to seal the drain.
  • Fill the water pan with water up to the threshold.
  • Let the water sit overnight, and check the water level the following morning.
If the water level holds, your shower pan is good to go.

What To Do if the Water Level Drops

If the water level drops, your shower pan is leaking. It may leak at the drain-to-drain pipe connection, membrane-to-drain connection, or at a membrane seam or corner. That’s why it’s wise to perform the shower pan test before installing the tile; you’ll not have to tear out the floor to fix it in case of a leak.   Similarly, if you detect the leak before buying the house, you’ll get an allowance to fix it and avoid costly repairs later.

Get Your Leak Detection Equipment From Us

We cannot overstate the importance of leak detection, but you need the right tools to do it right.  LeakPro® has the best leak detection systems for homeowners and plumbers. Contact us today to order your equipment or to learn more about  LeakPro® products. Don’t forget to check out Roger’s YouTube for useful leak detection tutorials.
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