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Schluter Systems
Schluter Shower System

Schluter Systems

Ceramic and stone tiles are durable, easy to maintain, and hygienic, representing the ideal surface coverings, particularly in wet areas such as showers and bathtub surrounds. These coverings are not inherently waterproof, however, and must be installed in conjunction with a waterproofing system that effectively manages moisture to protect moisture-sensitive building materials and control mold growth.

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The traditional method for installing tiled showers is time and labor intensive and creates a “water in/water out” system. First, a mortar bed is sloped to the weep holes in the drain. The waterproofing membrane, called a pan liner, is placed over this “pre-slope” and clamped into the drain. Pan liners do not allow for the direct application of ceramic or stone tile. Thus, another mortar bed must be installed to provide load distribution and a bonding surface for the floor tile. Finally, a moisture barrier typically must be included behind the solid backing on the walls (e.g., mortar, cement backerboard, etc.) and lapped over the pan liner to protect the wall cavities from moisture penetration and divert that moisture into the pan.

Contrary to popular belief, the tile covering itself is not waterproof. Moisture will infiltrate the mortar bed and solid backing on the walls. This moisture must percolate through the mortar bed to the sloped pan liner and exit through the weep holes in the drain. With regular use of the shower the mortar bed can remain saturated, particularly if pre-slope installation is ignored or the weep holes become clogged, thus increasing the potential for efflorescence and mold growth within the system.

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The Schluter®-Shower System is an integrated family of products that creates a “sealed” system. First, the Schluter®-KERDI-DRAIN is installed in conjunction with either a sloped mortar bed or the Schluter®-KERDI-SHOWER-ST prefabricated foam tray. The KERDI-DRAIN provides a simple and secure connection to the Schluter®-KERDI waterproofing membrane at the top of the assembly via the unique integrated bonding flange. Unlike shower pan liners in traditional assemblies, KERDI is a bonded waterproofing membrane that allows for the direct application of tile with thin-set mortar. KERDI is bonded to the mortar bed or tray and the surface of the KERDI-DRAIN’s integrated bonding flange. In addition, KERDI is installed over the solid backing (e.g., gypsum board, cement backerboard, etc.) on walls, creating a fully waterproof and vaportight enclosure.

The resulting assembly provides superior moisture management as it does not permit moisture to penetrate into the mortar bed or solid backing, allowing the assembly to dry completely between uses. The integrated Schluter®-Shower System eliminates leaks, reduces the potential for efflorescence and mold growth in the system, and dramatically reduces total installation time to ensure success and make shower installation easier than ever.

Further Schluter Shower System Information

Various KERDI waterproofing accessories are available. Use KERDI-BAND to seal butt joints or corner joints. KERDI-KERECK pre-formed seamless inside and outside corners and KERDI-SEAL-PS for sealing around pipes or KERDI-SEAL-MV seals mixing valve protrusions, and KERDI-DRAIN Assemblies. KERDI-TROWEL also available for installation of thin-set mortar.

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