Frequently Asked Questions
What holds the linear drain cover in the tile adaptor?
It's a snug fit. There are round rubber bumpers that you insert into pre-bored holes in the side walls of the cover. Pressing the cover into the adaptor squeezes the bumpers just a bit, making for a snug fit. The cover will come out only if you want it to.
How deep is the linear drain cover?
All covers are 1/2" deep.
Why can't I cut a TrueDEK linear base?
These bases have a mild steel frame that is part of their internal structure. Each steel tube that makes up the frame is set back from an edge of the base by about 1". Cutting through these tubes weakens the structure and may reduce the load capacity of the base, depending on how the base is supported underneath.
What do I use to bond tile to the shower foundation?
Use a quality brand of modified thinset mortar mix.
Before installing tile, TrueDEK foundations must be coated with Tank/10 waterproofing compound, which bonds to the plastic shower base and provides an ideal surface for the modified thinset mortar.
Modified thinset mortar will bond directly to the shower base, but it is an inferior bond. Tank/10 waterproofing, on the other hand, bonds very well to the plastic shower base, and it provides an anti-fracture membrane to protect grout and tile from minor movement in the underlayment that may otherwise cause a crack or fissure in the tile layer.
Do I have to use ARC waterproofing supplies, or can I use different products?
Many waterproofing products will not bond well to plastic shower bases. The waterproofing products ARC has developed have proven to work over thousands of installations, and we stand behind them. Using other products may or may not work, but you'll have to experiment to feel confident in the long-term results. Whatever you use has to do the job for the long haul.
Do I need to tape the joints around a shadow box, niche, or built in bench?
Leaving joints uncovered allows more opportunity for water to penetrate your framing structure. In the long run it pays to embed tape over every joint. You'll never regret it. Remember, most tile and stone are impervious to water, but grout is not.
Can I remodel a TrueDEK shower?
Absolutely. One of the great things about aTrueDEK foundation is that you can remove the original tile or stone, then redo the waterproofing and cover with new tile or stone of your choice. Be sure to repair any damage to the fiber cement board underlayment on the floor or walls before reapplying waterproofing materials.
Is building a wet room expensive?
Great question. Any installation will depend on many factors, including the size and complexity of the room, the time and materials it takes to apply the waterproofing materials, and most significantly, the type of tile or other wall covering you choose. Wet room walls must be covered with some type of waterproof material like tile, stone, or sheets of acrylic, fiberglass, quartz or the like, and as you might guess, the cost of these materials varies widely.
What is a wet room?
A wet room is basically an entire bathroom that has been waterproofed. So, in addition to the shower area, the floor throughout the bathroom is waterproofed along with the walls to a height of about 3" to 4". All seams and joints in the floor, as well as the floor to wall joints and wall corners, are covered with embedded reinforcement tape.
Can I install two TrueDEK foundations next to each other to make a large shower?
This has been a good solution for some situations. You'll have to plan for two drains, and two drainage areas with a slight ridge in the middle.
Do I need to support the edges of a foundation that don’t rest on joists?
Setting a TrueDEK on joists requires care and is a critical part of the installation. The entire perimeter of a base must be supported. Additionally, the drain area requires support. Use 2x stock for all support blocking, and make sure all edges are supported by at least 1½" of material. All adjacent subfloor edges also require support.
What is the hole size for the drain connector?
You'll need to bore a 3-1/4" hole in the TriForm for each drain connector. A piloted hole saw is the easiest and least expensive tool for accomplishing this task. If you look at any of the supplied plugs for the drain recesses you'll notice they have a dimple centered in the top surface. Position a plug in the drain connector location you intend to use, and drill a 1/8" diameter pilot hole through the plug and the TriForm using the dimple to locate the drill bit. Now set the plug aside and use your 3-1/4" hole saw, outfitted with a mandrel and pilot drill bit, and bore out the large hole for the drain connector (just use the pilot hole you drilled earlier to guide the hole saw).
What do I use for connecting the linear drain gulley to the drain line?
ARC carries Sioux Chief's 825 solvent weld shower drain module for 2" drain line connections. One of these is supplied with each linear drain assembly. You can order additional connectors if you plan to install 2 or 3 drain lines.
Do I need to install these plugs in the unused drain connector spots?
Yes, we do recommend it. Without the plugs, which are supplied with every linear shower base, the drain connector recesses will hold water and gunk from showering, and become an ugly little science experiment. Use silicone caulk to adhere the plugs in place and it will spare you from dealing with a yucky mess later on. Be sure to clean out the recesses with a damp cloth before installing the plugs.
Do I need to support the edges of the foundation that don’t rest on joists?
Setting a TrueDEK on joists requires care and is a critical part of the installation. The entire perimeter of a base must be supported. Additionally, you must add support around the drain gulley. Use 2x stock for all support blocking, and make sure the base edges and the adjacent subfloor edges are each supported by at least 1½" of material.
Where do I set a level to check my linear base installation?
The perimeter of each base has a flat area for resting a level. Because of the importance of leveling a TrueDEK foundation, consider using several levels to test your installation: a torpedo level for checking the edges, a longer carpenter's level for going edge to edge, and a bulls-eye level for spot checks.
How level does the TrueDEK linear foundation have to be when it’s installed?
Absolutely level! TrueDEK foundations offer plenty of pitch to speed water to the drain, but every degree that's lost to an out-of-level installation affects drainage performance.
Are other drain cover colors available?
Not at this time, though adding oil-rubbed bronze has been considered. Stay tuned.
Do I have to use an ARC waterproofing kit?
Many waterproofing products will not bond well to a gel coat foundation. The waterproofing products ARC carries have proven to work and we stand behind them. If you use any other products, you're on your own.
What size screws do I use to fasten the linear base?
Use #9 or #10 flathead screws that are 2" to 2½" in length. Choose screws appropriate for the substrate: deck screws for wood and Tapcon-style screws for concrete. We do suggest using coated or stainless steel screws as a bit of insurance against corrosion due to the wet environment.
Do I drill holes for screws?
Yes, you do want to drill pilot holes so that you can screw a former to a substrate or joists. Use a twist drill bit meant for drilling in metal (you'll likely drill through the mild steel reinforcement tubes just inside the edges of a TrueDEK linear foundation. Countersink each pilot hole so that the screw heads seat slightly below the surface.
Can I get a custom linear base made?
Sorry, no. TrueDEK linear foundations are made by a special process that requires a mold. Building the mold is time consuming and requires a substantial investment. The manufacturer has tried to offer sizes that meet most requirements. Also, because of the pitch requirements for drainage, there are limitations on the size can be made.
Why are there three drain connector spots?
By offering three drain connection locations, an installer can pick the one that best suits the installation to avoid obstacles or to run a drain line. Also, you have the ability to install more than one drain connector to handle high flow showers. Multiple drain connectors can share a common drain line, or, to increase drain capacity even more, you can use separate drain lines all the way to the stack.
Is the drain gulley a separate part?
Each linear foundation is a fully integrated shower base. The drain gulley is part of the mold and is fabricated at the same time as the rest of the base.
What is a TrueDEK Linear foundation made of?
Fiberglass, resin, mild steel tubes to reinforce the edges, and special marine grade plywood.
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