Fitting an Electric Shower: Step by Step Guide
FITTING THE SHOWER
Plumbing in the shower is straightforward, but if you work in a methodical order it will save you having to do things twice.
♦ Establish the position of the shower unit and shower head bracket, then mark the pipe and cable runs.
♦ If the pipe and/or cable are being buried in the wall, cut channels (chases) in the plaster.
♦ Run the pipe and cable to where you plan to connect to the unit.
♦ Plaster over the pipe and cable.
♦ Fit the shower tray (where appropriate).
♦ Tile and grout the wall (where appropriate), then fit the shower.
♦ Connect the supply pipe to the rising main.
♦ Connect the supply pipe to the shower, then make the electrical connections.
♦ Fit any shower cubicle/surround.
♦ Showers come fully assembled, so start by checking the fitting instructions, then remove the knobs and casingand put them back in the box for safe keeping.
♦ On a tiled wall, try to position the backing box to coincide with the grout lines.
♦ It’s advisable — and on some models essential — to position the shower unit so that it is outside the line of the spray. There may be specific advice in the instructions.
♦ Check — if necessary with a metal detector — that there are no buried pipes or cables where you plan tothe shower to the wall.
The instructions here take you as far as connecting the pipework, though in most cases you will be running the electric cable at the same time. Leave the cover off until the electrical connection is made.
1. Having removed the cover, offer up the unit and draw around it. Mark the fixing holes, followed by the pipe and cable entry points.
2. Put the shower unit safely to one side. Cut chases if burying the pipe/cable, or fit the mini-trunking (see Problem Solver – How to Hide Pipes and Cables in Your Electric Shower) if surface mounting.
3. Run the pipe between the shower and the connection point. Fit a stopcock somewhere accessible, making sure the flow arrow points towards the shower.
4. Screw and plug the wall, and fit the shower unit. Before connecting the supply at the shower end, flush the pipework by opening the stopcock momentarily.
5. Connect the supply pipe and tighten with an adjustable spanner or wrench, supporting the internal connections as you do so, to avoid straining them.
Clip it tight
“Make sure the supply pipe is properly clipped or otherwise held along its run. If not, there is a real risk of water hammer whenever the solenoid valve in the shower stops the flow.”
FITTING THE ELECTRIC SHOWER SPRAY HEAD
The shower head should be fixed to the wall so it is central to the shower tray or bath. With a sliding rail fitting, this means that the rail must be slightly off centre. The rail fixing positions are normally 600mm (2ft) apart, which on a tiled wall usually means you can drill through the joints rather than the tiles themselves.
The height of the rail depends on who will be using the shower. Allowing 2m (6’6") with the head at the top of the rail allows it to be lowered to 1.4m (4’7"), which suits most people.