Search This Blog

Showing posts with label rubber membranes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label rubber membranes. Show all posts

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Copper Shower Pans vs. Rubber Membranes

Copper Shower Pans vs. Rubber Membranes 

shower head
I always want to give my customers and blog followers the best advice on the most economical yet highest quality tile-related installations. I've learned this information from years of hands-on doing of the jobs myself. As you may know from my actual web site I do all my jobs personally and have over 34 years of

In all those years out on the job I have pretty much seen it all. So when I make a recommendation on what's the best way to go, it's because I've weighed 
out the best options for my customers out there on he job. I also do repairs and always have: many in my industry overlook the repairs as not being lucrative enough to warrant their time, so I do get a lot of repairs.

The most costly repair is the leaky walk-in shower panwhich can sometimes be in 

excess of $500. I've done well over 100 of these repairs in my career and only 1 or 2% of these were rubber membrane repairs, while the other 98% were copper pans. In the instances of the rubber membrane repairs it was always improper installation by nails being nailed below the waterline. As we have all heard from the eco criers, it takes hundreds of years for plastic and heavy rubber products to deteriorate in the environment, so it only makes sense that a rubber membrane would almost never be affected by water and would surely last past my lifetime when installed correctly.

The copper pan, on the other hand, is metal and starts the deterioration process

almost immediately when in contact with water. We've all seen a green copper penny, and that green on the copper is just like rust on iron and steel. I have removed so many copper pans that were rusted through (for lack of a better word). I've seen it again and again: tearing out a shower floor and 12 inches up the wall because water was dripping into the living room ruining the ceiling and requiring more costly repairs.

Furthermore, copper pans are very costly even without repairs: most have to be 

custom-made and the plumbing labor is very expensive. The cost is $400 to $800 and even more depending on the layout of the shower floor to be dried in. On the other hand, I install rubber membrane to dry in the shower floor at a total cost of $175 and that includes the concrete in the floor to slope to the drain. I have several contractors who used to use copper who now call me to come out just to dry-in showers for them at a huge savings for a much more reliable and longer-lasting product. Using logic and common sense, it seems obvious that for less money and a longer-lasting, dependable shower floor the rubber membrane is the best call.
I don't supply materials on any of my jobs and don't ever gain monetarily on any of my recommendations: I speak only from experience and the desire for my customers to get the most for their money.
For more answers to all of your tile-related questions, visit my "Ask Chris" blog here

Friday, September 26, 2014

Copper Pan vs. Rubber Membrane-Unsanded vs. sanded grout-Durock vs. HardyBoard Lowes and Home Depot? Ask Chris I Tile Excellence

Is your plumber insisting on using a copper pan for your shower but you remember reading that rubber membranes were not only much more economical, but lasted forever, and did not leak or rust? You can't remember the details, but you want to talk to the plumber and ask questions or insist on using a rubber membrane, but you need your facts.   "ask chris", the do-it-yourself,  and consumer friendly tile installation blog of Tile Excellence, Inc, is written and answered personally by owner Chris Lawson based on his 34 years experience. There are posts all about copper pans vs. rubber membranes.

Doing it yourself? Tile on top of wood? Durock vs. Hardyboard? Is the tile from the designer store necessary, or can he purchase nice tile at a discount store or at Home Depot?

Hired a contractor or tile installation company?  Is three days a long time for installing a backsplash? Is uneven marble floor installation "expected" as you are being told?

At Lowe's or Home Depot and have a question about a product or material? Do you need sanded or unsanded grout? Less expensive thin set, or the more expensive one the salesperson recommended?

His searchable blog allows you instant access to your questions, ask questions or follow his helpful links.

Need more or need immediate answers? Call him directly! You'll find his email and direct number on his site, and almost without exception, he'll answer the phone the first time you call!

Tile, Flooring, Plumbing,Carpenters, Electricians, General Contractors I Need Experts to Join DIY Consumer Blog Tile Excellence

A majority of the questions here relate to issues around tile installation,  bathroom remodeling and general contractor - type  questions and projects. We are continuing to add new tile experts to our list of future guest bloggers, and are hoping to add other expert skilled laborers and contractors in all areas of home improvement, such as: plumbers, carpenters, flooring experts, bathroom and kitchen remodeling experts, landscapers, sheet rock and wall experts, electricians, etc. to join us in providing the best, most honest and ethical answers and blog posts for our readers. The goal continues to be providing our site as a solid resource for do it yourself [ DIY ] and consumers needing answers-real answers, not sales pitches or slams to competitors, but REAL honest, ethical, compassionate and upfront answers and posts to situations consumers deal with when building a new home, improving on an existing home, or general contractors working for homeowners and businesses. We also want to be a powerful resource for these skilled businesses and provide resources links, advise, expertise, experience and direct answers to peers trying to run good businesses, who care about their customers, and provide good products/services at reasonable prices. Topics have in the past included discussions on copper pans vs. rubber membranes, time lines, prices and quotes, ethical practices, bad customer reviews and online review sites in general, customer testimonials, "professional" organizations online such as Home Advisor, Thumbtack directories and free listings. For more information on the small business end, you are welcome to contact Diana directly. She writes the content and profiles for Tile Excellence, related blogs and websites as well as other small business and local contractors. Diana's site (in process) can be reviewed at For information on Tile Excellence blogger opportunities or small business information, contact

With over 53000 readers to date, and the number continuing to grow, we feel we have a rare and wonderful opportunity to make a difference; to help each other out while building good, ethical business advise and trust with our consumers/readers.   So share your expert experience, help others, and be part of a very popular and trusted community.

If you think you can help our readers please email Diana directly with a summary of your background and why you think you be a great addition to the site. Thank you for your consideration.


To book a tile installation job contact Chris of Tile Excellence, or call him at 978 471-9127.

Featured Post

Home Renovation From Gut Rehab in Less Than 4 Months!

Home renovation finished products This house is a gut rehab ¹ job. My team and I started this project in April 2019 and it is now compl...

Our Most Popular Posts