9 ways to compare solid surface and ready for tile shower pans
If you’re tired of a fiberglass pan you can’t clean, an acrylic base you can’t make a custom design, or a mortared tile shower floor which is cracked and leaking it may be time to consider a solid surface or an expanded polystyrene ready for tile pre-manufactured base. In the article below explore the similarities and difference in these two shower pan materials to guide you to the best product selection for your application.
Similarities between solid surface and expanded polystyrene ready for tile pans
1 – Customization – Even if you need an odd size or shaped pan both of these products can be manufactured to your specifications. Curved, angled or even rounded or serpentine shapes are possible.
2 – Waterproof – A base which won’t leak is the key to eliminate the risk of a costly repair and you can rest easy with the selection of either of these pans with a 100% waterproof surface.
3 – Pre-sloped – These bases are factory made, have a consistent two degree slope and are made with a standard or custom drain location. There are no worries about water pooling due to a poorly done mortar bed done by hand at the job site.
4 – Different entry options to fit your family’s needs – Whether you want a standard full height curb (usually about 4” tall), a sleeker low threshold curb (in the 1 ½ – 2” range) or a ramped barrier free roll in shower design you’ll be served with either product.
5 – Available in standard or custom sizes – You can choose between the cost-effective standard sizes or a custom shower design.
Differences between solid surface and expanded polystyrene ready for tile pans
6 – Weight – Expanded polystyrene ready for tile pans are light and easier to maneuver vs. the dense composite solid surface bases.
7 – Finished vs. unfinished surfaces – Solid surface pans have the advantage of a top surface which is finished and textured for traction without the need for any additional work to it. Ready for tile bases require tiles (usually smaller mosaic 1” x 1” units) be added to the top surface to complete the project.
8 – Zero threshold option – Ready for tile bases can be purchased and set lower on a sub floor for a one level shower (while solid surface showers can have a ramped entry they are not available for a one level entry).
9 – Grout vs. grout-free – While many people like tile – almost no one loves grout due to it’s maintenance challenges. The solid surface base has the benefit of being grout free.
Which shower pan do you prefer? If you have questions or would like a quote or design consultation on either of these pans call the numbers below.
Nationwide supply on ready for tile and solid surface pans is available through Innovate Building Solutions (877-668-5888) or regional installation and supply through The Bath Doctor in Cleveland (216-531-6085) or Columbus (614-252-7294).