A shower bench is an excellent option for those looking to add a seating component to their showers. Wondering how to construct this with concrete blocks? Well, we did some in-depth research on this matter, and here’s what we found.
The steps for constructing a shower bench out of concrete blocks are as follows:
- Determine the location of the shower bench.
- Plan the design of your concrete block bench.
- Get the mortar ready.
- Moisten the area where you plan to place the blocks.
- Place initial blocks.
- Assemble the remaining blocks.
- Fill the gaps
- Smooth and even out the seat’s surface
Continue reading to learn more about these aforementioned procedures. We'll also explain how to waterproof your concrete block shower seat bench. More worthwhile details are coming, so let's get started!
How To Build A Shower Bench With Concrete Blocks?
A bathroom shower can include a wide range of accessories, all of which can make taking a shower simpler and more enjoyable. Homeowners often request a shower bench for its' seating options, but also because it also provides aesthetic value, relaxation, and even convenience.
You may construct your shower bench out of a variety of materials, with concrete blocks being one of them. Concrete blocks are a sustainable option. They are widely available, inexpensive, and sturdy, making them a popular choice for construction materials.
In order to build a customized shower bench made of concrete blocks so that you may enjoy taking showers, follow the steps given below:
1. Determine The Location Of The Shower Bench
Make sure that the walls and shower pan of your shower are complete before adding a shower bench. Find a suitable place for your show bench, ideally one with good drainage or where there is no chance of standing water. A slightly sloping area may be helpful. You may check this using a spirit level.
Simply place the level bar on the surface and check where the bubble goes. If the bubble lies between the two guidelines, it is uniformly flat. So, for a sloping surface, look for bubbles going toward the drain opening.
Below is a YouTube video that demonstrates how to use a level bar.
2. Plan The Design Of Your Concrete Block Bench
Decide the overall shape of the seat as it takes many different forms. Try out piling the concrete blocks without mortar on the shape you want, breaking up the blocks as necessary to make room for the pattern using a concrete chisel and a hammer.
A YouTube video is provided below to give you an idea of how to cut blocks.
Save any extra block pieces so you may use them later to fill any voids between the block course that forms the seat's face and the wall. Then, using chalk, indicate the outer lines where you intend to place the mortar.
After that, take the blocks and arrange them in the proper sequence on the side so you can easily reassemble the pile of blocks afterward.
3. Get The Mortar Ready
You can directly purchase a bag of ready-to-use pre-blended mortar mixes like Sakrete Type S Mortar. This versatile mixture is ideal for every masonry project, including this block-laying one.
This is significantly simpler than purchasing cement, sand, and gravel separately and estimating the proportions. Particularly, this shower bench is just a small project that only requires a minimal amount of mortar.
You only need to place a bag of this mortar in a container, ideally a wheelbarrow so you can move it around with ease.
After that, make a hole in the center of it, and fill it with water in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions that are printed on the bag. After that, mix it around for 5 minutes using a shovel until you reach the consistency of the mortar.
You may also consider another type S pre-blended mortar mixes such as Spec Mix and Amerimix. Type S mortar is ideal for this project as it has sufficient compressive strength, around 2,300 to 3,000 pounds per square inch (psi), for a shower bench project.
4. Moisten The Area Where You Plan To Place The Blocks
Use a moist sponge to dampen the surface area where the fresh mortar will come into touch with them. This will prevent the mortar's moisture from being readily absorbed by the wall and impede the curing procedure.
5. Place Initial Blocks
Spread a thin layer of mortar on the specified pattern or up to the layout or chalk line on the shower floor. As possible trowel the mortar in one direction (left to right).
Then, place the first blocks and beat them a little with a mallet, or tap it with your hands. Align them and evaluate levels front to rear and side to side. Make necessary alterations. You can fill around ¾ of each block’s void to straighten the base or foundation of the bench.
6. Assemble The Remaining Blocks
Butter the end of each first layered block with mortar before setting the next layer of blocks. Then, level all sides. Repeat the process for the rest of the concrete blocks.
However, place the rebar on each corner of the bench before closing it or placing the last few blocks to boost the tensile strength of the concrete blocks. Pour additional mortar around the rebar as well.
Aim for a facade that is as even as possible, but don't worry if the blocks' faces in the first and succeeding levels aren't perfectly square, this can be fixed later with a layer of mortar and a finishing trowel.
7. Fill The Gaps
If the layout of the seat created a gap between the mortared blocks, fill it with mortar and blocks or segments of blocks, building it up to the top of the face blocks.
8. Smooth Out Evenly The Seat’s Surface
After the void has been filled in, mortar the top of the bench. In order to direct runoff toward the drain, the top of the seat ought to have a slight slope. Spread mortar over the seat's top, raising it in the back by about a half inch.
You don't want water to go everywhere in a restroom either. As a result, make sure it travels toward your drains effectively and stays where it should.
Examine the top of the seat with a straightedge to find any areas that are low or high, and then correct the mortar as necessary. Make sure there is a minor slope by using a level.
Smooth out the rest of the bench’s surface evenly as necessary. Using a straightedge, trowel and level, find any low locations, pack mortar into them, and scrape any extra mortar away. Before continuing, let the mortar cure.
For you to visualize how the process is done, a video on YouTube is shown below.
How Do You Waterproof A Shower Bench Seat?
Waterproofing a shower bench is an ideal approach to resist the continual moisture of a bathroom. Luckily, it is easy to waterproof a built-in shower bench. All you need is some time and any of these waterproofing membranes:
Drylok Extreme Masonry Waterproofer
This waterproofer enters the pores in a surface, bonding to the masonry and forming an impenetrable barrier, in contrast to regular paint, which only clings to a surface and can be driven off by incoming water pressure.
It is an aesthetic exterior elastomeric latex coating for waterproofing above grade. When used properly, it stops wind-driven rain or water from penetrating porous substrates. It remains flexible as it fills in tiny cracks.
It is a reliable liquid-applied waterproofing membrane for your go-to tile and stone applications in both commercial and residential settings. It may be used on both interior and exterior surfaces that will produce a watertight membrane barrier and lower crack transmission.
It is a premixed liquid-rubber waterproofing and crack-isolation membrane that you can use beneath ceramic tile or stone in residential, commercial, and industrial settings.
You only have to paint or apply a waterproofer to the bench and the joints where it attaches to the rest of the shower, then let it dry. It's really that easy. Water damage is never an issue with the concrete shower bench.
It is made of solid concrete, so even if water leaks through the seams, it would still follow the wall all the way to the shower pan and go to the drain just as it would if the bench weren't there. The concrete shower bench offers a nice surface for applying tile as well.
In your bathroom, a shower bench that is improperly installed can cause serious problems. We, therefore, hope that the above guide helps you a lot in properly building your dream shower bench. Simply follow the instructions, and once you're done, your new bench is ready for you to sit back and enjoy.
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