How to Install a Pebble Shower Floor
- 1). Stretch blue painter's tape or masking tape along the edges and main body of the drain, as well as all walls just above the height of the tile. This will protect these areas from the tile adhesive, which can stain or cause uneven surfaces if allowed to dry in an unneeded spot.
- 2). Mix thinset mortar and latex additive per specific product instructions. Mix the material in a bucket with a drill mixer until it takes on a consistency similar to thick peanut butter or toothpaste.
- 3). Start in the back left corner of your shower stall. Spread thinset over the surface with the flat edge of a ¼-by-¼-inch notched trowel. Run the notched back through the thinset to create small grooves for better adhesion. Only cover an area about the size of three of your pebble tiles so that the thinset does not dry too quickly before you can add the tile.
- 4). Butt the first pebble tile in the corner as close to the two walls as possible. Smooth it into the thinset and apply equal pressure over the entire area to bond it to the adhesive fully. Continue to add tiles, butting them as close together as possible. You can even overlap the tiles by 1/8 to ¼ inch if necessary.
- 5). Set a level over the tiles after every three or four that you install. Gently tap the top of the level with a rubber mallet to apply equal pressure over all tiles, bringing them to a flat, level surface. If one tile sits unevenly, tap it more to gain a flat surface.
- 6). Cut tiles to fit the pattern or around the drain with a sharp utility knife. Simply turn the tile upside down so the backing of the tile is exposed and cut in the appropriate spot. If you have to cut through pebbles, use a diamond blade wet saw or wet tile saw. When you install all tiles properly, allow the thinset to dry overnight before continuing.
- 7). Seal the pebbles with a natural stone sealant, spread over the surface with a sponge or paintbrush. Use a sealant provided or approved by your tile manufacturer and follow specific product instructions and warnings to ensure proper use. Allow the sealant to absorb and dry per product instructions before continuing.
- 8). Mix unsanded tile grout and water per specific product instructions. Spread the grout in a thick layer of the surface of the tile with a rubber grout float, held at a 45 degree angle to force the grout into gaps between the pebbles.
- 9). Wipe excess grout off the tile surface with a damp sponge. Do not wipe grout out from between the pebbles as the grout will prevent water from leaking down under the tiles. Allow the grout to dry overnight before continuing.
Buff away any fog or haze from the pebbles with a dry cloth. Reapply sealant to the grout and the pebbles to ensure a fully waterproof and stain-resistant surface. Allow the sealant to dry per product instructions before using the shower.