What is a floor former

What is a wet room floor former


Okay, we understand that the very word “Wetroom” can put fear into the end user, and sometimes even the installer. There really is no need, and here we are going to dispel the rumours and poor advice that can sometime frighten people, by taking the mystery out of wetrooms.
Wetrooms do not leak! Occasionally a plumber will attempt to put people off of wetrooms by saying they leak. This is usually because either they do not understand wetrooms, or more often they would like to install an old fashioned shower tray because it is quicker.
A properly installed wetroom will not leak, and to prove it we offer a lifetime guarantee. And yes they can be installed upstairs and more often than not, are.

Wetrooms have been for many years, and continue to be, fitted in this country without any issues. If you ask your friends or neighbours if their shower has ever leaked and ruined the ceiling. The ones that say yes have almost certainly had shower trays, not a wetroom.


So, what is a wetroom? Well quite simply, a wetroom is a level access shower area with a gradient in the floor to direct the water to the drain. This gradient can be easily achieved by using a “Floor former” such as our own brand Marlin and Rhino, or AKW Tuff form or SolidDec. A floor former is similar to a shower tray, but it sits in the floor rather than on it. Once installed it is water-proofed or “Tanked” before tiling.


The first question should be, What finish do I want? It can be either tiled, or a vinyl sheet can be used. Depending on what the answer to that question is will point you in the direction of the floor formers to look at.


Tiles can be used on all of our floor formers. But if you are looking for value and performance, we would suggest either Rhino or Marlin. So what is the difference between these two? Rhino will have a square drain and four distinct falls to that drain. This will result in an “envelope cut” in the tiles. As the tiles have to follow the falls, it will mean having to cut the tiles in relation to those four falls. So, when viewed from above the grout lines look like the back of an envelope.
Marlin on the other hand has a designer “Linear drain” like a long thin oblong. This former has only two falls in it. One from the back of the drain and one from the front. These are cutting edge floor formers and as a result of only having two falls, means that you do not have an envelope cut in the tiles. Both Rhino and Marlin have reversible grates. This means that you can have either a stylish brushed steel finish. Or by turning the grate over it will accept an inset tile. Both are light weight but extremely strong and robust when installed. They are easy to work with and can be trimmed down if needed. The trap for the waste water can be put into any one of three positions on Marlin to avoid joists or other obstructions below the floor. Marlin can also have up to Three wastes fitted if you should have a shower that delivers more water than a standard shower. Rhino and Marlin are NOT designed for use with vinyl sheet finishes.


If you want a vinyl floor finish then you should use either “SolidDec” or “AKW TuffForm”. These are tried and tested floor formers in the healthcare arena and have proven themselves over many years. The main difference between using tiles or vinyl sheet is that you DO NOT need to use “Tanking”(water-proofing) if using vinyl as the vinyl is its own water-proof barrier. If tiling a floor former you MUST use tanking before tiling. We recommend our Orca tanking kit https://www.simplywetrooms.co.uk/tanking-kits