Shower Drain Offset Problem: Causes And Troubleshooting Tips

The shower drain offset problem can pose a serious issue. It takes a lot of time and energy to solve. Sometimes a shower drain offset issue might affect your entire drainage system.

You need to carefully inspect the main cause of this problem before trying to solve it.

In this article, we will talk about all the probable reasons and solutions to this problem so that you can solve this issue without any hassle. So, stick to the end.

Shower Drain Offset Problem: Brief Overview

Shower Drain Offset Problem

Let’s first talk about what the shower drain offset is and how can we know the drain is offset. Sewer lines can occasionally encounter issues like being “offset.”

An offset sewer line has joints that are no longer properly connected, causing the two pieces of pipe to become misaligned.

Other than pipe collapse or deterioration, the most troublesome plumbing issues a homeowner can have are pipe offset damages.

Offset pipelines are not only difficult to fix but also costly projects. However, in this article, we try to show you a variety of possible causes, issues, and solutions you can take in response.

Probable Reasons for Shower Drain Problems

If you want to solve this shower drain offset problem, then, first of all, you have to know the probable reasons behind this. Let’s discuss some of the major reasons for the problem-

  • Roots

Tree roots are one of the main culprits of this problem. Tree roots on your property have the potential to grow through, beneath, and above the drain pipes.

Usually, what happens is that the roots locate a tiny hole in the hub of the pipe and enter the pipe through that hole. After this, the roots spread and cause the joint in a drain pipe to slide out of place, which may cause the joint to become offset.

Mostly, clay pipes get affected by these tree roots.

Nothing will prevent roots from spreading where they wish to. Some of the tree roots are so strong that they can also crack a 4″ thick concrete wall.

So, whenever you will face this offset problem, thoroughly observe your drainage system to find out if there is any root or not.

  • Earth Settling or Shifting
offset shower drain

It might sound unbelievable, but another reason for offsets is the earth settling or shifting. Typically, this occurs with clay drain pipes.

The most extreme example of earth shifting would be an earthquake. An earthquake can be so powerful that it can break your entire drainage system.

Cast iron pipe is safer than clay pipes in this situation because cast iron pipes tend to stay together and form a belly where the ground has moved. So the offset problem is not possible to happen.

  • Aging of the Infrastructure

Shower drain offset problems usually happen in old houses where the drainage system is also old. Because the drain pipes face a lot of environmental changes over the years and get damaged gradually.

  • Poor Installation

Poor installation is one of the reasons that your shower pipe becomes offset. Poorly installed pipes can not tolerate vibration, pressure, and thermal change. So the shower pipes easily get offset.

  • Pipe Corrosion or Deterioration

Pipe corrosion or deterioration can be another reason. Usually, this happens in the steel pipes. When the joint of the two pipes face corrosion, it starts to wear off, and, at some point, the two pipes get separated from each other, leading to the offset problem.

How To Solve The Offset Problem?

As we have learned what causes this shower drain offset problem, now it’s time to know how to solve this problem-

  • Cleaning the Drain

There can be a lot of trash and tree roots in the drain, which causes the offset problem. That’s why the first step should be cleaning the drain properly.

Look for the roots or trash and clean them thoroughly. Rejoint the pipe and inspect if the water flows smoothly without any waste.

  • Video Camera Inspection

This is kind of a tricky method and needs a professional’s help. After cleaning the drain pipe, it is important to visually verify the sewage line’s length with a video camera examination.

Technicians can then precisely diagnose the problem and develop solutions after doing a visual investigation.

  • Pipe Lining

Pipe lining can be an amazing solution to this problem. Pipelining is a method of fixing the drain pipes without digging. It is a technology of inserting a rigid, better pipe inside the old, broken pipe to ensure a better water flow.

You can use this pipe lining method to your entire shower drain or just on the spots where offset problems happened. As the new pipe is rigid and seamless, this can provide a better and long-lasting solution.

  • Traditional Method

The traditional method of repairing offset drain is quite time-consuming and requires a lot of work. In this method, you have to dig up your yard and change your whole drainage system.

First of all, you have to remove the old pipes, and then replace them with new ones.

This process is also quite costly. You will need professionals for this. You have to pay them for digging and burying also. The cost of the pipe portion that is being repaired or replaced will also be added.

So overall, this traditional offset repair method is expensive. But the good thing is that you will easily find this type of professional who can do this work as no advanced technology is needed for this method.

Watch this video on installing an offset shower drain for a better understanding.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)

Can a shower drain be offset?

Yes, a shower drain can also be offset. Offset problem happens when two pipes do not align with each other. So, when the shower drain pipes face problems in the alignment, it becomes offset.

What do you do if your shower drain doesn’t line up?

If your shower drain does not line up, you will need a coupling or adapter to solve this problem. The adapter will connect the two pipes according to your preference. But the coupling or adapter will work if the gap between two pipes is shorter than two inches. Otherwise, you have to buy an extension or call a plumber to fix it.

What is an offset shower drain used for?

An offset shower drain is mainly used as a shower stall base. It works as the first portion of the entire shower drain system. It also has a fiber and rubber washer that helps connect the drain body with the shower base. It also has a drain cover which keeps the drain clean and unwanted dirt away.

How do you align a shower drain?

To align the shower drain, you will need a metal ring and rubber washer. The washer will make a nice seal. Then you will need an adapter so that it can hold the drain pipe properly. Then put the pipe in it. You can also use silicone sealer paste around the adapter to make the joint rigid and aligned.

Final Words

Homeowners frequently discover the existence of shower drain offsets after experiencing several problems such as blockages and sewage floods. If you don’t want to suffer like them, follow some prevention techniques.

Check your entire drainage system at least once a year. 

However, do not worry if you’re already facing this shower drain offset problem. Just find out the exact reason for this problem, and try out the suitable methods we have discussed above.

Clyde Mitchell

I run a hardware store nearby Court Anaheim, CA. Over the last 7 years, I have been blogging about home improvement and yes, I own ReliefInBath.com From me and this website, you can expect some useful tips on great ideas for a modern bathroom.

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