Prevent Leaks And Water Damage: A Guide To Tanking Your Wet Room Shower Tray

Installing a sleek walk-in wet room shower makes a stylish, spa-like statement in any home. However, without comprehensive waterproofing, these indulgent spaces risk leaks, mould growth and structural damage. 

That’s why proper tanking is critical to modern wet room construction. While you can install a wet room or walk-in shower yourself, particularly with one of our handy wetroom kits, it usually pays off to bring in a professional.

What is Tanking?

Tanking refers to applying a continuous, impermeable barrier behind finishes to protect surfaces from moisture ingress. Tanking is important when creating wet rooms, given their prolonged water exposure. When applied beneath decorative surfaces like tiles or vinyl, quality tanking solutions block water from: 

  • Seeping into walls and floors 

  • Travelling into adjoining rooms or lower levels 

This proactive measure prevents the erosion of substrates and framing, mitigating the risk of dangerous mould and mildew growth.

Key Areas Requiring Tanking

In a wet room, the main areas that need comprehensive tanking include:

The Shower Tray

As the focal point of water activity, shower trays must actively resist water penetration into the subfloor below. Even in the case of moisture-resistant concrete, additional barriers are essential.

Surrounding Walls

Tanking becomes imperative in splash zones around the shower, extending several feet up the walls and vertically into corners. This strategic application serves as a protective shield for drywall and framing.

The Ceiling

Similarly, low hanging overhead areas  may require tanking to prevent condensation from penetrating in through light fittings and protect upstairs ceilings.

What to Consider When Choosing Tanking Solutions

With various products available, keep these factors in mind when selecting tanking for your wet room:

Ease of Application

Tanking might sound daunting because it involves precision sealing and corner reinforcement, but it doesn't have to be a professional-only feat. Look for kits boasting user-friendly membranes and sheets with bendable, pre-cut pieces for DIY use.

Prior Preparation Needs

Some tanking solutions, like liquid membranes, require extensive substrate priming and joint taping first. Opt for our user-friendly kits that come with primers, that work on all surfaces and aid in bonding.

Drying Times

Working to the tanking’s cure schedule is vital before applying finishes. Choosing rapid 1-2 hour drying solutions can reduce construction delays. Keep in mind that drying times may vary depending on the temperature and humidity in the room the tanking is being done.

Chemical Resistance

Your wet room will face its fair share of cleaning battles, so your tanking must withstand cleaning solutions without eroding. Seek hardy products that are immune to bleach, acids, alkalis, mould and mildew.


Tanking plays a critical role in your wet room's safety and longevity. Don't settle for anything less than the best. Choose rigorously tested solutions that meet stringent UK building standards.

Installation Tips for Tanking Wet Room Shower Trays

When installing tanking for your wet room, pay particular attention to the shower tray area using these tips:

  1. Before fitting the tray, ensure the floor is totally level. This ensures the water flows correctly to the drain without pooling.

  2. When bedding tanking sheets onto trays, make clean and precise cuts, ensuring full contact. This helps prevent moisture from tracking under the membrane.

  3. Fully seal all perimeters, outlets, pipes and corners before applying surface finishes. A comprehensive seal is crucial to prevent any potential water seepage.

  4. Avoid walking on tanking before tiling to prevent damage to delicate barriers. This precaution ensures the integrity of the tanking system before the final surface finishes are applied.

Waterproof Your Wetroom with Wetroomstop

Comprehensive waterproofing prevents leaks leading to costly repairs if you install and use specialist products correctly.

At Wetroomstop, we supply professional-quality tanking solutions to create completely watertight wet rooms. Our extensive expertise in designing wet areas means we understand the methods and quality components needed to construct bathrooms that function for decades.

Browse our range of tanking kits or contact us for personalised advice on creating your waterproof sanctuary.

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