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8 Common Pebble Tile Shower Floor Problems

8 Common Pebble Tile Shower Floor Problems

Let’s be honest – not many experiences beat that of spending time at the beach. The smell of the salty air, the sound of rolling waves, and the feeling of tiny pebbles beneath your feet all come together to create a truly special experience.

But we can’t be at the beach all the time. That’s why so many of us opt to bring a little piece of the beach into our home by installing pebble tile in our showers. These unique tile designs so much mimic the beauty of the beach, they make us feel like we’re there every time we step into the shower.

But before joining the bandwagon of installing pebble tiles, it’s essential to be aware of the possible issues with these beautiful tiles. And that’s what we’ll discuss here today.

8 Most Common Pebble Tile Shower Floor Problems

Like all other floor types, pebble tile shower floors have a few common problems homeowners should know about. We looked into the most common issues related to pebble tile flooring and put them together for you here:

Water Drainage Problems

If there’s one area where we want the best drainage, it has to be the shower floor. Small puddles on our bathroom floors are never a pleasant thing, which is why we often choose to go for flooring on the smoother side.

Pebble tile is not one of those surfaces, as it can make it difficult for water to drain properly due to the uneven surface. The gaps and crevices between the pebbles form small pockets where water can linger, which isn’t something anyone will want for their bathroom floor. 

Left unremoved for long, this water can cause mold and mildew buildup, leading to potential health concerns. So, as you plan to invest in pebble tile flooring, also look for a clever way to get around this drainage problem.

Lots Of Grouting Required

For the uninitiated, grout is the substance used to fill the gaps between tiles, creating a seal and adding strength to the structure.

On pebbles, it’s the element that holds everything together, ensuring that the little pebbles don’t wiggle when we walk on them. It also helps protect the pebbles from water damage and staining, making it all the more important.

Now, since pebbles come with irregular shapes, the gaps between them are often wider than the usual tiles. This means that more grout is required to keep them in place, which can easily double or even triple the installation costs.

Uncomfortable To Stand On

As much as they’re visually up there, pebbles can be quite uncomfortable to stand on for a longer duration. The irregular shapes can cause an uncomfortable feeling under feet, and the fact that pebbles are naturally bumpy doesn’t help either.

For this reason, pebble tile shower floors are not recommended for people with mobility issues or arthritis. So, if you plan to have someone in your home who might need extra support, it’s best to look for other alternatives.

But again, the issue of comfort depends on the installation process. If installed properly, the pebbles can be positioned to give them a more comfortable feel under our feet.

High Maintenance

As you step on pebbles, the pressure exerted by your feet causes micro-movements between them. And as this continues, the pebbles develop micro-gaps which gradually increase in size to leave bigger gaps.

Now, by the time you notice bigger gaps, it means that the sealer was long compromised, and the grout had been gone too. This means that your shower floor needs to be frequently inspected and maintained for a longer-lasting effect.

Proper maintenance requires proper cleaning, occasional sealing, and re-grouting, all of which can add up over time.


Pebble tiles are bound to discolor after some time due to their porous nature. This is why you’ll often see a different color in your pebble tile shower floor than the one it was installed with.

This discoloration is caused by the accumulation of dirt and grime over time, which can dull your tile’s natural glow. To prevent this, make sure to scrub your pebbles with a mild detergent or cleaner regularly.

Not The Best Option For Hard-water Areas

Living in a hard water area? Well, pebble tile shower floors are not the best option for you. The reason being that hard water contains high concentrations of minerals, which can leave behind deposits on your pebble tile.

With time, this deposit builds up and causes a white haze on the tile surface, making it look dull and lifeless. And while that won’t be enough to destroy your pebbles, it will certainly harm the aesthetics of your bathroom.

That means you’ll have to invest enough time and effort in cleaning your pebble tile just to keep it looking new.

Prior Floor Inspection

Pebble tiles are installed over a previously existing structure, so it’s important to inspect the floor before you install them. This is because pebbles are quite heavy and can cause extra pressure on an already weak floor, leading to the formation of cracks and structural damage.

So, before you install your pebble tile shower floor, make sure to check the existing structure for any signs of damage. If necessary, replace or reinforce it before you install your tile. Otherwise, you’ll be putting your entire floor at risk.

They Have a Lifespan

No matter how well you maintain them, pebble tiles won’t last forever. As the sealer wears off over time, pebbles will start to lose their natural shine and become dull. Not to mention that bigger gaps between the pebbles will start to form as well.

This is why it’s important always to keep an eye on your pebble tile shower floor and replace it when necessary. Otherwise, you might have to face more serious problems like water damage or structural damage due to the shifting of tiles.

Sometimes when cleaning the floor, some of the pebbles may get knocked off. That’s especially true for those that are already in a compromised state.

So, if you’re looking to install pebble tile shower floors in your home, make sure to keep these 8 most common pebble tile shower floor problems in mind. With the right amount of maintenance and care, you can keep your pebbles looking as good as new for a long time.

Is It Hard To Clean The Pebble Shower Floor?

No, it’s not hard to clean the pebble shower floor. In fact, you only need to scrub it with a brush with moderately stiff bristles brush once a week. But if you’re living in an area with hard water, you’ll need daily scrubbing to keep your floor looking clean.

But don’t fret, keeping that white deposit of minerals off your pebble tiles is much easier than it sounds. 


  • Fill a spray bottle with equal parts of distilled white vinegar and water and spray the shower floor.
  • Allow the solution to sit for about 30 minutes. 
  • Scrub the floor with a stiff brush 
  • Rinse it with running water. 

And voila, you have your pebbles looking back to their shiny glory!

If the surface has some rust, you may need to use a combination of lemon juice and salt. Just combine equal parts of lemon juice (or any other citrus juice) and salt, and apply the paste directly on the rust stains.

Let the mixture sit for about 2 to 3 hours before you scrub it off with a brush. Make sure to rinse your pebble tile shower floor afterwards for a complete cleanse.

Should The Pebble Shower Floor Be Sealed?

Yes, it’s best to seal the pebble shower floor if you’re looking forward to getting the most out of it. Several layers of a sealer on your floor will not only offer protection but also help keep your shower’s floor looking shiny and new for a long time.

In fact, some of the experts recommend that you first seal the pebbles before applying grout. Pre-sealing the pebbles will ensure that they remain protected and also help in keeping the grout from staining or cracking.

Once you’ve applied grout, again you need to apply the sealer. This will help in keeping your pebble tile shower floor looking as good as new for years to come.

And as usual, always settle for a high-quality sealer. It may mean paying a little more up front, but the long-term advantage is definitely worth it.

And lastly, apply a new layer of sealer every year to keep the pebbles looking their best. As long as your shower pebble tile floor is well-sealed, it’ll stay in perfect condition for years to come.

Can You Use Pebble Tile on The Shower Floor?

Absolutely! Pebble tile is an excellent choice for a shower floor. Pebble tiles add some texture and a unique look to any bathroom space. Plus, they’re also very easy to clean and maintain once you have them installed.

Moreover, pebble tile shower floors can be customized according to your preferences and style. Whether you want a classic look or a contemporary design, you can easily find pebble tiles that will fit your needs.

So, if you’re looking to add some pizzazz to your bathroom, pebble tile shower floors are definitely worth considering. With the right installation and care, you can have a beautiful looking shower floor that will stay in perfect condition for years to come.

How Long Does a Pebble Shower Floor Last?

Pebble tile shower floors can last for years, if maintained properly. It all depends on the quality of the pebbles, installation, and how well you take care of it. High-quality pebbles can last for up to 20 years before you have to do some serious repairs – as long as they were well-installed and maintained.

Now, two decades of a beautiful, well-maintained shower floor is definitely worth the effort. Plus, with regular cleaning and sealing of your pebble tiles, you’ll be able to enjoy the beautiful look and feel of your shower floor for a long time.


Even with all the potential problems, pebble tile shower floors are well worth the effort. They are a great option for bathrooms and can be customized to provide a unique look and feel to any bathroom.

Plus, with proper care and maintenance, a pebble tile shower floor can last you for years to come – making it well worth the effort. So, if you’re looking for something unique and long-lasting, pebble tile shower floors are definitely worth considering!