Knowing how to install a bathtub requires experience and a basic understanding of construction and plumbing. If this is your first time attempting any house repair, it is best to give this bathtub installation work to the experts. But if you want to build your knowledge and start training yourself on DIY jobs, this article is a good starting point.
Preparation Before Installation
1. Do bathroom measurements first.
The first thing that you need to do as part of our bathroom installation guide is to check if the bathtub fits in your bathroom. The standard bathtub has a minimum of 60 inches in length and 30 inches in width. Other designs vary in size. Bathtub installers must first make measurements to determine if the bathtub that you want can be installed in your bathroom.
2. Pick the bathtub that best suits your bathroom.
Look at the aesthetics of the bathtub. Does the type of bathtub that you picked fit the overall theme of your bathroom? Can the bath drain fitting be installed perfectly in the bathtub you chose for your home? These are just some questions to ask yourself before purchasing a new bathtub.
3. Know about the types of bathtubs available.
Here are the types of bathtubs available:
a. Alcove bathtubs
This bathtub is recessed into a wall. This type is surrounded by walls on 3 sides. Some baths have a separate area for showers, but the most common ones have shower installations on one of the walls.
b. Corner bathtubs
Just as the name implies, this bathtub is installed in the corner of the bathroom. Some designs are angled while others are rounded.
c. Drop-in bathtubs
The shell of the tub is dropped on a frame that will enclose it. This type of bathtub has a lot of customization available.
d. Freestanding bathtubs
Freestanding bathtubs can have no foot or claw feet. These tubs look more stylish and sleek because of the added detail in the foot of the tub.
e. Walk-in tubs
These tubs are used by seniors and others who find it difficult to enter any bathtub. The design includes a door and safety bars.
f. Jetted tubs
Jetted tubs shoot streams of water and can offer a massage that can give relief to pains and strains.
4. Accomplish all the needed building permits and comply with all local building codes.
Building codes differ from one location to another. Some areas may not require any permits while others may have stricter rules to follow. The requirements on how to install a freestanding bathtub Australia may be quite dissimilar to a bathtub in the US. Be sure to list all the needed documents and permits for construction, modification, and plumbing before starting the bathtub installation.
5. Check the bathtub that is delivered to your home.
You cannot fully trust the service delivery of your bathtub. Make sure to check all sections of the bathtub before installation. Inspect the tub for any chip or damage to the surface. Remember that these may result in a leak and possible injuries.
You should also make sure that all the items are included in the box.
6. Prepare the tools that you will use.
Have these items ready before moving on the installation proper:
– Measuring tape
– Pipe wrench
– Caulking gun
– Protective equipment
– Other plumbing tools
Step by Step Guide on How to Install a Bathtub
The installation of a bathtub requires precise measurement and accurate placement of parts. Use the bathtub installation diagram provided with the unit.
1. Dry-fit the tub.
Make sure that the bathtub that you ordered fits the space you provided. Check to see if its drain location lines up with the supposed floor P-trap. Be careful when moving the tub to avoid chips and scratches.
2. Install the surrounds as needed.
The alcove bathtub is designed to have surrounding back panels. For this type, you will need to purchase additional panels in the bathroom. If you have a shower bathtub combo, you should also align the shower pipe to the top flange. Use a pipe wrench as needed.
3. Install the supports.
A bathtub will need all the supports that can carry the weight of the tub. A ledger board does just that. It also helps secure the tub if it needs to be attached to the wall.
4. Install the drain.
Ensure that the drain is installed in the bathtub. Use a plumber’s putty to attach the drain and put the necessary gasket to the bottom of the tub. You may use pliers to tighten the parts.
5. Connect the overflow drain.
The overflow drain prevents the overflow of water to the top of the bathtub. Connect all the pipe fittings which provide a way for the water to flow to the drain in case the water keeps on running.
6. Install the bathtub securely.
Place the bathtub so that it is securely resting on the floor. The drain on the floor should connect directly to the drain of the bathtub. This can be very tricky, especially in cases where the question is how to install a bathtub without access underneath.
Secure the bathtub by putting studs in the wall and securing the flange to it. Read the bathtub installation diagram from the manufacturer to ensure proper connection.
You also need to caulk the tub to the surrounding panels.
7. Install all the bathroom fixtures.
You can now install the accessories such as the faucet, handles, and other fixtures as needed. You will also need to connect the drain to the P-trap under it.
8. Secure the tub to the floor.
Use a silicone caulk and run it along the edges between the tub and the floor. This prevents water from going under the tub.
9. Test it out.
You have to wait for 24 hours before testing it out. This is to make sure that all the adhesives have set. In case there is a problem, you may want to look for a possible solution or ask the help of a professional plumber.
Tips and Warnings
– For old pipes, you do not need to replace the whole plumbing to convert the galvanized pipes to plastic or copper. You can buy a special type of coupling that helps with the transition.
– If you are not confident in your knowledge of how to install a bathtub, it is best to leave it to the professionals. You can watch them do it and learn from the installation job.
To know how to install a bathtub does not necessarily mean that you will do it yourself. Having that kind of information will help you even if you hire an expert to do it for you. Installing a bathtub may cost hundred dollars so knowing the steps is quite important, if you want to save money while making your bathtub look new, re-paint your bathtub is also a good idea.
Frequently Asked Questions about How to Install a Bathtub
The whole installation may amount to $1,500 to $5,000 depending on the type of bathtub, the modifications needed, and the retrofitting to be done.
It depends on the one taking on the job. A certified plumber can do it in 5 hours or less. The time varies depending on the layout of the bathroom and the setup of the tub. The knowledge of how to install a bathtub is also key in the length of time that the whole installation will take place.