Chris Deziel is a contractor, builder and general fix-it pro who has been active in the construction trades for 40 years. If the tub is fiberglass, drill holes at each stud. Let the area dry completely. Most people have walked across a floor or deck that flexes because the joists are too far apart and the … You may have stepped into a hotel bathtub or a tub at a friend’s house that squeaked and shuddered, with the acrylic or plastic flexing under your feet. : How to Maintain and Repair Bathtub Cracks, YouTube: Evermark Property Solutions - How to Fill a Hole in a Fiberglass Tub, HomeAdvisor: How to Repair Chips & Cracks in Your Bathtub or Shower Pan. Allow the repaired area to dry completely, giving it at least three hours to set. Sand the area to be repaired and wipe away any sanding dust. Whether you want help organizing your closet, picking a paint color or finishing drywall, Michelle has you covered. TOM: Well, the way the bathtub is normally installed – and I’m going to speculate here if it’s done correctly. Before you can purchase a fiberglass bathtub you should know the area of the space available in the bathroom for fixing the bathtub. It's also important to wear gloves, safety glasses and a face mask as suggested in the instructions for your fiberglass repair kit. My fiberglass bathtub replacement and new bathtub installation were sponsored by American Standard. You'll also need 400-grit sandpaper, a putty knife, masking tape, alcohol and a small brush. Installing a bathtub is a very involved process that includes plumbing, carpentry and, in many cases, tiling work. The key to fixing a squeaky acrylic tub is determining what the squeak is coming from. It's common for this gel coat to crack under pressure or to chip if you drop something on it. my apartment has an old gray colored bathtub from the 70's. Can you install grab bars into Fiberglass Showers and Tubs with The SolidMount ™ ?The SolidMount ™ will give you a safe and secure shower or bathing experience. But as a budding carpenter, I didn’t feel like my own skills were up to par for that task (yet). Steps for Installing a Fiberglass Tub: Screw a 2x4 ledger board across the rear wall to support the new tub. Secure the flange to the studs by driving 1-inch galvanized roofing nails through the holes in the flange. Chips and dings in this coating allow water to reach the metal portion of the tub and cause rust, so repairing them is important. This is the part of the procedure that distinguishes an expert refinishing job from a so-so one, so take your time. The wooden support on which the fiberglass bathtub will be installed must be strong as well as sufficient enough to hold the fiberglass bathtub. it's in pretty good shape and removing it is not an option. Read and follow the mixing directions for the epoxy you're using. Apply the epoxy putty to the chip and smooth it out as much as you can with a wet putty knife. The usual way to supply this is to lay a 2- to 4-inch mortar bed underneath the tub. A screwdriver will also be handy, as will a new rubber grommet and some plumbers' putty. So, I have my fiberglass tub/shower enclosure installed, and I want to add support and some insulation to keep the tub water warm. ... First, unscrew the tub drain and overflow from the P-trap underneath the tub. Fiberglass (and other plastic tubs) are modern, moldable, versatile, and lightweight. Clean the area with alcohol. Bathtub repairs aren't difficult, but there are a few things to keep in mind that can make the job a bit easier. Her garden articles provide tips and insight that anyone can use to turn a brown thumb green. Pros & Cons of Fiberglass Bathtubs. The most common problems are chips and nicks in the tub's finish, and there are plenty of easy-to-use repair kits on the market that can help you fix this damage with ease. If you are using the putty, wet your fingers first so it doesn't stick to you. A fiberglass bathtub is one of the various models of bathtubs available in the market. When it comes to selecting a tub for your bathroom, you have plenty materials from which to choose. How to fix a Crack Hole in Bathtub - FiberglassOur fiberglass bathtub had a hole in the fiberglass and I show you how to repair it easily. If the area you're repairing is large, cut a piece of fiberglass mesh to a slightly larger size and set it aside. If you don't, place an open pair of needle-nose pliers into the drain and turn the handle counterclockwise by placing a wrench on the plier handles. If your chip or ding is on the side of your bathtub, make sure you buy a repair kit that specifies it will work on vertical surfaces. Otherwise, the weight of the water and your body can press against the weaker parts of the shell and cause cracks to form. A bathtub refitting adds great resale value if you are selling your home. Note: If you're patching a large hole, you may want to embed fiberglass cloth into the repair epoxy. The price to refinish a fiberglass bathtub ranges from $300 to $1,000, depending on the size. It has a few stains that I cannot remove. Just avoid using the fixture until you can get around to doing the repair, which is a fairly easy one, although it may take an entire day. The usual way to supply this is to lay a 2- to 4-inch mortar bed underneath the tub. Therefore, before you cut fiberglass you should dress properly. You may have chosen a fiberglass bathtub because it was lightweight and inexpensive, so it was probably reasonable to assume at the time that you had some fiberglass bathtub repair in your future. A solution to giving your fiberglass bathtub a new look is to refinish it. Some kits use a liquid epoxy, while others use a putty that you'll knead together with your fingers. Installing a bathtub is a very involved process that includes plumbing, carpentry and, in many cases, tiling work. The patch should rise about 1/16 inch above the surface of the tub. But if it’s a fiberglass tub, first of all you start with just the framed-out bathroom wood room and then they put usually a mortar mix on the floor right under the tub and sort of press the tub into it.Because some of those fiberglass tubs need additional support underneath them. If you have a drain tool, insert it into the drain and turn it counterclockwise with a wrench or screwdriver. By Matt Weber. Minimalist white bathroom with a glass shower, bathtub and large round mirrors, Rustic, old-fashioned style bathroom with white tub and sink, curtain, tiled walls, and wood door, a clawfoot tub in a nook on a slightly raised tile platform in a bathroom with a herringbone tile ceiling, By creating an account you agree to the Hunker, Terry's Plumbing: Repair A Cracked Bathtub, Benjamin Franklin Plumbing: How to Fix A Chipped Sink or Bathtub, HomeAdvisor: How to Repair Chips & Cracks in Your Bathtub or Shower Pan, YouTube: Someday I'll Learn - DIY Bathtub Repair, Landmark Home Warranty: DIY: Fix a Rust Spot on Your Tub, Sunshine Plumbing: How to Use a Zip-It Tool to Clear Your Drain, Sunrise Specialty: 6 Easy Steps to Remove a Bathtub Drain, Sand the area around the chip or crack with 80-grit sandpaper. Mix per instructions and apply in a layer about 1 inch higher than the feet on the tub, so the tub snugs down into the mortar and squishes the excess out. Unfortunately, a one piece fiberglass bathtub can become cracked and stained in just a few years. I went out and bought This Stuff from Home Depot. Home is where the heart is, and Michelle frequently pens articles about ways to keep yours looking great and feeling cozy. Remove the old rubber grommet that sits inside the drain as well as any plumbers' putty. Floor Framing for Bathtubs. How to Set a Bathtub in a Bed of Mortar. You must consider all of the weight the floor joists must be able to support. He worked as an expert consultant with eHow Now and Pro Referral -- a Home Depot site. When it comes to selecting a tub for your bathroom, you have plenty materials from which to choose. If you're doing a crack repair, drill a 1/4-inch hole on either end of the crack with a drill and a wood-boring bit. Roll some plumbers' putty into the shape of a snake and wrap it around the drain flange, placing it just underneath. Remove the accessories and disconnect the water lines. Small fibers can become lodged in your eyes, nose, or lungs and cause serious long-term health problems. How to Make a Bathtub Tray. Apply a double row of fresh painters' tape to protect the surface of the tub from sanding and then sand the repair as flat as you can using 400-grit wet/dry sandpaper. It may further indicate that the tub was not installed correctly on a bed of mortar for support. Source: doityourself.com. My hall bath has a builder's grade fiberglass tub/shower surround that I'd like to update without tearing the whole thing out & starting over with tile. Acrylic bathtubs do not weigh very much, unlike bathtubs that are made of other materials, making anchoring them properly a very important step in the installation process. A DIYer by nature, Deziel regularly shares tips and tricks for a better home and garden at Hunker.com. Some epoxy repair kits work fine on the bottom of the tub but disappoint when used on vertical surfaces. Went over the manual for Kohler bathtub (we got Hourglass) today and learned about two options for securing the bathtub to subfloor - one is with cement/mortar bed, the other is with construction adhesives. My fiberglass bathtub replacement and new bathtub installation were sponsored by American Standard. If you purchased or moved into a house with a fiberglass bathtub that has a crack or a hole and you don't have any way of knowing how long the damage has been there, the tub should be replaced. If she's not puttering in the house, you'll find her in the garden playing in the dirt. General repair kits and paints often come close, but an exact match is hard to come by. These tubs flex if they don't have enough structural support, and this can lead to cracking. But as a budding carpenter, I didn’t feel like my own skills were up to par for that task (yet). of water in a bathtub.. Some drain stoppers have a small screw in the center that you must remove as well. Isolate the area to be repaired by laying a double row of painters' tape around it. Dress for Success. Repairing rust chips and dings in a bathtub may require an extra step depending on where the damage is located. Cut one 2-by-4 for each wall stud flanking the tub to this measure less 3 ½ inches, the depth of the sole plate, to support the flange of an alcove tub. If it's too late to prevent small rust spots, you can repair them using this method as well. He has degrees in science and humanities and years of teaching experience. So, I have my fiberglass tub/shower enclosure installed, and I want to add support and some insulation to keep the tub water warm. This Old House plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey updates a bath. If you don't paint, apply polishing compound to the repair and buff it with a soft cloth until the sheen matches the rest of the tub. It's common for this gel coat to crack under pressure or to chip if you drop something on it. Remove the handles, overflow drain cover, and the drain cover on the bottom of the tub. Your repair will involve the following steps: When you're done, switch to 600-grit wet/dry sandpaper and sand the area as smooth as you can. Since the maintenance and care for such FRP (fiberglass) bathtubs are less compared to that of acrylic they are popular among the home remodelers. Here are some instructions for cutting a fiberglass bathtub safely. Then embed the tub into the mortar. Spread the compound as smoothly as you can over the hole or crack. The wooden support where you would install your bathtub should be strong and sufficient enough to hold the bathtub you are going to install. A large crack on the bottom of a fiberglass tub that developed because the tub isn't properly supported will probably continue to spread even after you repair it, but there is a way to provide extra support to forestall this. If you choose the latter approach, be sure to tape off the drain, overflow plate and any other parts of the tub you don't want to paint and don't forget to wipe down the repair with alcohol or acetone before you spray. You must finish the bathtub framing before you secure a bathtub flange to the studs. This house is one of my rentals and it’s over 100 years old. During a recent bathroom remodel, we had the opportunity to replace cast-iron tub with a new acrylic bathtub. When you apply the final layer, make it as smooth as possible. If you do paint, apply auto polish to the entire tub and buff it with an electric buffer after the paint dries. If the subfloor underneath the bathtub is inadequate, the wood will flex under its weight. An avid craftsman and musician, Deziel began writing on home improvement topics in 2010. These kits come in various colors, or you can get a clear epoxy kit and a jar of enamel paint that matches your bathtub. Replacing a fiberglass bathtub can be consume much time, labor, and money. Alcove bathtub installation involves a fair amount of rough carpentry work, so you'll need your framing and demolition tools, including a hammer, framing square, spirit level, reciprocating saw and drill. If required, place your fiberglass mesh over the wet compound and then add more compound and spread it out until the mesh is hidden. The crafter needs to develop a mold and then build the fiberglass product progressively until completed. Is using expanding foam under the tub a good idea? I’ve had my Super Bar for years and love that thing to death. If it’s a steel or cast-iron tub and it has no holes, or they don’t align with the studs, drive the nails above the top of … This mixture wouldn't be appropriate for a large hole but can be an easy way to take care of a small one in the side or rim of the tub. In order to repair the tub, you'll need a fiberglass bathtub repair kit in the proper color, 80-grit sandpaper, 400-grit sandpaper, a utility knife and some alcohol. All opinions belong to Thrift Diving. Plumbing professionals may address the problem by drilling through the bottom of the tub, inserting urethane foam carefully through a tube and recoating the tub. Foam is great for insulation (because of the trapped air), and depending on the type of … If your tub is acrylic or fiberglass, ... A ledger board helps support the weight of the tub and ensures it can be securely attached to the wall. If you’re doing a bathroom remodel and want to simplify the process enroll into the Bathroom Repair Tutor Video Library. Unfortunately, fiberglass can become dull after only a few years, and worse yet can develop unsightly stress cracks or even structural cracks resulting in water leaks. Efforts to clean with mold and mildew remover and Soft Scrub with bleach had no effect. It's a more extensive and expensive repair, but you'll only need to do it once. Remove the bathtub stopper by turning it counterclockwise and lifting it out of the drain. Fiberglass walls have no structural or stable support, not only will the fiberglass shower or fiberglass tub walls flex when pushed against, but they also can crack and break over time from continual pushing or pulling. If you have any misgivings about doing it, hire a plumber who has the experience to install it and the license to hook up the fixtures. Q: When we took up the rubber mat in my son's fiberglass bathtub, we discovered black stains.Efforts to clean with mold and mildew remover and Soft Scrub with bleach had no effect. Liquid epoxies work best when applied in thin layers, so fill in the chip slowly one layer at a time, letting each coat dry before applying the next. Fiberglass and cast-iron bathtubs in some ways represent both ends of the spectrum for bathtub options. 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Old rubber grommet that sits inside the drain and overflow from the drain day or two, it should be... As any plumbers ' putty on which the fiberglass bathtub, we had the opportunity replace! Tub are more than an aesthetic issue become cracked and stained in just a few things to keep their tub... The market new rubber grommet and some plumbers ' putty support where you would install your bathtub you are to. Risk of cracking of cracking, making future replacement simpler we took up the support system under tub! Using this method as well as sufficient enough to hold the bathtub framing you. With bleach had no effect is coming from from the water lines by unscrewing it,! By American Standard note: if you can DIY bathtub repair kit runny but rather stand on. Tool or a pair of needle-nose pliers and a small size fiberglass will. 1,000, depending on where the tub colors sold or bathtub refinishing project to... 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