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morrigan3003 07-21-2007 12:34 AM

Replacing a bathtub
I have a small, 5x7 bathroom with the tub running from wall-to-wall. The plumbing is toward the inside of the house. We want to replace everything. How likely would it be for my husband (and a few strong friends) to get a new bathtub in there themselves?

Daryl in Nanoose 07-21-2007 07:56 AM

When you say replace everthing does that include the wall board as well. If it does then you won't have to much problems and in fact I have done one myself

morrigan3003 07-22-2007 01:17 PM

thanks for the encouragement. We're on our way to the library for some books and to the house for demolition.

Kerrylib 07-23-2007 12:00 PM

I re-did just the same 5x7 bathroom mostly by myself. Had some help w/ a few items such as removing the old tub, hanging cement board, etc.

Before you get your new tub, take a look at the American Standard tubs that are backed with a plastic material on the underside I think its called "Americast". You get a lot of the benefits of a cast iron tub w/out the weight. Probably other mfgrs have similar products.

Good luck

morrigan3003 07-24-2007 12:27 PM

I had actually found an American Standard acrylic tub that I liked online. I have had a hard time finding any selection in the mid-price range for tubs, even online. I hate turning to Lowe's, I'd rather pay a little more somewhere else with better service, but so it goes.

liquidjayno 03-19-2008 11:17 AM

Out with the old...
I tore out the tub surround (installed c. 1970 by my father)and found 2 layers of 'board' (house built early '50's) that I could not identify. My plans of demolition, including tub, began to sink (unintended pun). I had just attended the local Home Show and had set up time for another pitch from BathFitter (first was 2 years ago, and I decided the cost was prohibitive, but I'm desperate). I love to soak (and get soaked, apparently), and BF now offers an ergonomically sculpted soaking tub. However, it cannot be fitted over the existing tub; the tub has to be removed. It will cost an extra $650. to accomplish this, which I wouldn't quibble about if the costs weren't already exhorbitant -- at least, for me. I told the pitchman I was going to attempt the removal myself. He didn't seem to have much confidence in my abilities. (I may be ricketty, but I'm tenacious.) He said demolishing a cast iron tub has brought 300-lb. men to their knees and that the tub weighs 600 lbs. My question is, then: Can a middle-aged woman tear out a tub without causing injury to herself and surroundings? Is there an alternative to sledge-hammering, such as using a device to apply increasing pressure 'til the sucker cracks? Any knowledge or ideas would be mighty appreciated!

guyod 03-19-2008 12:10 PM

He is exaggerating but for the most part is right. a normal sized tub should weigh about 300lb. If you do try it make sure you have the money to pay someone if you can't get it out.
$650 seems high. I'm sure if you called around you could find someone that collects scrap metal that will remove it for alot less.

Here are some tips if you decide to try
1. Disconnect as much of the plumbing as you can. Remove faucets, trim, and so forth. In some houses, there is no easy way to disconnect the drain beneath the tub. That's okay, just follow the rest of the instructions in order.
2. Stuff a cloth into the drain opening to keep out debris.
3. Cover the tub with an old wet blanket to prevent flying chips of cast iron and porcelain, then take a sledgehammer and hit the side of the tub with all your might, about 2/3 of the way down from the end with the drain. Your objective is to bust out a big hunk of tub.
4.Once you get the first hunk out, break the side again, closer to the drain, so you can get access to the drain connection beneath the tub. Unhook the drain.
5.Keep swinging! Breaking it into three or four good sized pieces makes removal possible.


Use a 16 lbs. sledgehammer; a heavy sledge will do the job best.
If you have a good drill and drill bit you can drill a couple holes.
Be mindful of the walls behind the tub - the tub will move when you hit it and may tear them (see plywood tip below).
Cover the spot you are about to hit with an old wet towel. The porcelain is about to splinter into a thousand flying knives. The towel helps keep them in check; a wet towel clings to the tub better than a dry one.

Look around. If there is anything in the room that you don't want to hit with a sledge hammer, remove it or cover it with thick plywood. Sledge hammers sometimes have minds of their own.

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