How to Install a Bathtub

Before installing a bathtub, it's important to have a building inspector examine the floor joists to determine that they can support the weight of a full bathtub or bathtub/shower [source: Donavan].

This article assumes that the old bathtub was previously removed and the drain pipes were installed on the new bathtub.


Here's how to install a bathtub:

  1. Check if the bathtub comes with a supporting frame. If it does, install the frame according to the instructions listed in the instruction book.
  2. Install the faucets into the bathtub, if necessary. If the faucet comes with a washer, place it between the tub and faucet. If the tub is plastic, attach a supporting plate beneath the faucets to reduce the strain.
  3. Attach flexible connectors to the faucets with nuts and washers.
  4. Place the bathtub in position within the frame.
  5. Make sure the bathtub is parallel with the floor, using a level. Adjust the bathtub feet or insert shims as necessary, until the tub is level.
  6. Connect the free end of each flexible faucet connector to the appropriate water pipe, if you installed faucets on the bathtub.
  7. Connect the tub drainpipe to the house drainpipe.
  8. Turn on the water supply and check for any leaks along the joints and new pipes. Tighten any loose connections.
  9. Fill the tub to check both the regular drain and the overflow pipe outlet for leaks. Tighten the connections, if necessary.
  10. Attach any bathtub paneling according to the instruction book.
  11. Wait until the bathtub has been used at least once to allow for settling before sealing the tub and putting up tiles.
  12. Seal the area where the tub meets the wall or tile with silicone rubber caulking [source: Northstar Plumbing].