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How to Install a Fiberglass Tub and Shower Surround

Tub and shower surrounds offer a relatively quick way to update your bath. The separate tub and surround pieces can fit through doorways and are lightweight and not difficult to move. You will need some plumbing experience to learn how to install a fiberglass tub and shower surround. The last thing you want is the headache of a leak after you attach everything. For help from the bath experts in the Delaware Valley, contact PJ Fitzpatrick today.

How to Install a Fiberglass Tub and Shower Surround Steps

  1. Remove the old tub and shower.
  2. Examine the plumbing for problems. Now is the perfect time to install a new shower valve.
  3. Attach a 2×4 board with screws across the studs at a height that will support the tub beneath its flange.
  4. Before putting the tub into position, install its drain and overflow parts.
  5. Align the drain and overflow with the holes in the tub.
  6. Wrap a generous coil of plumber’s putty around the threads of the strainer that fits into the drain hole.
  7. Push the strainer through the drain hole from the top.
  8. Slide the gasket over the strainer threads on the bottom of the tub.
  9. Line the drain pipe up with the strainer threads.
  10. Grab the strainer from the top with pliers and screw it into the drain assembly.
    1. Have a helper hold the drain and overflow part on the other side while you tighten the strainer.
  11. Wipe off excess putty that squeezes out.
  12. Slide the stopper on the trip lever down through the overflow opening.
  13. Secure the overflow plate with the trip lever with two screws.
  14. Now move the tub into its final position.
  15. Use the 3/16-inch bit to drill through the flange into the studs.
  16. Screw the flange snugly to the studs with 1-1/4-inch decking screws.
  17. To continue learning how to install a fiberglass tub and shower surround, fit the hole saw onto your power drill.
  18. Measure carefully to determine where to cut holes in the surround piece for the shower valve and spout.
    1. Triple check your measurements.
  19. Cut the holes through the tub surround.
  20. Bring the surround into the tub.
  21. Prop up the surround in four spots with scrap wood.
  22. Run a bead of caulk along the exposed tub flange.
  23. Take out the wood blocks and place the surround on the tub.
  24. Once again, predrill 3/16-inch holes around the flange of the surround.
  25. Attach the surround through the holes with 1-1/4-inch decking screws to the studs.
  26. Use the propane torch to solder two male connectors on the ends of a copper pipe long enough to connect the plumbing to the spout.
  27. Screw the spout into the water supply with the copper pipe until it fits against the tub.
  28. Attach the strainer plate over the drain.
  29. Install moisture-resistant drywall over the remaining areas of exposed studs over the surround.
  30. To finish installing a fiberglass tub and shower surround, tighten the trap to the drainpipe beneath the tub with pliers.

Tools & Materials

  • Measuring tape
  • Pliers
  • Screwdrivers
  • Power drill with 3/16-inch bit
  • Hole saw
  • Caulk gun
  • Propane torch
  • Plumber's putty
  • 4 pieces of 2-inch wide lumber scraps

Professional Tub and Shower Installations

Learning how to install a fiberglass tub and shower surround yourself could leave your bathroom torn up for one or more days. For faster results, talk to the bath professionals at PJ Fitzpatrick. We’ve installed many tubs and showers for Delaware Valley homeowners. Ask us for a bath replacement estimate today.

Need help with this project?

We have trained professionals that can help. Contact us today. 1-877-246-4354

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