One of the happiest endings to a long tiring day is an excellent and long bath. Bathrooms are one of the most missed things in a home when people are away; the reason is easy bathroom comfort is something very personal to everyone. It is something to start your day on a positive and refreshing note or come home and wear off troubles and sign off for the day.
We understand loads of inconvenience is caused when there stands any reason between you and your bathtub comfort. Not only does a worn-out tub affect your “me” time and comfort, but it also eventually starts acting as a liability draining out the money in the constant maintenance and repair jobs to keep it together. And it is not even pleasant to look at, because of its faded color and so on.
A replacement has crossed your mind, but you are facing an issue that most people that are trying to replace an old worn-out alcove bathtub face, measurements do not match. Well, fortunately, we came up with this article to give some solutions to this issue that most people face while replacing an old bathtub. Most people get one question “are all bathtubs 60 inches” cause the alcove is smaller. Well, we will discuss that too further in this article itself.
Let us look at this issue step by step
Most of the time, what happens is people measure the tub in incorrect ways, which results in them thinking that the replacement is either big or small for their bathroom, and they conclude that it cannot be fixed. And that is right where we need to start, sometimes it happens that the space you have is precisely how much is needed for the tub, but you do not know. Bathrooms are made with standard measurements for such fixtures.
You cannot start looking for new tubs without knowing the dimensions of the space you have or the measurements of your old alcove bathtub. To take down the exact measurements of an alcove bathtub is trickier than a freestanding bathtub because a little portion of the bathtub is covered from three sides and is fixed inside. The measurements can be calculatedly assumed, which most likely can be as good as the actual on drawing measurements, but it still is an assumption.
You might think the measurements from the finished wall to the finished wall should be the space you have to fit your new tub in, but that is precisely where most of the people go wrong. The way to measure for a bathtub is stud to stud, not drywall to drywall, but as that would require some work, you can subtract the approximation of how thick your drywall is, which is generally 0.5 inch (it can vary). If there are tiles on both ends, subtract the tile thickness and some additional mortar tolerance.
(Stud is right behind the drywall, a vertical frame providing structure to the wall)
You should talk to the person from whom you are buying the new bathtub and get the specs and on drawing dimensions of the new tub. The dimensions will be from outer rim to outer rim, according to which you can talk with the installer to get a professional opinion if you are in any doubt in case the measurements are exact or jamming edge to edge.
If you are planning to do it yourself, then it would be best to talk to someone who has done this before; in case you can’t seem to reach anyone, you can talk to the tub manufacturers they know about their product well enough and can suggest some easy tips to get your work easy.
Are all Tubs 60 inches?
The kitchen and bathroom are specially designed considering the standard fixture dimensions; space planning plays a significant role here. We will be listing some of the standard sizes of alcove bathtubs here.
Smallest Alcove bathtubs available
(48-inch freestanding tub are available but at very few places)
L – 54 inches, W – 30 inches, H – 15 inches
Tiny house moment is to thanks for the availability of this size more than before, it is still challenging to find in some areas, but it can be bought easily than before.
Moderate size alcove bathtubs
L – 60 inches, W – 32 inches, H – 18 inches
This is the standard size that you can find anywhere; it measures outer rim to outer rim and fits between studs and not the finished wall, which can also be adjusted if you have a little more space than required on speaking with the installer.
Most giant size alcove bathtubs available
L – 66/72 inches, W – 36 inches, H – 20 inches
This is for the people who like the bigger, the better, but this is just additional information as this article is more about the smaller than 60 inches.
The above measurements are what is commonly available. It can differ about 0.25 inches, but a difference more significant than that is quite rare.
Other Options That can be Considered are
If wall to wall it is 58.5 inches, a 60-inch tub will fit, that is the standard size it will fit. Most bathtubs are 60 inches and are meant to fit between studs on both ends and not between two drywalls. It will take some work if the wall to wall it is 57.75, but a little extra work and it fit right in. If it was smaller than this, go with the below-written solution.
Trimming of the studs if it is about a very little difference, which is in mm, then it can be considered after ensuring the condition of the wall. Professional help is strongly recommended if it comes to this as the studs provide a structure, and we would want to cause more trouble than solve. It is not something to be scared about, but something to be aware of and careful about.
Wall studs can be notched to a depth of 25 percent at max if it is in a bearing partition, and not boring any hole more significant than 40 percent of its width if it is in non-bearing partitions. Mostly this should do the job, but again professional help is recommended and do so while assessing the situation and condition of the wall.
We figured it would be easier for you all to understand if some most common doubts are discussed here. You might relate better to what was discussed above. Here are some answers to most
Frequently Asked Questions
Do plumbers install bathtubs?
Yes, bathtubs are best installed by plumbers. Not only do they remove and replace it with a new one, but they also do the required plumbing work of connecting the fixtures. Some people might prefer this on their own, which has been successful in more than half of the scenarios.
How to frame an Alcove tub?
Here is a link that can best answer the question.
Is it possible to install a tub on an existing one?
Technically, no. What you can install on an existing tub is called a bathtub liner. It is a good and cheap alternative to complete remodeling when facing an issue. These are custom acrylic inserts that are easy to install over an existing tub. If done professionally, the results are surprisingly plentiful and are cheap and hassle-free. It can also be used on showers.
What is the rough opening for a standard bathtub?
For an easy, hassle-free installation, it should be 0.25 inches more than the size of the tub, stud to stud.
So that was about it. One last option that we might have around this if nothing and absolutely nothing works, and you have a tight budget. We would say reglazing the bathtub might act like your way out if we are not dealing with issues like rust or severe damage. This way can avoid the slightest risk of plumbing damage that the replacement may cause, but it cannot guarantee as much comfort as a new tub. But we had to mention it as a last resort.
If you are looking to add value to your home, a new bathtub is a definite bath upgrade. It gives you a window of opportunity to fashion a great deal of impact in the interiors; also, you can check out features. If you are planning on selling/renting the place, it will just be additional leverage while negotiating the price. And if you plan to live in it, you can check this part of your dream house feature list right off.
We hope all the mentioned solutions, tips, and tricks prove helpful to you and bring you the comfort that you deserve. We are optimistic that the information shared made a positive difference and thus made the process and the experience of replacing the alcove bathtub fun. It is easier said than done, and the situation can look tedious, but meticulous attention paid can get you precisely what you had in mind.
I wish you a happy bathtub experience!