View Full Version : Whirlpool bathtub framing questions...

10-02-2009, 02:23 PM
I am re modelling our ensuite, and bought a Vegas whirlpool tub by Maax. We had a corner shower in before and removed it due to leaking water damage. I have just received the tub that we ordered, it is 60x32. I now have to frame where it is going in the ensuite. Any tips on how to do this properly or if it is better to frame it so you have a small ledge all the way around, or frame it so the actual lip of the tub goes over the frame itself. I also have this nagging feeling that I will not build it a bit too high and damage the edge of the tub due to weight, or build it a bit too low and possibly damage it due to leaning on the edge getting in and out of tub.

If I do the ledge all around it, I will want to tile it, but once I install tub, how would I go about lifting it up a bit to place tiles under the edge?:eek:

10-02-2009, 03:44 PM
It is fairly common to build, then tile the deck before you install the tub. You want to provide some waterproofing for that deck, since you'll probably get some splashing. Except for possibly a CI tub, you don't want to ever hang a tub by the lip, so careful measurement of the height is important. You do want it supported underneath from the floor. Note, if you build the deck a little high, you can use some mortar underneath the tub to get it the perfect height. It's possible to install the tub before you tile, but then fitting the tile under can be a big pain, and you risk getting thinset and grout on the tub...that along with getting the tile in place can scratch things...not good.

Check out www.johnbridge.com (http://www.johnbridge.com) for help with this and tiling for some additional opinions.

10-03-2009, 07:39 AM
There is a lot of information missing from your post.

Is it a standard tub?

Is it a deck mount?

Are you using it as a shower? If so a standard tub is what you need.

The framing requirements for each type are different. The space in the bathroom can also change the framing technique if placing the tub is an issue.

Often we will leave the back wall off until the tub is placed and leveled.

Can you post pictures of the layout and the tub in question?

Good Luck

10-04-2009, 07:49 AM
IF it is a "drop in tub" then the easiest way is to tile EVERYTHING except the front apron. Install the tub, shim or grout underneath it, connect the drain and water lines, then tile the front of the platform. Do not install the tub and then tile up to the edge of it.

10-05-2009, 11:48 AM


Got the tub in place, ready to start framing. I know I need to be sure of my measurements for the frame as with a fiberglass tub, it shouldnt have too much weight hanging form the edge (thats correct right??) On the bottom of the tub there is some plywood where the tub and all the components are mounted (motor, heater etc) and there are 4 wooden feet. Do these feet stay on or do I remove them before framing it? Need to know before I can go further. Seems funny to have all the weight of the tub on these 4 little 4x4 legs. Maybe I should run a support underneath down the middle to bear more of the weight.

It is Maax Vegas type tub, will be having a 4 inch ledge around the 2 outside edges but not on the inside as we will be using it for a shower as well, getting one of those shower curtains that go all around the tub.

10-05-2009, 03:36 PM
The question really is, what does the instruction manual say? It should tell you what to do. My guess is it sits on the legs. But, that's a guess.

You don't want ANY tension on the lip...the thing should be supported from below. A ledger is likely called for to support the lip all around. On a drop in tub, that would be from the decking. If using it for a shower, I really think you would have been better off getting one with a tiling flange and building an alcove. With the thing sitting on a deck, a slightly opened curtain could cause a significant leak.

10-05-2009, 04:45 PM
And for using this as a shower as well, we need to use this tub, so looking back is not an option. But with the drywall coming down on the top edge of the tub with a curved tile flange, the water will actually slope away from the wall as long as the tub is level.

But still wondering for sure about those damn 4 legs under tub. No where in the instructions does it mention the legs, just about framing properly and levelling.

10-05-2009, 07:44 PM
I'd treat that as an alcove tub...buy the add-on tiling flange (not as good as the tub with it built in, but will work), and then treat it as a standard tile-in tub with ledgers underneath the inside three edges, then you can decide what and how to do the front. Then, use cbu on the walls with a vapor barrier, and you could use either a standard shower curtain, or fit a door on the open side. Drywall anywhere near a shower is asking for problems.

Call the manufacturer's help line, and ask them what you are supposed to do about supporting the bottom. A clue would be to look at the spec sheet to see how tall they say it is (i.e., the stepover). If it is excessively high, thne the feet should come off.