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        Adding shower to a jacuzzi tub Sign In/Join 
        posted
        We just bought our home and have a jacuzzi tub in our master bed with a hand held shower. The tub is rectangular and is a drop-in with a tile deck on all sides. We are looking to use the hand-held shower as a shower in the tub, but am worried that the water on the tile deck will not drain. Is there anyway to raise the tile deck or add another layer to make the tub flush on three sides to be able to use the shower without worrying about the draining issue? We would add either a curtain or a glass door on the front. Any ideas are welcome.

        Thanks
        Paresh
         
        Posts: 4 | Registered: Aug 04, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Jaybee
        posted Hide Post
        I have a set-up like this in my house and have done a few as projects for clients. Some tubs are not suitable at all, the ones that do work are the kind with a flat top.

        It does work better if you have not installed the tub first. In that case, we add a 2" lip around the perimeter of the tub by siliconing in a 2' piece of metal flashing. This makes a lip to keep water from getting behind the tub.

        Since you cannot do this step without removing the tub, the best you can do is a very good silicon seal between the tub and the surround. While this 'can' work, it will always be subject to leaking if the silicon seal is ever broken.


        Jaybee
         
        Posts: 10094 | Location: Knoxville, Tennessee | Registered: Sep 27, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of joecaption
        posted Hide Post
        Posting a picture would be a big help.
        If this is a drop in style tub your asking for trouble by using it as a shower.


        joecaption
         
        Posts: 17984 | Location: Hartfield VA | Registered: Jan 31, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        Paresh,

        The answer is simple, NO!.

        I had to laugh at the attempt to contortion an answer above. Someone's forgetting that tile and grout are not what makes a shower waterproof and how a shower is built.

        The only way to take a shower in that tub is to get one of those 360 shower rod and bring the shower head within that space.

        Jaz

        This message has been edited. Last edited by: JazMan,


        Tile 4 You llc - Troy, MI
        Kerdi shower specialist - Ditra installs - Product-Method suitability consultation. I have NEVER made a mistake, I thought I did once...........but I was wrong!
         
        Posts: 43 | Registered: Apr 18, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Jaybee
        posted Hide Post
        quote:
        Originally posted by JazMan:
        Paresh,



        I had to laugh at the attempt to contortion an answer above. Someone's forgetting that tile and grout are not what makes a shower waterproof and how a shower is built.



        I'll assume that was directed at my answer.

        First off, from the one and only short post from Paresh above, I would bet that you are probably correct - it sounds most likely that he has a typical fiberglass Jacuzzi tub that is sitting on top of a tile surround. Had he responded back or included a picture, we could have either moved on with more detailed information as to how to turn his Jacuzzi tub into a shower or pointed out that things would not work in his case.

        All too often on these boards that's what happens - a fairly interesting problem is posted, a bunch of people jump in with advice and then nothing else is ever heard from the OP. On the flip side, Lots of times there is a bunch of posts and follow-up - all the way to the completion of a successful project. Jaz, if you stick around here long enough you'll see a little of both.

        But I digress. The OP asked if it's possible to turn a Jacuzzi into a real shower and of course the answer is yes. As I mentioned in my first post, I have one sitting in a bathroom almost directly above my head as I type this. It's been there for 22 years and hasn't leaked yet. In addition, I've installed similar in clients homes over the years - not a lot, I'd say 8 to 10 total. It's kind of a niche market - bathrooms that are big enough for a Jacuzzi type tub but not so big so that they can have a stand-alone tub and a separate shower. And yes, you do have to make a proper surround - much like you would for any other tub/shower set-up. The key is having the correct style "Jacuzzi" tub - a question that at this point only the OP knows.


        Jaybee
         
        Posts: 10094 | Location: Knoxville, Tennessee | Registered: Sep 27, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        All

        Thanks for the information - and sorry for being offline for a bit. We started on some yard project and got distracted - though this one is still open for me. Attached is a picture. I am still hoping I can find a solution other than taking the whole tub out. Once again thanks for the discussion and appreciate your opinion.

         
        Posts: 4 | Registered: Aug 04, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        Based on the pic above - I can put a shower door on the front. I would still need to figure out a way to either raise the tile deck on the back wall or somehow cover that up and the same on the side wall for the water to drain.
         
        Posts: 4 | Registered: Aug 04, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Jaybee
        posted Hide Post
        Ah, a picture is worth a thousand words.

        The short story: Not going to be easy to do in your case. It can be done with your style tub, but it will take a complete rebuild or the surround.

        The longer story: It's not a matter of building up the deck level - even getting the tile to the same or slightly higher level compared to the tub edge will not work. As Jasman pointed out in his post - tile and grout are not waterproof. Two things would have to be done to turn this into a real tub/shower:

        1. After removing the fiberglass tub, you'll need to install a lip around the edges of both sides and the back. This only needs to be about 2" high and can be attached with screws or rivets, but MUST be sealed with a good 100% silicon. I've used thin vinyl and 45 mil rubber that work fine. You could also probably use aluminum flashing. The purpose is to create a raised lip - much like you see molded into any tub that is already designed for use as a tub/shower.

        2. Then you will have to reinstall the tub so that the three walls of the surround can overlap this lip. In effect, pulling the back wall in by about 6" and the two side walls in by an inch or two. So you'll have new framing, a liner, backerboard and then your new tile. Kerdi as a backer will work very well with this. The shower door on the front will work well for that plane.

        The main problem with all that is that it's not a small project. You will totally have to gut and rebuild the entire tub/shower area. But there is no easy to simply modify what you have to keep from getting water damage. In addition, I don't know how tall the existing tile is but since it was never set up as a shower, just a tub there is a good chance that the wall tile is jut attached to a backer or even drywall. This is good enough for the occasional splash from a tub but cannot remain waterproof if used as a shower.

        Bottom line here is that all you will be reusing will be the tub. That being the case and if it has some age on it you'd be better off getting a different tub that already has a molded in lip to be used as a shower.

        Thanks for posting back BTW. Your decision now as to how much work & money you want to do for this.

        OH, BTW #2 - If you want to make this a shower/tub for the least amount of money possible, then Jasmans suggestion of a circular tub curtain will work.

        This message has been edited. Last edited by: Jaybee,


        Jaybee
         
        Posts: 10094 | Location: Knoxville, Tennessee | Registered: Sep 27, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        Thanks Jaybee for the detailed response and explanation on the issues. Do you think even if I put on the curtain (U Shaped), the wall where the shower head will go might still be a concern due to water splash. It is tiled but I don't know if it is tiled just on drywall or any waterproof material.

        I might just go with the curtain option for now and at some point probably remodel the whole bathroom - which is a bigger deal.

        Paresh
         
        Posts: 4 | Registered: Aug 04, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Jaybee
        posted Hide Post
        As long as the curtain will direct all the water into the tub is should work fine. The weak point will be any water that may splash up over the curtain or somehow get around it will tend to collect in the area between the edge of the tub and the wall. Even this, if it's just the occasional thing or is wiped up with a sponge immediately should work out OK.


        Jaybee
         
        Posts: 10094 | Location: Knoxville, Tennessee | Registered: Sep 27, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        posted Hide Post
        Sorry Jaybee, but your description #1 will not work. Sealing the edge with silicone is not the issue.

        A "U" shaped curtain will protect 3/4 of the job. How about the plumbing wall, how're you gonna get the water to go up over the lip and down the drain?

        It's a soaking-tub, that's all it'll ever be unless you can find curtain that does a 360. But then who controls the valve?

        Jaz


        Tile 4 You llc - Troy, MI
        Kerdi shower specialist - Ditra installs - Product-Method suitability consultation. I have NEVER made a mistake, I thought I did once...........but I was wrong!
         
        Posts: 43 | Registered: Apr 18, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
        Picture of Jaybee
        posted Hide Post
        quote:
        Originally posted by JazMan:
        Sorry Jaybee, but your description #1 will not work. Sealing the edge with silicone is not the issue.

        Since I am referring to a process that does exist and does work, I'm afraid that I must disagree with your opinion.

        A "U" shaped curtain will protect 3/4 of the job. How about the plumbing wall, how're you gonna get the water to go up over the lip and down the drain?

        My bad. I did not pick up on onlytp saying "U shaped". I think both you and I are referring to a full circle curtain - the type seen in those old free-standing clawfoot tubs.

        It's a soaking-tub, that's all it'll ever be unless you can find curtain that does a 360. But then who controls the valve?

        There will not be a perfect solution for this one. But onlytp is asking if it's possible to turn his tub into a tub/shower. Our job is to give him the benefit of our knowledge and experience so he can then decide what he should do. for the record, my professional opinion is that a curtain could work (yes, a 360 degree one) but it would be awkward to use and would look rather strange. Rebuilding the tub and surround as I described in my other posts above would also work, but frankly if I were going to all the expense of a complete tear-out then I would recommend getting a whirlpool tub that is designed for tub/shower use.

        Jaz


        Jaybee
         
        Posts: 10094 | Location: Knoxville, Tennessee | Registered: Sep 27, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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