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Question DetailsAsked on 10/15/2014

Who should I hire for bathtub replacement? Handyman? Plumber?

I'm DIYing most of my bathroom renovation, but would rather have someone else come in to do a few things:
-Install new tub (same size and spot)
-Reconnect plumbing (including replacing any broken parts from demo)
-Install new greenboard (or similar, as appropriate) before I do tile work myself

So who would be best to do this job? A handyman, carpenter, or plumber?

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1 Answer


Here is a recent answer to another similar question that might help -

Plumber can install the tub and hook it up. I am surprised you want the greenboard done by a contractor - no more difficult than putting up drywall, and of course you seal the joints with a different material - but not tough, and lots of how-to videos on the web. If you want someone else to do it, a tilelayer would be the most expert in getting the underlying water barrier and the green board in and sealed right, but finding one who will do just that without the tile part is probably going to be pretty hard. A handyman could do it, but honestly you are probably better off doing it yourselfif you do a bit of research and pay attention to how water flows when leaks occur.

Another recommendation - concrete backer board cost versus green board is minimal - why not just go with the truly waterproof material instead of the cheap joke route and use concrete backer board - especially behind tile, which should not use green board as a backer anyway regardless of installation method. (Yes, I know, millions of showers are done over green board with mastic adhesive to put tile up, and some make it decadeswithout leaks - but I have also seen $10-30,000 repair jobs from ones that leaked for years and rotted out flooring and structural members,so why risk it.

Green board was originally developed for water resistance in areas that have high humidity and occasional splash like near tubs and showers, locker rooms, laundry rooms, etc - but only has limited water resistance and it is not waterproof nor truly water resistant. Because it is a lot lighter and easier to cut, it migrated into use behind formica, then fiberglass then acrylic shower/tub surrounds, which I guess is OK till the seams leak. However, you WILL get slightly leaky grout joints over the years unless you touch up the grout at least yearly, so just use the right product right off the bat, and make sure the interface with the tub lip is correct so anyhting coming down the water barrier or backer board ends up in the tub, not under it.

Answered 5 years ago by LCD

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