How do I remove these bathtub skirt panels?

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by HGG, Feb 16, 2017.

  1. HGG

    HGG New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2017
    Location:
    Massachusetts and Minnesota
    Our bathtub has a wooden skirt with 4 panels. I need to access under the tub but, for the life of me, I can't figure out how to open the panels. I can pull out the bottom of each panel a couple of inches, but that's it.

    There isn't clearance at the top to swing open any further. I can't pull the panel down with any level of reasonable force. There are two clips inside at the top of the panel (a few inches from either end) but I can't locate any way to disconnect. Pushing or pulling at the top (to the extent I can) has no effect.

    Suggestions?
     

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  2. ben in il

    ben in il New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2012
    Location:
    Illinois
    From the tub we had with a panel, once you pulled out the bottom, next step was to pull down toward the floor to disengage the clips at the top. Typically that required a bit of wiggling of the panel as the clips were pretty stiff.
     
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  4. HGG

    HGG New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2017
    Location:
    Massachusetts and Minnesota
    Thanks. I can't see any way other than what you described but as hard as I wiggle, I can't get any of them to budge. I don't know if spraying some silicone in the area of the clips might help (assuming I could get a spray "straw" into the gap at the top).
     
  5. ben in il

    ben in il New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2012
    Location:
    Illinois
    How about trying to slide it up first? Might be a lip on the upper clips.
    Next step: flashlight and small mirror to see if you can get a peek as to what you're dealing with.
     
  6. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    The previous owner of the house might know, or at least know who installed the tub. Most previous owners would try to be helpful.
     
  7. Highlander

    Highlander Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Location:
    Ontario
    Or maybe you could you put the lens of your phone camera at that small opening and try to shoot some pics of the inside?

    I'm remembering seeing some built-in cabinet doors that had "touch latches" to keep a streamlined look and avoid pull knobs - you pushed it closed and it latched, pushed it in a bit again and it would pop out - maybe try that as well?
     
  8. Master Plumber Mark

    Master Plumber Mark Sensitivity trainer and plumber of mens souls

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    Feb 6, 2005
    Occupation:
    Sensitivity trainer.. and plumber of mens souls
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    indianapolis indiana - land of the free, home of
    why not just pry on it till it breaks???
     
  9. HGG

    HGG New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2017
    Location:
    Massachusetts and Minnesota
    It can't move up as that movement is blocked by the piece above it.

    This is a condo. The previous owner is long gone and probably wouldn't know anyway.

    I tried pushing (mentioned in my initial post) in case the latch works that way but no luck.

    What I need is a small dental type mirror to get into the small opening. I can't even get my hand in there (with phone) but I'll see if my wife can. I suppose one of those borescopes would be useful here.

    I can shut off the master water valve instead of the valve under the tub (for this repair) but would like to know for future reference.

    Thanks for the suggestions. I have a feeling that if/when I finally get it open it will be one of the "duh" moments.
     
  10. Master Plumber Mark

    Master Plumber Mark Sensitivity trainer and plumber of mens souls

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Occupation:
    Sensitivity trainer.. and plumber of mens souls
    Location:
    indianapolis indiana - land of the free, home of
    you wold be wise to just shut down the whole house and let sleeping dogs lie...
    you probably are not gonna find any money in there
     
  11. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2004
    Occupation:
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    Location:
    New England
    No idea if it uses this sort of latch, but have you tried pushing in on the top of the panel? Some latches are spring loaded, and pressing against the spring will open the latch, then, when reinstalling, pressing again will cause it to latch. Let us know.

    Did they use this sort of panel on other units in your condominium? If so, one of the other owners, or if they have a maintenance company doing regular work there, may know.
     
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