Installing new tub walls out of square

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by larman, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. larman

    larman New Member

    Sep 2, 2011
    Long Island NY
    Im installing new tub walls out of square. What is the best method to getting these walls square so I can set the tub?
  2. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Jan 5, 2008
    Test, Don't Guess!
    Land of Cheese
    Unless the inside and outside of all the walls are already stripped to bare studs, I wouldn't recommend trying. More often than not, you can use shims to set the tub square and then shim the studs/wallboard to match.
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  4. nestork

    nestork Janitorial Technician

    Aug 5, 2012
    How far out of square are they?

    If you're planning to tile those walls, then the walls can be out by quite a bit because the thickness of the tile backer board, thin set and tile is gonna add up to a full inch or so.
  5. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Aug 31, 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    You can't "square" the walls before you set the tub. Install the tub, then do whatever is necessary to fit the tiled areas to the tub.
  6. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Aug 17, 2004
    Bothell, Washington
    Measure 4 x 3 to find square.
    From the corner, four feet, then three feet the other way. The diangle measurement will be five feet.


    Plumbers use this method all the time for their ground works. You have to be able to determine a square if a framer is following your work.
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2012
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Sep 2, 2004
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    New England
    If you're planning a pre-fab wall system, you really need to square up the walls before installing them, or you'll have a big problem keeping it waterproof. Shims or sistered studs would work, sisters may be easier.

    It is MUCH easier to square the walls if you want to tile them, too. The cuts and alignment of the tile just come out nicer. Getting it nice and flat when setting the tile can be done, but takes a lot more time and skill.
  8. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple BATHROOM DESIGN & BUILD for both Canada & the US

    Jul 20, 2009
    Design Work World Wide: Bathrooms Vancouver Area
    North Vancouver, BC
    The wall might have been bumped durning construction. Is this new construction?

    Check the wall for plumb. If it is leaning out of plumb because the lower section of wall was bumped a 25pound sledge is your best friend. Sometimes all these walls need is a little "Love Tap".

    Now if it is a renovation then you will need to get creative.

    If you need to remove say a 1/4" of wood on one stud to make the tub slide into place you can make a series of cross cuts in the 2"x4" about 3/4" apart from each other. Then with the back side of a framing hammer or with a carpenters hammer and chisel chip out these bits of wood. Using a saws-all with a sharp short wood blade makes short work out of this step. It should take less than 10 minutes to complete.

    Make sure you know what the stud does. If it is a bearing wall you will not want to be removing mass from the wall studs.

    Good Luck.

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