How to Remove a Garden Tub

If you’re considering removing your garden tub, you know it’s no simple task. Whether you’re hoping to create more space in the bathroom or reduce costs on water and energy bills, taking out a garden tub is a substantial job that can feel intimidating. But don’t give up yet – with some knowledge of the process and the right tools, tackling this project isn’t impossible. If you’re ready to take on this challenging project, here’s a simple guide to help you get started.

Preparing Your Bathroom

Before you start removing your garden tub, it’s a good idea to get your bathroom ready. Clear out any items like toiletries, rugs, and shower curtains. This will not only give you space to work but also prevent any damage to your belongings. If you have other fixtures near the tub, consider covering them to protect from dust and debris.

Tools You Will Need

To start, make sure you have these tools at hand:

  • Hammer
  • Chisel
  • Pry bar
  • Utility knife
  • Wrench
  • Saw
  • Gloves
  • Goggles
  • Protective attire

Safety Measures

Keep these safety tips in mind before you begin:

  • Switch off the water and electrical supply in the bathroom.
  • Protect yourself with gloves, goggles, and proper attire to avoid any injuries.
  • Use drop cloths or plastic sheets to shield the floor and nearby surfaces from potential damage and make cleaning up easier.

Tile Removal

The first step is to get rid of the lower tiles around the tub. Using a hammer and a chisel, start at one corner and work your way around, chipping away at the tiles. Be careful not to damage the wall or floor. If possible, try to keep some tiles intact for reuse or proper disposal later.

Detaching the Tub

Next, it’s time to loosen the tub from the surrounding wall. Using your utility knife, score the grout between the tub and the wall. Then, with the pry bar, start pulling the tub away from the wall. It might take some effort, but keep going until the tub starts to move. 

Dealing with Plumbing and Electrical Connections

During the removal process, you might come across various plumbing and electrical connections linked to the tub. It’s essential to approach this with caution. You might need a wrench to disconnect water pipes and valves. When it comes to electrical connections, use a screwdriver or wire cutter to detach wires and switches safely. If you are unsure, consulting with a professional is advised.

Breaking Up the Tub

Once the tub is loose, it’s time to break it down into smaller pieces for easy disposal. Choose a saw suitable for the material of your tub, and begin cutting it into smaller sections. Exercise caution to prevent injuries, and remember to dispose of the parts responsibly according to local guidelines.

Post-Removal Cleanup

Once the tub is removed, there will be a bit of a mess to clean up. Sweep up any debris and dust to prevent it from spreading to other areas of your home. If there were tiles surrounding the tub, there might be adhesive residue on the floor or walls. You can clean this with a suitable cleaner and a scraper. 

Planning Your New Shower or Tub

Thinking of installing a new shower or tub? Now is the moment to plan. Consider the space available and choose a design that complements your bathroom. Installation can be a bit complex, so hiring a professional to do this might be a good idea. They can ensure that the new installation meets all safety and functional requirements.


How much time should I allocate for the garden tub removal process?

The removal of a garden tub is quite a labor-intensive task. On average, you can expect the process to take anywhere between 4 to 8 hours, depending upon the complexity of the setup and your familiarity with the necessary tools and procedures. Allocate sufficient time to allow for a careful and unhurried removal, ensuring your safety and the protection of your bathroom’s infrastructure.

What costs are involved in removing a garden tub?

Removing a garden tub can incur various costs. If you’re undertaking the project yourself, you’ll need to account for the costs of tools and safety gear, which can vary widely depending on what you already have on hand. Additionally, you might face disposal fees for the old tub. If you choose to hire a professional, the costs will be higher, but this comes with the benefit of a quicker, potentially safer removal. Get a few quotes from local contractors to gauge the expected costs in your area.

Can I repurpose my old garden tub?

Certainly, repurposing your old garden tub is a creative and sustainable option. Garden tubs can be transformed into unique garden planters, outdoor seating, or even a small pond feature in your backyard. Before you decide to dispose of it, consider the various ways it might be given a second life in your home or garden. It could become a standout feature and a talking point amongst your guests.

What are some modern alternatives to a garden tub?

If you’re considering replacing your garden tub, modern alternatives might include walk-in showers, which are both stylish and space-saving. These showers can come with various features, such as rain shower heads, built-in benches, and steam capabilities. Freestanding tubs are also a popular choice, offering a luxurious and contemporary aesthetic to your bathroom. Whichever option you choose, ensure it complements your bathroom’s style and meets your functional needs.

How can I make my bathroom more eco-friendly after removing the garden tub?

Post garden tub removal, you might want to think about making your bathroom more eco-friendly. Consider installing a low-flow showerhead to reduce water usage, or perhaps opt for a dual-flush toilet. Utilize energy-efficient lighting and think about integrating greenery into your bathroom for a natural aesthetic and improved air quality. Additionally, choosing materials and finishes that are sustainable can further enhance the eco-friendliness of your bathroom.

Final Thoughts

There you have it! While removing a garden tub isn’t an easy task, with some preparation and the right tools, you can certainly do it. If the task seems overwhelming, remember that professionals are just a call away to assist you.