Shower Before & After with Tub Surround Tutorial

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Hey Y’all!
Today, I want to share our shower before & after pictures as well as a little tutorial on how to install a new tub surround. Are you with me?!
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
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The last time we chatted about the bathroom, I told you we were in the process of installing a new tub surround because our current shower situation looked a little something like this….
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Sad, but TRUE!!!
Anyway, we took down all of the old tile, ripped out all of the old sheet rock, and took things down to the studs. Then we put up a mildew & moisture resistant barrier (purple board) & waited for the drywall guy to come & do his thing….
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
He came in & finished the job in just 2 hours & only charged us $75.00. That included the cost of his materials….I thought that was a pretty darn good deal! Not only did he do a good job, but now I won’t ever have to worry about whether the job was done right in the first place! You just can’t put a price tag on peace of mind people! Agree?!
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial

Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
After the mud was dry, we just lightly sanded the wall & put a couple coats of paint on the wall above where the new tub surround would be. My dad came the next day & with my hubby, they got to work on the installation! For information on the tub surround we purchased, see this post.
 The new surround came in five different pieces. One piece for the back wall, two side wall pieces, & two corner pieces. I am gonna walk you through the installation process & show you how easy this product was to use. 
To start, a level line must be established to align the top of the panels. To do this, we taped the corner pieces to the wall & used a level to draw a line connect them. 
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
You want to also continue that line on the side walls as well. 
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Once we had our lines drawn, my dad focused first on the side panel which would cover the plumbing fixtures. He measured & marked the location of the plumbing fixtures on the BACK SIDE of the panel.
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Then using the proper size hole saw, he cut out the plumbing fixture holes.
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Ensure that the holes fit properly over the fixtures.
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Once this step was done, he & my husband dry fit all the panels to the wall. The aligned the panels with the pencil line & taped in place with painter’s tape. If panels do not align, this is probably due to the fact that the bathtub isn’t level. Trim the bottoms of the panels to follow the slope of the bathtub. 
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
 Tape panels to wall with painter’s tape…
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial

Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Now it’s time to glue your panels to the wall!
We used this to glue our panels to the wall….
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
We purchased it at Lowes when we purchased the tub surround.
Starting with the side panels, apply adhesive to the back side of panel using a caulk gun….
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Apply the adhesive in an “S” pattern from the top to the bottom of the panel and also on the outside edges.
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Press the panel to the wall & with a rag, rub the panel from top to bottom to smooth out adhesive & release any air bubbles. If using a solvent-based adhesive, pull the panel away from the wall for 30 seconds to allow solvents (gases) to escape. Re-press panel firmly against the wall. 
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Once the panel is on the wall, you will want to again, tape the panel to the wall until the adhesive is completely dry. Follow directions on the adhesive container for recommended drying times.
Once the side panels are glued to the wall, using theses same steps, glue the back panel on next, followed by the two corner pieces. The corner pieces will overlap the side & back panels. 
We allowed our tub surround 24 hours to dry & then went back & applied a sealant (caulk) to all the seams. 
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
We waited another 24 hours after caulking the seams before using the bathtub/shower.

So, do you want to see what the tub looks like now?!

Here she is……
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Nice, clean, & more importantly USABLE!!!
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
You can see we all added a vinyl caping along the upper edge of the surround. That was just done to give it a more finished look. This is completely optional!
And just because we all like a good before & after…..
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
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Quite the improvement, eh?!
And just in case you are wondering how to keep your kids occupied & more importantly, OUT OF THE WAY while you are working…..
Tub Surround Installation Tutorial
Just give them the box that the tub surround came in! I will keep them busy for hours DAYS!!!
Seriously, these boys have been obsessed with this box since we put the tub surround in on Saturday! I’m thinking I’m just gonna take the easy way out this Christmas & get them a bunch of cardboard boxes!! Anyone else?!
Hope you found this tutorial helpful & as always THANK YOU SO MUCH for stopping by!!
I hope you have a Lovely Wednesday!! 🙂

Linking up here….
Happy Hour Linky Party at Craftberry Bush
November Before & After Party at Thrifty Decor Chick
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  1. Anonymous says:

    It turned out great!!! I love how you kept the boys occupied, christmas is going to be really easy this year, cardboard boxes are pretty easy to come by and inexpensive!!! lol!!


  2. I am seriously impressed!!! That is a project I would never be brave enough to take on as a DIY project. You did GREAT!!!!

  3. It really looks great, you are making me feel brave like I can do this stuff! Did you pick this option instead of tile because it’s easier to clean?

  4. Fantastic!

  5. Anonymous says:

    WOW! that turned out awesome! I’m really impressed with how that turned out. I’m so happy for u guys! As always tonga another great make over!

    Love ya


  6. Tonya, the tub looks GREAT!!! Love how you just keep it so real and picture the tub with toys in it. I know you mentioned it in an earlier post. That’s my style… outta sight, outta mind. It’s sorta bad for me. LOL. Way to go on that $75 job! We’ve learned the hard way (a few too many times), insisting that a DIY would save us money and that the DIY too easy to do to pay someone else for. PSSShhhhh (rolling my eyes at the hubster). Oh and by the way I’m reading this at my desk. Of course the office this morning is quiet… SUPER quiet! I literally laughed out loud when I saw that smile/smirk from Mr.Love of Family and Home! HA! I so appreciate your details and pictures (and tips too)… this was such a great tutorial! I’m SOOOO with ya on the cardboard box. WE do the EXACT same. Sometimes we toss a bucket of markers along with the box(es) and they have a BLASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSST making windows and drawing aliens etc. HA!

  7. This post must have been put together just for me! Thank you SO much for sharing, seriously, my husband and I are just now recovering from our first renovation and are getting dangerously close to starting our second round… 3 bathrooms! And you made this looks SO simple! I am going to have to pin this and show my husband later, I have a feeling he will want to get going with bathtubs right away!

  8. I started putting a surround into our bath/shower because the previous one was cracked and letting water through and just plain old and shot. When I peeled off the old surround, there was water damaged sheet rock underneath and the outer walls were exposed in some areas. I filled in the broken sheet rock with particle board and filled the cracks with expanding foam.

    This is what this is all leading up to … I used the very same Loctite Power Grab as shown in your article. I have a 5 peice surround, so the three large sections went in fast and easy. The two corner units remain. The Loctite PowerGrab says in the instructions that it needs one or the other surface to be pourous, it cannot bond plastic to plastic or vinyl to vinyl. It can do tile or wood to plastic or vinyl, but again, not plastic to plastic.

    So then, with these two remaining corner peices… they will overlap the other sections. And according to the Loctite, it is not recommended to bond overlapping tub surround sections. So what then, would be a recommended adhesive to bond overlapping plastic sections?
    The rest of the construction adhesives do not recommend any plastic bonding (Liquid Nails, etc) Maybe PVC cement that you would use in a plumbing/pipe application? Afraid that PVC cement would be too strong for this this, flimsy surround material that I trimmed with household scissors. Did you have an overlapping situation?

  9. I installed what looks to be the same surround 8 years ago. I wish I had this guide then – thanks for the effort !!!

    One thing I discovered: the edges of the panels are slightly porous. The mildew resistance they claim seems to work best on the glazed, sealed surface. In the past year I’ve seen some edges that are more exposed start to turn black, especially where the caulk was thinner. I also have some staining on mildew-resistant caulk in places so I can’t be sure how much infrequent cleanings were to blame.

    Anyway, my two points – 1) try to make sure the vertical seams are well covered/caulked. It’s an art, and a difficult one at that. Research and practice on scraps. 2) If they do go black in time, I found that you can take a sharp knife and trim away 1/8″ of the edge back and re-caulk.

    Overall, I can’t complain given how inexpensive the project was. One can’t expect a $150 alternative to what could have been a $4000 contracted job to last forever. One also probably should clean more than I do. 🙂

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