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How to Install a Clawfoot Tub Faucet

by Jess Buskirk

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Clawfoot tub faucet

Things You Need:

  • Plumber's tape
  • Basin wrench
  • Smooth-jawed adjustable wrench

Once you've put your new clawfoot tub in place and the plumbing is ready to go, you'll need to install the right bathroom faucet for your clawfoot tub. Your bathtub faucet will likely come with the necessary hardware and directions for the various mounting options. Every clawfoot bathtub faucet is going to mount a little differently, depending on the faucet's style, the mounting location and manufacturer, but the general process is the same for every clawfoot bathtub faucet installation.

Instructions:

  1. Check your plumbing codes. The code for your municipality may be very specific about the location of the faucet's spout, the connection to the supply lines or even the type of faucet you install. You'll need to cross-reference the relevant plumbing codes with the faucet manufacturer's directions.

  2. Shut off the water supply. In most cases, the bathtub supply lines will have shutoff valves you can simply close. If valves aren't available, shut off the water at the meter.

  3. Mount the faucet. Follow the manufacturer's directions. Where you mount the bathtub faucet will depend on the type of faucet and the style of clawfoot tub. You may have a free-standing faucet, deck-mounted faucet, hand-shower faucet or standard tub faucet. Some clawfoot tubs come with holes pre-drilled into the deck for easy faucet installation.

  4. Connect the supply lines. Attach the supply lines to their respective hot and cold water feeds. Coat the threaded ends in either plumber's putty or tape before screwing in the connections. It may take some adjusting to get a tight connection. Then connect the supply line arms to the faucet.

  5. Turn on the water and test the faucet. Make sure the hot and cold taps are in the same position when turned off. Allow the cold water to run for a few minutes, checking the connections for leaks. If you notice water beading at the connections, shut off the water supply and re-tighten the connections, adjusting the plumber's tape if necessary. After you've determined the cold water line is not leaking, test the hot water tap.

Warnings and Tips:

  1. The hot water tap always goes on the left.

  2. If a smooth-jawed adjustable wrench isn't available, place a rag between the jaws of your wrench and the chrome pipes to avoid scratches.

  3. Read your warranty. It may be voided if the faucet is not installed by a licensed plumber.

  4. Do not test the faucet before the drain has been installed.

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