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Install a floor-mount bathtub faucet

A floor-mount faucet (also called a tub filler) adds a touch of sophistication to a freestanding or clawfoot bathtub. It will instantly create an elegant design statement in your bathroom.

This project describes how to install a floor-mount faucet once the rough plumbing is in place beneath the floor. The advantage of a freestanding installation is that the faucet pipe is exposed (no walls, access panels, etc.), providing an unrestricted work area. The project is simple and straightforward, with no soldering involved. However, it may be necessary to reinforce the floor, which requires basic carpentry skills.

Before you start

For this project, it is assumed that the water supply and drain pipes are already in place and directly accessible beneath the floor.

Before installing the bathtub and faucet, you need to make sure the floor is perfectly level and sturdy. It must be strong enough to support 50 lb/sq. ft.

There are two types of floor-mount tub fillers available: single-riser (single-leg or monobloc) models and dual-riser models. The installation method differs for each. Single-riser faucets are completely freestanding and so must be secured firmly to the floor, while those with two risers are additionally attached to the tub drain or the wall. The following project provides detailed steps on how to install a single-riser faucet.

The exposed section of the faucet is installed once the finished floor is in place, to prevent any damage to the pipe.

Before you begin, turn off the water supply by closing the shut-off valves. If there are no shut-offs, then you will need to close your home's main water valve.

The following steps may vary depending on the faucet model. Make sure you refer to the manufacturer's installation instructions for more details.


Prepare for installation

  • 1.1 - Determine where on the floor the supply lines are located.
  • 1.2 - Mark out an opening of approximately 7" x 7" on the floor.
  • 1.3 - Drill a hole in one corner to insert the jigsaw blade. Cut out the opening with the jigsaw.
  • 1.4 - Determine the height of your faucet spout, remembering to account for the height of the finished floor.
  • 1.5 - Screw down a 6"-wide wood support, 2" to 3" below the floor surface. Adjust according to the height of the faucet base and make sure that the mounting flange (escutcheon mounting plate) is level with the finished surface of the floor. The wood support should be at least 2" thick.
  • 1.6 - Lower the faucet onto the support and turn the spout to the inside of the bathtub.
  • 1.7 - Check and adjust the distance of the spout in relation to the tub.
  • 1.8 - Once you have noted down these measurements, temporarily mount the whole faucet (and its base) with screws and washers. Tighten only slightly.
  • 1.9 - Check that the hot and cold water supply lines are aligned with the inlet connections on each side of the base. If they are not, make the necessary modifications to lengthen or shorten the supply lines.
  • 1.10 - Test the handle to make sure that full rotation of the spout will not interfere with the tub or the wall.

Install the faucet base

  • 2.1 - Unfasten the faucet base.
  • 2.2 - Decide the position of the faucet base on the support and mark the location of the mounting holes.
  • 2.3 - Drill the holes as marked.
  • 2.4 - Fasten the base to the support with the screws and washers.
  • 2.5 - Check that the base is firmly attached and level. Tighten if necessary.

Connect the water supply

  • 3.1 - Wrap thread seal tape around the hot and cold supply lines.
  • 3.2 - Connect the supply lines to the faucet base. Refer to the manufacturer's instructions or colour code to determine which line (hot or cold) goes into which side.
  • 3.3 - Insert the plug(s) into the opening(s) in the base.
  • 3.4 - Turn on the main water supply valves and leave open for two hours in order to check for leaks.
  • 3.5 - Turn off the water supply and remove the mounting flange and plug.
  • 3.6 - Fasten the guard onto the base.

Finish the floor

  • 4.1 - Close the floor opening with a piece of plywood, leaving a 3" diameter hole for the guard.
  • 4.2 - Lay the finished flooring throughout the room.
  • 4.3 - Cut off the top of the plastic guard so that it is flush with the finished floor.

Install the faucet

The following steps may vary depending on the faucet model. Refer to the manufacturer's installation instructions for specific details.
  • 5.1 - Thread the mounting flange onto the bottom of the riser and place it over the internal pipe.
  • 5.2 - Connect the bottom of the riser to the internal pipe and secure the flange.
  • 5.3 - Attach the hot and cold water handles to the faucet as necessary, after installing the riser.
  • 5.4 - Depending on the model, attach (screw on) the hand shower holder to the bottom or top of the faucet.
  • 5.5 - Tape the thread of the faucet pipe that will connect to the hand shower hose.
  • 5.6 - Tape the thread of the hand shower.
  • 5.7 - Thread the hose into the hand shower and tighten with a wrench.
  • 5.8 - Thread the other end of the hose into the faucet pipe and tighten.

Test the newly installed faucet

  • 6.1 - Check that all the connections are tight.
  • 6.2 - Turn on the main water supply valves and leave open for two hours.
  • 6.3 - Check for any sign of leaks.
  • 6.4 - Run the hot water and then the cold water.

Install the escutcheon

  • 7.1 - Slide the decorative escutcheon to the floor to conceal the foot of the faucet.
  • 7.2 - Seal the floor joint with silicone.

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