Should Mortar or Construction Adhesive be used for Jacuzzi Tub Base
By Mark J. Donovan
||Jacuzzi tubs have grown in popularity over the years. The pressure jets associated with Jacuzzi tubs provide high velocity streams of heated water and air to the occupants of the tub that provide for a comforting and relaxing bath experience. As a result of their popularity many do it yourself homeowners are installing their own Jacuzzi tubs nowadays. During the installation process the question often arises on whether or not a mortar or construction adhesive should be used in the base.
The short answer is a mortar base is preferred, however always defer to the Jacuzzi tub manufacturer’s directions.
So why is a mortar base preferred over using construction adhesive?
The answer is quite simple. Jacuzzis tubs are made out of fiberglass materials that are fairly rigid, but do flex to some degree. This flexing causes stresses on the Jacuzzi tub as well as creates squeaks. By resting the Jacuzzi tub in a bed of mortar any gaps, or voids, between the subfloor and the base of the Jacuzzi tub are filled. By filling the voids, the Jacuzzi tub is better supported and is less apt for flexing or squeaking.
On the other hand, simply applying a construction adhesive on the bottom surfaces of the support spacer blocks will prevent lateral movement of the tub, but does nothing in regards to offering additional support.
Next, immediately drape a layer of polyethylene plastic over the soft mortar bed.
Then immediately apply construction adhesive to the bottom of the Jacuzzi tub support spacer blocks.
Finally install greenboard or cement backerboard to the outside surface areas of the Jacuzzi tub area. Note that if you plan to tile around the Jacuzzi tub it is important to use a cement backerboard as it is meant for wet environments. Greenboard will not hold up to repeated moisture exposure.
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