A Guide to Selecting, Installing, and Caring for Fiberglass Bathware

Fiberglass bathware has become a popular choice for modern bathrooms due to its durability, ease of maintenance, and sleek appearance. Whether you're undertaking a new construction project or planning a bathroom renovation, understanding how to select, install, and care for fiberglass fixtures can ensure long-term satisfaction. Here’s everything you need to know about working with fiberglass bathware.
Disclaimer: This guide provides general information based on current best practices and is intended for educational purposes only. Always follow local codes and manufacturer instructions when installing and maintaining bathware. If unsure, consult with a professional plumber or bathroom renovation specialist.

Selecting Fiberglass Bathware

When choosing fiberglass bathware, such as bathtubs, shower stalls, and combo units, consider the following factors:
  1. Quality of Gel Coat: The gel coat finish on fiberglass bathware not only impacts its appearance but also its resistance to staining and ease of cleaning. Ensure the surface is flawless to avoid issues with maintenance and aesthetics.
  2. Size and Configuration: Standard fiberglass tubs and showers typically measure about 5 feet long and are available in various widths and heights to suit different bathroom layouts. Measure your space carefully and consider how the unit will be brought into the room—especially in remodels where space might be constrained.
  3. Color and Style: Most units come in standard white, but custom colors are available to match other bathroom fixtures. Choose a style that complements your bathroom’s décor.
  4. Structural Integrity: Check the reinforcement of the base and sidewalls. Fiberglass units are generally strong, but verifying the structural integrity ensures durability.

Installing Fiberglass Bathware

Proper installation is crucial to the longevity and functionality of your fiberglass unit. Here’s how to install it correctly:
  1. Preparation: Before installation, ensure the bathroom framing accommodates the new unit. This includes having a stud at the front edge of the unit to attach the nailer flange, and ensuring that the area for the faucet and plumbing is free from obstructions.
  2. Setting the Unit:
    • Positioning: Carefully move the fiberglass unit into the designated space. For remodels, consider units that can be assembled on-site if access is limited.
    • Securing: Attach the unit to the framing using the flanges provided. Use screws and fasteners as recommended by the manufacturer. Ensure the unit is level to prevent future drainage issues.
  3. Plumbing Connections:
    • Drain and Seal: Apply silicone caulk or a rubber seal to the drain for a watertight connection. Ensure compatibility with your existing plumbing.
    • Faucet Installation: Install the faucet and shower fittings, taking care not to damage the gel coat. Use hole saws or sabre saws for any cuts, protecting the surface with masking tape.
  4. Final Steps:
    • Check all connections for leaks.
    • Seal joints and edges with silicone caulk to prevent water ingress.

Caring for Fiberglass Bathware

Proper maintenance can significantly extend the life and appearance of your fiberglass fixtures. Follow these tips:
  1. Regular Cleaning: Use non-abrasive cleaners designed for fiberglass. Avoid harsh chemicals and abrasive scrubbing tools that can damage the gel coat.
  2. Polishing: Occasionally apply a good quality automotive polish to maintain the luster of the gel coat.
  3. Avoid Heat Damage: Keep heat sources like lamps and heat guns away from fiberglass surfaces to prevent melting or warping.
  4. Repair Scratches: Small scratches or chips can often be repaired with a gel coat repair kit. Follow the manufacturer's instructions carefully to match the color and finish.


Fiberglass bathware is an excellent choice for both aesthetic appeal and long-term durability. By carefully selecting, properly installing, and diligently maintaining your fiberglass fixtures, you can enjoy a beautiful and functional bathroom for many years. Grover is here to help—but it's wise to consider professional help for complex installations or when working with plumbing connections to ensure safety and compliance with local building codes. PDF Download for Reference
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