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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
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    Default How to remove old acrylic grab bar from molded tub/shower & replace with new one?

    I have a molded tub/shower with an acrylic grab bar built into the soap holder on the center of the shower wall. The grommets on the grab bar have deteriorated and need to be replaced badly to keep water from seeping behind the shower. I can twist the bar about a half turn but no more. Can someone please tell me how to remove the old grab bar and replace it with a new one? Thank you for any help.
    robjef

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    7,242

    Default Re: How to remove old acrylic grab bar from molded tub/shower & replace with new one

    I believe that most of those are molded into place. Basically, they make the tub, drill the holes, insert the grab bar, then fiberglass the ends of the holes to keep the bar in place. You're probably going to have to just silicone the grab bar in place.
    Last edited by A. Spruce; 01-30-2014 at 11:36 PM.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Houston Texas
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    2,969

    Default Re: How to remove old acrylic grab bar from molded tub/shower & replace with new one

    How pretty do you want this to look ?

    You can caulk it into place with a waterproof sealant such as Kerdi - fix, Sikaflex, a good Urethane, a good RTV, if you can find one in white (or the color of your tub). I know Kerdi Fix comes in White for around $23 a tube.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Portland, Oregon, formerly of Chicago
    Posts
    1,808

    Default Re: How to remove old acrylic grab bar from molded tub/shower & replace with new one

    Plain old GE white bath silicone or 3M urethane marine sealant should work fine. Both are available for about $5 at Home Depot for a squeeze tube, which will be more than plenty. You don't need a regular caulk tube.

    If the grommets are rubber, you should be able to slice of the part that is visible by running a single edge razor blade around the edge. Once removed, tape off the plastic rod about an eighth inch away from the fiberglass. Take some two inch masking tape and cut a circle in it about a quarter inch bigger in diameter than rod diameter. Slice the tape in half and place it around the rod. Now put the caulk around the exposed rod where it enters the fiberglas. Smooth with your finger, pull the tape immediately, wet your finger and gently smooth out the caulk. You should get a neat, non-amateurish looking caulk bead.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: How to remove old acrylic grab bar from molded tub/shower & replace with new one

    I appreciate all the responses and agree with everything thats been said. I guess what I am looking for is a method of actually changing the grab bar and the grommets due to the fact that I have found that you can purchase both the acrylic bar and rubber replacement grommets for this purpose. I'm assuming that if you can purchase these items there must be an approved way to do it. I have read forums where people have actually bought the replacement items for the job, but they never state how to do the job. Thanks again for any and all help.
    robjef

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    7,242

    Default Re: How to remove old acrylic grab bar from molded tub/shower & replace with new one

    If you know of a particular kit for the job, then you need to research that kit. The manufacturer will likely have the instruction manual on-line for you to see if it will work for your situation. If not, a few emails to said company should get you the info you need. Good luck, please report back.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    2,203

    Default Re: How to remove old acrylic grab bar from molded tub/shower & replace with new one

    I'm wondering if the lack of comments from the buyers is because they didn't want to admit to making a mistake in finding they too can't install the new rod

    With all of these I've seen the grommets are the first part that fails under normal usage. And with all of these I've seen, the bar is held captive by the shell and not removable except from the back. You'd have to cut some material away, work the rod out, install the new, and then find a way to hold it captive again.

    Silicone might work for a fix, but it is a lot softer than the rubber it would replace so I'm not sure how long it would last. A butyl rubber caulking might do better. I'd be more inclined to try hot-melt glue from a glue-gun as it dries much harder and should be more durable.

    Another option would be to push the old grommet into the hole, then cut a new grommet on one side (making a "C" shape) and working it into place, gluing the ends together as best you can. I'm not sure how long that would last either.

    Phil

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