Average Labour Cost/Price to Fit/Install a Bath

To clarify the following prices it is recommended that you read the article in the INFORMATION box below the PRICES…

(These prices are based on a tradesman’s rate of £150.00 per day and a labourer if required at £100.00 per day. This includes the cost of buying and collecting any materials, dumping any waste if necessary and any incidental materials they will need. The minimum price will usually be for a half day)

How Much Does It Cost To Fit a Bath?

cost to fit a bath

These prices are based on a possible plumber’s rate of £200 per day and a labourer if required at £100 per day. They include the cost of buying and collecting the materials, dumping the waste as necessary and any
incidental materials.

The usual minimum price is for half a days work.

You are paying separately for the bath etc.

We are not going into tiling here, it may be necessary to tile 2 walls and this is dealt with in our tiling section.
Job 1

So, a “like for like” acrylic replacement, with no shower screens etc. to mess about with, will take one chap a good day. This assumes the new bath, taps and panels are in the house waiting for him. We would always price for an extra half day though, because something always goes wrong and just one unexpected extra trip to the merchants will foul up his timings.

So that’s 1½ days plus materials and the tip, say …….

Job 2

If he has to make MDF side and end panels as well, you can say…… £445.00

Job 3

IF you want an acrylic corner bath and it will fit in easily without moving toilets, basins, radiators, etc. then without taking account of comprehensive new tiling (and this might mean the floor as well), he will charge 2 days, partly because the semicircular bath panels are a “so and so” to fit and just manoeuvring the bath itself around can be a nightmare. Lets say…… £400.00

Job 4

If you want a “spa bath”, the fitting is more or less the same but there are also a pump and electrics to be fitted. This cannot legally be undertaken by an unqualified person anymore, he must be registered with a “competent scheme” and that means a “sparks”, who will have to liase with the bath fitter. This will inevitably mean a 5 day gap between bath fitting and bath working!

Besides the extra cost of the bath and pump, there will be extra labour for the “sparks” (that’s builder speak for an electrician by the way). A new electrical outlet will probably have to be fitted in an adjacent room.

So now the whole job could cost…….

Material Information

Steel Bath Cost £120-£250

Acrylic Bath Cost £80-£200

Acrylic Shower Bath Cost £180-£300

Corner Bath Cost £250-£400

Spa Bath Cost £400-£500

Ball and Claw Cast Iron Bath Cost £1500-£2500

For your must-see guide to Tradesmen's Rates please click on the map…


A Price Guide and Information Sheet on Fitting and Installing a New Bath

The next 3 paragraphs are also to be found in our far more comprehensive Bathroom Fitting section but as they are also relevant here, we have included them.

Which design of bath do you want?

“Normal”? Normal with a bulge in it for easier showering? One with the taps and plug hole (builders call this the “waste”, not the waste hole, just the “waste”) in the middle, (and a shelf for some aromatic candles and space for two glasses and a champagne bottle)? A corner bath? A spa bath? A free standing bath set right in the middle of the room, (just right for bathing the boys in, you didn’t like that downstairs ceiling anyway).

Which type of bath do you want?

Do you want cast iron? The builder won’t! The only advantage of cast iron for a “normal” bath is it doesn’t creak when you stand in it. But then, if the other types are secured properly nor should
they. Free standing ones will be cast though. So they should be at 2 grand a throw! Do you want acrylic? These are a bit like buying a Skoda. There’s absolutely nothing wrong at all with them but…

Do you want pressed steel? People used to buy
steel because they didn’t want to splash out on cast and to avoid buying acrylic. There’s no difference as far as efficiency of the bath is concerned between steel and acrylic AND with acrylic you get matching, contoured side and end panels. Make sure these are supplied with the bath though, as sometimes they are not and have to be paid for separately.
Will you ever
use the bath? You might always use the shower?

Bath Removal Procedure

Right… you’ve decided on the new bath and it’s in a box in the back bedroom.

Removing the old one is a bit of a faff because you now have a bathroom surrounding it. When it was fitted it was the
first thing in the room remember. If the old one is cast iron it will most likely be smashed to pieces where it is. This is incredibly noisy and might upset you - go and do a bit of shopping till it’s all over and take the dog with you. The noise makes fireworks night sound like the gentle ticking of a Swiss watch. It makes a Formula 1 car sound like the gentle ticking of a Swiss watch!

The new bath will very likely be a different size and won’t exactly fit the existing tiling. Unlike basins and toilet cisterns which, if fitted properly, should have had the walls behind them tiled
before they were fitted, the walls adjacent to a bath are almost always tiled after it’s fitted. This is usually to make up for the fact that the corner the bath fits into, is never exactly square.

So unless you are lucky and any difference can be covered by the new silicone seal, you will have to
re tile, because there is no way you will be able to get matching ones anymore.

If the new bath is “like for like”, the tap connections and waste pipework will be sitting there already and with a bit of fiddling around will be fine for the new unit. If you have decided on one with the taps and waste in the middle, then there will just be more fiddling. There is enough space under a bath to reconfigure wastes and supply pipework. If the bath is going anywhere else then you should be reading the “
Bathroom Fitting” section.

Finishing The Bath Off

A frame will have to be built to fix the side and end panels to. This will be a quite simple one if they are acrylic but more substantial for pressed steel and cast iron baths. These don’t come with panels, these have to be made on site. Decide what material you want, will it be tiled? Will you have an access panel so the taps can be “got at” in 5 years time when a leak develops, or if the “gold” starts to look a bit naff?

Sealing around the top is a serious business. All the old stuff must be completely removed. This is best done with a sharp chisel or Stanley blade then with silicone remover. When the new seal is applied it has to be sanitary silicone (with fungicide). Here is one area where you definitely get what you pay for. If he uses cheap silicone it will be black within a year.

Ideally, if he’s not an expert, he should apply masking tape first, this takes a bit of time but the application and smoothing become an absolute doddle and the job looks perfect afterwards. The bath should be filled before silicone is applied to allow for it dropping slightly under the weight of you and the water and this water should be left in the bath for 4-6 hours once sealed, so that the silicone can cure.

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