Adding a Shower to a Roman Tub with a Faucet Adapter [step by step]

A roman tub, also known as a soaking tub, is a luxurious bathtub that is designed for relaxation and comfort. Roman tubs are characterized by their deep, inset design and are often accompanied by jacuzzi-style jets. While a roman tub offers a wonderful soaking experience, many homeowners wish to also have the convenience of a shower. Adding a shower to your roman tub is possible with the use of a special faucet adapter.

In this article, we will walk through the entire process of adding a shower to a roman tub by installing a faucet adapter. We will cover what to consider before starting, the step-by-step installation process, tips for use and maintenance, and the benefits of adding shower functionality to your tub. With some handy DIY skills and the right faucet adapter, you can enjoy both soaking and showering in your elegant roman tub.

Things to Consider Before Adding a Shower

Before beginning any project, it is important to fully evaluate the space and plan accordingly. Here are some key considerations when adding a shower to a roman tub:

Space Available – Measure the tub and surrounding area to ensure there is adequate room for installing the faucet adapter and accessories like a showerhead and hose. Make sure there is enough open wall space above the roman tub for mounting the showerhead at an appropriate height.

Plumbing Requirements – The plumbing must be configured properly to support both tub filling and shower functions. This may require some re-piping behind the walls to supply both hot and cold water lines to the faucet adapter. Consult a professional if significant plumbing modifications are needed.

Faucet Options – There are several types of faucet adapters designed to add shower functionality to a roman tub faucet. Choose one that coordinates well with your existing faucet style and finish. Models with diverter valves allow you to easily switch between tub filling and shower mode.

Cost – Factor in costs for the faucet adapter, any new plumbing or modifications, accessories, and professional installation if DIY is not feasible. This will help determine if the project fits within your budget. Expect to spend at least $100-$300 for materials.

Carefully considering these factors will help you determine if adding a shower to your roman tub is possible within your existing space and resources. With proper planning, you can create the perfect spa-like bathroom retreat.

Steps for Adding a Shower

Once you’ve addressed any plumbing issues and gathered the necessary supplies, follow these steps to add shower capabilities to a roman tub:

Choose Faucet Adapter – Select a faucet adapter that is compatible with your roman tub filler style and finish. Look for a highly-rated model with positive reviews. A universal adapter with thumbscrews allows for easy DIY installation.

Install Faucet Adapter – Turn off water supply lines and drain the tub. Remove existing aerator or spout. Attach the faucet adapter using the provided hardware and hand tools. Make sure it is securely tightened.

Connect Plumbing – Use supply lines to connect the hot and cold water inputs on the faucet adapter. Adjust supply line length as needed. Seal with plumber’s tape to prevent leaks. Turn water back on and check for leaks.

Install Showerhead – Mount the showerhead and arm at the desired height. Typically 48-54 inches above the tub floor. Connect the shower hose to the adapter and showerhead.

Test for Leaks – Turn on the tub filler and shower and check all connections for leaks. Tighten joints or reapply plumber’s tape as needed to stop any drips. Let run for several minutes to ensure no issues.

With the proper faucet adapter in place and accessories installed, you now have a fully functioning shower in your roman tub! Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions closely during installation.

Tips for Use and Maintenance

Here are some top tips for enjoying your new roman tub shower setup:

  • Setting Temperature – The tub faucet and shower will share hot/cold water lines. Adjust as needed to get the desired temp. Install thermostatic valves for safety.
  • Cleaning – Use a squeegee to wipe down walls and surfaces after showering to prevent mold/mildew buildup. Keep showerhead free of mineral deposits.
  • Avoiding Leaks – Periodically check fittings and supply line connections for any drips. Re-tighten if needed to prevent leaks over time.
  • ** roman tub Precautions** – Take care when entering and exiting a wet roman tub to avoid slips or falls. Consider grab bars and non-slip tub stickers.

With routine cleaning and maintenance checks, your new shower setup should provide years of reliable service. Be sure to follow the faucet adapter manufacturer’s care guidelines as well. Enjoy the luxurious experience of showering in your roman tub!

Additional Tips and Considerations

Installing a shower in your roman tub can transform your bathing experience, but there are additional tips and considerations to ensure success. Here are some other factors to keep in mind with your new shower setup:

Choose Accessories – Along with the essential showerhead and hose, consider convenient accessories like an adjustable slide bar, inline vacuum breaker for backflow prevention, elbow adapter for positioning, soap dish and shelves. Choose finishes to match your roman tub faucet.

Check Building Codes – Before installing, check local building codes for any requirements regarding showers and bathrooms. A permit may be needed if significantly modifying plumbing. Inspection may be required to ensure proper function and safety.

Inspect Fixtures – Examine the tub, faucet, showerhead and handles for cracks, leaks or other defects before installing new plumbing. Repair or replace fixtures as needed to ensure safety and reliability.

Consider Pressure – Check your home’s water pressure. Standard pressure around 60 PSI is ideal for a roman tub shower. If too low, pumps can increase pressure. Excessive pressure may demand a regulator.

Protect Surfaces – During installation, cover nearby surfaces like floors and countertops to prevent damage. Remove any debris right away to avoid staining. Apply caulk around fixtures to seal gaps and prevent leaks.

Hire a Professional – For major plumbing overhauls, faucet replacement, jetted tub installation or electrical work, consider hiring a qualified professional plumber and/or electrician to ensure optimal safety.

Maintain Proper Ventilation – Roman tub showers produce increased humidity. Ensure proper ventilation with a bath fan to prevent mold and mildew growth in the bathroom. Keeping surfaces clean also helps.

Prevent Scalding – To avoid accidental scalding, install tub filler valves with anti-scald technology. This maintains the water at a safe temperature. Also consider digital temperature displays and preset limits.

Conserve Water – To operate an eco-friendly shower, install water efficient showerheads with flow rates of 2.0 GPM or less. Take shorter showers. Adjustable heads allow pausing the water while lathering up.

With smart planning and preparation, you can successfully transform your roman soaking tub into a therapeutic spa shower retreat. Follow installation steps properly and enjoy the blissful combination of both bathing experiences!


What if my roman tub filler has an unusual design?

Some roman tub fillers may have a non-standard design that requires a custom faucet adapter. Consult the manufacturer to find an adapter that is guaranteed to fit your specific filler model.

Can I add body jets to my tub for a true spa experience?

Yes, many roman tubs can accommodate aftermarket jet kits. Plumbing modifications would be required. Consider jets that offer massage therapy, variable flow, and chromatherapy lighting.

Is it safe to combine electricity and water with my new shower setup?

As long as proper precautions are taken, a shower can be safely added. Use a GFCI outlet or circuit for any electric accessories. Never place electrical items like lights or speakers directly in the shower stream.

How difficult is the installation process?

Adding a shower requires some plumbing knowledge but installing most faucet adapters involves basic DIY skills. Complex mods are best left to professionals. Carefully follow all manufacturer instructions.

Can just a handheld showerhead be used instead?

A standalone hand shower is an option but will not provide the overhead rainfall shower experience. Make sure your plumbing and water pressure support handheld-only use. Consider a slide bar.


Adding shower capabilities to a roman tub can provide the best of both bathing worlds. With the right faucet adapter, plumbing adjustments, and installation process, you can upgrade your soaking tub with a convenient shower option. Key steps include choosing a compatible adapter, securely installing on the tub filler, connecting new plumbing lines, mounting the showerhead, and thoroughly testing for leaks before use. Follow manufacturer instructions closely for proper function. With routine care and cleaning, your new shower-tub combo will provide the spa-like experience you desire. No more having to choose between a relaxing soak or an invigorating shower – now you can enjoy both from the comfort of your elegant roman tub!

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