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Old 06-25-2016, 01:46 PM   #1
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Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


I have a Roman tub and need to replace some, if not all, of the plumbing for the hot and cold water (valves, faucets, etc.). I have removed the access panel/skirt for the pump (which was attached with screws and then caulked on all sides), and can see the plumbing, but cannot get my hands and tools into the narrow space to it to remove and replace. The cultured panel/skirt which needs to be removed was attached to the wood frame in several places with what appears to be joint compound. Any suggestions on removing, loosening, cutting or breaking the joint compound without breaking the cultured marble? (Getting access through the floor wouldn't work, as the space between the plumbing and the panel/skirt is too narrow for tools without removing the panel.) Thanks in advance for any help.
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Old 06-25-2016, 03:19 PM   #2
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Re: Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


Broke off a piece of the compound used to attach the cultured marble panel to the wood frame - it isn't joint compound so I'm thinking now it is globs of silicone caulk. Same question though - any suggestions on softening, cutting, or otherwise removing it so I can remove the panel. Assuming I can get it off in one place, I will drill holes and use screws to reattach so there is permanent access to the plumbing as well as the pump.
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Old 06-26-2016, 01:26 AM   #3
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Re: Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


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Originally Posted by corsairdriver View Post
Same question though - any suggestions on softening, cutting, or otherwise removing it so I can remove the panel.
I suggest that you search on "Silicone Solvent"

At http://homeguides.sfgate.com/removin...due-28359.html
it is stated:
"No solvent dissolves silicone caulk, so you won't find a chemical agent in the hardware store that will allow you to wipe away the caulk after brushing it on. Mineral spirits will soften it, but you'll probably have to accomplish the bulk of the removal by cutting the caulk with a sharp knife and pulling it off with pliers."
and
"Removing silicone caulk residue effectively is a two- or three-part process. Softening the residue by prolonged exposure to mineral spirits loosens its bond with the substrate. Leaving one or several rags soaked with the solvent in contact with the caulk for several hours is the best way to accomplish this. "
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Old 06-26-2016, 05:48 AM   #4
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Re: Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


Thanks, FrodoOne - will give this a try and post the results. Will take a few days to get to all the silicone and I am traveling a couple of days this week, so likely won't know results until next weekend. Thanks again for the suggestion.
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Old 06-26-2016, 09:13 AM   #5
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Re: Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


Hopefully the curve panel wasn't glued, but assume it was and be careful. Long thin blade on those razor cutters can get under the joint and cut the silicon/joint filler. Vinegar can clean silicon, but recommend not scraping with razor. Try plastic scrapers but very carefully. The curved panel is probably solid surface or acrylic on curved base and will scratch very easily.
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Old 06-26-2016, 02:31 PM   #6
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Re: Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


Thanks, carpdad - will be trying mineral spirits and/or some type of silicone adhesive remover. Since I have vinegar handy, will give it a try first. Have used a razor cutter to remove the caulk around the panel, but the back of the panel is rock solid. Thanks again.
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Old 06-30-2016, 04:25 PM   #7
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Re: Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


Success - Used "Re-Mov™ Adhesive and Silicone Remover" to loosen the panel from the adhesive substance - worked great and the second panel is off, allowing access to the plumbing. (Website is http://www.re-mov.com/products-Adhes...e-Remover.html - 8oz. bottle was $15 retail.) I will reattach the panel with decorative screws to allow easy future access to the plumbing - don't know why the installers didn't do that in the first place. Thanks again FrodoOne and carpdad for the suggestions.
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Last edited by corsairdriver; 06-30-2016 at 04:39 PM. Reason: Add photo
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Old 07-01-2016, 06:15 AM   #8
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Re: Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


Can you come back with the list of active agents on the bottle? Sounds great but I just want to check if tape remover I have is same or different, before I spend the money?
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Old 07-01-2016, 06:41 AM   #9
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Re: Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


carpdad -bottle does not have active ingredients, but per company website active agents are as follow:

  • Aliphatic hydrocarbon ~97%
  • Aromatic hydrocarbon < 1%
  • Wetting agents (proprietary) <3%
The MSDS shows solvent as the Aliphatic hydrocarbon ~97% by weight. Stoddard


Hope this helps.
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Old 07-01-2016, 09:38 AM   #10
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Re: Access to replace plumbing for Roman Tub


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Originally Posted by corsairdriver View Post
carpdad -bottle does not have active ingredients, but per company website active agents are as follow:

  • Aliphatic hydrocarbon ~97%
  • Aromatic hydrocarbon < 1%
  • Wetting agents (proprietary) <3%
The MSDS shows solvent as the Aliphatic hydrocarbon ~97% by weight. Stoddard


Hope this helps.
That is a really nice "cop out" by the manufacturers of the product that you have used.
The most simple "Aliphatic hydrocarbon" is methane - followed by ethane, propane and on and on through a hydrocarbon chain of molecules.

In other words, they are, if liquid, (hydrocarbon) "Mineral Spirits" - like "Dry Cleaning Fluid" - or mineral turpentine etc.
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