Birth Tub - Too heavy for an old house? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 09-28-2011, 11:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi Mamas,


So we are planning a homebirth this time (DS was born at a birth center) and are really excited about the prospect of a waterbirth.  However, we live in an old house, about 100 years old.  Its kind of crooked in a lot of places, lots of cracks in the walls...definitely still settling all the time.  Ideally, we'd like to use the second bedroom upstairs...but I just have visions of us in a full tub falling through the floor or something!  By my math, a full tub has to weigh somewhere around 1500 lbs, right?


Has anyone else worried about this?  Any similar fears or has this ever actually happened to anyone? 


The backup plan is to do it in the basement, and I am sure we could make a sort of ok space down there with some wall hangings or something, but I really don't particularly want to give birth with all the spiders in the basement if I can help it!


Just looking for some insight if anyone has any to offer :-)



Judy treehugger.gif wife to Brandon 7.15.06 -- Mama to Micah Rowan 12.08.08 -- EBF, babywearing, selective/delayed vax (none so far) -- expecting baby #2 in March 2012 and planning a homebirth!

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#2 of 8 Old 09-28-2011, 04:26 PM
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1500# is about the same as maybe 5-7 adults and a dining room table and chairs. If you wouldn't hesitate to put your dining area on that spot, I wouldn't worry about a birth tub (at least that's the argument I used to convince myself at the time!).

Mama to DS (6/07) h20homebirth.gif, DD (6/09) h20homebirth.gif, and DD (07/12) homebirth.jpg..

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#3 of 8 Old 09-29-2011, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by dogmom327 View Post

1500# is about the same as maybe 5-7 adults and a dining room table and chairs. If you wouldn't hesitate to put your dining area on that spot, I wouldn't worry about a birth tub (at least that's the argument I used to convince myself at the time!).

That's a good point.  Also keep in mind the weight of the furniture you already have in there though.  It's probably more stable than you think, but on the other hand you don't want any surprises.  Maybe you could have a professional (contractor or something) come look at the floor and tell you how stable it is. 

Sarah, partner to J and mom to DD1 April 30th, 2002 and DD2 May 5th, 2012. love.gif

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#4 of 8 Old 09-29-2011, 11:31 AM
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We just went through this last week and I'm happy to report that our house did just fine :).  Our house is also about 100 years old, sloping this way and that, with cracks in the walls.  I normally love the house and the character it has but I was also worried about the pool on the second floor and originally planned on using the dining room over the main support beam.  When my midwife came for the home visit at 36 weeks she assured us that having the pool upstairs would be absolutely no problem and that she had done so in houses even older than ours.  We decided to trust her (plus DH is an electrician who originally worked residential and he asked a few contractors who said it would probably be fine). 


We used the big Ocean Reef pool and had it filled pretty much the entire way and it was just fine.  The labor went so fast that I was really just in there for the pushing but it was terrific and DD2 was born in the pool.  It was also really nice to be so near the bedroom and not have to worry about climbing stairs right after having a baby.  DH emptied it after the birth with a hose out the window into the backyard then carried it outside to finish cleaning.


So my experience is that it's just fine and nothing to worry about at all.   Best of luck to you with whatever you decide to do!

Alexis, mom to DS 11/99 DD1 01/02 and DD2 09/23/11.
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#5 of 8 Old 10-05-2011, 07:42 PM
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I think I asked this very same question back when we were getting ready for our homebirth in March. Our 100+ year old house did fine as well! And our tub was set up and filled for DAYS in advance of birth. (like at least a week now that I think about it.)

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#6 of 8 Old 10-09-2011, 09:10 AM
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DP and I are having the same concern about our 100+ - old house. We also have a bedroom upstairs and plan to place the birth pool in the office next to the bdrm.  

DP is a contractor/carpenter, and he does not have faith in that floor, so he is planning to install a temporary supporting wall downstairs beneath the birth pool.  Just in case.  This house has many, many issues.  I hate to break up our tiny living room with a wall if we don't need to, though...  Maybe he can re-evaluate that floor.

read.gif+dp_malesling.GIFreading.gifmoon.gifblahblah.gifjog.gif(All waterbirth.jpg. 3 @ homebirth.jpg30stork-suprise.gif*31*32*33*34*35*36*37*38*39*40?41*42?h20homebirth.gif 
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#7 of 8 Old 10-09-2011, 11:07 AM
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I've had two HB's on the 2nd floor of our house that was built in 1896.  The first time I had the big tub - 7 feet across.  It was fine!  My mw said it is like having several adults standing around at a party in the same area that the tub would take up.

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#8 of 8 Old 10-13-2011, 04:24 AM
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At hospitals, they say, "Would you mind if four stout nurses stood in a close huddle on that spot? Then a birth tub will be fine."


We actually used a 100 gallon rubbermaid horse trough, and while it wasn't expansive, it was plenty deep and me+the 50-60 gallons of water was really not anything the house couldn't handle. I'm totally up for doing that again.

Jenrose, Mama to DD1, born 1993, DD2, born 2005, and DS1, Jan. 2012. Babywearing, cosleeping, homebirthing mom with fibromyalgia and hashimotos.  DD2 has a rare chromosome disorder. 

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