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You can probably say this about a lot of things, but tubs–they just don’t make ‘em like they used to. For the larger part of the past century, bathtubs were formed from cast iron and coated with porcelain enamel. Bathrooms were built around them. These baths were significantly fuller and consequently more inviting than the tubs you’d find now. The dominant colour for bathtubs is white and it’s almost the only solution to really go.
With the 60s and 70s came the exploration of bathroom fixtures in browns, beige, pastels, and so on. Despite these bad choices, tubs in this era were still quite nicely made. While building transferred to include lightweights like acrylic, bathtubs in steel appeared, and like the cast irons, these steel baths were even occasionally sculptural and refined in layout.
Cast iron is generally heralded for its indestructibility, even when rust might set in. It has a close relative in steel, in fact one would turn into the other. Cast iron is heavier, while steel is heavy, and baths made of these alloys ultimately well beyond their finish.
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For just these reasons, you might choose to refinish a bathtub. Any kind of tub may be refinished while those with a timeless clawfoot refinish hope to reach a vintage feel. This article with focus on the redo of an alcove tub, undoubtedly the most frequently installed bathtub.
Tools Substances Ability Level Estimated Time
• Utility knife • Acid-Established commercial cleanser Advanced
• Putty knife •
• Straight razor • Baking soda
• Wire brush • Masking tape
Abrasive cleaning pads
Polish pads and • Buffing • Sandpaper
• Respirator • Sailcloth drop cloth
• Rubber gloves • Porcelain repair epoxy or polyester glazing putty
Towels and • Rags • Two-Component fiberglass repair putty
Store towels or • Paper • Tack fabric
• Small blending trough • Porcelain bonding agent
• Plastic spreaders • Peculiarity acrylic urethane OR acrylic aliphatic polyurethane OR white paint and high gloss polyurethane
• Electrical paint sprayer • Denatured alcohol
• Plumbing tools
Tub Refinishing Factors
Off Site or In Place?
Cast iron and steel baths are incredibly heavy as mentioned above, and you’ll need a hand, at least three, to remove and deliver them to a refinishing works. In case of an alcove tub, one that is “built in,” it’s typically best to approach it while it’s still in place.
A refinishing works may commonly begin with a procedure called “dunking” or stripping the original finish. Once stripped, your tub may again have a porcelain enamel implemented before it is ultimately re-fired in a kiln. Comparable coatings could be employed onsite; stripping, nevertheless, is replaced with other way of prep.
Will You Replace Hardware?
Working under the assumption that once (re)ended, you’ll have a fresh look bath. It might be rewarding to plan for an update of the tub’s present drain hardware.
It should be pointed out, also, that the edges are usually the “poorest” part of any finish. At minimum, it makes sense in a place always subjected to water to remove the drain before applying your new bath finish.
Note: When upgrading a bathtub’s drain assembly, accessibility to the lower wall cavity supporting the bath drain is needed at the absolute minimum.
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Consider How You’ll VentilateBecause, generally, you’ll be working with caustic substances and paints that are airborne, make certain that you have adequate venting as you work. Along with running a built-in bathroom fan, it could also make sense to open a window and utilize cross-ventilation by setting a fan in an opposing doorway. Ventilation gear can also be rented at rental centers or home improvement stores if added concerns continue around your skill to work or employ paint efficiently.
Ready the Job
There are numerous approaches for essentially preparing a tub refinish available. Regardless of the approach you decide on, take great care in this period. The steps below are common to any occupation training approach you might pick:
1) Remove Present Caulk: Remove caulk which should be touching the bathtub surface. Begin by cutting on both the top and bottom edges of the caulk bead using a utility knife. Follow with a stiff putty knife and end with a straight razor blade. Entirely remove. Sweep out or vacuum up any debris that could make its way to the underparts of the the bathtub.
2) Remove OR Hide the Overflow Plate: Plan to replace present bath hardware. The tub’s drain remains in great working order, along with if this really isn’t attainable, remove. Should you opt to remove a connected lever, be conscious not to permit linkages to fall back into the overflow or drain.
3) Remove Drain Pop Up, Strainer Assembly, OR Mask: Remove as many of the open finished drain components as possible. Mask any finished surface that you simply choose not to remove. Poke holes used} in the homework stage, to allow for drainage of water.
4) Give the Bath an Industrial Cleaning: Using an acid-based cleaner, spray down the complete tub surface. Allow the merchandise sit for five minutes and make use of a stiff-bristled brush to scrub blots away. Because these cleaners are caustic, wear rubber gloves (or better) and a correctly rated respirator. Then allow the tub dry.
5) Mask Off the Tub Area: Using a comparatively strong plastic, begin in the edge of the bath and mask off the alcove walls at least four feet. Mask both the interior of the bath as well as the face (or apron) of the bathtub as it intersects with bathroom walls. As it meets the floor, do the same with the tub. Cut holes in locations where bath spouts or faucet handles may seem. Use masking tape prior to spraying.
6) Mask Bath Spout and Faucet Handles: While you might need to time this with the other steps below, wrapping tub spouts and faucets with builder’s paper or additional plastic (cling wrap will work just as well). Alternatively, it might make sense merely to remove them.
Ready the Surface and Also Make Modest Repairs
Make use of a stiff-bristled four inch stain brush or a scrub brush to apply an acid etch designed expressly for porcelain. Cover the face of the tub fully and allow around 15 minutes for this product to do its thing. Wear rubber gloves (or better) and a correctly rated respirator. Wipe dry with store towels.
Choices for Acid Etching
Some will forgo acid etching in favor of using a bonding agent only. Others may use mechanical means to rough up the bath surface. This really is achieved by way of using sanding (aka flap) disks fitted to an angle grinder. While this process is somewhat aggressive, most concluding products are self-leveling to the degree that they will level out reasonably over a “ scarified” surface.
Repairing Bath Surface Imperfections
Spots and grittiness can appear after decades of improper cleaning on bath surfaces. Abrasive and bleach cleaners might be harmful to tub surfaces, themselves working to etch porcelain. Green spots or rust can be addressed using oxalic acid combined in hot water with talc to form a paste that was whiting.
Dings or processors must additionally be addressed prior to applying a finish. Mix of two -part fiberglass repair putty and apply to the affected region using a plastic spreader.
If necessary, follow with porcelain or polyester glazing to fill in small pockets that may appear in the restored region.
Wipe down the tub with paper towels and follow with a tack cloth.
Optional: For a more comprehensive cleaning, give one final wipe to the bath with fast-evaporating denatured alcohol.
Caution: If acids either weren’t used, only use or have been effectively neutralized.
Applying Finishes: DIY Strategy
That is a seemingly innumerable array of refinishing kits accessible from reputable manufacturers. Generally speaking, you’ll find varying amounts of dry times and quality with these products. Do your homework before purchasing and understand that effectiveness may be informed by cost with time. Choose a name that is reputable and follow all directions closely. These kits should give a finish continuing one to five years with proper care.
Build Your Own Apparel
Brush on an appropriate bonding agent,or spray on an appropriate primer using an airless (sub HVLP) paint sprayer (available for lease at local home improvement stores or rental centers). The topcoat is implemented using the same sprayer (make certain to wash it thoroughly between steps). Work using long strokes along with a constant movement, overlapping somewhat as you move forth and back. Play around with a mixture of white paint and high-gloss polyurethane. Alternatively, spray or roll on a two-part marine epoxy. In the event you haven’t skimped on homework, this process should give a finish that will continue between 3 and 10 years.
Employing Finishes: Professional Approach
Professional refinishers are plentiful, but be warned: the products and techniques used plus their opinions vary widely. It may not be surprising that many professional refinishers started out in trades like auto body repair, where work is usually quite personalized.
Acrylic urethane enamel, acrylic aliphatic polyurethane, or an epoxy-based finish is applied in multiple layers using a paint sprayer. (There is much debate online about the favourite sprayer type for this occupation.n general, choose airless and HVLP through others.) Depending on the product used, each layer should dry 15 to 20 minutes before the following is employed. The concluding layer should dry for no less than an hour.
A wet sanding with 600/800/1000-grit paper smooths any imperfections. A car compound buffed into the surface using annular buffing pads and an auto polisher is used by some. Hand frequently does additional buffing. Glazing can also be applied with a soft cloth to bring up a more brilliant luster.
Once the finish has dried to the touch, per product recommendations or after two hours, whichever comes first, slowly remove from the job site. It is best to work with a utility knife in hand in case any one of the just applied finish begins to pull away with masking. Work with care over the newly finished surface. Bundle waste into construction totes and dispose of appropriately.
Locate a Bathub Professional near you
It’s often better left to a master, while bathtub refinishing can really be a DIY project. SB Refinishers in San Diego bathtub refinishing is only one of the most practically priced jobs. Costs generally range from $400 to $500 and are usually packaged with an important warranty.
In hiring a pro for this particular job the most significant variable is the individual technician scheduled to do the work. That’s appropriate, don’t necessarily hire a pro based on the reputation of the company, on their system, or on their process, but rather on the actual person you’d desire doing your job. These machinists should be able to create a portfolio of work and references. Request it before making a decision, and review it.