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You can probably say this about a lot of matters, but tubs–they merely don’t make ‘em like they used to. Bathrooms were built around them. These baths were considerably fuller and thus more encouraging than the tubs you’d find now. The dominant color for baths is white which is nearly the only method to go.
With the 60s and 70s came the investigation of bathroom fixtures in browns, beige, pastels, and the like. Despite these poor options, bathtubs in this age were still really nicely made. While construction shifted to include lightweights like acrylic, bathtubs in steel appeared, and like the cast irons, these steel bathtubs were refined and even sometimes sculptural in layout.
Cast iron is usually heralded for its indestructibility when rust might set in. It’s a close relative in steel, in fact one would turn into the other. While steel is heavy, cast iron is heavier, and bathtubs made of these metals finally well beyond their finish.
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For just these reasons, you might choose to refinish a bath. Any type of bath could be refinished, while those with a classic clawfoot refinish hope to attain a vintage feel. This article with focus on the redo of an alcove bath, undoubtedly the most frequently installed bathtub.
Tools Materials Ability Level Estimated Time
• Utility knife • Acid-Based commercial cleanser Advanced 4 to 8 Hours
• Putty knife •
• Shop Vac • Plastic sheeting
• Wire brush • Masking tape
• Auto polisher/buffer •
Polish pads and • Buffing • Sandpaper
• Respirator • Canvas drop cloth
• Rubber gloves •
• Rags and towels • Two-Part fiberglass repair putty
• Paper or store towels • Tack material
• Little blending trough • Porcelain bonding agent
Peculiarity acrylic urethane OR acrylic aliphatic polyurethane OR white paint and high gloss polyurethane
• Electric paint sprayer • Denatured alcohol
• Plumbing tools
Bathtub Refinishing Considerations
Cast iron and steel baths are incredibly heavy as mentioned previously, and you’ll need at least three, a hand, to safely remove and deliver them to a refinishing works. In the case of an alcove bathtub, one that’s “built-in,” it is generally best to approach it while it’s still in position.
A refinishing works may frequently begin with a procedure called “dunking” or stripping the original finish. After stripped, your tub may have a porcelain enamel used before it’s finally re-fired in a kiln. Comparable coatings can be applied onsite; stripping, nevertheless, is replaced with other means of homework.
Are You Going To Replace Hardware?
Working under the assumption that once (re)finished, you’ll have a fresh appearance bathtub. It could be worth it to plan for an update of the bath’s existing drain hardware.
It should be pointed out, also, the borders are typically the “poorest” part of any finish. In an area constantly subjected to water, prior to applying your new tub finish, it seems sensible at minimum to remove the drain.
Note: Accessibility to the lower wall cavity behind the bathtub drain is called for at a minimum when upgrading a tub’s drain assembly.
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Contemplate How You’ll VentilateBecause, usually, you’ll be working with airborne paints and caustic substances, ensure that you’ve got adequate venting as you work. Along with running a built in bathroom fan, it could also make sense to open a window and use cross-ventilation by putting a fan in an opposing doorway. Ventilation equipment can also be rented at home improvement stores or rental centers if added concerns persist around your capacity to work safely or apply paint effectively.
Prepare the Occupation
There are numerous approaches for effectively preparing a bath refinish available. Regardless of the approach you choose, take great care in this period. The measures below are common to any occupation prep strategy you might select:
1) Remove Present Caulk: Remove caulk which should be touching the tub surface. Start by cutting on the top and bottom edges of the caulk bead with a utility knife. Fully remove. Sweep out or vacuum any debris that will make its way to the underparts of the the tub up.
2) Remove OR Hide the Overflow Plate: Plan to replace existing tub hardware. The tub’s drain is still in good working order, and also if this is not attainable, remove the bath’s overflow plate. Tubs fitted with linked stoppers can be disconnected or disassembled, but because of uniquenesses in moving parts (particularly with vintage baths), it may be best to just mask overflow plates off. Be conscious not to allow linkages to fall back in the overflow if you determine to remove a lever that is linked or drain.
3) Remove Drain Pop Up, Strainer Assembly, OR Mask: Remove as many of the exposed finished drain parts as possible. Mask any finished surface that you simply choose not to remove. Poke holes or make an X in masking tape to allow for drainage of water as it’ll be used in the homework stage.
4) Give the Tub an Industrial Cleaning: Using an acid-based cleaner, spray down the complete bathtub surface. Allow the product sit for five full minutes and utilize a stiff-bristled brush to scrub stains away. Because these cleansers are caustic, wear rubber gloves (or better) and a properly rated respirator. Then let the bath dry.
5) Mask Off the Tub Area: Using a relatively durable plastic, begin at 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 tub as it intersects with toilet walls. As it meets the floor, do the same with the bath. Cut holes in places where faucet or tub spouts handles may seem. Use masking tape prior to spraying.
6) Mask Tub Spout and Faucet Handles: While you might need to time this with the other steps beneath, wrapping bath spouts and faucets with contractor’s paper or added plastic (cling wrap will function just as well). Instead, it might make sense just to remove them.
Prepare the Surface and Make Modest Repairs
Apply an Acid Etching Paste
Make use of a stiff-bristled four inch stain a scrub brush or brush to use an acid etch designed particularly for porcelain. Cover the face of the bath completely and allow around 15 minutes for this particular merchandise 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. While this approach is somewhat aggressive, most concluding products are self-leveling to the amount that they are going to level out pretty over a “ scarified” surface.
Fixing Tub Surface Imperfections
Stains and grittiness can appear after decades of improper cleaning on tub surfaces. Abrasive and bleach cleaners might be damaging to tub surfaces, themselves working to etch porcelain. Green spots or rust could be addressed using oxalic acid mixed in hot water with talc to form a paste that was whiting.
Processors or dings must additionally be addressed prior to applying a finish. Blend of two -part fiberglass repair putty and apply to the affected region using a plastic spreader. Allow to dry according to the product’s instructions and sand first with 36-grit sandpaper (the sort used for sanding floors) and then follow with an 80-grit paper to feather out the repair.
Follow with porcelain or polyester glazing to fill in little pockets that could show up in the repaired region if necessary.
Wipe down the bathtub with paper towels and follow with a tack cloth.
Discretionary: For a much more thorough cleaning, give one final wipe to the tub with quick-evaporating denatured alcohol.
Caution: If acids weren’t used, only use or have been effectively neutralized.
Applying Finishes: DIY Strategy
There is a seemingly countless collection of refinishing kits accessible from reputable manufacturers. These products vary widely from epoxies to acrylics, spray-on to brush-on and even to roll on choices. In general, you’ll locate varying levels of both quality and dry times with these products. Do your homework before purchasing and comprehend that cost may advise effectiveness with time. Pick a reputable name and follow all instructions closely. These kits should afford a finish lasting one to five years with appropriate care.
Assemble Your Own Clothing
The topcoat is implemented using the same sprayer (make certain to clean it thoroughly between steps). Work using long strokes and also a continuous movement, overlapping slightly 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. This approach should afford a finish that will continue between 3 and 10 years if you’ven’t skimped on prep.
Employing Finishes: Professional Approach
Professional refinishers are plentiful, but be warned: techniques and the products used plus their opinions vary.
(There is much discussion online about the favored sprayer sort for this job.n general, select airless and HVLP finished others.) Determined by the product used, each coat should dry 15 to 20 minutes before the next is employed. The concluding layer should dry for no significantly less than an hour.
A wet sanding with 600/800/1000-grit paper smooths any imperfections. An automobile compound buffed into the surface using circular buffing pads and an auto polisher is used by some. Hand frequently does added buffing. Glazing can also be applied with a soft cloth to bring up a more brilliant luster.
Once the finish has dried to the contact, per product recommendations or after two hours, whichever comes first remove all masking, paper, and plastic from the job site. In case any one of the just applied finish begins to pull away with masking it is best to work with a utility knife in hand. Work with attention over the newly finished surface. Bundle waste into building totes and dispose of appropriately.
Find a Bathub Professional near you
While bathtub refinishing can definitely be a DIY project, it’s frequently better left to a master. SB Refinishers in San Diego tub refinishing is only one of the very nearly priced jobs. Costs generally range from $400 to $500 and are usually packaged with an important guarantee.
In hiring a professional for this particular occupation, the main variable is the individual tech scheduled to do the work. That’s appropriate, don’t always hire a master based on the name of the firm, on their system, or on their process, but instead on the genuine person you’d want doing your job. These mechanics ought to be able to generate a portfolio of references and work. Request it before making a choice, and review it.
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