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You could probably say this about a lot of matters, but bathtubs–they just don’t make ‘em like they used to. For the larger part of the last century, tubs were formed from cast iron and coated with porcelain enamel. Bathrooms were built around them. These baths were significantly fuller and thus more inviting than the tubs you’d find nowadays. The dominant colour for bathtubs is white and it’s virtually the only method 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 age were still really well made. Bathtubs in steel seemed, while building shifted to contain lightweights like acrylic, and in layout, these steel bathtubs were refined and even sometimes sculptural like the cast irons.
Cast iron is generally heralded for its indestructibility, even when rust might set in. It’s a close relative in steel, in fact only slight tweaks in composition would turn one into the other. Cast iron is more heavy, while steel is heavy, and bathtubs made of these alloys finally well beyond their finish.
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For just these reasons, you might choose to refinish a bathtub. Any type of bath can be refinished, while those with a timeless clawfoot refinish hope to reach a vintage feel. This post with focus on the redo of an alcove bath, undoubtedly the most often installed bathtub.
Tools Materials Skill Level
• Acid-Established commercial cleaner Innovative
Acid etching paste
• Shop Vac • Plastic sheeting
• Buffing and polish pads • Sandpaper
• Respirator • Sailcloth drop cloth
Towels and • Rags • Two-Component fiberglass repair putty
Shop towels or • Paper • Tack fabric
• Small combining trough •
• Plastic spreaders • Specialty acrylic urethane OR acrylic aliphatic polyurethane OR white paint and high gloss polyurethane
• Electrical paint sprayer • Denatured alcohol
• Caulk gun • Silicone caulk
Plumbing tools that are •
Bathtub Refinishing Factors
As mentioned above, cast iron and steel baths are incredibly heavy, and you’ll need a hand, at least three, deliver and to safely remove them to a refinishing works. In the case of an alcove tub, one that is “built-in,” it is usually best to approach it while it is still in position.
A refinishing works may often begin with a process called “dipping” or stripping the initial finish. Once stripped, your tub may have a porcelain enamel implemented before it is finally re-fired in a kiln. Similar coatings could be used onsite; stripping, however, is replaced with other means of prep.
Are You Going To Replace Hardware?
Working under the assumption that once (re)ended, you’ll have a new appearance tub. It might be worth it to plan for an update of the bath’s present drain hardware.
It should be pointed out, also, that the borders are usually the “poorest” part of any finish. At minimum, it makes sense in a place constantly subjected to water to eliminate the drain prior to applying your new bath finish.
Note: Access to the lower wall cavity supporting the bathtub drain is required at a minimum when updating a tub’s drain assembly.
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Because, in most cases, you’ll be working with paints that are airborne and caustic materials, ensure that you’ve got sufficient venting as you work. Along with running a built in bathroom fan, it could additionally make sense to open a window and utilize cross-ventilation by placing a fan in an opposing doorway. If added concerns continue around your capacity to work or apply paint efficiently, ventilation equipment may also be rented at rental centres or home improvement stores.
Prepare the Job
There are numerous strategies for essentially preparing a bath refinish available. Irrespective of the approach you decide on, take great care during this phase. The measures below are common to any occupation preparation approach you might pick:
1) Remove Existing Caulk: Remove caulk that should be touching the bath surface. Start by cutting on the top and bottom edges of the caulk bead with a utility knife. Follow with a stiff putty knife and finish with a straight razor blade. Entirely remove all existing caulk. Sweep out or vacuum up any debris that could make its way to the underparts of the the tub.
2) Remove OR Conceal the Overflow Plate: Plan to replace existing bath hardware. If this isn’t doable, along with the bathtub’s drain remains in good working order, remove. 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 components as possible. Mask any finished surface that you just select not to remove. Poke holes or make an X in masking tape to allow for drainage of water as it will be used later in the prep period.
4) Give the Bath an Industrial Cleaning: Using an acid-based cleanser, spray down the entire tub surface. Let the product sit for five full minutes and use a stiff-bristled brush to scrub stains away. Because these cleansers are caustic, wear rubber gloves (or better) and a properly rated respirator. Then allow the tub dry.
5) Mask Off the Tub Area: Using a comparatively strong plastic, begin at the edge of the bathtub and mask off the alcove walls at least four feet. Mask both the interior of the bath in addition to the face (or apron) of the bath as it intersects with toilet walls. Do the same with the bath as it meets the floor. Cut holes in places where faucet or tub spouts handles may appear. Apply masking tape before spraying.
6) Mask Bath Spout and Faucet Handles: While you may require to time this with the other measures beneath, wrap bathtub spouts and faucets with builder’s paper or added plastic (cling wrap will work just as well). Alternatively, it might make sense just to remove them.
Prepare the Surface and Make Small Repairs
Make use of a stiff-bristled four inch stain a scrub brush or brush to implement an acid etch designed specially for porcelain. Cover of the bath completely and allow around 15 minutes for this particular merchandise to do its thing. Wear rubber gloves (or better) and a properly rated respirator. Remove with a (clean) scrub brush and wash down the drain with bath water. Wipe dry with shop towels.
Options for Acid Etching
Some will forgo acid etching in favor of applying a bonding agent only. Others might use mechanical means to rough up the bathtub surface. This really is accomplished by way of using sanding (aka flap) disks fitted to an angle grinder. While this method is somewhat aggressive, most finishing products are self-leveling to the amount that they’re going to level out fairly over a “ ” surface that is scarified.
Mending Tub Surface Imperfections
Stains and grittiness can appear after decades of improper cleaning on bath surfaces. Bleach and abrasive cleansers might be detrimental to tub surfaces, themselves. Green stains or rust can be addressed using oxalic acid mixed in hot water with talc to form a paste that was whiting.
Prior to applying a finish, dings or chips must additionally be addressed. Blend of two -component fiberglass repair putty and apply to the affected region by means of a plastic spreader. Allow to dry in line with the product’s directions and sand first with 36-grit sandpaper (the type used for sanding floors) and then follow with an 80-grit paper to feather out the repair.
If needed, follow with polyester or porcelain glazing to fill in small pockets that could show up in the fixed area.
Wipe down the bath with paper towels first and follow with a tack cloth.
Optional: For a much more extensive cleaning, give one final wipe to the bath with fast-evaporating denatured alcohol.
Caution: Just use if acids weren’t used or have been effectively neutralized.
Applying Finishes: DIY Strategy
There’s a seemingly countless collection of refinishing kits accessible from reputable makers. In general, you’ll find varying degrees of both dry times and quality with these products. Do your research before purchasing and comprehend that effectiveness may be informed by cost over time. Select a reputable name and follow all instructions closely. These kits should give a finish lasting one to five years with proper attention.
Construct Your Very Own Clothing
The topcoat is applied using the same sprayer (make certain to wash it thoroughly between steps). Hold the gun about six inches from the surface when spraying. Work using long strokes along with a continuous motion, overlapping somewhat as you move back and forth. Play around with a mixture of white paint and high-gloss polyurethane. Instead, spray or roll on a two-component marine epoxy. This process should afford a finish which will last between 3 and 10 years in case you’ven’t skimped on homework.
Implementing Finishes: Professional Strategy
Professional refinishers are plentiful, but be warned: the products and techniques used plus their opinions vary widely. It might not be surprising that many pro refinishers started out in trades like auto body repair, where work is often quite personalized.
(There is much discussion online about the favourite sprayer sort for this occupation.n general, select airless and HVLP through others.) Depending on the merchandise used, each layer should dry 15 to 20 minutes before the following is employed. The concluding coat should dry for no significantly less than an hour.
An automobile compound buffed into the surface using annular buffing pads and an auto polisher is used by some. Additional buffing is often done by hand. Glazing may also be implemented with a soft cloth to bring up a brilliant luster.
Once the finish has dried to the touch, per product recommendations or after two hours, whichever comes first remove all masking, paper, and plastic from the job site. It’s a good idea 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 recently finished surface. Bundle waste into construction totes and dispose of appropriately.
Locate a Bathub Professional near you
It’s often better left to a guru, while bathtub refinishing can certainly be a DIY project. SB Refinishers in San Diego bath refinishing is simply one of the occupations that are most nearly priced. Prices typically range from $400 to $500 and are usually packaged with a significant guarantee.
In hiring a professional for this occupation, the most important variable is the individual technician scheduled to do the work. That’s right, don’t always hire a professional based on the name of the firm, on their procedure, or on their system, but rather on the genuine individual you would want doing your job. These machinists should be able to create a portfolio of references and work. Request it and review it before making a decision.
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