Bathtub Refinishing: What Is It & Does It Last

Bathtub resurfacing, bathtub reglazing, and bathtub re-enameling are all commonly used terms for bathtub refinishing. This is the process of refreshing the surface of a tub that is worn out or damaged and making it look like new. Typically, the process involves repairing any damaged areas found on the surface of the tub. A type of polyester putty is often used to restore chips or cracks in the surface. After all necessary repairs are made, acid etching is typically applied to the surface to create a porous surface before applying the coating. Alternatively, an adhesion promoter bonding agent known as saline can be used. These two steps can actually be done together for better results.


The Refinishing Process

Once the surface is prepared, a component cross-link synthetic white coating is applied to the tub. This coating typically does not have the same tolerance or abrasiveness as the original coating. Coatings are also available that can be rolled, brushed, or sprayed on. Refinishing a bathtub can be done by purchasing a DIY kit from the hardware store or by calling a professional.

DIY vs. Professional Refinishing

While DIY kits are available and can be a budget-friendly option, they often don’t provide the same level of finish as a professional service. Professionals have access to higher-quality materials and specialized equipment that can ensure a smoother, more durable finish. Additionally, professionals are experienced in the refinishing process and can often complete the job more quickly and efficiently than a DIY attempt.

Durability of a Refinished Tub

Typically, a refinished bathtub will not last forever. If done correctly, a refinished tub can last for up to three and a half years, provided it is not aggressively used. However, it is important to note that it will not have the same feel as the original tub, and it typically won’t look as nice. The new coating can be more prone to damage due to the thinner layer of material applied compared to the original tub’s finish.

Pros and Cons of Refinishing

Refinishing is a good option for people on a budget, but it’s important to realize that it’s only a temporary solution. While it can provide a quick fix and improve the appearance of your bathroom, it may not be the best long-term solution. Here are some pros and cons to consider:

  • Pros:
    • Cost-effective compared to replacing the tub.
    • Quick process, often completed in a day.
    • Can extend the life of your existing tub for a few more years.
    • Enhances the appearance of your bathroom.
  • Cons:
    • The finish is not as durable as the original.
    • May require touch-ups or additional refinishing over time.
    • Not suitable for heavily damaged tubs.
    • Limited lifespan compared to a new tub.

Is Refinishing Worth It?

A refinished tub is a good idea to get you through a rough patch until you can afford a new one, as long as that rough patch doesn’t last for ten years down the road. If you’re looking for a quick, budget-friendly way to spruce up your bathroom, refinishing can be a viable option. However, if your tub is heavily damaged or you’re seeking a long-term solution, investing in a new tub may be the better choice.

Making the Right Choice

Bathtub refinishing can be a cost-effective way to improve the look of your bathroom without the expense of a full replacement. However, it’s important to understand the limitations and lifespan of a refinished tub. If you need a quick fix or are on a tight budget, refinishing can be a suitable option. For those looking for a more permanent solution, investing in a new tub might be the better choice. Before making a decision, consider exploring various bathtub refinishing tips to better understand the process and outcomes.

Ultimately, the decision between refinishing and replacing depends on your specific needs, budget, and long-term plans for your home. If you’re unsure, consulting with a professional can help you weigh the pros and cons and make an informed decision.

For professional bathtub refinishing or if you decide it’s time to invest in a new tub, consider reaching out to experts like Sacramento Handyman. They can provide quality services and help you achieve the best results for your bathroom renovation.

Sacramento Handyman
2386 Fair Oaks Blvd, Sacramento CA 95824
(916) 472-0507

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