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Five Ways To Put New Life In Your Old Bathtub

If your bathtub is showing the signs of old age and has started to crack and leak, then it is time to either replace it with a new one or have your old bathtub repaired. Obviously, buying a new bathtub is much more expensive than fixing your old one. Additionally, getting a new bathtub also requires that you remove some of the wall and floor tiling before you can install it in your bathroom. If you do not want to go through the exhausting and expensive experience of getting a new bathtub, then you can try fixing your old bathtub. Here are some of the bathtub repair options at your disposal:

Bathtub Liners

If your bathtub has worn out from years of use, looks old, faded and discolored, then bathtub liners are your best bet. Bathtub liners are sheets of synthetic material (like PVC plastic or acrylic) which are molded to the shape of your tub, placed over your existing tub, and then glued down to cover it up. Bathtub liners are custom made to fit the shape of your old bathtub, but also come in stock sizes (if your old bathtub has a regular stock size). These bathtub liners add a new surface to your old worn-out bathtubs and make them look brand new.

The installation of a bathtub liner involves calling the plumber who takes the measurement of your bathtub and ordering a bathtub liner of the appropriate size from the factory. Once the bathtub liner is available, the plumber can install it in just one day. The drying up of the glue can take some time and you cannot use the bathtub as soon as the bathtub liner is installed. The average acrylic bathtub liner installation costs around $1300.

Bathtub Reglazing

If your bathtub is extremely dirty looking and is beyond any regular means of cleaning, then you can have it re-glazed. The bathroom re-glazing is done best for porcelain bathtubs. The re-glazing involves cleaning of the bathtub using industry strength chemicals which are hazardous enough to require a hazmat suit.

The process of re-glazing starts with masking the surfaces of surrounding surfaces to prevent them from being exposed to the chemical spray. Then the cleaning chemicals are applied all over the bathtub surface for some time which cleans the porcelain and etches into the upper surface. After this, multiple coats of polyurethane finish are applied with sanding in between. The end result is fantastic, though it takes 3-4 hours to finish the whole process. The procedure is extremely hazardous and requires very careful operation. The bathtub glazing can cost up to $300 for an average bathtub.

Bathtub Crack Repair Kits

Bathtub cracks are more common than you can imagine. They can occur due to many reasons – dropping a heavy object in the bathtub, taking a plunge into the bathtub or too much temperature fluctuations. The bathtub cracks are easy to repair. You can get a bathtub repair kit from your local hardware store which contains putty sticks, applicator and sandpaper. First of all, you have to dry the bathtub using your hair dryer. Then lightly sand the surface with sandpaper, fill the crack using the filler material included in the repair kit and finally let it dry. The drying may take more than 24 hours, after which you have to sandpaper it again to make it smooth. Some kits come with paint which must be applied at this stage. The overall cost of a bathtub repair kit is less than $50 and can be used without any special help.

Bathtub Recaulking

If your bathtub has started to leak water, and it is not due to cracks in the bathtub surface, then it could be that caulk is your problem. The caulk is applied all along the edges of the bathtub so that no water leaks into the space between the bathtub and the walls. When caulk gets damaged, water can seep through it and may lead to mold formation. Re-caulking does not take much expertise. All you have to do is use a putty-knife to remove the old caulk, clean the area with the cleanser (containing bleach and alcohol), and let it dry. After the surface has dried up, you can use the caulk gun to apply the new caulk all along the target surfaces. You may have to clean the excess caulk using your fingers. The caulk may need drying for up to 24 hours. The total cost for a good quality silicone caulk is around $70 and may require special tools like the caulk gun.

Bathtub Drain Flange Repair

The drain flange is the only visible drainage portion in a bathtub. Usually, a stopper is inserted into the drain flange to keep the water from draining. If any one of the stopper or the drain flange has been damaged and the water is draining even after the drain stopper is plugged in, then you need to replace the whole drain flange and stopper assembly. First of all, you have to remove the old flange using the drain key tool. Once the flange is removed, you can clean the surface using a standard putty cleanser. Then you can install the new drain flange assembly by screwing it in a clockwise direction. The overall cost of the a brand new bathtub drain flange assembly is only around $5, but you may need special tools like the drain-key tool in order to remove the old drain flange.

So if you are feeling irritated with your old leaking or cracking bathtub that looks ugly, faded and discolored, then instead of spending $3000 on having the whole bathtub replaced, you can have it repaired or repair it yourself without having to spend so much money.

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