Make Your Old Bathtub New Again

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Dingy bathtubs happen even to the best of us. Over time, bathtubs lose their shine and are discolored by hard-water mineral deposits. This can lead to an appearance that is rather unpleasant to look at, but the good news is that you can do something about it! Rather than waste a ton of money on a new bathtub, you can spruce up your old one and having it looking brand new. All it takes is elbow grease, cleaning supplies, paint, and a respirator to breathe life back into a worn out, ugly tub.



Before you begin painting, you must clean your tub thoroughly. The first step in this process is to remove drain plugs and fixtures then clean your bathtub with a bleach and water dilute. This will kill any mold and mildew that may be lingering. Once the bleaching is complete, it is time to scrub your tub with cleanser. A good ol' fashioned powered brand such as Comet is very effective for this purpose as the granules will scrape away at stubborn soap scum. Once you have rinsed your cleanser away, it is time to break out the CLR or Lime Away to remove any hard water deposits. Spray or wipe on, then rinse away completely.

Now that your tub is clean, the surface must be sanded in order for the paint to properly adhere. The best sandpaper for this job is a superfine wet/dry sandpaper in 400-grit. Sand the entire surface of your tub thoroughly and when you are done, rinse it one last time. Your tub will need to be allowed to dry completely before the painting begins, so if you have a box fan it wouldn't hurt to bring it into the bathroom and aim it at the bathtub to enhance drying.



Rust-Oleum makes a product known as a Tub & Tile Refinishing Kit that you can use to paint your bathtub. This is an epoxy acrylic that can be used on porcelain, ceramic, and/or fiberglass. The cleaning instructions above correspond with the directions for use of this product. This Tub & Tile Refinishing Kit is self-leveling and requires no acid etching, plus it is fast drying, which is convenient for a one bathroom household. It can be applied via brushes and rollers or with a sprayer; instructions come with the product, telling you how to prepare for all methods of application. This product does, however, also come accompanied by harsh fumes so a painter's mask and good ventilation are essential with use of this product.



Be sure to remove or tape up any unremoved drains and faucets before you begin the paint application. Also utilize drop cloths or other barriers between your tub and anything else you do not want accidentally painted. Paint your clean, dry tub with the method of your choice (brushes, rollers, sprayer) and let dry for 1-2 hours between coats. Apply your second coat and allow to dry and cure as per product instructions, then resume life as normal. Your bathtub will go from old, outdated, and dingy to brightly shining and oh so inviting quickly and inexpensively. Hop in and enjoy that rejuvenated tub, rejuvenating yourself in the process as a reward for a job well done!

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