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elementx440 01-31-2007 05:03 PM

re-enamel tub?
I'm thinking of reusing an existing tub in my new house, its not really chipped just got some red hard water stains.

i hear of people re-enameling the tubs, how does that work? is it worth doing? how expensive? thanks.

glennjanie 01-31-2007 07:03 PM

Hello Elementx:
My wife, Janie, had our old cast iron tub re-finished and got a 5 year warranty on it. It looked great but, after a few months, it started popping off right where the shower sprays down.
They have reparied it at least 5 times; once even after the warranty had been out for over 6 months. The last time they even gave her a slip-resistant bottom. It is popped off an area of about 2 sqrare feet in the same place, right where the shower sprays down.
I also have a friend who does claw-foot tubs in his body shop using epoxy on them. He says he has never had a call-back.
Janie had paid over $400 to have ours done and no, it is not worth it.

elementx440 01-31-2007 09:03 PM

ouch. I thought maybe there was some cheapy paint on stuff, I guess it's time to just buy a new one...

newjack 02-01-2007 07:32 AM

I would only re-enamel for two reasons. One, you don't or cant remodel the bath area. Two, the tube has great value to you. Re enameling is expensive and it just isn't as strong a factory finish that can be baked on. Hope that helps.

cibula11 02-01-2007 01:55 PM

I recently painted my tub. It was fine, but a gross 70's yellow. My parents have done the same to theirs. You buy a tub and tile paint kit. It costs about $20. You can find it at any home improvement store. You just follow the directions on the box and you have a new finish. Now, I will say its not perfect, but unless you get up really close, you can't tell at all. You use muratic acid to clean it first, then steel wool. Let it sit for a day. You end up applying 2 coats total. So, as long as you have some place else to shower, your fine.

Daryl 02-02-2007 03:29 PM

The hardest and most important part of any painting is in the prep work as well as the quality of product used to refinish. Tubs are finished with a very hard surface from the factory due to the fact it is applied as a powder coating and then baked at very high temps making it very impervious to water etc. That slick hard surface is very hard to prep for refinishing. Not only should it be chemically etchrd (acid) but manully sanded to give the surface a tooth for the paint to grab on to. THis is very important to asssur any finish will adhere to the tub surface. I'm sure the body repairman is doing this in the shop, He will first wash it down with a solvent to remove grease etc, sand it with various grits , wash it again, chemically etch it , spot prime with an epoxy primer and then spray it with at least two coats of a two part epoxy paint, and maybe bake it. If this process is followed it will give a very durable coating that will last for years. Very difficult for a regular homeowner to do all of this, but no matter what (even with the home center epoxy systems) cleaning , mechanical sanding, and chemical etching wil provide the best surface for good adhesion. If the finish is coming off, it is do to poor adhesion to the surface underneath and the expansion and contraction of the paint on the surface (due to the cool surface being hit with hot water is causing the film to lift and peel.

glennjanie 02-03-2007 06:35 PM

I'm with you Daryl, and NewJack has an even better idea. Mine is one of those you can't remove unless you want to re-do the ceramic tile floors and walls; and my ceramic walls are the 1" kind set in concrete.

younggj 02-12-2007 03:53 AM

Hi, I want to know if I can do a course in the re-enameling process?

glennjanie 02-12-2007 10:59 AM

Welcome to the Forum, Younggj:
If you want to take a course in refinishing; I suppose the best bet would be to read the directions with the kit Cibulla was talking about. Then, experiencing a couple of them should be a good education.

If you are saying you want to teach a course, then go to it man; we are all ears (or eyes). If you have some expertise in re-finishing we would be glad to hear about it.

Zig 03-24-2007 11:01 PM

Hello everybody,

You have a few options:

- Re-enamel/ painted ( with polyurethane paint ) - They will etch the tub ( prer surface ), paint and that would last for 6-7 year. Then the paint will eventually peel off and I need to get that redone. Take 8 hours to complete and 24 hr setting before you can use the tub.
$$ 400

- New acrylic liner ( custom measured and made ) that go over the existing tub
$$ 800
$$ 1200 with new tub surround ( do they just put the new tub surround over the old ugly blue tiles? )
One day job.

- Or if you think you could change the tub yourself : ( I always want to know why the ceiling under the tub area got water stain at some point )
Cost of tub : $$ 150-300 depending on quality.
New drain and overflow kit : $$ 20

Of course, the wall around the tub will need to be renewed/repaired as well once you start removeing the tub :
$ 200 for 3 or 4 sheets of wall tile tub surround and check the board to make sure no gap/leak before placing the new tub surround.
Or new tiles etc.
This could be a huge and dirty job but I think it's worth it.

Hope it helps.

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