Bathtub Refinishing made simple!
There are many different ways to refinish a bathtub... (Explaining that can take all day), from the
do it yourself kits to the top of the line Hawk Laboratory Products. You get what you pay for.
Many companies use an epoxy coating that never looks quite right, has a tendency to yellow and
it is also brittle and easy to chip. (We know this because we used them for years). These
types of products have a life span of a few months to a few years and is what we consider to be
the old technology.
These products are anywhere from 50 to $150 cheaper but again you get what you pay for. We
use nothing but Hawk Laboratory Products with over 6 million applications worldwide. The
average life expectancy is 10 to 12 years. Our process is significantly different and is as follows:
Set up ventilation system. If there is no window in the bathroom we carry a minimum of 50 feet of ventilation tubing to properly ventilate the work area.
- Remove all caulking from the perimeter of the tub.
- If the tub has been painted or refinished before this would be the point where we chemically strip all the old existing material off the tub. The reason we insist on stripping off any previously applied material is for your benefit. Yes we could just sand it and reshoot over it but there is no guarantee that the old material would not lift, thereby creating a whole other set of problems. We prefer to do it right the first time!
We then acid wash the surface (colored tubs need this process twice).
- If there are any chips in the tub this is the time that we do any fill work. We use a product again from hawk labs that does not shrink and is made specifically for bathtubs. We do not use bondo as it has a tendency to shrink.
- Once the chips are filled and leveled we clean the surface twice more and then mask, cover and protect all walls floors and fixtures.
We then spray 2 "Space Age Technology" primer coatings that bond molecularly with the surface of the acid washed tub.
- Once the primer coatings tack , three finish coats are applied. These are an acrylic polyurethane. At this point your tub should be as shiny as or shinier than the original. We just love being able to say that!
- After giving it a few minutes while we clean up, we will clean up the work area leaving the ventilation system for last.
- We caulk the tub along the edges AND THE DRAIN AREA. We have found, (In my over 20 years of doing this), that caulking the drain area can prevent what we believe to be the largest problem in the bathtub refinishing industry today; "Peeling at the Drain". We know of no other national company that caulks the tub before leaving. Most companies leave it to the consumer to handle. We don't take that chance.