There are a couple of options you can look at when you have a leaking or rusting steel or cast iron bathtub. You can either buy a new, replacement tub, incurring the expense of the tub and the related tear-out and repair expenses, OR you can re-line the tub, keeping your present tub by improving it with an acrylic liner.
Re-Lining a Bathroom Tub
Re-lining a bathroom tub appeals to many people for various reasons:
♦ Expense—liners are a fraction of the cost of a new tub, plus there are costs associated with removal and repair of the walls around the tub that you do not incur.
♦ Convenience—a tub liner can be replaced in one day – not days or weeks depending on the amount of change the homeowner wants in their home.
♦ Safety—the process takes one crew a single day as opposed to potentially multiple contractors (tear out, install, tile, floor, etc.). The less people in and out of your house the better.
♦ Walls—new walls can be installed to further update the look of your bathroom, transforming the entire look.
♦ Showers—in place of the tub a shower stall can be installed, including matching new walls.
It’s important for people to understand that the technology for liners has changed substantially in recent years. For example, in the 70-80’s, tubs were commonly ‘re-glazed’ or refinished with a top layer of paint that was aliphatic acrylic polyurethane enamel. It made bathtubs look brand new. The main drawback of this process was that it was a temporary solution; the paint could peel over time.
Built To Last
Acrylic tub liners are a long term solution to bathtub refresh. An acrylic tub liner is a new bathtub custom-made to go over steel or cast iron tubs. Steel and cast iron have a porcelain enamel shell baked onto them to provide the bather a smooth surface. Over time porcelain can chip then becoming porous, making it hard to clean. That is where acrylic excels in that it has a durable, glossy surface, which will not chip, crack, dent, peel or rust and is very scratch resistant. Acrylic is also extremely easy to keep clean because it is non-porous and will retain its gloss for years if no abrasive cleaners are used.
One Solution Does Not Fit All
Note that bathtub liners are not placed over a fiberglass tub. Fiberglass does not have the structural integrity to support a new bathtub liner. In cases of fiberglass, the tub must be removed and new acrylic tub installed. If you are unsure as to whether or not you can use a bathtub or shower liner to refresh your bathroom, consult with a bathtub professional.
Worth the Investment
One of the first places that home buyers consider when purchasing a home is whether or not the bathroom is updated. An easy and fairly inexpensive way to make sure that your bathroom looks its best is to have a tub or shower liner installed. This will give your bathroom a fresh, updated look that will last for year’s to come.