Is Bathtub Refinishing Too Dangerous for DIY?

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atlanta bathtub refinishing

Subject: buying a DIY home

buying a DIY home-refurnishing kit is very dangerous I would suggest to hire a professional bathtub and tile refinishing expert of your area as the fumes these mode made kits carry are very dangerous for our health.



i would like to remodel my home could you seen me a catalog

Sal Calandra


Agreed. I've been reglazing bathtubs since 1993 and have stripped hundreds of tubs that have been "painted" with that worthless epoxy kit that Home Depot sells. There is no way to get proper adhesion due to the fact that they supply no etching supplies or primer. Further, due to the fact that the brushed-on finish is an epoxy, it yellows within the first year(that is, whatever hasn't peeled!).



Another option to refinishing is to use a bathtub liner. These liners go over old steel and cast iron tubs and carry a lifetime product guarantee. Refinishing is cheaper - but the liners provide a quality alternative you don't have to redo in a number of years.

Rick Hugill


Being a competitor of his, I couldn't agree more on his comments that it should be left to a professional. We strip and refinish more tubs than I care to mention that were done with the "home kit". It's like getting a can of spray paint to paint your car. It can be done, but never well. Refinishing a tub can be done, but unless you know the proper techniques to prepare the tub, it will eventually peel and never hold up well. The refinishing industry has gone under extreme changes with the technology available today, from molecular bonding agents to the coatings themselves. While the DIY kits serve a purpose as some stated here, getting a professional result can only be done by a professional.

Joan Baron


My house was built in 1948 and by now, all of the windows have been painted shut. Is it possible to have my tub redone w/o having an open window? Vacating the house for a day or two would be difficult as I have pets.

Mary DeLuca


In response to Gregory's comments: I can't count the number of clients I have made for LIFE after they have bought a home kit from home depot. Except for those doing a tub in a rental, where they don't care what it looks like, all have not liked the results. It is very difficult to get a nice finish that makes your tub look like it is brand new (not glazed) without spraying it on. The difference is dramatic. The whole point to glazing is that others will never know you glazed the tub, it just looks new to them. A brushed on kit never gets that result.



Just go the Home Depot and buy a recoating kit for $30.00 I have used it on a victorian tub, and the results were great!
Sorry, but professionals have been telling me for your I can't do all the work I have done in my house! Of course they will tell you that!

Ernest Staton Jr


Mr. Burns is correct except that leaving the old tub without a professional finish will make it hard to clean. I have been reglazing tub professionally in Connecticut since 1996 and all my jobs have lasted since I started. Tub reglazing is not a DIY job as the proper preparation equipment and top coat reglazing materials are not available to an untrained professional.

Kevin Klepper


We regalze tubs all the time here in NYC, because of the complexity of replacing,cost and of course the old tubs are much stronger and bigger..I have used a company here for over 25 years,and never had a tub peel,chip,crack ,or yellow..My clients here in NYC are always very pleased..Thank you Kevin Klepper A-1 Home Improver Constr.Co.NYC

Mary DeLuca


I agree with everything Mr. Burns said in your article "Dangerous Bathtub Repair" except for the final comment. If your tub is an older tub (which most glazed tubs are) and you strip it down to its previously etched surface it may be leaching lead. I would not recommend leaving it in an unglazed condition. At the very least you should purchase a lead test kit to confirm there is no leaching lead, whether you have children in the house or not. We have been glazing tubs in Stamford, CT since 1971 and have not left one stripped tub unglazed. It's just not worth the risk with an older tub.

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I second the original question (still unanswered). Speaking as someone who logged in today to try to find an attorney, I see this category as one that's exactly what I have my Angie's List membership for:

1. It's important that I find a good one
2. I'm not an expert enough to know myself who is a good one
3. The industry is full of advertisements and misinformation
4. I wish I knew what experiences other people have had

I don't care about lawns--I planted mine in clover and don't have to mow it. When I do need to mow I use a rotary Fiskars mower, which is great--or a scythe. That's right--a scythe (the European type, which is smaller, and it's very good exercise). Gas-powered mowers, chemical fertilizers and weed killers--all nasty stuff that gets into everyone's air, soil, and water. I'm sure my neighbor doesn't like my wildflowers, semi-wild pockets of fruit bushes, and unmown areas and yes, dandelions (I have 10 acres) but that's too bad. It's better habitat for wildlife, especially the pollinators on which our food supply depends. I think this obsession with the Great American Lawn is a waste of time and resources. Plant some food instead.

I'm not sure Angie et. al. want you to have a complete answer to this question. By re-subscribing at the Indiana State Fair in 2012, I think I paid $20.00 per year for a multi- year subscription. Maybe even less. At the other extreme--and I hope my memory isn't faulty about this--I think the price, for my area, for ONE year was an outrageous $70.00. And they debited me automatically without warning. I had to opt out of that automatic charge. I like Angie's List, but if some of the companies they monitor behaved the way they do in this respect, they'd be on some sort of Pages of Unhappiness. I'll be interested to see if this comment gets published or censored out of existence.

That's very difficult to answer without seeing the house. As one poster said, the prep is the most important part. On newer homes that don't have a lot of peeling paint, the prep can be very minimal even as low as a couple or a few hundred dollars for the prep labor.

On a 100 year old home with 12 coats of peeling paint on it, then the prep costs can be very high and can easily exceed 50% of the job's labor cost.

A 2100 sq ft two story home could easily cost $1000 just for the labor to prep for the paint job. That number could climb too. Throw in lots of caullking  or window glazing, and you could be talking a couple or a few hundred dollars more for labor.

Painting that home with one coat of paint and a different color on the trim could run roughly $1000 or more just for labor. Add a second coat  and that could cost close to another $1000 for labor.

For paint, you may need 20 gallons of paint. You can pay from $30-$70 for a gallon of good quality exterior paint. The manufacturer of the paint should be specified in any painting contract. Otherwise, the contractor could bid at a Sherwin-Williams $60 per gallon paint and then paint the house with $35 Valspar and pocket the difference. $25 dollars per gallon times 20 gallons? That's a pretty penny too.

That was the long answer to your question. The short answer is $2000 to $4000 and up, depending upon the amount of prep, the number of coats, the amount of trim, and the paint used.