Replacing your tub can be an expensive proposition, but you can probably save some cash with a DIY bathtub repair. Once the foam sets, which takes an hour or two, it will provide enough support to prevent the crack from recurring. Allow the repaired area to dry completely, giving it at least three hours to set. Some sell repair kits specifically made to match the tub colors sold. With those fiberglass tubs, the best technique – because you’re right: they are very flexible. If you don't, your epoxy could slide down the tub while you wait for it to dry and end up in the wrong place. You'll replace these when you reinstall the drain. The patch should rise about 1/16 inch above the surface of the tub. Damage to the rim or sidewall of a fiberglass or acrylic bathtub or to the wall of a shower stall can be repaired at any time provided they pose no threat of leaking. This mixture wouldn't be appropriate for a large hole but can be an easy way to take care of a small one in the side or rim of the tub. Fiberglass and cast-iron bathtubs in some ways represent both ends of the spectrum for bathtub options. He has degrees in science and humanities and years of teaching experience. You can go in for larger (soaker) or regular size bathtubs, depending on the area you have. It is helpful to understand what is flexing and why. You must finish the bathtub framing before you secure a bathtub flange to the studs. Fiberglass tubs have a life span of 10-15 years. You can reinstall it if it's in good shape, but you should replace it if it's rusty or corroded. And I say that in the most polite way because it was a patchwork of wood. The floor framing for bathtubs requires special attention. A bathtub shouldn't flex, crackle or pop when you fill it with water or step into it. Acrylic is one of the most common because it is easy to create and uses plastic-based materials that are cheaper in comparison to the others. This is what I use to clean my entire bathroom. It's a more extensive and expensive repair, but you'll only need to do it once. Here are some instructions for cutting a fiberglass bathtub safely. If you have any misgivings about doing it, hire a plumber who has the experience to install it and the license to hook up the fixtures. Let the area dry completely. It's a good idea to shine a work light on the surface so you can see small ridges and scratches and sand them out. We show how to build showers (Schluter, Wedi, Curbless, etc. If you’re doing a bathroom remodel and want to simplify the process enroll into the Bathroom Repair Tutor Video Library. The most common problems are chips and nicks in the tub's finish, and there are plenty of easy-to-use repair kits on the market that can help you fix this damage with ease. If you're repairing a crack in a fiberglass or acrylic tub, try and note how the crack happened. Clean the area with alcohol. I’ve had my Super Bar for years and love that thing to death. Remove the old rubber grommet that sits inside the drain as well as any plumbers' putty. Apply masking tape around the area you're repairing. Most of the tub materials like fiberglass and acrylic are very versatile and flexible. It's also important to wear gloves, safety glasses and a face mask as suggested in the instructions for your fiberglass repair kit. When looking for a repair kit, contact your tub manufacturer first. If you're sanding so much rust that you're considering just grabbing the belt sander to make quicker work of the job, it's probably another sign to go pro. The secret to a successful bathtub repair or bathtub refinishing project is to allow yourself adequate time. Secure the flange to the studs by driving 1-inch galvanized roofing nails through the holes in the flange. Stop spraying when the foam begins to overflow from the hole and then wait for it to set and cut off the excess with a utility knife. Since it occupies the affordable spectrum, fiberglass bathtubs hold the cheapest price point when compared to other materials on market. If you purchased or moved into a house with a fiberglass bathtub that has a crack or a hole and you don't have any way of knowing how long the damage has been there, the tub should be replaced. Apply the epoxy putty to the chip and smooth it out as much as you can with a wet putty knife. What’s Next. Then embed the tub into the mortar. Acrylic and fiberglass bathtubs need support underneath to prevent flexing. Mix per instructions and apply in a layer about 1 inch higher than the feet on the tub, so the tub snugs down into the mortar and squishes the excess out. All opinions belong to Thrift Diving. Attach the drain and overflow pipe to the tub prior to installing the tub. In this video, This Old House plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey updates a bath. Pros & Cons of Fiberglass Bathtubs. Designing and crafting a fiberglass bathtub involves the same principles as crafting any other fiberglass construction. Similarities Between Acrylic and Fiberglass Tubs If the subfloor underneath the bathtub is inadequate, the wood will flex under its weight. How much does it cost to repair a fiberglass tub? Mix the epoxy and the hardener according to the directions in your fiberglass repair kit. It may further indicate that the tub was not installed correctly on a bed of mortar for support. if so, would this one that I … As soon as you're done filling and leveling, remove the tape, which will be impossible to do if you let the filler set first. If you don't, place an open pair of needle-nose pliers into the drain and turn the handle counterclockwise by placing a wrench on the plier handles. Her garden articles provide tips and insight that anyone can use to turn a brown thumb green. Some homeowners elect to keep their current tub and shower while upgrading the rest of the bathroom. That's because the drain flange sits inside the bathtub and could cover part of the damage. Read and follow the mixing directions for the epoxy you're using. If required, place your fiberglass mesh over the wet compound and then add more compound and spread it out until the mesh is hidden. Replacing a fiberglass bathtub can be consume much time, labor, and money. The trick is to layer plastic sheeting over the mortar to prevent it adhering from the tub, making future replacement simpler. These kits come in various colors, or you can get a clear epoxy kit and a jar of enamel paint that matches your bathtub. The first is to note where you're making your repair. The pros at. You'll need to allow adequate drying time between these layers, so don't plan on using your tub the same day that you repair it. I went out and bought This Stuff from Home Depot. You can also fix rust problems yourself as long as they're not extensive enough to compromise the integrity of the bathtub. All opinions belong to Thrift Diving. If you are going to this length, you might want to take the opportunity to install a new shower pan that is more resistant to flexing. How to Fix a Squeaky Acrylic Tub. Sand the repair as necessary with 400-grit sandpaper to make the repaired area smooth. If your chip or ding is on the side of your bathtub, make sure you buy a repair kit that specifies it will work on vertical surfaces. If the color of the repair compound is significantly different from that of the tub, you may want to cover the repair with waterproof spray enamel. Fiberglass walls have no structural or stable support, not only will the fiberglass shower or fiberglass tub walls flex when pushed against, but they also can crack and break over time from continual pushing or pulling. This house is one of my rentals and it’s over 100 years old. Fiberglass (and other plastic tubs) are modern, moldable, versatile, and lightweight. Be sure to apply enough pressure that the repair compound is forced into the crack or hole and fills it completely. Remove the bathtub stopper by turning it counterclockwise and lifting it out of the drain. Fiberglass and cast-iron bathtubs in some ways represent both ends of the spectrum for bathtub options. Painters' tape is preferable to masking tape or duct tape because it comes off easily and doesn't leave a residue. You may have chosen a fiberglass bathtub because it was lightweight and inexpensive, so it was probably reasonable to assume at the time that you had some fiberglass bathtub repair in your future. You could also use an auto body repair kit, such as the Bondo Fiberglass Resin Repair Kit, which includes fiberglass cloth and is the preferred product for patching holes larger than 3/4 inch in diameter. Whether you want help organizing your closet, picking a paint color or finishing drywall, Michelle has you covered. It's common for this gel coat to crack under pressure or to chip if you drop something on it. Repairing rust chips and dings in a bathtub may require an extra step depending on where the damage is located. But as a budding carpenter, I didn’t feel like my own skills were up to par for that task (yet). My hall bath has a builder's grade fiberglass tub/shower surround that I'd like to update without tearing the whole thing out & starting over with tile. Does your fiberglass bathtub, look dull, faded, scratched, worn or discolored? When you apply the final layer, make it as smooth as possible. Installing a bathtub is a very involved process that includes plumbing, carpentry and, in many cases, tiling work. Just avoid using the fixture until you can get around to doing the repair, which is a fairly easy one, although it may take an entire day. Press The Surface Of The Tub: Start by knocking or pressing the outer tub wall. Mix the enamel repair epoxy according to the instructions in your kit. Use either a hammer or super bar to pull up the old subfloor. Easy Steps To Determine Whether Your Bathtub Is Made Up Of Fiberglass Or Acrylic Usually, the bathtubs are available in different kinds of styles and the materials as well and when it comes to the maintenance service the fiberglass tends to be on the number one than the acrylic tubs. The floor framing for bathtubs requires special attention. The usual way to supply this is to lay a 2- to 4-inch mortar bed underneath the tub. Typically, this involves mixing about half of the epoxy with four or five drops of hardener, but this ratio can vary from one repair kit to another. Unlike cast-iron and steel bathtubs, which are rigid and self-supporting and often come installed in a frame, acrylic and fiberglass bathtubs need extra support underneath to prevent flexing, and this is typically supplied by a mortar bed.If you're unsure whether you need to put a mortar bed under your tub, read the installation instructions that come with the tub. After you attach the flange directly to the studs, you can can finish the walls next to the bathtub with drywall or tile. Small rust spots are an easy DIY fix, but tubs that are rusted through probably need professional help to make sure they don't leak. There are a variety of tub types that you can choose from when it is time to install a bathtub in your home, ranging from cast iron to steel, acrylic and composite tubs. Efforts to clean with mold and mildew remover and Soft Scrub with bleach had no effect. Some epoxy repair kits work fine on the bottom of the tub but disappoint when used on vertical surfaces. If you find a ding or a crack in your bathtub, don't panic. By creating an account you agree to the Hunker, Remove and Replace: How To Fix A Hole In The Bathtub DIY, Badeloft: Why Do Bathtubs Crack? Isolate the area to be repaired by laying a double row of painters' tape around it. A typical kit includes two-part epoxy filler in your chosen color, application sticks, cleaning swabs, fine-grit sandpaper and polishing compound. Making a tray for your bathtub is a pretty basic DIY project requiring very little carpentry know-how! A full bathtub is heavy, sometimes 500 to 600 lbs. Use a screwdriver to unscrew the faucet and disconnect it from the water lines by unscrewing it. Before you give up on trying to scrub away the stains, try the cleaning process Home Depot recommends for tough stains on fiberglass: Smear on a paste of … However, fiberglass often makes the short list … The price to refinish a fiberglass bathtub ranges from $300 to $1,000, depending on the size. Remove the handles, overflow drain cover, and the drain cover on the bottom of the tub. To be fair to this all-purpose, fiber-reinforced plastic material, it is fairly durable, and with proper support and care, a fiberglass bathtub can last as long as one made from heavier materials. Here are some instructions for cutting a fiberglass bathtub safely. If you don't paint, apply polishing compound to the repair and buff it with a soft cloth until the sheen matches the rest of the tub. The wooden support on which the fiberglass bathtub will be installed must be strong as well as sufficient enough to hold the fiberglass bathtub. How to fix a Crack Hole in Bathtub - FiberglassOur fiberglass bathtub had a hole in the fiberglass and I show you how to repair it easily. Ripping out and replacing the old bathtubs and showers in my house has always been on my “MUST DO” list. Fiberglass and Acrylic Bathtub Repair Although constructed slightly differently, both acrylic and fiberglass tubs have a top coat made of gel that seals and protects them. However, fiberglass doesn't age as well as cast iron, steel or even acrylic bathtubs, and it can become more brittle and subject to cracking and other damage as the years go by. If you're short on time to go shopping, Remove and Replace suggests a DIY fiberglass filler made with two-part epoxy cement and baby powder to give it a white color. Primarily because this bathroom had a ton of water damage. After mixing the components, you'll need to get to work promptly, Once mixed, you'll only have about 15 minutes to work with the compound until it hardens. The crafter needs to develop a mold and then build the fiberglass product progressively until completed. Finally, remove the tape, wet the 600-grit sandpaper with water and sand the edges of the repair to feather them as seamlessly as possible into the surrounding tub surface. When reinstalling the drain, place a new rubber grommet in the drain. When it comes to selecting a tub for your bathroom, you have plenty materials from which to choose. Pour the mortar on the subfloor so that it’s a few inches from the drain opening. Dress for Success. You'll find her work on Modern Mom, The Nest and eHow as well as sprinkled throughout your other online home decor and improvement favorites. Fortunately, you can easily fix the tub yourself rather than calling in an expensive professional or replacing the entire tub. As the sizes get larger, the … The mortar should be evened out and about 2 inches thick on all sides. Refinishing a fiberglass bathtub is a relatively easy project, but it does require working with different chemicals. Would appreciate feedback/insights on the … I highly doubt that spray foam will provide much support. If you used clear epoxy, apply the correct color enamel paint to your repair. Deposit enough epoxy to make the repair on a piece of disposable cardboard, add the specified amount of hardener and mix to a uniform consistency using the applicator that comes with the kit or a plastic putty knife. Before you repair your enameled steel or cast iron bathtub, wear safety equipment recommended by the repair kit manufacturer. If it's too late to prevent small rust spots, you can repair them using this method as well. Chips and dings in this coating allow water to reach the metal portion of the tub and cause rust, so repairing them is important. Installing a bathtub is a very involved process that includes plumbing, carpentry and, in many cases, tiling work. 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