Introduction to Refinishing & FAQs
Refinishing is the replacement of the original shine with modern sprayed-on polymers that replicate a new bathtub's finish. The procedure is also called reglazing or resurfacing. The procedure is much like painting a car. Our finish is a hard-drying, high-gloss material specially developed for the greatest durability, superior to do-it-yourself approaches.
WHY CHOOSE US?
A refinish job isn't something you can just shop for online like you can on Amazon or CraigsList. The premium quality materials used require an advanced knowledge of their chemistry and characteristics.
So let's say you found a cut-rate contractor...do you think they're using premium quality products, can deal with complications, or can deliver a beautiful, durable job? Will they be available in the future?
We use premium quality products, excel with complications, respect your property, and deliver a beautiful job. And since we've been serving the area for 25 years, we're going to be around even longer.
WHY OUR FINISH IS THE BEST
We use only the best quality materials for our customers, materials that we use in our own homes. For example, we use epoxies and polyurethanes that have separate components that are mixed onsite. These molecules are KEY to the best durability and are the best quality offered today. Furthermore these superior materials are our tools to deliver durable repairs, ease of cleaning and a beautiful appearance. Simply put, we do not cut corners or skimp on quality.
Is your work brushed or rolled on?
We apply by spray to achieve a uniform, attractive product.
Does it look like it’s painted?
Usually it takes a sharp eye to discern a good refinish job from a new tub. Part of that result stems from quality equipment, materials and experience.
Can my tub be refinished a second or third time?
The next refinish job can only go over previous work that is solid and holding well. In most cases previous work will need repair or stripping for the next refinish job to be a success. This applies to all bathtub types.
Will you protect my walls and other surfaces while you work?
We cover walls, floors and other surfaces which might otherwise be exposed to spray mist and use an exhaust system to move spray mist to the outdoors. We even take extra precautions.
Is the finish slippery?
The finish is smooth and should be considered slippery. We recommend adhesive slip resistance products, or we can apply a slip resistant additive to the floor of the tub at the time of refinishing. We recommend using no mats in the refinished tub. See "TUB FINISH CARE" tab for more information.
Are there strong odors from refinishing?
There are many odors when we prepare and refinish. While performing our services, we exhaust nearly all the odors outdoors for safety and comfort. When the application is complete, the finish continues to give off solvent odors which taper off over the next several hours. We recommend opening the windows afterward and also possibly leaving the house for a few hours. Most people sleep normally at night. Nobody has ever reported illness of family, pets or plants.
Can you change colors?
We can refinish over any color to a new color, or you may keep the same color. Any color imaginable can be made for you.
Is it cheaper to have you service only the small area that is worn?
Simply put, it is. While chips and small damaged areas can be repaired independently of the rest of a fixture and can look nearly invisible, worn tubs typically look best when bathtubs are completely refinished.
Can chips, rust, or stains be repaired?
In more than 98% of cases, we’ve "saved the day" with repairs. Chips, scratches, and cracks are gone when refinished. Rust and stains are typically associated with worn tubs, aging plumbing, or water quality. Any repair will only be performed when we are certain the source of the damage has been resolved.
Does the whole tub have to be refinished because of one chip?
Not necessarily. We employ a technique that can blend in a repair to be very inconspicuous if it's even noticeable at all.
Does my bathtub have to be removed to be refinished?
No. All the work can be done in your home with the tub in place.
Do my faucet and drain have to come out?
Generally, if you have no plans to change the drain it can stay in place. If you are changing your drain, it's best to leave the drain out until our finish is dry before the drain is reinstalled. It's also a good idea to check that the faucet does not drip. We prefer a drain and faucet that are in good working order. If either stay in place, we mask them.
Do the shower doors have to come out?
If you do not intend to replace the doors, the track may stay in place but the doors need to be removed to have the work performed.
I’m doing other work in the bathroom. When should I have the tub refinished?
Plan to have the bathtub refinished last. This minimizes the likeliness that any other work you are doing will damage your new finish.
The caulk is in bad shape. Can you fix this with the tub?
Assuming the wall is sound, we can re-caulk. However, chances are that failing caulk is a minor symptom of wall damage behind the tile or surround. The condition of the caulk is a good indicator of moisture penetration. Walls that you aren’t planning to replace may have absorbed water and often shed crumbs which can land in your finish when the tub is refinished. Check the walls, then replace or repair the wall before refinishing.
Does refinishing take care of the rough spots on the bathtub?
While performing the “prep”, rough spots can be repaired. Our estimator or service technician will be able to explain outcomes and options to you.
How long does it take to refinish a bathtub?
A typical bathtub can be refinished in 3 to 4 hours. Condition, size, accessibility and field conditions can change that.
How soon can I use the tub?
Your tub could be ready in as soon as 24 hours after refinishing. Please call or email for details.
How do I take care of the refinished bathtub?
Because a refinished bathtub behaves much like an automotive finish, you should protect it from impact damage, abrasive media, and strong cleaners. We strongly recommend avoiding constant moisture. Try one of our slip resistance products instead of using a bath mat. Towel drying is a great habit that will give you years of extended life beyond the warranty. Waxing has benefits as your finish ages. See "TUB FINISH CARE."
How long will refinishing last?
We have customers whose finishes are still serving them after 19 years, and some who had damaged theirs the day it was applied. Ultimately, your care and the environment you manage will be instrumental to a long-lasting finish.
Durable refinishing starts with a good job. Secondly, a tub that’s dry between uses goes a long way. Thirdly, you must also care for the finish. These three factors are critical to a long-lasting finish. We provide complete care instructions to help keep you a step ahead of your finish and to help you achieve the greatest durability from our product. See "TUB FINISH CARE".
How does a refinished tub compare to a plastic tub liner or a new tub?
-COST. Compared to refinish jobs a bathtub liner can start at $1500; bathtub replacement can start around $3,000; refinishing starts around $400.
-TIME. When compared to a liner (4 hours) or a replaced tub (7-14 days), refinishing can be completed on shortest notice taking just 4 hours.
-DURABILITY. In terms of initial durability, a new enameled cast iron tub is the hardest and most durable. A bathtub liner will be more forgiving than a refinish job. However, comparing all three over 25 years you may need a new liner, refinish job or new tub. But the refinished tub can be repaired or redone, still at a fraction of the cost of another liner installation or another replaced bathtub. If a crack forms in a liner, it usually cannot be repaired, requiring its removal and you're back to your starting point.
Please note this compares a cast iron bathtub and not fiberglass or acrylic bathtubs which have the durability near or below the performance of bathtub liners.
-CONCERNS. Bathtub replacement/ remodel jobs take time, create a lot of dust and traffic in the house, and generate the most waste. The liner can beneath itself and often has a larger caulk seam to maintain. Refinish jobs can delaminate from excessive moisture.
-OUR CONCLUSION. If a property owner doesn't want to go through replacement with an enameled cast iron bathtub, refinishing is bargain. It will require special care that the majority of people can manage. While results vary with care and substrate, most bathtub refinish customers experience a useful life near 10 years.
Does an electrostatic application increase the durability of the job?
No. Actually, all the steps and materials make the job durable, and not the electrostatic spray equipment.
Here's the secret: the electrostatic equipment puts a static charge on the solvents used in the paints. This system requires a technician to clamp a wire onto bare metal on your tub to attract the paint spray to it. The electrostatic system simply reduces the overspray cloud in the work area. This process works nicely on file cabinets, gym lockers and appliances to help keep the overspray cloud to a minimum.
Interestingly enough, when a fiberglass product is being refinished with this machine the electrostatic property doesn't work. Again, when there isn't bare metal on a metal tub to connect the electrostatic spray system, it does not work. In the end, this technician still needs to do the same preparation, spray on his materials, and exhaust fumes to the outdoors for a nice and durable job.
How long is your warranty?
Different services have different warranties. Bathtub refinishing can be warranted from 5 to 10 years.
What does your refinishing warranty cover?
Our warranty covers our finish changing color, turning dull, cracking or delaminating from the surface to which it was applied.
What does your refinishing warranty not cover?
The warranty does not cover touchups or scratches (this is part of a homeowner's normal maintenance), caulk, any debris in the finish, a second party's failed repair attempt, damage from mats, damage from excess moisture or heat, damage due to negligence or damage from field conditions. For non-warranty repairs we will charge our current hourly repair rate plus travel. Payment for services serves as your agreement to warranty coverage.
Why is Tubs N' Stuff NOT a member of any bathtub trade or accreditation groups?
Trade associations are used to embellish a contractors' credibility and to act as an industry resource. Whether the reason is that the "best guys are members" or that watchdog group logos look great on websites, with some research the truth is discovered. The bathtub refinishing trade associations don't sufficiently monitor their members, act as consumer advocates nor support members with training; neither consumer nor contractor truly benefit. And ironically enough, we used to be members of a nationally known consumer resource that needed to be reported to itself for their lame customer service but did a fine job collecting our dues. Needless to say, we have little confidence in these groups though they serve a purpose for some.
Since we do not subscribe to these associations we set the highest standards of workmanship, communicate with our customers, stand behind all our work and offer references to those considering our services.
How can I be ready for my refinish job?
-Complete all major construction work prior to refinishing so that tools, ladders, adhesives and falling objects will not be near the new refinish work. Being ready includes correcting dripping faucets and slow drains prior to refinishing services.
-Clean the fixture to be refinished, walls and room as well as any adjacent areas from dust, hair, and airborne oils/ chemicals as these can blemish the refinish work. Cleaning charges may apply if more cleaning is necessary.
-Remove the screen from the window closest to the bathroom.
-Remove towels, accessories and hygiene products from work area.
-For their safety we recommend pets, small children, and sensitive people to be kept from the work area. Also, any pets that shed and pets that are curious should be kept from work area until the finish is dry.
-A parking space close to the house and a path to the work area is greatly appreciated.
-Please have payment ready at the time of completion. A price quoted on the phone may not necessarily be the final price. We accept cash, checks, and major credit cards. We do not invoice our customers.
How do I make an appointment?
You can call or email us. Once we've exchanged some details, we'll find a time that works for both of us. If for some reason we can not keep our appointment with you, we will call so you're not kept waiting.
Please note, sometimes people have left messages wanting to schedule or reschedule their appointments for specific times, and some have assumed that a date we called "next available" was their appointment. We recommend exchanging a confirmation of the appoinment with us for the best results.
Call or email today!