Your bathtub is a vital part of your home and well-being. This is because it helps you stay clean and improves your mood after you take a relaxing bath. This is why you need to check your bathtub’s condition frequently. A leaking bathtub can cause severe water damage to your home’s structure over time. If your bathtub is leaking, the problem can be with its faucet, grout or drain. Instead of replacing the entire leaking bathtub, which is expensive, you can do fiberglass repair on it yourself. Here’s how to fix a leaking bathtub yourself.
1. Locate the Leaks
The first step to repairing a leaking tub is to find the leak. The leaks from the faucet and grout can be easy to spot, while those on the drain are more challenging to find. However, you can know if there is a leak in your bath’s drain through elimination. If you don’t see any leaks in the faucet and grout, it means that the leak is in the drain. To locate the leaks:
Wipe the faucet and the outside of the grout dry with a cloth.
Wrap the faucet and the outside of the grout with dry newspaper.
Let the faucet fill the tub with water and leave it for 10 minutes.
Check the wrapping newspaper for any damp spots to find the leaks.
2. Fixing the Leaks
If the faucet leaks, you will need a screwdriver, pipe wrench, gaskets and stem washers to fix it. You will start by removing the faucet handle and using the pipe wrench to remove the packing nut. Go on and replace the old washers and gaskets with new ones and put the faucet back together.
If your tub’s body or grout is leaking, clean the leakage area and dry it thoroughly. Apply a sealant to the leaking spot and let it dry for at least three hours. If the leak in your bathtub’s drain, you will need a drain removal tool, screwdriver, putty knife, plumber’s putty and a rag or paper towel. As the bathtub is an important part of your home, make sure you use quality products for the repairs.
Pros and Cons of Repairing Your Bathtub Yourself
The pros are:
It can be more affordable than having to call a professional.
It can be a fun family-bonding activity you can do with your child.
The cons are:
Poor workmanship; thus, the repair work won’t look as appealing compared to if it were done by a professional.
The refinishing work won’t last as long as if it were handled by a professional.
You risk causing more problems to your bathtub than it had before.
Are you looking for bathroom refinishing help?
Welcome to A-1 Porcelain & Fiberglass Service Co., located in Glendale, Arizona, for your bathroom refinishing needs. We are top-notch bathtub and shower specialists that started operations in 1975. We repair cracked fiberglass tubs and refinish tubs, sinks and showers. A-1 Porcelain & Fiberglass Service Co. operates all weekdays. Call us today for unmatched bathroom refinishing assistance.
Fiberglass bathtubs and showers are affordable, durable and attractive, but they’re prone to cracks and pitting after years of regular use. Luckily, fiberglass repair can bring these features back to their original, beautiful condition. This project can be challenging for the average DIY-er, which is why hiring a fiberglass repair professional is your best bet for a quality fix.
Here’s a brief summary explaining how to get the job done the right way.
Repairing a fiberglass tub
From small pits to large cracks or indents, all it takes is a simple epoxy kit and a few tools to fix a tired-looking fiberglass bathtub. Your repair technician will wear protective gear, including goggles, a respirator and gloves, during the process. After assessing the type of damage to the tub, the technician will form a plan to tackle it.
Small chips and cracks only require a simple filling and refinishing, while larger holes or cracks require significant intervention. In these cases, the technician will typically add extra support to the tub structure before patching and refinishing the fiberglass.
Your technician will follow a similar process to the one listed below:
Preparing the area: The technician will use a cleaning solution and sponge to remove oil, soap scum and loose glass fibers.
Drilling: If any extra support is needed below the tub, the technician will drill a few small holes in the surface and inject a foam support below.
Patching: To repair large holes, the repair technician will lay fiberglass mesh as a patch and then seal it with resin putty and hardener. For smaller holes, all it takes is a small amount of the putty to fill them effectively.
Drying: The mixture will dry and set on the tub surface for about three hours or longer. After setting, the technician will sand the surface and then use finishing polish to help the repair blend in with the rest of the tub.
Repairing a fiberglass shower pan
Fixing cracks and holes in a shower pan follows a similar process to the one described above. The only real difference in the process is that the shower pan can be reinforced with plywood or any type of board instead of with foam. Your fiberglass technician will perform the following additional steps:
Sealing: The repair technician spreads epoxy on the plywood and presses it into the hole or crack from the unexposed side, sealing it effectively.
Applying the topcoat: To complete the repair, your technician adds a top layer of epoxy on the exposed surface of the shower pan. Finishing follows the same process as that for bathtubs, with the surface sanded and carefully polished to blend in with the surface.
Looking to bring back the original look and feel of your bathtub or shower with professional fiberglass repair? Reach out to the experts at A-1 Porcelain & Fiberglass Service Co., L.L.C. We’ll restore the appearance and function of a tired bathtub or shower in as little as a day.
Could your fiberglass tub or shower use a little TLC? Fiberglass repair isn’t for everyone, but it can be a DIY project if you’re familiar with bathtub refinishing. To try fiberglass repair yourself, use the following step-by-step guide.
1. Get your kit
For bathtub refinishing, you will need a fiberglass repair kit. Verify that your bathtub is actually fiberglass before you proceed. If you tap on it with a wooden spoon or your knuckle, it should make a hollow, non-metallic noise.
Fiberglass repair kits come in a variety of colors, so choose the color that matches your existing tub. If you need to alter the color slightly, most kits come with tinting products that allow you to do so. Your kit should also contain hardener, a fiberglass mesh or mat, polyester resin, sandpaper, protective gloves, thickener, a mixing container and a stirring tool.
2. Clean thoroughly
Before you complete your fiberglass repair, you must clean the area that requires the repair. Remove any jagged fibers from the area. Sand it to remove any contaminants. Then, rinse it with solvent to prepare the area for the repair product. The area must be very clean and smooth for proper adhesion.
3. Reinforce with fiberglass cloth (if needed)
If the area that needs repair is more than one quarter-inch wide or is an open hole, you will need to use fiberglass cloth reinforcing. Cut a piece of cloth that is slightly larger than the area that needs repair. If the area is particularly large, you may need to use more than one layer of fiberglass cloth.
4. Read the instructions
Review the kit instructions for mixing and tinting the materials before you proceed. Each product varies slightly, so be sure to have a good understanding of how to properly mix and tint before you proceed.
5. Mix (don’t forget to protect your floor!)
Use cardboard or heavy construction paper to protect the surface where you will mix your fiberglass repair material. Measure the recommended amount of resin and mix it according to the kit guidelines. Don’t forget to include any colorant that is recommended to make the mixture the right tint for your bathtub.
6. Thicken and harden
Again, following the kit instructions, add the thickening and hardening agents to the mixture.
7. Mix again, quickly
Remember, the longer you stir, the better results you’ll get. However, once you add the hardener, you’ll only have up to 15 minutes of working time.
8. Apply the mixture
Use a putty knife or other flat tool to apply the mixture to the damaged surface. Spread evenly, making it slightly thicker than the original surface to allow for sanding to finish.
Allow the material to harden. This typically requires about two hours.
10. Sand and buff
Use coarse sandpaper to smooth the repaired area. Work your way from coarse to smooth paper as you sand, until the area is even with the rest of the bathtub surface. Your kit should include a buffing compound that you can use to buff the area and give it a gloss finish to match the rest of the surface.
Call for backup
To skip all of these steps and let the experts handle your fiberglass repair, contact the pros at A-1 Porcelain & Fiberglass Service Co., LLC. We specialize in bathtub refinishing. Call us today for all of your bathroom repair and refinishing needs.
After a certain amount of time, any bathtub—no matter how well you care for it—will start to show signs of wear and tear. Your bathtub might be a place for relaxation and solitude, but it takes a beating over the years.
When you start to notice cracks, dents and other wear, it’s time to recruit a professional for bathtub repair in Phoenix, AZ. Most fiberglass tubs can be refinished to make them look and feel brand-new once more.
Why bathtubs crack
Bathtubs typically see two different types of cracks: hairline cracks and stress fractures. Stress fractures tend to be larger, but make no mistake—if you ignore cracks in the bathtub, they will worsen over time. The bigger the crack, the more likely it is that water will leak underneath your tub and cause structural damage, mold and other homeowner’s nightmares. Here are some things to avoid:
Harsh chemicals: If you’ve been using harsh cleaners to scrub your tub, you might be doing more harm than good. Harsh chemicals erode the glossy finish, which contributes to faster degrading. Eventually, the bathtub will start to crack.
Lack of support: Your fiberglass tub is durable, but if there isn’t enough support underneath the floor of the tub, the material can start to flex and bend. Eventually, your tub will bend, particularly if you stand in the same spot for a shower every day. The more your tub bends, the faster you’ll notice cracks forming.
Heavy objects: Finally, dropping heavy objects in your tub is the fastest way to see cracks form. Accidents happen, but they can leave behind damage. To mitigate this possibility, try to keep all heavy items away from your tub, including the sides and shelves above the tub. You’ll be much less likely to drop or knock things over that way.
How to fix your cracked tub
When you notice bathtub cracks in Phoenix, AZ, it’s important to take care of them right away. Some cracks can be repaired with DIY kits from your local home improvement store, but you risk an ineffective and unattractive result. Some cracks are so large or lack so much support that you’d be better off replacing the entire tub.
The best option for repairing your cracked fiberglass tub is to hire a professional company to fix the cracks and refinish your tub. In addition to restoring old, grungy tubs, refinishing does wonders for hiding the evidence of cracks, chips and other problems. This tends to add years to the overall lifespan of your tub and is much cheaper than paying to remove and demolish your old tub in order to install a new one.
When you opt to refinish your tub, you’ll also benefit from the company’s expertise—they will be able to recommend ways to ensure your tub doesn’t crack again, including preferred cleaners.
Don’t let your tub cause water damage and other problems in your home. Call A-1 Porcelain & Fiberglass Service Co., L.L.C. to discuss bathtub crack repair in Phoenix, AZ.
Eventually, all of our home fixtures will wear out at one time or another. Bathtubs are not immune—sometimes they can be refinished, but at others, it’s more prudent to replace your bathtub entirely. How do you know when you need to get a new tub, or when you can get by with bathtub repair in Phoenix, AZ? Read on to find out.
When to replace your bathtub
The first thing to evaluate is how bad the damage is. Is your tub cracked? Is it buckling from repeated weight? Is it leaking from its drain or supply lines? That’s a sure sign that you need to go ahead and replace it with a brand-new tub. Otherwise, you could see water damage to your floors, walls and ceilings if left unattended.
When you notice these serious issues with your bathtub, you need to get it fixed right away. Try not to use the tub if you can avoid it—otherwise, you’ll be increasing the likelihood of more costly repairs to the surrounding room.
When to refinish and repair your bathtub
If your tub’s damage is minor, like dents, dings and discoloration, you can have the tub refinished and complete any necessary bathtub repair in Phoenix, AZ. Both fiberglass and porcelain tubs are good candidates for refinishing, and they can often leave your tub looking like new. If your tub is otherwise in good shape, refinishing it can add new life to the tub and extend its lifespan by several years. It’s a much more economical option than simply replacing your tub—you’ll avoid needing to hire a contractor to rip it out, install a new one, fix the walls and pay for landfill fees and demolition services.
Refinishing a bathtub is a simple process that takes very little time from start to finish—you can start using your bathtub in as little as 24 to 48 hours after it’s refinished. First, the contractors will strip the caulking and remove the hardware like faucets, drains and more. Then they lightly sand the surface so that the new glaze can stick. If there are still dings and dents, they’ll fill those first so the glaze goes on smoothly.
Next, the contractor will prime the bathtub, which can require several layers. The primer needs time to dry in between. Then they’ll spray on several layers of a top coat. Depending on the top coat used, the contractor may need to come back to buff the tub before it’s finished, but many top coats are good to go as soon as they’re cured.
After the top coat is applied, it will need a period of time to cure. At that point, you’ll be able to use your tub once again, and it will look just like new.
In short, when your tub has major damage, you’ll need to bite the bullet to replace the entire fixture. However, if it just has cosmetic damage, you can hire a contractor for bathtub repair in Phoenix, AZ.
When your sinks and tubs need a facelift, call A-1 Porcelain & Fiberglass Service Co., L.L.C.