Reglaze or reline an old porcelan Bathtub.... which is better?

paul_mellerOctober 22, 2008

Just got a forclosed home here in West Bloomfield, Michigan

(about 15 miles north of Detroit). Overall good shape with not much altering to bring it back.

I have an old green cast iron bathtub (about 40 years old). It is in worn out, but good condition, no chips, no rust and still has some sheen on it. The tile around and above the tub is in new condition. I don't want to rip the heavy tub out and replace it as this would destroy the tile.

What about reglazing it? I'm sure that this should be done by professionals (those who have been doing it for awhile). Will this last long? What is the ball park price for this service?

What about relining as an alternative. Again what is price for this alternative?

What are some websites to go to for info?

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Hey neighbor, we're just north in Orion! We bought a fc home as well, with a simular situation, but have decided to gut and replace the tub with a shower. When starting the research on choices, I heard pro's and cons about both, one concern I had about reglazing is how it can or will eventually wear off.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2008 at 12:16PM
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Hi Paul...I used to be a contractor for quite a few years. I had sub-contracted many tub re-glaces. There are good re finishers and crappy ones. If done well, it can look every bit as good as anew tub for many many years. You do have to take very good care of the unit tho. No abrasive cleaners etc. Use Mr Clean or Vim Oxy Gel( **NOT** regular Vim) and you should have no problems for I would say at LEAST 10 years. You typically have even better luck with cast iron. I am remodeling my entire house next year, and a claw-foot tub will be in the design of our en suit bath. I would not hesitate getting a re glazed cast iron clawfoot if done from one of my good subs.

There is nothing in the world as good as cast iron for a bathtub. I would highly recommend keeping it.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2008 at 1:16AM
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We reglazed our tub almost 3 years ago, and it still looks like new. I highly recommend it if you don't want to do a tear out and the tub is otherwise sound. They can even change the color for you.

I use Scrubbing Bubbles to clean it. Unfortunately, no more Comet with this type of surface.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2008 at 8:53PM
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I just got an estimate to reglaze my old green tub. Said it would take about 1/2 a day and would cost $400.00.

I checked his references and the people I called were all happy.


    Bookmark   October 25, 2008 at 10:37PM
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Jane- that is bang on. It should take a good 1/2 day for a proper job. I used some guys that would be done in literally 1.5 hours start to finish. They SUCKED!!! Guys I use now are absolutely amazing and take about 1/2 day. I have not had one single call back yet. And yes it is about $400 (In Toronto)
To O/P.....ask anyone doing this how long they take. I don't know TONS about the process either, I just farmed out the job to guys that knew what they were doing, but I think epoxy paints are not a good idea as well....they yellow over time.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 2:04AM
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Paul Meller here again from West Bloomfield, Michigan. I have been getting your responses directly to my Yahoo e-mail. It's a real neat feature of this blog so I don't have to constantly check in.

Nice picture of your tub Jane. That's a classic tub, nice lines.... very worthwhile saving. Seems like your floor and wall tile are in good shape too. It's good and very economical to save the whole thing rather then gut and replace. It's like restoring a classic car. Nice picture.

My bathroom is a similar situation. My wall (white tile) and floor (green tile) are more recent, my tub is an oldy, but goody. Perhaps it's a good thing the former owners didn't reglaze mine, they could have done a bum job and I would have to be dealing with more of a mess. So now it's on to find a good company in this area. That's a good question to ask of the contractors on how long they will take too. An hour and a half spent on this job sounds like a disasterous outcome.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2008 at 5:50AM
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Hi tyguy,
Could you please send me the contact information for the guys you used? I live in Toronto and I am looking to get my tub reglazed.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2008 at 9:22AM
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My neighbor had the tub relined. It was awful. It didn;t fit tightly and you could squeeze it and get it to move. EVentually water got under there and then it squished.

I had my tub reglazed by Perma Ceram about 17 years ago. It looked great and only in the past few years has it started to chip and peel. I have always cleaned it with Soft Scrub. It really made the bathroom livable until now when I plan to remodel.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2008 at 12:03PM
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I had a tub relined in my last house, and it held up well through a bunch of renters until I sold it. At one point, I tried to recaulk and did a horrible job of it, and water got between the tub and the liner. I just had a plumber come and fix it -- it was fine after that.

Our current house also has a liner on the tub. I called a reglazing place to see if they could remove the liner and refinish the tub, and they said they do not refinish tubs that have had liners installed. So apparently, this an either/or proposition.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2008 at 2:40PM
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Forgot about this post. Wanted to update. The tub turned out great. Shiny and smooth. Beautiful job and the guy was so nice. He came back a week later , checked everything and removed the plastic covers from the stainless fixtures.

Well worth the money...

Forgot to get rid of that old soap!


    Bookmark   November 29, 2008 at 12:39AM
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Glad to see it went well!

    Bookmark   November 29, 2008 at 10:28AM
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Very well done Jane, what a difference that made! I'm so happy for you!

    Bookmark   November 29, 2008 at 12:35PM
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Hi Tals

Sorry I didn't see your msg to me until now. I would be glad to give you the contact info. Is there any way to privately email each other from here?

    Bookmark   November 30, 2008 at 12:57AM
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I really love these forums! I got all the info I needed, and one poster was even in the same area (Toronto) so I know the price quoted is accurate.
My mother recently bought a 1980's condo. The 2nd bathroom is in good shape, but the fixtures are bright blue. She wants to replace the sink and toilet, and having the tub reglazed would be within her budget.
She lives alone, and the bathroom would get limited use, since she usually uses her master bath. In her case the tub reglazing would last indefinitely.
Thanks for the info!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2009 at 12:28PM
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Lovely job on your green tub! Would you mind sharing who you used for your job? I am also in the NYC area (Westchester County) and am looking for a recommendation to reglaze my 1920's-era tub. Thanks!

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 9:04AM
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This guy is so nice. Came down from Goshen,NY. Very clean cut, well educated, classical pianist - can't figure what he's doing in this business, but he's good.

Nathan O.

I just checked my receipt and I paid $425.00


    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 4:17PM
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paul_meller -- if you are still around, I'm also in metro Detroit and would love to know who you chose to reglaze the tub, were you happy with it and how much you paid.

I am planning on doing it but thought I'd wait until my kids are older since they say it can chip if you drop things on it.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 3:33PM
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Hello again,

I didn't get my tub done yet but here are two companies in Michigan which have good reputations and prices. I'll probably be getting it done within the next month. How it hold up will depend on the use and how one gently maintains it. 8021 N. Haggarty Rd. in Canton MI. 48187 734-459-9900 $260 White $309 colors

Dans Bathub Reglazing 198 W Auburn Rd In Rochester Hills
48307 248-852-6650

My brother used Dans a few years ago. In white, it is holding up very well. Price about the same as unique

Paul M

    Bookmark   January 31, 2009 at 7:48AM
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paul, thanks for the repost. I'm in Dearborn and will be doing mine in the spring, just before putting on the market.

I'll be using one of these two vendors.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 8:06PM
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WOW!What a great website. I have been delaying doing over a bathroom for a long time. Looked into relining and leaking was the #1 problem that came up along with the possibility of mold developing. That reglazed tub looks terrific. Thanks for the pictures. I may well go ahead with it although the plumbing is old and would like a new single shower valve installed which means either cutting into the bathroom tile or working thru a wall in a bedroom. Too many decisions.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2009 at 11:05AM
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I would HIGHLY recommend NOT calling, using or referring the Painted Otter. Not only is there product horrendous but their customer service isn't any better. First, we were quoted a priced of $400 and when we received our bill it was more like $700. A new tub would have been cheaper. They had to return four times due to drips, runs and the product not covering properly. We received an ATTITUDE from Nate after asking him to come back and finish the job. I wish I were kidding. The exhaust fan they used to blow the excess paint out of the house stained our screen. They didn�t care. Using their head, it not an option for these two. Although they say they can match any Kohler color, don�t believe Jess (the co-owner/secretary/scheduler/no help at all), because they can�t! But they will charge you an additional $75 dollars to 'color match'. My neighbor down the road also used the Painted Otter and had a horrible experience too. At least their consistence. I would have warned them if I had known. Also, the company who referred them apologies after receiving MANY calls and emails from unhappy and VERY dissatisfied customers. Please do not use this company, I GUARENTEE you�ll be glad you didn�t! If this wasn�t enough, during our final meeting, Nate shook my hand and said to me, 'no hard feelings'. RIGHT!! Get out� That was the best part of the whole experience- seeing Nate�s truck pull away for the final time.

Here is a link that might be useful: The Painted Otter

    Bookmark   April 1, 2012 at 4:03PM
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