Ready to freshen the look of your bathroom? DIY bathtub and shower repair kits are available at most hardware stores and home centers. A do-it-yourself shower repair kit applied to ceramic, porcelain or fiberglass surfaces, can renew old bathtub and shower fixtures, or completely change their color if you wish. Here’s how:
Refinish Your Bathtub and Shower with a Repair Kit
Cleaning and Surface Preparation:
- Wet & Forget Indoor (to remove mildew)
- Abrasive cleaner
- Abrasive pad
- Sandpaper (#400/600 grit wet/dry)
- Putty knife
- Tack cloth
- Painters tape
- Fan (for poorly ventilated areas)
- Respirator (optional)
- Wooden stirring stick
- Paint tray
- Fine bristle varnish brush or a good-quality, short nap bath roller
- Small foam brush (for corners)
- Safety glasses
- Disposable gloves
First, make sure to adequately ventilate the area by opening windows or place a fan in the bath to circulate the air. Be sure to read all instructions included in the bathtub or shower repair kit before beginning.
Inspect the surface, patch and repair cracks with an epoxy patching compound. Fix cracks before the bathtub or shower repair kit application, this ensures your project will have the underlying prep required to achieve a fresh, renewed finish.
Put on safety glasses and disposable gloves. If you’re sensitive to strong odors, use a respirator.
To remove mildew, spray Wet & Forget Indoor on the surface, let the surface sit for 10 minutes, then wipe the surface. To remove dirt, scrub all surfaces with an abrasive cleaner. Remove caulk with a putty knife and wipe the area dry.
Scrub the entire surface with an abrasive pad and cleaner specially formulated for removing calcium deposits and hard water stains. Let the cleaner sit on the surface for 5 minutes, rinse and let dry.
Sand the surface with #400/600 grit wet/dry sandpaper. Rinse thoroughly. Allow the surface to dry completely. Wipe down all sanded surfaces with a tack cloth to remove dust.
Before applying the repair kit, use painters tape to mask off metal drains and hardware.
If your bathtub or shower repair kit requires mixing two solutions, use a wooden stirring stick to blend them. Apply the solution to the surface using a high-quality, short nap roller or a fine bristle, varnish brush.
Hint: It’s a good idea to prep the roller by removing any loose fibers. To do this wrap the roller with painter’s tape and then pull off the tape to remove excess fibers.
Use light, even strokes to smoothly apply the refinishing product. For corners, use a small foam brush. Allow the surface to dry at least one hour before applying the second coat.
Remove the painter’s tape and allow the surface to dry a minimum of 3 days or according to package directions. Caulk the affected areas and allow to dry according to manufacturer’s instructions.
When cleaning your newly refinished surface, use a mild, non-abrasive products, such as Wet & Forget Shower.
Quick Fix Extra- How to Repair Chipped Steel or Cast Iron Bathtubs
What causes unsightly chips on enamel or porcelain coated, steel or cast iron tubs? The usual culprit is something heavy being dropped on the surface such as a long handle wood brush or a shampoo bottle.
If your tub is made of steel, it may flex when struck, resulting in a chip. Although vintage cast iron tubs are stronger, the coating may chip over time. It’s a good idea to repair your chipped bathtub to minimize rust formation and to improve its overall appearance.
- Dremel tool or acid-based toilet bowl cleaner (to remove rust)
- 2 household sponges, one wet and one damp
- Isopropyl alcohol
- Paper towels
- (10 to 20 percent) mineral spirits (optional)
- Small artist’s paintbrush
- Porcelain touch-up glaze
Remove rust from the chipped area using a Dremel tool, or dissolve the rust with an acid-based toilet bowl cleaner. Apply the toilet bowl cleaner to the chipped area with a Q-tip. Let sit for 15-30 minutes.
To remove rust, wipe the area with a wet sponge; wipe again with a damp sponge. Immediately flush the chipped area with isopropyl alcohol. Any water remaining on the surface will evaporate. Wipe away the excess alcohol with a paper towel. Let dry.
With a small artist’s brush, paint over the chipped area with porcelain touch-up glaze. Apply the glaze in thin layers allowing it to dry at least one hour between coats.
If the glaze is too thick, thin it with a little mineral spirits (10 to 20 percent). Thinning the glaze will also minimize brush strokes. Allow the glaze to cure thoroughly, per the package directions.
For routine care and cleaning of your new surfaces, use a cleaner that doesn’t contain harsh chemicals like bleach or ammonia. Wet & Forget Shower will help keep soap scum, shower grime, and body oils at bay with one weekly application.
Learn more about keeping your bathroom clean with Wet & Forget Shower, here.