Comparing Bathtub Refinishing And Bathtub Liners

An old bathtub can begin to crack and fade, ruining the aesthetic of your bathroom and increasing the risk of a leak occurring. However, a complete replacement of an old bathtub can be a costly and complicated process. There are two main processes that are done on an older bathtub to restore its previous beauty: refinishing and installing a liner. Though both processes seek to achieve the same end result, they carry distinctive sets of advantages and disadvantages over each other. Understanding the differences between refinishing and lining a bathtub can help you choose the right option for your bathroom.

Bathtub Refinishing

Bathtub refinishing consists of contractors working within your bathtub, sanding down and patching the structure of the tub itself before coating it with a special finish that is designed to strengthen your bathtub at the same time that it restores its appearance. In addition, for cost considerations, it is possible to refinish a bathtub by yourself. Keep in mind that if you do decide to refinish your bathtub yourself, the results may be of a lower quality than if you hired professional bathroom remodeling services to touch up your bathtub.

Refinishing does have a few downsides. Because it involves actual sanding and painting, the process itself can be messy, which can require a longer clean-up period to get your bathroom back into order. Further, refinishing can't completely restore the structural integrity of an older bathtub, which means that real damage and cracks will not be reversed.

Bathtub Liners

Bathtub liners, on the other hand, are made out of a thick acrylic lining that fits into the tub itself. This lining is much thicker than the layer of sealant that refinishing puts on, which can greatly extend the lifespan of your tub and prevent further damage and cracking. Further, bathtub liners make very little mess as far as remodels go, as no dust, paint, or other materials will need to be used during the process.

However, bathtub liners have a couple of problems associated with them. First of all, and perhaps most importantly for those homeowners with tight remodeling budgets, installing a liner in a tub is a fairly expensive process especially when compared to refinishing. This is because liners have to be custom made to fit into each individual tub, driving up material costs. Secondly, if your liner is improperly installed, water can get stuck between the liner and the tub, contributing to mold and mildew growth.