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Restore stained bathtub or basin




In an older home with original bathroom fittings being able to paint a basin or tub allows you to refresh a bathroom without the expense of fitting new sanware.


Rust stains on enamelled or porcelain bathtubs and basin are common in older homes and flats that still have steel pipes. While scrubbing may remove some of the stains, more often than not the best solution is to rip out and replace.


Today's epoxy paints allow you to refresh and restore enamelled cast iron and porcelain basins and tubs for a semi-permanent solution that allows you time to save up for replacement fittings. Rust-Oleum Tub & Tile Kit is available on the shelf at your local Builders Warehouse. This product acts and looks like porcelain and ceramic, and when applied to these surfaces, provides a durable finish that instantly refreshes a bathroom.



Where a basin or tub is badly stained you will need to sand down with 120- and then 180-grit sandpaper to smooth prior to painting. Wipe clean to remove all traces of dust.


The room needs to be well-ventilated as you work. Open windows and doors, or have a circulating fan at hand to keep the space well aired.


The kit includes a tin of Base and Activator. After stirring both tins well, the Activator is poured into the Base tin and stirred well. That is all that is required and you are now ready for painting.





If it isn't possible to remove taps and drains from a sink, basin or bathtub, cover these up with masking tape to avoid getting them full of paint.




Cover the drain hole with a piece cut from a plastic container, such as a margarine tub or milk bottle. Secure in place with a bead of Prestik.




Apply the epoxy paint with a small paintbrush in and around detailed areas and foam roller on larger surfaces. A foam roller is the preferrred method as it leaves a nice smooth finish. However, the product is self-levelling and should smooth out on its own.



If you have a large project, such as a bathtub, a spray system may be the best option. You will need to mask off the surrounding area and work in a well-ventilated space.




You will need to apply two coats of epoxy paint. After applying the first coat, allow this to dry to touch. The surface should not be tacky. It is recommended that you let each coat dry overnight.


A second coat is applied in the same way, and depending upon the colour or how badly the tub or basin in stained, you may need to apply a third coat.




Although not a permanent solution, applying epoxy paint to a basin or bathtub should last a few years. You will also find a touch-up kit that is handy when chips do occur.


Janice Anderssen