Author: nEIlDayTub

Stripping a Bath

Only for cast iron and pressed steel baths.  Do not attempt on an acrylic surface. For further advice on stripping an acrylic bath please call us on 08003284324

A question often asked is how I can tell if my bath has been resurfaced in the past and why is it important.  Firstly to tell if your bath has been resurfaced have a look at the surface and check for any peeling, blistering, flaking, bubbling or cracking.  If none of these are present, have a look around the edge of outlet, base of the taps and around the overflow, when a bath is resurfaced in situ these areas are masked up and when the masking tape is removed it can leave very fine jiggered edges in the coating and is a tell-tale sign of a resurfaced bath.

Now we know how to tell if it has been resurfaced, now why is it important.  In 99% of cases where a bath has been resurfaced and is starting to show signs of ware you will need to strip the coating off prior to resurfacing with one of our Tubby Extra’s kits.  The main reasons for this is; if the coating is broken water will get under the coating and when warmed it will turn to steam and over time will lift the material.

Secondly, all bath coatings have a life span at which stage the adhesion of the material will start to go.  With a Tubby bath we would expect the coating to last in the region of 10 years.  Other coatings may have a shorter life expectancy.  As such if you merely try to coat over an existing coating once the adhesion goes on the original coating the top coat will come away anyway.

The third and final reason why you would want to strip a resurfaced bath is if you don’t know what is on your current bath and you apply Tubby on top, the solvents in our materials can dissolve the coating below and lift the new Tubby coating.

However if you have used Tubby please call the office as you may not be required to strip the bath.

To strip the bath you will need to have the following consumables:  between 700ml – 1l high quality stripper, a couple of blade scrappers, 80 grit wet and dry paper, scotch bright pad, chemical resistant gloves and any other personal safety gear you may require.  We would advise you to wear a mask and eye protection.

The stripping process can be time consuming as due to regulatory changes the active ingredient dichloromethane or methalyne dichloride  have been removed from most DIY stripping products.  The new reformulated products do work however the process takes significantly longer.  Most tins will say you need to apply and wait around 40 minutes  however in practice you will more than likely need to keep the stripper and for 3 – 5 hours, remembering to keep the stripper wet by adding more every 30 minutes.

Start by meticulously washing the bath with a scotch bright pad and soap cleaner as strippers generally will not work through soap residue, dirt or limescale build-up.

Aggressively sanding the bath with your 80 grit wet and dry paper or alternatively the preparation wheel which comes in our Tubby Extra Kit, this will break the surface of the material allowing the stripper to get in and start working faster.  Give the bath a final wash out and make sure it is completely dry as strippers will not work through water either.

Working on about a third of the bath at a time apply the stripper and keep checking on it every 30 minutes to make sure it is still wet as described above.

Once the coating starts to bubble and blister, use your blade scrappers to remove the coating.  It is a good idea to keep an old newspaper so you can load the stripper and coating muck onto for easy disposal later.   Continue this process until you have completely stripped the whole bath.

Once the bath is completely stripped wrap all the muck in additional newspaper sealed with a plastic bag and dispose of it in a responsible way in accordance with your local council rules.

You will now need to wash the bath out with plenty of warm soapy water to make sure all the stripper is completely removed.

You are now ready to start the Tubby process. Which will begin with washing out the bath with the Tubby cleaning powder and cleaning pad.  Don’t skip this step as it is the foundation of the Tubby process and really important to make sure there is no residue of the stripper remaining.

If in doubt about what kind of bath you have and any part of this process please contact our offices, we are here to help.

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Buying a second-hand roll top bath

Cast Iron baths were first mass-produced in the late 1800s and have remained in style ever since. This is due to their classical elegance, and whilst other trends come and go, the roll top remains. Not only have they been around forever, they are also very robust and in most cases will outlive their first owners. Given the above, there are a lot of baths to choose from on the market.

With so many around, how do you choose the bath that is right for you? If you have decided to ‘redo’ your bathroom and want to move on to a roll top bath, then the first place to start would be to measure your space, as most roll tops will be larger than a standard modern bath. Don’t forget to take into consideration the area required for any wall tiles you might need to put up.

Cast baths come in numerous shapes and sizes but the main categories would be single ended, double ended, slipper (raised back) and torpedo (bath tappers towards the outlet).

Having decided on what size and shape bath you want, it is now time to go shopping. There are many places you can find a second hand roll top bath, such as scrap yards, auction houses and even online auction sites. So how do you know what to look for and what to avoid? This article will try to help by pointing out some really important details to consider when buying a second hand bath.

It is not a problem if the bath has some surface rust as this can be sanded back and treated with Krurust before you resurface the bath, or if it is discoloured as you will be covering the bath surface with our specialist coating material.

Finally, if there are a few scratches or pits, that is fine as you will be filling them with the supplied filler in the Tubby Extra kit to achieve a smooth finish. Avoid buying a bath that has been sitting outside for extended period of time, or used as a trough or planter, or one that has been sandblasted. The elements will have degraded the surface and make the vitreous enamel powdery and not fit for resurfacing.

Remember, when collecting your newly purchased bath, they are very heavy so you will need help in loading the bath onto your trailer. When you get the bath home we suggest you start by cleaning the bath thoroughly before taking it to the area where you will start the restoration process. We suggest you work in a well-ventilated, dust free environment.

Now that you have the bath, you need to start the restoration process. Please have a look at our various articles and instructions for more details on how to restore your bath. We are a mere phone call away if you would like to discuss your restoration project with professionals in this field.

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How to Paint your Bath Room Tiles

Everyone likes to have a bathroom they are proud of, and one of the easiest ways to create a space that reflects your personal style is to change the colour scheme. Do you know you can use our materials to recoat your ceramic and porcelain tiles? Thus in a DIY environment and on a small budget you can: make a statement with a striking colour, bring a 70s bathroom up to date, freshen up your bathroom to prepare your property for sale, or create your perfect personal space in your new home. Our kits come in 48 different colours and five different sizes. Please note that porous surfaces such as natural stone are not suitable for recoating with Tubby.

When choosing a colour remember that lighter colours brighten up a room and make it feel bigger, If you want to make an ultramodern statement use a rich darker shade. Finally, for a soft romantic feel look at a pastel shade in our Whisper colours.

Have a look at our colour chart and if you would like a sample card of any colours just call or email the office and we will be more than happy to send out some free samples, or to discuss your particular project with you.

When recoating your tiles with Tubby you have the option of two finishes. Either you can completely coat over the grouting, or you can remove the top of the grout, recoat and then run the grouting again.

The two main benefits of applying the material over the existing grout are; it is the easiest and quickest method, secondarily by coating over the grout you are effectively sealing it off which will prevent mould and mildew from forming in the future. This method does change the look of the tiles slightly.

If you choose to re-grout we would suggest that you leave the tiles to cure for at least 1 week in a room with a constant temp of over 20 degrees Celsius. When grouting, work meticulously and keep your trowel clean and grout spill on the tiles to a minimum.

If your tiles have an etched pattern you can either coat straight over this to soften the pattern or cover it in a layer of dolphin glaze filler and sand smooth prior to coating. Embossed patterns are harder to cover in filler and get smooth, but it can be done.

Finally, when it comes to the actual process of recoating your tiles you would start by cleaning the tiles with the Tubby cleaning powder and sponge, which are both supplied in the kit. Make sure you clean the grout too. This is the most important step in the whole process, so take your time and use warm to hot water when cleaning. Now, with the included wet and dry paper, sand the tiles to give them some ‘key’. Make sure to run sand paper along the grout line too, to smooth it out and knock down any high spots. Ceramic and porcelain surfaces seem to reject the wet and dry paper but don’t worry just sand a tile then dry it and you will see there are very fine scratched in the tile surface, this is what you are trying to achieve. These scratches will ensure a strong adhesion of the material to the tile.

Once the surface is prepared you will apply two coats of specialist Tubby coating material. The material is specially designed to shimmer and settle into place to leaving a smooth, high gloss finish. One last tip would be to follow the application instructions and don’t over roll the material.

If you would like us to help you work out the cost, do call the office.

However if your tiles are perfectly good but you have mould in the grouting, why not look at our DIY grouting kit. Three easy steps; clean the grout, seal the grout and clean the tiles. Our specialist product is designed to leave your existing grout with a clean, uniform finish, this product is stain resistant so will be long lasting, making your bathroom cleaning a breeze. The grouting kits come in three colours to match your current bathroom suite. To clean and seal a bathroom of 35sq.m will cost you £42.

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Treating rust around the outlet

A common problem with old cast baths is that they tend to rust around the edge of the outlet. The reason for this is that the outlet fitting is sitting slightly proud of the bath surface. Thus a small amount of water is permanently sitting in this area unable to drain away, which, over time, causes rust to form.

There is a solution…

You can repair this and prevent it from coming back either as an individual project or as part of a full bath resurfacing job.

Repairing just the affected area:

If your bath is in good condition besides the rust around the outlet, then you can just do a spot repair. However if the rust is significant and stretches more than about a centimetre from the outlet, then we would recommend that you resurface the whole bath, or contact us for a professional repair job.

To fix the rust we recommend you purchase a chip repair kit, a bottle of Kurust and a small tube of filler. Start by sanding away the rust with some 80/120 grit wet and dry paper or use a dremel to remove as much rust as possible.  When using power tools always adhere to the manufacturer’s safety regulations.

Remove any dust and sanding debris before treating the affected area with Kurust to naturalize and oxidize the area. Once the Kurust has cured you can move on to building up the area with the filler. Mix a small amount of the filler and hardener together until a consistent light pink colour. Apply the filler to the repair area, then dry sand, smooth and assess. You might find that you need to add numerous layers of filler to build up the area adequately.

Once you are happy with the filler clean the area and mask up the outlet.  It is important to makes sure the masking tape does not touch the filler. You want the coating material to completely cover the filler in order to ensure a successful waterproof repair.

You will now continue with the repair by following the instructions in the repair kit.

If you are going to repair the rust as part of resurfacing a dull, unsightly or pitted bath, you will need one of our Tubby Extra kits and a bottle of Kurust. Just follow the instructions above, in conjunction with the detailed instructions included in the kits. A tip here would be to do the first stage of the preparation prior to starting your rust repair. So clean, key and remove all the sealant; now do the repair prior to applying the adhesion promotor and tac clothing the bath.

If you are hesitant to resurface the entire bath because you feel your DIY skills may not be good enough, don’t worry, we offer technical support over the phone and the step by step instructions in the Tubby Extra kit are detailed and easy to follow. We also offer professional services in most parts of the UK.

Finally when it comes to the actual process of resurfacing your bath you would start by cleaning the bath with the Tubby cleaning powder and sponge which are both supplied in the kit. This is the most important step in the whole process so take your time and use warm to hot water when cleaning. Now with the included wet and dry paper sand the bath to give them a key. Once the surface is prepared you will apply 2 coats of or specialist Tubby coating material.

The material is specially designed to shimmer and settle into place to leaving a smooth, high gloss finish. One last tip would be to follow the application instructions and don’t over roll the material.

Once your bath has been resurfaced it is very important to clean the bath with nonabrasive cleaners such as fairy liquid or Cif cream (original white). Do not use lime scale removers and bleach as these products damage the coating on your bath.

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Painting the outside of your bath

One of the easiest ways to change the look of your bathroom is to paint the outside of a freestanding bathtub in a feature colour.

You see it in all the home décor magazines; striking deep colours help to highlight the bath and create a happy modern look, while soft pastel colours create a warm, relaxing environment. By changing the outside colour of your bath you can not only change the look of your bathroom but can also use a colour that reflects your personality, style and taste, creating a truly unique environment to enjoy.

The best way to coat the outside of a bath is to do so when the bath is unplumbed, however do bear in mind that bathtubs can be extremely heavy so make sure you practice safe lifting techniques and have at least 1 or 2 strong people to help you.

Coating the outside of a metal-based bath: When recoating the outside of your bath it is important to assess the condition of the bath in order to determine where to start. If the bath has paint on the outside we would recommend removing the coating entirely, or sanding it back until all flakes etc. are removed. Please remember that cast iron baths do not have a smooth flat surface on the outside. This is due to the casting process and is one of the unique things that make a cast iron bath so special. This uneven surface is one of the reasons why traditionally the outside of baths have been painted in a low to mid sheen finish, as these types of finishes hide surface imperfections better than high gloss products.

At this stage it is advisable to coat the outside of the bath in a red oxide primer. This will prevent any rust forming over time and damaging the coating.

Once the red oxide primer has dried, it is time to decide on what finish and colour you would like to create your look. For a modern high gloss look our Tubby products cannot be beaten for quality, however as mentioned above, the high gloss nature will highlight any surface imperfections. For a more traditional look, choose a low to mid-sheen, high quality paint such as a solvent based eggshell; this would be your best bet, however a water-based eggshell will also work, provided it is waterproof. With water based paint it is even more important to apply the red oxide first.

Apply at least two coats using a high-density foam roller, which will help you get a consistent finish. Once your coating is dry, attached the feet and flip the bath back over again.

You will now start the Tubby process on the inside of the bath.

The rising trend for traditional bathroom design.

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Whilst many people love sleek, glossy bathroom design there are an increasing number of people who love more traditional styles. The Edwardian bathroom is a much replicated style – think ornate baths and lots of curved angles.

If you’re hankering after an Edwardian style bathroom you’ll probably want to focus on the bath first and foremost. In a traditional style bathroom, the bath takes centre stage. If you’ve got the room get a freestanding bath and place it in the centre of your room for that wow factor. If you’re limited on space you don’t have to rule out a free standing bath – just be clever about its positioning, slotting it in close to a wall where possible. An important part of most freestanding baths are the feet. Traditional claw feet look great as do wooden feet. You may even find a tub style freestanding bath which doesn’t feature feet. Both styles work incredibly well. It’s worth nothing that antique style baths can cost a small fortune. Read our blog on how to find and restore an antique bath and you could save yourself a lot of money.

Once you’ve found (and restored) your perfect bath you’ll need to make sure the other fixtures match its antique style. A traditional pedestal style sink unit will work better than a vanity unit. And if you’re opting for a shower, choose an over the bath one to keep the room’s traditional feel. Gold plated taps and plugs work really well with this type of design.

Next, think about the colours you’re going to use. Luckily, both soft and bold tones work well so it’s really up to your own personal preference when it comes to picking the shades you want. A deep, dark purple can lend a really dramatic look or choose a statement wallpaper for a really eye catching design.

Finally, it’s time to choose the accessories which work well. Luckily, traditional bathrooms work well with some clutter so you don’t have to worry about keeping it too tidy – something most of us would appreciate! You can also give it a lived in look by adding family prints on the wall. Choose cherry oak storage units for a traditional feel and why not install a chunky traditional radiator rather than a heated towel rail for a really authentic feel?

Top tips to help you save water in the bathroom.

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In most homes, the room that uses the most water is usually the bathroom. We shower, bath, wash, flush and brush in there, all of which uses of plenty of H20.

But as we’re all becoming a little more conscious of how much we’re using it’s time we put things in place to ensure that we reduce our water consumption.

To help you go green in the bathroom we’ve put together some easy to follow tips that’ll help you cut water usage

Turn the tap off when brushing – It’s recommended that we brush our teeth for at least 5 minutes each day. But if we leave the tap on whilst brushing, it means we’re wasting around 18,000 litres each year. So, the next time you’re cleaning your teeth make sure that you turn the tap off!

Fix leaky taps – Not only is a leaking tap an annoyance, but it’s a waste too. Your tap is probably leaking because of a poor washer and it doesn’t take a lot to fix.

Take a bucket in the shower – This sounds a little extreme, but it will help save you a lot of water. When you’re waiting for the water to heat up put the bucket in and catch all the cold water. This can then be used to water plants or clean your windows!

Spend less time in the shower – You need to be clean. You can’t turn up to work smelling nasty, but do you need to spend as long as you do in there? It’s easy to get distracted thinking about all the things you’re going to do that day. So keep on task, jump in, wash and then jump straight back out!

Purchase a low-flow toilet – Older toilets use 5 gallons every flush and the average person flushes around 5 times a day. A low-flush system will really help you cut down. Alternatively you can fill a bottle with water and put that in your cistern!

Put the plug in! – When you’re washing your hands, how often do you put the plug in? I’d bet it’s very rarely. Well basins lose a lot of water if you just let it drain away. Keep it in the bowl while you wash!

So there you go! 6 top tips to help you cut down on water usage in your bathroom!

The most common bathroom issues and how to avoid them

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Every day thousands of people call a plumber out to their property to help with what’s usually a preventable issue.

So to help you avoid making an unnecessary callout we’ve put together a list of some of the most common issues faced in the bathroom and what you can do to avoid them.

Blocked drains

I think it’s safe to say that at some point we’ll all come across this problem and not necessarily in the bathroom.

Its can be caused by a number of things, from collapsed pipes to foreign objects being thrown down the toilet.

The most obvious way to prevent this problem is to ensure that the only things going down your drain are meant to go down there.

You should also regularly bleach it to breakdown sludge that’s built up in there over time.

Leaking taps

This is one of the more annoying problems on the list, but it’s such an easy one to avoid! Fixing it is fairly simple too. All you have to do is replace the washer or tighten the connection.

To avoid it in the future make sure that you aren’t over tightening the tap when turning it off. Twist it until the water shuts down completely, no more than that.

Toilet problems

The toilet, depending on its age, is at risk of a whole host of issues. It could be down to something breaking in the cistern to a simple blockage.

A quick plunge can quickly get rid of any blockage but if the problem becomes a smelly one you might want to call out a plumber.

To avoid toilet issues regularly check inside your cistern to make sure that everything is working as it should and that you don’t stuff too much toilet roll down the loo.

Water heater woes

If your water heater has packed in, you’ll have to ring a plumber.

Tampering with it yourself is not only dangerous, but it could lead to you voiding the warranty too. Keep your eye out for issues like rust coloured water and a drop in heat as these are telltale signs that your heater’s on the way out.