Tubs, Showers

Published on December 4th, 2012 | by Henri

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Acrylic tub liners

Q.    My home is 50 years old. The original cast-iron bathtub and surrounding ceramic tiles are showing their age – for instance, rust around the overflow and hairline cracks in some tiles. What are the pros and cons of having an acrylic tub liner and wall panels installed as opposed to a complete remodeling (involving tearing out the tub and walls)? Are leaks likely to develop around the drain spud or overflow with a liner? Will the acrylic finish stand up without damage with normal use for another twenty-five years?

A.    The pros of acrylic tub liners and wall panels are that they are less costly than removing an old tub and tiles and replacing them, and the repair job is done much faster and with less of a mess. The cons are that you have to avoid using abrasive cleaners on them; the wall panels are less durable than ceramic tiles and a new cast-iron tub. But the tub liner itself is likely to last as long as a replacement fiberglass tub. A properly done installation should not leak.

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