Bathtub Peeling Around Drain

Judy Heban lives in Rossford, OH. She had a great question.

“Hi, Tim.  Hope you can advise me.  We have an original porcelain bathtub (57 years old).  In 1990 we had it glazed by BathCrest, who are no longer in business.

The glaze has now started to peel around the drain.  I’d like to keep the tub as it would be difficult to remove from our small bathroom. 

I’ve checked online and Rustoleum has  a product that it claims can be used for repairing the tub. Are you familiar with this; it’s called Rustoleum Speciality  and if so what’s your opinion?

Aside from having an insert installed, do you have any suggestions or advice?    Thank you so very much for any help you can send.   Happy New Year!!”

Here’s my answer to Judy:

Judy, HNY to you too. That’s how we shorten it in Morse. I’m an amateur radio operator – W3ATB.

For starters, you didn’t have your nice tub *glazed* by BathCrest. You had them come in and paint it. They may have used an epoxy paint.

To have a tub re-glazed, you need to send it back to the factory where it’s put in the kiln and new clear silica is fused to the tub. That’s what glaze is.

All paints are film formers and eventually will peel. No matter what paint you decide to use, and I’ve not used the Rustoleum Specailty paint – nor would I EVER use it where it would stay wet like near a tub drain – the paint WILL PEEL.

If you want perfection, then you put in a new tub and use the proper non-abrasive cleaners so it always maintains its gloss.

Good luck in your decision.

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