Thinking about a Bathtub Liner?
Bathtub liner companies create exact molds, which they use to make liners that fit tubs almost
perfectly, wherever they're installed and whatever shape they're in. The installer plays a critical
role here as they are the ones who take the precise measurements. Here's how the process
A local installer sends precise measurements and photographs of the tub to company
headquarters. The company identifies the model, pulls it off the shelf and with a sheet of 1/4-in.
ABS acrylic -- the same material football helmets and airplane windshields are made of --
vacuum-forms an exact mold of the tub. The result is a 35-lb. liner that slips over the tired tub like
a new glove. To install it, the local rep cleans the old tub with denatured alcohol, removes the
drain and overflow and trims the liner so it fits snugly against the walls. Then, using a
combination of two-sided butyl tape and silicone adhesive, he attaches the liner to the old tub. He
finishes up by installing a new drain and overflow, and caulking the seams. Once the liner is
delivered, which can take four to eight weeks, a single workman can install it in six to eight hours,
and the homeowner can bathe in it that same evening. Here are some of the pros and cons of
bathtub liners. Unfortunately, there are more cons than pros.
Pros & Cons Of Bathtub Liners:
* Liners may be the only alternative to replacement for tubs which are severely damaged or
deteriorated to a point where they can't be economically refinished .
* Most liners are fairly durable.
* Liners may be appropriate to use in dorms or apartments where tubs are likely to be
subject to heavy use.
* Liners are expensive. While liners themselves usually cost $100 - $175, the total price to the
consumer tends to be from $850 - $1500.
* Most liners look and feel like plastic.
* Liners can take several weeks to install - they must be custom molded, which requires one trip
to measure, time to order from the factory, time to ship, and a second trip to install.
* Liners can create plumbing problems because the added thickness of the liner may require an
extension of the drain and overflow.
* Liners suffer a bad reputation for allowing water to accumulate between the old tub and the new
liner. This water is almost impossible to remove. The result can be a "squishy" feeling each time
someone steps in and out of the tub. Not only can the misplaced water create "squishy" noises,
but even worse, the standing water can become stagnant, creating obnoxious odor problems.
Any small crack or hole which develops in the caulking along the seam between the liner and the
vertical wall surround can allow water to penetrate.
* Liners are fairly durable, but they can be scratched and damaged. They eventually will wear out.
* Liners can be difficult to replace. Since liners are glued to the old tub when installed, they
usually have to be ripped or cut out in order to replace them.
* If liners do not match the contours of the existing tub, then the liner may flex back and forth and
can crack over time.
* Liners come in a limited number of colors. Companies within the Bathtub Liner industry shy
away from working on fiberglass bathtubs, and most liner companies won't do jetted tubs, where
a professional refinisher can do either one.
Keep in mind they can not line claw-foot antique tubs.
We have removed well over 500 failed liners and have seem plenty of damage caused by improper
installation. Including mold, draining problems, leakage etc.
These are photos of a Liner Removal and Bathtub Refinishing from beginning to end.
Below is a link to the page on liners by Consumer
Affairs. Although we don't believe in scare tactics to sell
our services, the complaints and costs are just too high