Recommend me some bathtup-resurfacers in Chicago

My GF needs to get the bathtup in her condo resurfaced (it looks terrible). Has anybody had this done recently and can recommend a good company? How much did you pay?


We recently had our tub and shower redone by BathFitters, a chain which specializes in this sort of thing. The results were excellent. It wasn’t inexpensive, but it didn’t break the bank either.

Our tub surround was old tile, without proper backing. Much of it was essentially unsupported, and could be pushed into the wall with a fingertip. It leaked, and ran through into the floor below. It also looked terrible The hardware was old, and the faucets ran, etc.

BathFitters dropped in a tub liner which looks like a new tub, repaired the crumbling drywall behind the tile, installed a new surround, and replaced the antiquated hardware with new. My only complaint was that the workmen left a mess behind. The boss knocked a few bucks off of the bill, leaving me happy enough.

Our bathroom looks great!

Any chance you’d be willing to post a range of what it cost, BrotherCadfael? I’m wondering if I can get my new landlord to do something similar. My new tub has sliding doors, and I hate them. (What a pain to clean.) In addition to the fact that the tub looks like crap. I’m hoping if it’s reasonable, he’ll let me take care of the details and let me knock it off my rent.

I recently inquired on the cost of “Miracle Method” tub refinishing, and was quoted $475. This is in San Francisco, but I’d expect the cost to be similar in Chicago. The tub will be out of use for about 24 hours. If they need to take off tracks for tub doors, or any similar things, the cost will go up a bit for their extra labor.

Alternately, there are do-it-yourself kits, but they take a lot of labor on your part - the finished job will be only as good as the effort you put into the prep - and the tub is unusable for a week. Cost is $60-80 for the kit and an “organic vapor” respirator so you don’t get killed by the process.

It was about $1600. Probably more than what the landlord would be willing to go, but you never know – if he invests a few bucks into the bathroom, he might attract a higher class of tenant! :smiley:

We had it done for about $300 if I remember correctly. We have an old clawfoot tub. It came out really nice, too. Until the dorks from Empire Carpet put the bench from the make-up table in the tub and GOUGED the fuck out of it.

Of course, it depends on how much work is being done. At our old house, an acrylic tub developed a crack in the bottom. A local guy came in and basically replaced the who bottom with new plastic (the color didn’t quite match). That was about $300, as I recall.

The job in our current house was quite a bit more extensive, and correspondingly more expensive.

Ah. So maybe just putting in a new tub might be cheaper?

(Please excuse the highjack.)

Sure, you could replace the tub, but that’s an insane amount of work in most bathrooms. In practical terms, replacing a tub requires gutting the entire bathroom to the bare walls and completely redoing it.

You need to, at a bare minimum, disconnect the drain piping and bust out the bottom row of tiles, and the “backer” or “cement” board they’re attached to as there’s a 3/4" or so flange that goes up under the wall surface. Fiberglass/plastic surrounds have to come out entirely, and they often don’t take well to being pried out, so plan on replacing it as well. The toilet or vanity/sink is probably in the way, so that has to come out. In small bathrooms, you’ll probably find that both the toilet and sink have to come out. Invariably, as you maneuver the old tub out, or the new one in, you’ll bang it into a wall or scrape the door frame, so there’s that to fix.

Tubs are so awkward to move, and the old cast iron ones are so freaking heavy, that quite often, they’ll be beaten to death with a sledgehammer in the bathroom, rather than removed in one piece. Steel tubs succumb fairly well to a Sawzall. Noisy as hell, though, and your neighbors will not appreciate the effort.

gotpasswords, do much with tubs? I now plan to never replace my tub. Ever. Thanks for the info, though. I see why people re-surface if they’re not doing the whole bathroom.