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Guide to Bath Resealing and Resurfacing

Last Updated Jul 9, 2018 · Written by Craig Gibson


Is your bath area looking tired, worn, or a little leaky? There’s no need to go out and buy a new bath Instead save some serious cash by having your bath resurfaced so that it looks like it’s just come off the showroom floor. You can also have all the old silicone replaced or any pesky leaks fixed with a simple resealing job.

Read this to find out more about this job, and what it could cost you. For a ballpark idea resurfacing a bath could cost anywhere from $500 to $800, while a whole bathroom would be in the $1,800 to $3000 range.

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What is bath resealing?

Bath resealing is done to cure a leak or to replace existing sealing that has gone mouldy and become unattractive. It is one of the easiest ways to refresh the look of your bathroom. Don’t underestimate the appeal that fresh seals around the bath can have.

When the bath is being resealed, all of the old silicone or sealants are completely removed. The surface is cleaned thoroughly and is left to dry completely before a new seal is applied. The sealing agent is usually silicone. While this is an easy job, attention to detail is required, and the resealing of the bath should take from 60 to 90 minutes. If there are any problems, such as unstable baths, or loose tiles, your tradie will advise you on other work that you will need completed in order to ensure that the seal stays tight and waterproof. Do not use the bath for 12 hours before the resealing process and 24 hours afterwards.

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What is bath resurfacing?

Bath resurfacing may be necessary when the existing bath is chipped, suffering from wear and tear, stained, or otherwise looking less than its best. Resurfacing the bath will restore it to a brand new condition, and a great looking bath means that the rest of the bathroom will look much improved as a result.

The bath can be resurfaced without having to be removed from its existing position, and can be done so in a matter of hours. In many cases, you are able to use the bath the next day, minimising any inconvenience. The resurfacing process involves repairing, preparing, bonding, and top-coating built-in baths. Damage and rust needs to be totally removed and/or repaired before the resurfacing process can begin. Once the process is complete, the new bath surface is hard-wearing, attractive, and highly resistant to hot water, soap scum, staining and chipping.

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Can my bath be resurfaced?

Types of baths that can be resurfaced include porcelain, vitreous enamel, acrylic, gel coat, and old coated surfaces. Bath resurfacing is cost efficient. In fact, it can be up to 75 percent cheaper than replacing the bath altogether. You have the option to choose any colour for the resurfacing. This is great for matching the resurfaced bath to other elements of the bathroom. The resurfaced bath should last for more than ten years, provided it is used and cleaned correctly.

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Renovate or resurface?

A new bathroom could cost anywhere from $10,000 to $35,000+ depending on your budget and imagination. It may also take a few weeks or months to complete. Compared to a total renovation, resurfacing can be significantly cheaper. Of course, you won’t get a brand new bathroom or fixtures out of it. But you will be able to achieve an ‘as new’ look for less – up to 75 percent in fact!

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The cost of bathroom resurfacing

The cost of your resurfacing project will depend on the condition and size of the surface or item. Obviously the bigger the items and the more you have resurfaced, the greater the cost. As a rough guide, expect to pay between $1,800 and $3000 to have a complete bathroom resurfaced. Some resurfacing companies will also add on a charge to colour match, if you require. This can be around $60.

For a ballpark idea of resurfacing costs, expect to pay in the region of:

  • $150 for a small basin
  • $250 to $400 for a larger basin
  • $500 to $800 for a bath
  • $1,500 to $2,000 to resurface and fully restore an antique/claw and foot bathtub
  • $1,800 to $3000 for a total bathroom resurfacing

In terms of resealing your bath, this should not cost more than a couple of hundred dollars - and will often be included in a resurfacing job. If you are not resurfacing you can also get a handyman to do this for you.

Hiring the right tradie

While there are DIY kits available, it is recommended that you have a professional do the resurfacing for you to ensure the best finish possible. When it comes time to hiring a business make sure they are right for your job. Some questions to ask then include:

  • Are you licensed?
  • Are you insured to work in my home?
  • Does your product carry a warranty?
  • How long will my job take?
  • Can you provide a written quote?
  • Do you have references I can follow up?
  • Can I see examples of your work?

Getting quotes for bathroom resurfacing

The best way to calculate the cost of your bath resurfacing job is to get a variety of quotes from local bathroom resurfacing specialists. They will need to visit your home to measure and assess your job, suggest the best surface for what you want to achieve, and provide a written quote based on those recommendations.

The best way of finding out the cost of your job is to get quotes from local bathroom resurfacing specialists. This will give you a sense of what market rates currently are.

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