Craig's Refinishing Tips

Refinishing Advice for Bathtubs, Counters, Cabinets & More!

17. January 2017 13:36
by CMunro

What is EZ Etch and should I use it?

17. January 2017 13:36 by CMunro | 0 Comments

The purpose of EZ Etch is to remove any residual finish that remains on porcelain or ceramic surfaces prior to the refinishing process.  EZ Etch was originally created by professionals, for professional use, but we've now formulated it to cater to the growing DIY community!  In combination with good preparation, EZ Etch creates an undeniable bond that achieves that "like factory new" finish!

EZ Etch has the texture of hand cream, and easily spreads onto surfaces with a sponge.  Once applied, allow 20-30 minutes for EZ Etch to rest before removing.  To remove, simply rinse with water and a scrubby pad.  Quick and easy, yet extremely effective! 

Why Should I Use EZ Etch?
Typically, porcelain and ceramic surfaces are too glossy and smooth to properly accept a new finish without some prior treatment to the surface.  Though it is possible to refinish these surfaces with only cleansing, sanding, and liquid primer, using EZ Etch is more effective and will ensure the preparation of these surfaces has been treated correctly.  Fixtures such as claw foot bathtubs, cast iron bathtubs, steel bathtubs, sinks, and tile can be easily etched in about 20-30 minutes.  Why risk not removing any remaining gloss and therefore inhibiting a strong bond?  Use EZ Etch to help safeguard your Bathworks application and ensure the ideal bond between your surface and it's new finish. 

Click Here To Get EZ Etch Now.


31. July 2015 19:07
by CMunro

Cast Iron Bathtub Refinishing

31. July 2015 19:07 by CMunro | 0 Comments

How do you know you have a Cast iron bathtub? Imagine yourself kicking a large boulder; you’ll have the same feel kicking a cast iron tub!  Cast Iron bathtubs have been used for decades, their extremely hard, heavy, durable, long lasting bathtubs. For those of you who love your tub and like to soak for long periods of time you already know your Cast iron tub is very deep and it holds the heat in extremely well.

Now, besides the fact that taking one out with a sledge hammer is a brutal job, putting one back in is equally difficult, very expensive, and a very long messy remodeling process. So let’s just refinish it with great success! Below I’ve supplied a list of exactly what you'll need to complete a gratifying DIY project, keep your original high end cast iron bathtub, and complete the project in no time flat!

What you'll need:

BathWorks Premium Bathtub Refinishing Kit  (two coats, no problem, there’s enough)
BathWorks EZ Etch Kit (highly recommended for cast iron)

Project time: 1.5 hours 

That’s it!!  Enjoy your beautifully refinished cast iron bathtub.


31. July 2015 18:49
by CMunro

What is A Tub-Shower Unit & How to Refinish It Yourself

31. July 2015 18:49 by CMunro | 0 Comments

It’s a brilliant sunny morning, and I’m getting through a handful of emails, and noticing a pattern.  Most people don't really know what kind of tub they actually have. Why would they! So here's a bit of guidance about one we get lots of questions on.

What is a Tub/Shower unit anyway?  They’re a one piece acrylic tub/shower combination.  They’re actually installed during the rough framing stage when the house was built, while the walls are open giving access for installation into their final resting place.  For this reason, replacing them can be quite the challenge during any remodeling project, so what’s the next best thing? Refinish it! A great self-rewarding DIY project!

Getting the best out of your project order:

BathWorks Tub Refinishing - Combo Kit (pick your color)

BathWorks Standard Bathtub & Shower Refinishing Kit (only needed if you’re refinishing from a dark color to light color)

BathWorks Preval Sprayer (optional, but Highly recommended, as it helps with all the curves & soap trays)

Project time: About 3 hours

Enjoy your newly refinished Tub-Shower Unit!


23. June 2014 10:33
by Admin

Well Water and Refinished Bathtub Surfaces - The Never Ending Battle

23. June 2014 10:33 by Admin | 0 Comments

Another question I often receive is regarding "well water."  What’s the never ending battle you may ask? For most people who have well water it’s a number of things that need no mention (if you have well water, then you already know what they are).  For me, it’s the same questions many have when considering refinishing their bathtub, showers, tiles, etc... How does it stand up in areas where the water is EXTREMELY hard with high iron and magnesium? 

Well (no pun intended), it stands up just fine - refinishing you’re bathtub in these conditions is absolutely normal, but keep in mind that refinishing will not alleviate the problems that may reoccur soon after (unsightly rusty reddish stains, etc... will return quickly if not dealt with properly). I won’t go off on a rant about how to remove or handle well water stains, I’m sure all of you who deal with it have looked into it.  But I will reiterate, the most effective way to avoid the stains is to wipe down and thoroughly dry the bathtub, shower, tile, etc... after every use. Doing so goes a LONG WAY, trust me on that one.

Extra help- Trick of the Trade:

Having a polishing regiment in place for the notorious stain areas won’t prevent them altogether, but will help with the cleaning. You’ll notice the stains will wipe off with ease. A good Polishing Kit with Revitalizing Cream & Finishing Gloss in the drain area every couple weeks goes a long way. Remember: do not use any polish in the areas that you will be standing, as it will be very slippery, and could cause you to fall!

If you don't have a polishing kit available, be sure to check out the BathWorks Bathtub Polishing and Care Kit.



13. June 2014 09:51
by Admin

Spraying BathWorks DIY Kit with an HVLP Spray System - The Serious DIY'er!

13. June 2014 09:51 by Admin | 0 Comments

Can I spray the DIY kit instead of rolling it?!  This question is amongst the top 5 questions I receive, so I figure it needs a little extra attention.  When I first started receiving questions regarding this, I automatically assumed these questions were coming from a professional of some spray nature (tubs, countertops, painters, etc...), but you know what happens when we assume! It makes an A$$ out of you and ... you get the idea. Anyway, as it turns out, a significant portion of the questions were simply from the average DIY'er looking to spray their tub, instead of roll it. Go figure, I’m proud!

Now, to answer the question, yes you can spray the DIY Kit to help acquire a more professional look. However, the only product not included in the BathWorks DIY kit is the "Topcoat Reducer" which is used to thin the topcoat. Thinning will be necessary for spraying as well as for cleaning out your spray gun.  You can purchase our Topcoat Reducer in our "Pro Shop" ( or you can use Lacquer Thinner, which can be purchased at any chain hardware store. NOTE: if you decide to use Lacquer thinner, the dry times change, thinning ratio changes, and the over-spray can be overwhelming so you’ll need to ventilate the area very well!

We spray over 1500 residential bathtubs locally every year, so here are a few of our best tips for spraying a bathtub:

Here are a few tips to achieve a pro look when ROLLING the BathWorks DIY Bathtub Refinishing Kit:

  • Thoroughly clean the bathtub with Ajax or Comet before beginning.

  • Never "dry roll" and always have a good amount of product on the roller. The kit includes enough material to two coat the finish, so use it up!

Now  the secret  trick of the trade:

So in the end, the answer is YES, you can spray a tub.  BUT, being able to access the equipment, and going through the motions of spraying does not mean your tub will turn out the same as if a professional were to spray it.  Not because the product isn't good (BathWorks is the best bathtub refinishing product on the market, no doubt about it), but there's definitely a technique to doing it, that develops with time and experience.  So I typically recommend going with the Pre-val Kit, and rolling the rest.  In fact, we do the exact same thing in hotels all over the country, where they don't want us to use a large HVLP sprayer (hotels full of guests don't like fumes), so we just end up rolling the tub and using the Preval Kit to spray the top deck and lower curve.

In the end, it's up to you.  If you're confident that you can do a good job, then who am I to stop you from trying.  After all, that's what DIY is all about, right?

Happy spraying!

- C. Munro

18. December 2013 11:52
by CMunro

Using the Preval Kit - Tricks of the Trade!

18. December 2013 11:52 by CMunro | 0 Comments

I receive so many questions from DIYers about the Preval Spray Kit that I want to take a few minutes to explain how it’s best used alongside the DIY Bathtub & Tile refinishing kit. First thing, the Preval kit is not a “sprayer” that can be used to spray the complete bathtub, tile, shower, etc... –but here’s what it can do for you:

Trick of the Trade: We refinish hundreds of commercial bathtubs each year (Marriotts, Host Hotels, Starwood, etc...) using the BathWorks DIY Bathtub and Tile Refinishing Kit. We spray nothing and roll everything, but here’s the thing - both methods have pros and cons, so we went and figured out how to combine the two to the help the DIY’er get the best of both worlds. We wanted that "professional look" with the DIY’er satisfaction! 

To start, one of the biggest negatives with spraying is also one of the biggest positives with rolling - the solvent!  Solvent is needed to achieve that glass smooth finish sprayed from a HVLP spray system. Adding solvent to the topcoat (to spray) thins the material and makes the top coat brittle. Now, don’t get me wrong we spray thousands of residential bathtubs each year, and give a 15 year warranty, no problem!  We’ve been doing this for 42 years, no problem with that either, but there's no denying the advantage of the roll method is that there's simply NO solvent!  The ending result is hard as a rock! A true hard shell finish. The down side with rolling only, is you’re not going to get that glass smooth look, that a good quality professional sprayer can produce.  The good news is, now you too can achieve a spray like finish, that's gets much closer to the quality of a professional refinishing company! Here’s how you do it.

The Preval sprayer works great on the upper deck and lower curve, as well as the caulk line of the bathtub.  After you have completed the DIY refinishing kit rolling steps, spray the upper deck (where you step over) the lower curve and any other areas you want with the Preval kit. Doing this greatly helps lay down the rolled topcoat leaving an extremely smooth, glossy, rock hard finish, as well as giving you that professionally refinished look!   It’s that easy! Both the BathWorks Bathtub Refinishing kit and the Preval Sprayer come with step by step instructions, and everything needed to complete your project.

Remember good ventilation- negative air out positive air in!  And should you decide to go with a professional company to refinish your tub, instead of doing it yourself, always check referrals, warranties, etc… There are a LOT of poor quality refinishers out there, so please do not support the "bottom feeders."

Happy rolling/spraying

27. May 2013 14:09
by CMunro

Protect Your Investment - How to Maintain a New Tub Finish for the Long Term

27. May 2013 14:09 by CMunro | 0 Comments

Your bathtub has just been resurfaced by a professional or perhaps by yourself!  Here are a few tips to help protect your investment:

  • Avoid leaving wet washcloths on the surface for long periods of time.
  • Stay on top of the soap.  Soap scum will dull and dirty your finish very quickly! Unless you use a heavy abrasive it is quite difficult to remove.
  • Hair dye will permanently stain and ruin everything… I live with three women, I know!
  • When giving the dog a bath put down a towel to prevent scratches.  If you're giving your cat a bath, well, wear body armor!!! Wink
  • If you opted out of the non-slip bottom, and need to use a bathmat, use the non-suction cup kind.   Here's one we sell:

- CM

13. May 2013 13:26
by CMunro

Frequently Asked DIY Bathtub Refinishing Question

13. May 2013 13:26 by CMunro | 0 Comments

Here’s one of the many daily questions I receive at Tub Refinishing, Inc. regarding our commercial refinishing products:

"Hello.  I am interested in refinishing my bathtub; however, I cannot afford a professional to do this and would like to do it myself.  I have read that a lot of the do it yourself kits contain poor paints and other ingredients that do not last long and are not durable.  I am looking for a company that I can purchase professional grade products from to use myself.  Would you be willing to sell me the products that I need to redo my own tub?"

My Response:

We cannot sell our Shurbond products to the general public (you must be a trained refinishing professional to use them).  However, we do have a retail product for the DIY enthusiast, called BathWorks - a DIY Bathtub Refinishing Kit. I can assure you it is a top of the line, commercial grade bathtub and bath wall refinishing kit,  and it has been formulated to provide an extremely glossy, very durable, long lasting finish. It is easily rolled onto your tub, or you can purchase a preval spray kit, which will allow you to spray on the finish.  Either way will produce a beautiful result.

Here are the two products we typically recommend for most projects:

Please feel free to call with with any questions!


6. May 2013 11:03
by CMunro

DIY Bathtub Refinishing Kits: Yah or Nay?

6. May 2013 11:03 by CMunro | 0 Comments

There was a time when I definitely would have said “hire a professional!” Today, ah not so much! Look, we all know if you want a top notch, 100% professional turnout, then hire a professional. Simple as that. In doing so, as always, do your homework (how long have they been in business, quality referrals, warranty, etc...)! Please don’t support the bottom feeders! There are many great companies out there, and we sell to most of them! At (aka. Tub Refinishing, Inc.) we cater to both professionals (our “Pro Shop” Bathtub Refinishing Store), Hotels/Motels (our TubWorks product line), and the DIY'ers of the world (our BathWorks DIY Refinishing Kit line).  BathWorks is based on our professional refinishing products, but redeveloped to be useable and safe for the "weekend warrior."

Back to the “do it yourselfer.” I’m here to reassure you can refinish your own bathtub, tub/shower units, plastic bathtubs, shower stalls, tiles, shower basins, counter tops and sinks (kitchen and bathroom) with success!  As good as a reputable refinishing company, probably no, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be pretty darn nice, and last for many years to come.  Not too mention, only another professional would be able to tell the difference.  Your friends and family will never be able to tell the difference (unless they happen to be a professional bathtub refinisher, of course).  Truly a great value for the money!  Plus, it’s a self rewarding DIY project.

What to look for in a Do It Yourself Bathtub refinishing Kit… NO Epoxy! Yes, it’s easy to use and doesn’t cost much, but let me tell you, you will get what you pay for! Epoxy DIY kits will not last the year. Epoxy is very quick to yellow, extremely thin, and easily chips.  It's pretty obvious that I'm a fan of our own BathWorks products, but with good reason.  We've spent many, many, many years perfecting it. More importantly, not only do we sell it, but we also use it ourselves!   In certain cases, hotels don't want us to spray the tubs (increase fumes), so we actually refinish the tubs using our very own BathWorks products.  I wonder if ANY of the other DIY Kit masterminds ever completed 798 rooms in an SLC Hilton or 572 bathtubs in a Cali Marriott, using their own DIY Kits?

Ha, Of course not! But we have, and the list of hotels and motels where we've used it goes on, and on.  Our “DIY Kit”  was developed (created/born) at a Homewood Suites in the Nation’s capital, because spraying was not an option! From that particular hotel project on, never again did we “spray” a bathtub in that hotel. 98 rooms later and a very pleased GM, a DIY Bathtub Refinishing kit (ahem, "king" Wink ) was born.

The important tips are to properly clean/scrub the bathtub first, follow the instructions step-by-step, and utilize the technical support if offered (another quality to look for in making your DIY decision - BathWorks has GREAT technical support - just give us a call, and you'll actually talk to a real person, maybe even me!). In doing that, a good DIY kit will look great and last many years.

My final take:  Some people like to “brew” their own brew, while others leave it to the Pro’s!  Either way, Cheers!

Happy Refinishing,
- CM