Surface Type ⇔ PORCELAIN
The base for a porcelain bathtub or sink is either steel or cast iron. This base was specially designed during manufacturing for "enameling" (baking a porcelain finish on top). Porcelain bathtubs and sinks are still the most common type of bathtubs found in homes today, especially those built before the 1980s, and almost every home has a porcelain bathtub in a secondary bathroom.
Porcelain is baked onto either a steel or cast iron 5-foot rectangular mold at the factory during its manufacturing process. Depending on its use and care, a refinished porcelain tub can last as long as 20 years before needing to be refinished again. We know that because we have had a handful of customers call us back after 20 years to refinish their tub again 🙂
A tell-tale sign that it's time to refinish is when the surface is getting hard to clean ... or hard to keep clean, and it never really looks clean. When this happens, chances are the porcelain finish is simply wearing off. Why does that happen? Over time, the finish wears off because of cleaning with harsh abrasives, which can cause a porcelain surface to become so porous that soap and body oils collect easily on the surface, making it nearly impossible to keep clean or look clean, even when you know it is.
If there is damage in the tub, it must be repaired before refinishing. Our 40+ years of experience with older tubs has been that the bottom inherently develop pinholes, pock marks, and dimples that may or may not be seen with the naked eye. However, once we start to spray on the new finish, these flawed areas are magnified and begin to appear. Although it's impossible to remove all of a tub's imperfections, skinning the tub helps to minimize them, so we take that extra step during the prep phase to meticulously fill in the divots with bondo to build them up, then gently sand them smooth and level them out as much as is possible. We call this process, "skinning" the tub.
Our standard color is white or off-white, but if you want a specific color and have the number and/or name of it, we can probably "special order" it from our manufacturer at an additional cost of $125. Please note that we do not refinish in dark colors because even in the semi-sterile environment we try to create, there are still minute dust particles that float through the air that can be seen on a dark surface.
You can probably buy a new porcelain bathroom sink for less than the cost of refinishing, so if your bathroom sink is a "drop-in" sink that lifts out from the top and can easily be removed, we recommend replacing it instead of have it refinished.
If your bathroom sink is not a standard size, or it is an undermount sink that is set in tile, marble, or granite, we can refinish it so you don't have to spend extra money and time tearing out the countertop just to replace the sink. Before we arrive to refinish, however, you will need to have the plumbing (handles, spout, and silver drain cover) removed from the sink (this is not a service we offer) and then wait at least two days before having the fixtures re-installed after refinishing.
Please note that porcelain sinks typically rust from the back side inward, especially at the overflow holes. If you see rust on the inside of the sink in that area, it's actually coming from the steel or cast iron surface behind the sink. Although the rust can be repaired, we cannot guarantee it won't reappear at some later date.
You may be surprised to know that we strongly suggest replacing - not refinishing - a kitchen sink. Why? Because it is less expensive and easier to do if the sink is a “drop-in” style that is sitting on top of the countertop, and can be lifted up and out for replacement.
However, if your sink is under-mounted in granite or tile, the only alternative to tearing up the countertop when trying to replace it, is to have the sink refinished instead. Having said that, please note we only refinish alcove-type kitchen sinks (those butted up against a wall and not open to another room).
The reason we do not refinish kitchen sinks that are open to another room (the type usually set in an island overlooking another room) is because one of the most important things in refinishing is to protect everything not being refinished from overspray, which is nearly impossible to do when a kitchen sink is wide open to another room.
If yours is an alcove sink, it can be refinished, but all hardware (handles, spout, and silver drain cover) touching the sink must be removed before we arrive to refinish (this is not a service we offer), and can be re-installed a couple of days after refinishing.
We've been doing chip repair for homebuilders and homeowners across the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex for many years. From hammers dropping into tubs, to soap dishes and towel bars falling off the wall, chips can happen in homes under construction, in homes just built, and in homes lived in for years! The minimum charge for chip repair is $175. Just because a tub or sink has chips, nicks, or scratches, it doesn't necessarily mean it has to be completely refinished.
If the damage is located above the water line, it can be repaired. If the damage is located below the water line, it can still be repaired, but not guaranteed, because the water can eventually loosen the repair. In cases like this, we recommend refinishing, so the repair is sealed and the work can be guaranteed.
More About REPAIRS
Please note that our warranty is specifically related to the two things under our control: workmanship and product defects. We do not guarantee that rust, cracks, or holes won't reappear later in a bathtub or sink if the underlying source of the damage (possibly a house shift, improper initial installation, water leak, or previous damage to the same area) has not been corrected.
Our service areas extend to most of the Dallas Fort Worth metroplex. Jim's home base is Colleyville, so he generally services the cities of Argyle, Bedford, Carrollton, Colleyville, Coppell, Euless, Flower Mound, Fort Worth, Grapevine, Haltom City, Haslet, Hurst, Justin, Keller, Lewisville, Northlake, North Richland Hills, Richland Hills, Roanoke, Saginaw, Southlake, Trophy Club, Watauga, and Westlake.
David's home base is Dallas, so he generally services the cities of Arlington, Cedar Hill, Dallas, DeSoto, Duncanville, Farmers Branch, Garland, Grand Prairie, Hutchins, Irving, Lancaster, Mesquite, Plano, Richardson, and Rowlett. These cities indicate our maximum travel range. Outside of these areas an additional travel charge would apply, or if Jim and David crossed areas.
Call Debbie at 817.305.0300 or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you're unsure whether we travel to your area without an additional travel charge, which generally ranges from $25-$50 per day.