The Pros and Cons of Refinishing a Bathtub to Save Money on a Remodel

One of the most expensive portions of any bathroom remodel is buying new toilets, sinks and especially new tubs. Many times this expense alone keeps people from doing a bathroom remodel. Some renovation contractors have started recommending that their customers refinish tubs and other major bathroom fixtures instead of replacing them to save money. There are both positive and negative things about doing this and we will discuss some of them here.


Here are some reasons that would make you want to go ahead and save some money on your bathroom renovation by refinishing your bathtub and other major bathroom fixtures:

  • Demolition and replacement of major bathroom fixtures can be very expensive.
  • Your old bathtub and fixtures may be higher quality products than what’s available today.
  • You often cannot tell the difference between refinished and new bathroom fixtures.
  • It saves time and mess on any bathroom remodeling job.
  • It’s an environmentally responsible remodeling solution.


Here are some concerns when you are thinking about refinishing your bathtub and other existing major bathroom fixtures:

  • Your bathtub and your other major bathroom fixtures may not be in the right condition where resurfacing will come out looking good.
  • You may not be able to get the look you desire from your bathroom remodel with the style of your current tub and other major bathroom fixtures.
  • Your bathtub and other major fixtures may not be made from a material that accepts refinishing materials very easily.

The Three Steps Involved When Refinishing a Bathtub

In case you are not familiar with the bathtub refinishing process here is a quick overview of how its typically done.

Step 1: Preparation and sanding

Step 2: Repairing any chips and cracks

Step 3: Adding the new exterior coating and then buffing it out

If you are talented and have a little bit of an artistic nature about you, then you may even be able to save more money and refinish your bathtub yourself.

Ask Your Local Renovations Contractor for Quotes Both Ways

One thing you can do to help you decide whether to refinish your tub and other major bathroom fixtures or not is to have a cost estimate done both ways. Companies such as Evergreen Renovations & Roofing out of the Beaverton/Portland, Oregon area have no problem giving multiple bathroom renovation quotes to help their customers with this decision. So don’t be afraid to approach your local remodeling contractor and ask them if they can do multiple renovations quotes for you. This should include one where you resurface your major bathroom fixtures and one where you replace your major bathroom fixtures entirely.

Another great idea is to see if the renovations contractor you are thinking about using will come to your home and do a free bathroom renovation assessment. While they are there ask them their professional opinion on bathroom refinishing and how it relates to your bathtub and the other major fixtures in that bathroom.

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