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Common questions around painting your bathtub

A white freestanding bath

If you’re thinking of painting your bathtub, then we’ve compiled this handy list of frequently asked questions on the subject and answered them for you. We hope you find this resource useful when considering getting the paint out in your bathroom.

Can you paint a bathtub?

Yes, it’s certainly possible to paint a bathtub, especially if it’s metal. It can be a great way to refresh your bath without going to the expense of installing a brand new one. Often, painting your tub can give you a high quality finish and a new lease of life to your bath.

How to paint a bathtub?

In order to paint a bathtub, it’s important to choose the right paint. A standard wall paint will simply not be up to the job, so you need to specialise.

An epoxy paint comprises of a resin and hardener which combines to form a really durable, waterproof and solvent resistant coating on anything it’s applied to.

It’s commonly used on concrete floors, such as in a garage, workshop or basement, due to the fact it’s so hardwearing. Importantly, it can also be used for providing a lovely finish on bathtubs as its adhesive qualities means it clings to the surface in a way that wall paints simply can’t do.

For a full step-by-step guide, please read our guide on How to Paint a Bathtub

How to remove bathtub paint?

You’ll need to give you bathtub a good wash first with soapy water to ensure all dirt and grime is removed and then allow to dry.

Next you’ll need to use a medium grit sandpaper on the outer part of the tub to remove any old paint and to make it feel rough to the touch. This will allow the primer to take hold and successfully adhere to the outer part of your bathtub.

If your bath is made of acrylic, then it might not be practical to try and remove the coating as you could end up making a horrible mess. If you have an acrylic tub that looks worn and tired, you may be best off getting a new one.

How long does bathtub paint last?

As long a you do a good job and use quality materials, there’s no reason that you bathtub paint job can’t look good for the next 10 years. The longer you take prepping your bath and the higher the quality of the paint you choose, the longer your hard work will last.

How to fix bathtub paint chip

It is possible to fix bathtub paint chips. In order to do it yourself, you’ll need a 2 part epoxy kit that contains the catalyst and the hardener. You’ll also need a small spatular in order to apply the epoxy to the surface and flatten it out.

Follow the instructions on the epoxy kit in order to apply it correctly. Once dried, according to the manufacturer’s instructions, you can use some 400 grit sandpaper to smooth the finish and get it flush against the bath.

It’s best to allow the epoxy around 24 hours to dry properly before attempting to sand it, otherwise you might damage the finish and have to repeat the process again.

How long does it take bathtub paint to dry?

It’s best to allow the paint on your bathtub to dry for between 24 – 48 hours before using it. The paint might need a little time to cure, so the longer you can leave it before use, the less likely you are to damage the finish and have something long-lasting.

Make sure that the bathroom is well-ventilated during the drying process. This could be leaving the window open, putting the heating on or allowing the extractor fan to run. A damp, moist bathroom could delay the drying process.


• Our quick and simple bathtub buying guide

What exactly are bathtubs made of?

How to paint a bathtub