Did you know that you can paint your fiberglass shower unit? Look no further as this article will guide you in doing it. Some say that doing this is cheaper than buying and installing a brand-new unit. The only downside is you have to put a lot of effort into doing it. Are you ready? Let’s start by getting to know what we’re dealing with.
What is Fiberglass?
Fiberglass is a material made of glass similar to what you can find in drinking glasses or windows. To manufacture it, the glass is heated until it melts and creates fragile glass filaments. Then, the filaments are woven together.
After they are woven together, different types of resin are added to increase the product’s strength to be molded into various shapes. Due to its durable and lightweight nature, there is a wide variety of items made from fiberglass, including bathtubs, shower stalls, boat hulls, doors, sports equipment, etc.
Pros and Cons of Fiberglass Shower
Let’s talk about the pros and cons of having a fiberglass shower/bathtub because that’s the main topic. The main benefit is the easy maintenance; in terms of appearance, the fiberglass keeps its shine with regular wiping with scratch-proof cleaners.
Fiberglass is affordable, and these bathroom units are for you who are on a budget. It’s inexpensive and easy to repair properties make it very efficient and effective. Also, they are easy to move and reinstall.
For the cons, it is mainly the durability as it is not specifically made for long-term usage. As the coating that protects the fiberglass starts to peel off, the water can cause damage to the unit as it can seep into it. Though the repairs are cheap and easy, if it is done frequently, it might not be cheap at all. Regular maintenance is the key.
Painting Your Fiberglass Shower
Maintenance can include giving your shower or bathtub unit a fresh new look. You can paint your fiberglass shower unit instead of replacing it, which may cost more. Make it feel like it is brand new while saving money. There are specific things you need to consider and follow; let’s start preparing!
What You Need
Before painting, be sure to prep up. Have everything that you need to be ready as it will save you time and energy. You can buy these materials in your local stores or online. Here are the items:
First, you will need three different kinds of sandpaper—100-grit for the first part, 200-grit for the second process, and lastly the 300-grit. Sand down your fiberglass to make a smooth surface that allows the primer and the paint to be properly applied.
2. Acetone Cleaner
The next product that you need to prepare is acetone cleaner to help you remove the sand dust from the previous step. It will prevent dust from making the primer and paint uneven when you apply it to your shower unit.
3. Masking Tape
Masking tape is crucial to have if you are planning to paint without uninstalling your faucet and knobs. This type of tape will prevent paint from being applied to it. It blocks the paint and protects the parts that are not meant to be painted.
What Type of Paint?
Before painting, you need to apply primer first. A spray primer is enough to do the job; even though many paints claim to have primer mixed in it, this is for safety measures instead of doing everything all over again.
The types of paint that work for fiberglass include; waterproof enamel paint, epoxy paint, and spray paint. You are free to choose the one that fits your style. Also, think about the color combination as well, because some paints have limited color options.
Here Is How You Do It!
- Wash your fiberglass shower unit. Wash it thoroughly to get rid of any dirt and grime.
- Remove or cover the hardware with masking tape.
- Equip a mask to cover your face, as the sanding process will create breathable small particles that can go into your body.
- Start sanding your fiberglass, starting with the 100-grit.
- After sanding every surface of the fiberglass unit with the 100-grit, continue sanding with the 200-grit to smoothen the surface further.
- After that, wash the unit with acetone cleaner to clean the sand dust.
- Start coating your fiberglass unit with primer spray and let it dry. After it dries out, sand it GENTLY with the 300-grit sanding paper. Clean the dust using a cloth, and apply a second primer.
- Once the second primer dries, you can finally apply your paint of choice! You will need to apply it 2-3 times with a top to the down pattern. Once you are satisfied, let it dry overnight.
After a long and tiring DIY process, it is safe to say that you can paint your fiberglass shower unit. Take your time, do not rush it. Great craftsmanship takes time and effort! Here is a video reference to assist you in your journey if you are not sure enough on how to do it: