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Thread: I hate caulking the tub!

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    DIY Junior Member neato0z's Avatar
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    Default I hate caulking the tub!

    I have an older home and thus an older tube. Older tubes tend to look nastier because after the caulk has been on for awhile it starts to get brown or blackish and very very unsightly. I hate scraping and re caulking the edges of the tub with a certain passion. So my question is what can i do to it to make it look more modern ( around the edges) and cleaner looking w/out breaking the bank. But honestly if i have to break the bank i will because its disgusting to look at. Thanks for your time.

  2. #2
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default caulk

    Use an antimildew silicone caulk after doing "superb" job of removing the old and any residue on the tub and wall.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  3. #3
    DIY Senior Member BobL43's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neato0z View Post
    I have an older home and thus an older tube. Older tubes tend to look nastier because after the caulk has been on for awhile it starts to get brown or blackish and very very unsightly. I hate scraping and re caulking the edges of the tub with a certain passion. So my question is what can i do to it to make it look more modern ( around the edges) and cleaner looking w/out breaking the bank. But honestly if i have to break the bank i will because its disgusting to look at. Thanks for your time.
    If you are unwilling/unable to remove and replace the caulking, then they do sell self adhesive moldings that stick to the wall and tub to hide the dirtly caulking. I'm not sure how long that would last or if it even looks better than the bad caulking to begin with. I don't enjoy washing my car or waxing it, but it sure looks better when I do them.
    I am definitely not a pro plumber, but I am a pro crastinator

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    Senior Robin Hood Guy Ian Gills's Avatar
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    I have found the polyseamseal caulk designed for tubs to work really well. I have been delightfully surpised.

    Not only are they water cleanup (unlike silicone) but because they have a little silicone in them they are remarkable resilient around the tub (unlike ordinary acrylic caulks).

    Use a wet finger (that you clean with a wet sponge) and you will have a smooth seam that lasts a long time.

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    DIY Member jadziedzic's Avatar
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    Use a 100% silicone caulk - that will greatly reduce the ability of mold to grow. Read this EXCELLENT silicone caulking for the D-I-Yer tutorial from the John Bridge Tile Forums: http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/...icone+caulking - this will help you get GREAT results. Oh, and pick up a bottle of GE's "Bead Tamer"; it works great for smoothing caulk.

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    DIY Senior Member BobL43's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jadziedzic View Post
    Use a 100% silicone caulk - that will greatly reduce the ability of mold to grow. Read this EXCELLENT silicone caulking for the D-I-Yer tutorial from the John Bridge Tile Forums: http://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin/...icone+caulking - this will help you get GREAT results. Oh, and pick up a bottle of GE's "Bead Tamer"; it works great for smoothing caulk.
    I have been using the painters tape like that for a long time and I found its even better to pull the tape away as soon as possible after wiping it smoothe. that seems to pevent the little ridges from setting in and staying at the tape's edges. The caulk edges feather in better if you remove the tape sooner than later. Its still no fun, but its got to be done. Never tried the bead tamer yet though.
    I am definitely not a pro plumber, but I am a pro crastinator

  7. #7
    DIY Member jadziedzic's Avatar
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    I agree with removing the tape right away - that helps minimize the ridges. However, if you then spray the caulk with the bead tamer and do a final smooth with your finger, that will flatten the edges of the caulk so there is no noticeable ridge - and the bead tamer helps maintain the crisp edges that you got with the tape.

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    DIY Junior Member neato0z's Avatar
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    Thanks for your time and suggestions mates but it sounds like ill eventually have to do what i dont want to do which is scrap and re-caulk eventually no matter what i buy (please,please correct me if im wrong). I want to get away from caulk all together if i can. I have zero knowledge of this stuff and thought there was a good alternative to my caulking problem. But again thank you for your suggestions and time.

  9. #9
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    When a tub/shower is built, there are options that would preclude the need for caulk, but those are not an easy retrofit. If interested in what I'm talking about, check out http://www.schluter.com/139.aspx.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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