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Do-It-Yourself Bathroom Remodeling: Tub Surrounds

Updated on June 6, 2012

Do have an older bathroom with tiled walls? If so, chances are that some of the tiles are cracked or chipped, and the tile grouting might be stained or beginning to come loose. Maybe you’re just tired of the old tile and want a newer, more modern bath. Replacing tile is messy, time consuming, inconvenient, and expensive. The old tile has to be torn out, the backer board has to be replaced, and the new tile and grout have to be installed. Much easier options lie in tub surrounds.

Tub surrounds are a great way to improve the visual appeal of your bathroom. Many times, the bathtub itself is fine – it’s the surrounding tile that makes it appear old and dated. A beautiful new tub surround can breathe new life into an old bathtub!

What’s a tub surround?

A tub surround or shower tub surround is essentially solid sheets that surround your bathtub or bathtub-shower. They’re made of acrylic or of fiberglass, and they fit right over your existing tiled walls. You don’t have to go through the work and mess of removing the existing tile.

The walls are tough and durable, especially the fiberglass tub surrounds. They come in a variety of colors and different textures, ranging from smooth as glass to rough. When properly installed and sealed, the tub surrounds are totally impervious to moisture.

How much do tub surrounds cost?

Tub surrounds vary in cost, depending on the size, material, and model you select. You can find tub surrounds for as little as $75. Compare this price to solid surface paneling that can cost as much as $2,500, or to re-tiling, which can cost around $1,500.

If you opt for a tub surround with additional features like built-in soap dishes and towel rods, expect to pay up to $500 for these tub surrounds – still significantly cheaper than your other options.

Is this a do-it-yourself remodeling job?

The best part of the tub surrounds is their easy installation. In just a few hours, you can install a new tub surround that will give your tired old bathroom an effective facelift and makeover!

Compare this job to replacing your old tile with new tile. You might think that since you’ve laid floor tiles before that you have the skills necessary for tiling your bathroom walls, but this probably isn’t the case. Wall tiles are much more difficult to place properly than are floor tiles. For one thing, you have gravity working against you. Even if you can lay the wall tiles yourself, your bathtub will be out of commission for quite a while, until the grout cures completely. Even then, you’ll be inviting the same types of problems you had with the old tile – stains, mold, and mildew.

Tub surrounds are definitely the way to go! You’ll be hard pressed to find a better way to spend $75 or so as far as bathroom makeovers are concerned, especially one that will make such a dramatic difference in the appearance of your bathroom in such a short time

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    • habee profile imageAUTHOR

      Holle Abee 

      7 years ago from Georgia

      Thanks for reading and commenting!

    • MsCookM profile image

      MsCookM 

      7 years ago

      I love your tips. I have been looking for great, cheap ideas to redecorate my bathroom and this one is a must-do on my list. Thanks!

    • habee profile imageAUTHOR

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Thanks for visiting, Pam!

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      8 years ago from Sunny Florida

      A very informative hub. Nice hub.

    • habee profile imageAUTHOR

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Sandy, I want to re-do my bathroom, too. thanks for reading!

    • Sandyspider profile image

      Sandy Mertens 

      8 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

      Ah yes...we have been talking about one of these. Nice hub.

    • habee profile imageAUTHOR

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Veronica, me like simple 2. lol!

    • habee profile imageAUTHOR

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Lucky girl, Lily!!

    • habee profile imageAUTHOR

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Thanks for visiting, Voice!

    • habee profile imageAUTHOR

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Good to hear, HH!

    • habee profile imageAUTHOR

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Eth, I've heard of others having that problem!

    • Veronica Allen profile image

      Veronica Allen 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      This sounds like it's a very simple process. I like simple.

    • Lily Rose profile image

      Lily Rose 

      8 years ago from A Coast

      My master bath is on my remodeling wish list! I can't wait to get to it!

    • thevoice profile image

      thevoice 

      8 years ago from carthage ill

      well informed hub work thanks

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 

      8 years ago from London, UK

      Thank you for an informative hub. I will remember when I get round to my one.

    • ethel smith profile image

      Ethel Smith 

      8 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

      This is a great idea. When the old tiles in our bathroom were removed half the plaster work came down with them :)

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