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Old 02-25-2014, 10:27 AM   #1
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Silicone or Acrylic Caulking...nothing works


About a year ago, I put an new bathroom in. The tub is white fiberglass and the tub surround is the same. Initally I caulked with acrylic and within a month or so it begin to lift. Never used acrylic before, so I thought I may have done something wrong (I did follow the instructions and let it dry three days in normal heat and humidly). Since it lifted, and having used silicone several times before on enamel tubs and tiles, I uses silicone, and within two months, IT began to lift and seperate. I removed it all, and really gave it a good cleaning with isopropal alcohol, and reapplied silicone. Sure enough after two months or so, it began to separate. Two weeks ago, I ripped the silicone out, (wasn't difficult, it wasn't really stuck to anything) cleaned the seam spotless, and tried the acrylic again. let it dry FIVE days this time, and now after a week, I can see when it is beginning to lift.

I have used silicone on our older type enamel baths and tiles and it lasted years and years. What the heck am I doing wrong? Will nothing stick to fiberglass tubs and glossy fiberglass surrounds? Thanks for your help.
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Old 02-26-2014, 10:38 AM   #2
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Silicone or Acrylic Caulking...nothing works


Are you using silicone made for showers and bath? Are you cleaning the alcohol off good before reapplying? Did you try sand/scuff surface.
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Old 02-26-2014, 02:44 PM   #3
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Silicone or Acrylic Caulking...nothing works


Thanks for the reply. Yes, both types were for kitchen and bath. The first two times I didn'y use alcohol to clean it as everything was brand new. No soap scum, etc. The second and third time, I used alcohol and did clean off any residue with water and dried the seam.

I thought of sanding/scuffing but was afraid of damaging anywhere which would not be covered by the caulk. I guess I could tape it, and sand inside the tape, and retape before I caulk if I damage the tape. It is probably the only solution. It has been such an annoyance. The new bathroom looks wonderful, the wife loves it, but in the bath you have this stupid caulk that looks like it was laid loosely, and not sticking to anything.
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Old 02-27-2014, 04:22 AM   #4
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Silicone or Acrylic Caulking...nothing works


wondering if sika polyurethane might not be better,,, it comes in colors - ck w/building restoration products pro supply house
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Old 02-28-2014, 05:02 AM   #5
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Silicone or Acrylic Caulking...nothing works


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Originally Posted by itsreallyconc View Post
wondering if sika polyurethane might not be better,,, it comes in colors - ck w/building restoration products pro supply house
Thanks. I will look for that and give it a try. Will let you know in a month or so if it does the trick or not.
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Old 02-28-2014, 11:50 AM   #6
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Silicone or Acrylic Caulking...nothing works


Hard to say what is happening in your situtation as it sounds like you have done things properly, but there must be something strange. Silicone will normally stick just fine to a fiberglass tub and surround. I have been doing it for years and on at least 20 units and have never had a call back for it not holding. Is it 100% silicone? Or just caulk with silicone? That is one of the only issues I can think of. Also, if you redo it again, make sure to get it completely dry before applying as any moisture can cause it to not stick, but it sounds as though you already did that.
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