Tub Refinishing... questions about products...
I am hoping someone on here has experience with a couple of different Tub Refinishing products. I am a Facility Manager for an apartment complex and the current product appears to have to be redone every 3-5 years. Due to some changes in the procedures, it is really unsuitable for occupied apartments due to the smell and the time it requires to cure.
I have received proposals on 2 other products: Kott Koatings out of California and Munro Products (from wherever they are located!). Kott Koatings states that they take 24-48 hours to dry (depending on if you use heat lamp system) but the smell is greatly reduced and it is an eco-friendly product. Munro states that they take 4 hours to dry - but according to the MSDS sheets, they are pretty nasty products.
Has anyone used these products (or, at least, had a contractor do the work)? I am mainly looking for results of the product and how long ago the work was done. Since I am in the DC area, workmanship is not of a concern as the installer would be different :).
The way I look at it, I would prefer to have a product that will last 5-7 years (or longer) to offset the amount of time it takes the product to dry.
Thanks for your advice on this matter.
A few things to consider. First, I don't think 3 to 5 years is bad for an apartment situation, mainly because renters will tend to either a) clean it like a normal tub, and use abrasive cleaners and harsh chemicals, or b) not clean it at all, either one of which will greatly reduce the lifespan of a glazed tub. Not to mention washing the dog, or their motorcycle engine, or whatever, causing dings which will make the glaze fail, and using suction cup mats, leaving them down all the time - all things that glazed tubs will not tolerate. This is why the industry standard is a 1 year warranty, versus 5 years for a homeowner.
Next, I don't know what product you're currently using, but regardless, the prep work is 80% of the job, and if not done properly, no topcoat will last very long.
Also, the type of primer is very important, assuming you use a primer instead of a wipe on bonding agent.
As far as the topcoat, the main differences are 2) isocyanate vs. "iso-free", and cure time. Isocyanates are more durable in general, but are also much more toxic, especially to the technician. I'd recommend a full suit, goggles, gloves, and without a doubt an air-fed respirator - not a cartridge type. Personally, I only use iso-free, except maybe for chip repairs. As far as cure time, in general, the longer cure times produce a more durable glaze. Some of the faster curing glazes use accelerators to cause the solvents to evaporate more quickly. This can lead to a more brittle coating, and less durability.
So just like most everything, there are some trade offs. Just keep in mind that faster cure times may or may not produce the results you want.
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