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Old 11-18-2015, 05:47 PM   #1
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Bathtub rust


Posting this for my girlfriend.

While cleaning her bathtub, a piece of rust about 1/4-1/2 the size of a dime fell out of the overflow drain. How concerned should she be about the tub being completely rusted out and/or her falling through it.
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Old 11-18-2015, 07:00 PM   #2
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It's very unlikely she would be at risk. The bare cast iron will b exposed behind the overflow. Water has gotten into contact with the bare metal and caused it to rust. I would seal the area so the rust doesn't blow out the porcelain.
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Old 11-18-2015, 07:02 PM   #3
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Picture would sure help.
Gasket leaking around the over flow?
How old is it?
Any access behind that area to look at it?
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Old 11-18-2015, 09:28 PM   #4
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If the tub overflow was leaking, would you have any way of knowing? That is, what's under that tub that might alert you to a water leak? Is there a finished ceiling under that tub that would show evidence of a water leak? If not, is it possible to get into the space under that tub with a flashlight?

I'm not concerned that she might fall through the tub. I'm concerned that the beveled rubber gasket between the tub and the tub overflow drain is leaking, and it might be best to replace it. Normally, you can replace that gasket from inside the tub.
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Old 11-19-2015, 12:37 PM   #5
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She was next to me when I started this thread. She is not home at the moment, so I thought I could come back and reply with my point of view and explain why I started this thread.

I hadn't yet looked at the tub when I started this thread, and also didn't think it was as bad as she was making it out to be from the way she described it. She found the rust chip, went to google images and searched for rusty bathtub. (Everybody knows if you do that, you're going to see the worst rusted bathtubs. Try it.) Seeing the pics from google images put her in a panic about her own tub, and she instantly thought her tub was as bad as the pics on Google Images. She wasn't interested in just my opinion, and wanted to see what this website would say about her concern.

So, this morning I pulled the chrome cover off of the overflow from inside the tub. The threads of the 2 screws that hold the cover on had the most rust. The seal is pretty shot and needs to be replaced. The edges of the hole in the tub, where the seal sits, has some rust, but it's minimal. A little flaking, but nothing that cannot be cleaned up and fixed with a new seal.

The house was built in '83. Single story ranch style house on a concrete foundation. I assume that the tub is original to the house. There is an access door in a closet next to the tub, that gives access to the tubs plumbing. I cannot see the entire underside of the tub, only about half from the plumbing back. Looking though there with a flashlight, the underside of the tub doesn't look bad. I honestly don't think she has anything to worry about as far as rusting through.

All of the plumbing under the house was redone in 2012. The actual overflow pipe that connects to the tub wasn't replaced, but everything from that part afterwards was.

I'll replace the seal, put a new trim cover on it, and thank her for spotting a problem before it got worse. Thank you for your responses.
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