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Why is my bathtub cracking? More importantly, do you know how to fix a cracked bathtub? Cracks in the bathtub may spell signs of an impending disaster. You really don’t want water seeping through these cracks.
Many people are very particular about the time they spend in their bathtubs. They like the peace and quiet, and it’s an ideal time for the average person to ruminate, think about different things in their lives, and plan for the future.
In fact, many people look forward to the time that they can spend in their bathtubs. So, as you can imagine, it can be incredibly frustrating when you prepare everything for your bath only to realize that there is a large crack running straight down your bathtub.
It may even infuriate you a little, no doubt there. However, before you can think about replacing your bathtub, it’s important to figure out why your tub may have cracked.
There are several reasons why bathtubs crack, and it’s important to discuss them one by one in detail.
Why Is My Bathtub Cracking?
Essentially, there are three primary reasons that tend to leave cracks in your bathtub. In the following paragraphs, we shall talk about the main reasons why bathtubs usually crack.
Lack of Support
One of the main reasons why bathtubs usually crack is because they do not get appropriate support. For instance, fiberglass is generally quite flexible and it usually bends when there is considerable weight placed on a fiberglass bathtub.
Now, if this bathtub is not installed in the right manner and does not get appropriate support, the pressure caused by the weight is likely to cause the bathtub to crack. The pressure continues to build and this causes the bathtub’s surface to deform, thus causing it to break.
Impact Due to Heavy Items
If something heavy falls on your bathtub, it is likely to cause the breakage. The two most common materials that are used for manufacturing bathtubs include acrylic and porcelain.
Porcelain, as you might know, is a common material that is used for a range of sanitary fixtures in the bathroom. It’s a bit expensive, but it’s also a bit fragile.
If your porcelain bathtub does not get adequate support, it’s likely to fall apart when something drops on it. In case something falls on the bathtub from a considerable height, it’s very likely to crack.
Small dents and divots are going to expand over the passage of time until they turn into much larger cracks. You have to make sure that you do not throw any sharp or heavy objects in your bathtub. It’s a terrible idea that could lead to permanent damage to your bathtub.
Highly abrasive, harsh cleaners can cause serious damage to your bathtub. The glossy finish of your tub is likely to erode over time if you continue using these on your bathtub.
As the upper layer of the finish erodes away, moisture is going to seep into the material. With the passage of time, this is just going to lead to more cracks.
You need to understand that cracks are quite dangerous and you need to take care of this situation as quickly as possible. The reason is simple: the cracks are going to increase with the passage of time.
Before you know it, these cracks are going to grow to the point where water is going to seep through the cracks. As water moves into the inner tracts, it’s going to affect the integrity of the bathtub.
As time passes, the cracks are only going to multiply, and eventually the entire tub will break apart. Cracking usually occurs most commonly in fiberglass bathtubs.
The material is relatively cheap and it’s generally porous. This means that fiberglass tubs are not able to bear heavy impact. Fiberglass bathtubs are prone to most kinds of cracks.
Now that you know the main reasons for cracks, it’s important to understand how to fix the problem or prevent it. One of the best things that you can do is to buy bathtubs made from more expensive materials, such as stone resin.
Stone resin is incredibly strong and does not bend at all. It’s also completely non-porous, so water isn’t going to flow through it.
You also don’t have to worry about cracks or chips on the edges. There’s no reason for you to worry about the stone resin tub absorbing water or leading to other problems.
Common Kinds of Cracks
There are several kinds of cracks that you might notice on your bathtub. It’s important to categorize them before you decide to implement any kind of fix. Let’s talk about the two most common types of cracks.
Hairline cracks: These are small cracks that usually occur due to consistent abuse. The excessive, consistent abuse leads to the appearance of small cracks that usually cover different parts of the bathtub.
The problem here is that these tiny cracks can aggregate and affect the integrity of your bathtub as a whole. Thankfully, you can buy smaller repair kits that are designed to protect against cracks.
There are sealants that you can use in order to cover the cracks and prevent them from growing. You have to apply the stress repair kit as quickly as possible otherwise the crack is only going to expand until the material starts to warp.
This usually happens when there is limited support for the bathtub.
Stress crack: These are pretty self-explanatory. A stress crack usually appears when something heavy falls on the bathtub. If you drop something heavy on the tub, it is likely to cause a crack on the bathtub.
In most situations, stress cracks usually exist on the surface. But if the crack is deep, it may render your bathtub useless altogether.
However, if it’s a surface-level crack, you can just use a repair kit in order to fill up the crack and prevent it from spreading.
How to Fix a Cracked Bathtub
There are several ways to fix a cracked bathtub. The first thing that you need to do is to buy a crack repair kit. These kits are generally inexpensive and readily available at different hardware stores.
All you have to do is to apply the tube on the cracks and let it dry. The epoxy is going to cover the cracks properly and prevent the cracks from spreading.
This is a simple fix, but you have to understand that if the cracks continue to spread, your only option will be to replace the bathtub altogether.
Will Flex Seal Fix a Cracked Bathtub?
Flex Seal is one of the most popular adhesive bonding products available in the market. Flex Seal is a great way to cover the cracks, but you have to understand that this is not a permanent solution. When you have the Flex Seal on, it’s going to prevent the water from escaping.
But, the use of soaps and shampoos is going to weaken the adhesion of the tape and that’s going to result in a problem. With time, the Flex Seal is going to fade away as well and lose its adhesion.
How to Maintain Your Bathtub
This may seem to be a difficult task at first, but you have to understand that there are several ways to maintain your bathtub.
The good thing is that if you properly maintain and care for your bathtub, it’s going to last very well and for quite a while. The first thing that you need to do is to make sure that your bathtub has been properly installed with proper support.
You may want to hire a plumber in order to check the bathtub in order to determine whether it has proper support or not. If it doesn’t, this is a great time for you to reinforce your bathtub to mitigate the chances of a crack.
Secondly, if you are going to have a new bathtub installed, it is important that you hire a reliable plumber for the job. Make sure that the bathtub is properly supported.
Once you are sure that the bathtub is properly supported, the next step is to make sure that you avoid the use of abrasive cleaners.
We have already discussed the impact of abrasive cleaners on the bathtub. It removes the outer layer of the bathtub altogether and makes it much easier for water to seep through the surface.
Instead, you can just use conventional bathroom cleaners. Don’t use harsh chemicals and bleach in your bathtub as they could lead to serious problems.
Similarly, you have to understand that all bathtubs have a finite lifetime. For instance, most bathtubs are going to last between 5-10 years. After that period of time, problems are likely to arise with time.
You have to understand that these tubs need to be replaced. It’s important that you replace the bathtub after a particular period of time.
These are just a few things that you should know about maintaining your bathtub and making sure that it remains in prime condition. As long as you are careful, this shouldn’t be a problem.
Hello, my name is David Zal and I’m a plumber with more than 20 years of experience based in Englewood (Florida). I like to teach normal people how to make easy fixes in their homes. I believe that a lot can be achieved just with DYI and that’s why I started this blog.