How To Fix A Rusty Bathtub

rusty bath tub David Locke Flickr
rusty bath tub David Locke Flickr from


Having a rusty bathtub can be unsightly and can also affect the overall functionality of your bathroom. Rust can develop over time due to constant exposure to water and moisture. However, there are several steps you can take to fix a rusty bathtub and restore its beauty and functionality. In this article, we will provide you with a step-by-step guide on how to fix a rusty bathtub.

Gather the Necessary Tools and Materials

Before starting the rust removal process, it is important to gather all the necessary tools and materials. You will need the following:

  • Protective gloves and goggles
  • Rust remover or vinegar
  • Scrub brush or sponge
  • Sandpaper or steel wool
  • Primer
  • Enamel paint

Prepare the Bathtub

Start by removing any loose or flaking rust from the bathtub using a scrub brush or sponge. Use gentle circular motions to remove the rust particles. Once the loose rust is removed, rinse the bathtub thoroughly with water to remove any remaining debris.

Apply Rust Remover or Vinegar

Next, apply a rust remover or vinegar to the rusty areas of the bathtub. Follow the instructions on the product packaging for the specific application method. Allow the rust remover or vinegar to sit for the recommended amount of time to dissolve the rust.

Scrub the Rusty Areas

After the rust remover or vinegar has had time to work, use a scrub brush or sponge to scrub the rusty areas of the bathtub. Apply gentle pressure and scrub in circular motions to remove the remaining rust. Rinse the bathtub thoroughly with water to remove any residue.

Sand the Surface

Once the rust is removed, use sandpaper or steel wool to smooth the surface of the bathtub. Start with a coarse grit sandpaper or steel wool and gradually move to a finer grit to achieve a smooth finish. Sand the entire surface of the bathtub to ensure an even application of primer and paint.

Apply Primer

After sanding, apply a primer to the bathtub. Use a paintbrush or roller to apply an even coat of primer to the entire surface. Allow the primer to dry according to the manufacturer’s instructions. This will provide a smooth and durable base for the enamel paint.

Apply Enamel Paint

Once the primer is dry, apply an enamel paint to the bathtub. Choose a paint color that matches your bathroom decor or opt for a classic white finish. Apply the paint in thin, even coats using a paintbrush or roller. Allow each coat to dry before applying the next one.

Final Touches

Once the final coat of paint is dry, inspect the bathtub for any imperfections or uneven areas. If necessary, lightly sand the surface and apply an additional coat of paint. Once you are satisfied with the finish, allow the paint to cure according to the manufacturer’s instructions before using the bathtub.

Maintenance Tips

To prevent future rusting, it is important to maintain your bathtub properly. Avoid using abrasive cleaners or scrub brushes that can damage the surface. Regularly clean your bathtub using mild soap and water. Consider applying a clear sealant or wax to further protect the surface.


Fixing a rusty bathtub is a relatively simple process that can be done with a few tools and materials. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can restore your bathtub’s beauty and functionality. Remember to take proper maintenance measures to prevent future rusting. Now you can enjoy a rust-free and beautiful bathtub for years to come.