Dr. Tubs Reglazing gets asked all the time about using bath mats and whether they are safe to be used on a refinished tub and the simple answer is they are safe for the user, but not for the tub. The problem with most of the bath mats out there is the way they stick to the tub. Most of them stick by way of suction cups and that’s great to prevent slipping, but when the mat is removed, the suction cups remove the glaze as well, coat by coat.Recently, I inspected a tub in a building 2 or 3 days after we refinished it. The property manager called me up saying that the new tenants moved in and are complaining about their tub peeling all over. When I saw the tub, it was evident that a bathmat was used right away, likely within a few hours of it drying and then removed after the first use. This mat didn’t rip off the glaze coat by coat, it ripped it right off in one go. See the picture below showing the mat partially peeled away. See the chunk of glaze still stuck to the suction cups of the mat?
For this very reason, Dr. Tubs Reglazing has a policy that the warranty will be voided if a mat is used. Now there are some mats that don’t have any suction cups. What about them? Those mats are not much better as they still rip off the glaze, just over a much a longer time due to the friction between them and the tub. The other issue is that they aren’t secured down because there are no suction cups, so believe it or not, many people slip and slide with them. What’s the point of using them if they aren’t going to prevent you from slipping and sliding and they are still going to remove the glaze?
There are bath mats that have an adhesive that when peeled off, the whole mat sticks to the floor of the tub. The biggest problem with this option is that you’ve spent hundreds of dollars refinishing your tub and most of it is now being covered up by a mat that is permanently stuck to it. Talk about making your tub look ugly in under a minute! Don’t forget the tub will be hard to clean and the mat will likely become dirty and stay dirty over time.
The last bathmat option is a mat made specifically for refinished tubs that doesn’t stick to the tub, so it can move around, you could slip and hurt yourself, but the glaze will likely be unaffected. It’s an interesting concept if you like surfing on rubber with bubbles protruding through it. See the picture below.
Supposedly, this is the only type of mat for refinished tubs. Dr. Tubs Reglazing would like to know why you would want to use a bathmat at all? They are dirty, they remove the new enamel by way of suction cups or friction when you slide around, they may not prevent slipping if they aren’t attached, they are an eye-sore and the list goes on and on. Why not get your bathtub refinished with a “built-in” no-slip surface?
More about Dr. Tubs Reglazing’s No-Slip Surface in our next post.