Working With Incredible Plumbers

Tips For Improving Your Vintage Sink

In today's remodeling projects, one of the goals for owners of older homes is to bring back the forgotten charm of the house while still celebrating modern design aspects. One of the ways that homeowners embrace vintage bathrooms is by using original fixtures, including tubs and sinks. Most vintage sinks are made from cast iron and then coated with a porcelain layer. These sinks are heavy and durable, but if your sink is stained and chipped, or if the finish is marred from years of poor cleaning and neglect, you'll have to make sure you take the right steps to bring out the old life of your vintage sink.

Clean it properly.

To tackle stains, your first instinct might be to use a powerful chemical cleaner or an abrasive scrubber. Ignore this desire, and look instead for a gentle but effective cleaning method. Typically, you should avoid steel wool (it can scratch an already delicate surface), vinegar (it's too acidic for such an old, fine surface), and powder-based scouring cleaners. Instead, use simple dishwashing liquid (a few drops dissolved in a bucket of water) for regular cleaning. For tougher cleaning jobs, it's best to make a mild ammonia solution and pair it with baking soda to remove stubborn stains. Baking soda is abrasive, but it is gentler that steel wool or scouring powder. 

You can help protect your sink from future soap scum stains and rust by rubbing it over with a citrus oil (not juice) like lemon or orange. This cleaning method helps to prevent any further damage to your vintage sink.

Get it reglazed.

If your cleaning efforts did not do much to help improve the overall appearance of the sink, you should contact a restoration and repair professional to restore the finish. If you're feeling brave, you can try reglazing it yourself using a reglazing kit. Usually, this means sanding off the old finish or any paint that may have been used on the sink during its lifetime. Sometimes, this can be done using a powerful acid wash. Afterwards, you prepare for the new coating by painting the whole sink with an epoxy primer that will adhere to the porcelain surface. Finally, after the epoxy layer is dry, you seal it using a polyurethane spray finish. If you are doing the reglazing work yourself, you need to be careful to spend the time carefully following the directions of the reglazing kit you buy, because if it is not done well, the new finish will start to peel off, making the sink look even worse than before. 

Talk to a company like Rapid Rooter Of Central Oregon if you have any questions about repairing your sink.


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