CONSIDER THE COST
The case for Bathtub Reglazing/Refinishing/Resurfacing is one mostly based on cost. The average price for a bathtub refinished in NYC and the surrounding areas is somewhere between $300-$400. When replacing a bathtub, one must consider much more than the price of the bathtub. Not only will you factor in the cost to purchase the tub, but also the labor for the removal, replacement, plumbing and any tiles/accessories that were removed or broken in the process of removing the bathtub. Also, co-op boards (mostly in Manhattan) will require the shareholder to replace the plumbing supply lines all the way back to the riser, necessitating all new concrete board and all new tiles! At this point, you might as well gut renovate the entire bathroom. Even outside of Manhattan a licensed plumber will be required for the plumbing work.
So, “the cost of replacing” depends on what type of structure you live in, the tub you purchase and the tub you’re removing. Typically, in a house outside of Manhattan, a new $200 boots tub installed will cost $3,000 when factoring in: Removal, carting, disposal, plumbing labor, plumbing parts, accessories, tile patching (do you have extra tiles that match?) and whatever other damage from the tub removal is caused.
As for Manhattan co-ops, a renovation will easily cost $20K depending on the rules of the co-op board. In the outer boroughs, Westchester, Long Island and Northern New Jersey, co-ops are less stringent but still require a licensed plumber just to replace the bathtub. $3,000 is a minimum!
In conclusion, if you’re renovating and don’t like your current bathtub, by all means, replace it! But make sure you replace it with a quality bathtub, and not a $200 tub from Home Depot. Go this route and you’re likely to need a bathtub refinishing service a year later – once the $200 tub starts to dull and wear out.