Help With a Bathroom Vanity

Q . I need a way to refinish a cultured marble bathroom vanity?

I’m buying another house that needs a complete remodeling.  I don’t mind replacing some of the vanity tops but not all if I can avoid that since I’m trying to bring the remodeling in within my budget.  These vanities are unsightly because of cigarette burns on them.  One is crazed in the sink where the drain is.  Can anything be done to refinish these without turning to a professional refurbisher?  Joan

A.  The only way to refurbish cultured marble is to sand down the top. This must be done with at least with a belt sander.  You can not just sand the affected area.  The whole top must be sanded to the same depth. Constantly check results with a straight edge.   

A.  The problems around the drain can only be solved with a new drainpipe that has an inner ring larger than the affected area.   If you can find this then fill the damage with auto body putty. Make sure that the sink bottom ring is sealed with a high quality sink and tub sealant and a rubber washer or it will leak after some use.  This is all a lot of work, but if you are intent on saving the cultured marble it may be worth your time.   If not then purchase new or find used tops that will work for your vanity dimensions  good luck!  Michael

A.  This is for the reader who wants to re-finish her vanity tops. I used a product called "Klenk’s", which I purchased at the Home Depot. It is an epoxy product, so there are two liquids to mix together, let set, then apply. AND, you can even ask the home improvement center to tint the base liquid (although the manufacturer suggests pastel colors only).  Read the directions, then follow every step exactly. Make sure to use a tack cloth after sanding – if you don’t sand, then "tack", the mixture will not adhere. I used Post-Its to mark off a grid on my vanities and shower floor, then sanded each grid (at night after work), or one or two grids.  Using a low adhesive marker, instead of masking or other types of tape, meant less sanding over the grid marks.  The box costs less than $20 and you should have enough to refinish several vanities. Oh, don’t worry about the first coat if it looks a little streaky- the second coat makes a huge difference. For the shower floor, I used two coats. Cora

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