How to Restore the Finish to an Acrylic Tub & Shower

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Things You'll Need

  • Water

  • Dish detergent

  • Sandpaper

  • Polisher

  • Wax

  • Soft cloth


Acrylic finish is similar to new car finish, so treat your acrylic tub and shower like a new car: wash and wax at least every two weeks for the best clean and finish.


Do not use abrasive cleaners such as Comet, Goof Off or paint thinner on your acrylic tub, as you will scratch or damage the surface.

Acrylic can be one of the most difficult materials to care for in your bathroom. You cannot use abrasive cleaners or strong products such as Comet, because they will scratch the finish of the acrylic. With multiple cleanings and uses, the finish on an acrylic tub and shower will inevitably fade. Being able to clean, fix and wash your own acrylic bathroom fixtures will restore shine and beauty to your bathroom.

Step 1

Mix warm water and a mild dish detergent such as Dawn in the tub or a nearby bowl or bucket. Wash the surfaces of the acrylic tub with a soft cloth or sponge soaked in the soap and water mixture.

Step 2

Inspect the acrylic surfaces for any scratches or dents. Shallow damage will be repaired by the application of polish.

Step 3

Sand the surface of the tub if you find deep damage to the tub, such as deep scratches or burn marks. Purchase 1500-grit sandpaper from a paint or hardware store. Wet the sandpaper. Sand in circular motions over the damage and three to four inches beyond it. Reapply water if the sandpaper dries out. Sand until the damage is no longer visible.

Step 4

Purchase polisher or wax from a hardware or automotive store. You can use new car wax or liquid polisher designed for cars or for acrylic; ask an expert at the retailer if you are unsure about a product.

Step 5

Dab wax or polish onto the area using a soft cloth; spread it over the area in need of refinishing in small amounts. Remove excess polish and wax with a clean cloth. Allow the wax to dry; repeat as necessary until shine is restored.


Samantha Volz

Samantha Volz has been involved in journalistic and informative writing for over eight years. She holds a bachelor's degree in English literature from Lycoming College, Williamsport, Pennsylvania, with a minor in European history. In college she was editor-in-chief of the student newspaper and completed a professional internship with the "Williamsport Sun-Gazette," serving as a full-time reporter. She resides in Horsham, Pennsylvania.