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How to Recaulk a Bathtub or Shower

There’s nothing that will brighten up your bathroom faster than recaulking an old, mildewed bathtub or shower.


  • Step 1: Remove the old caulk Using a utility knife, cut along the edge where the caulk meets the tub. Scrape out all the old caulk.
  • Step 2: Clean the area Pour a capful of bleach into a small bucket of water. Using a toothbrush, scrub the area with your bleach solution to help prevent mildew and mold from returning.
  • TIP: If you are having trouble removing all the caulk, spread some silicon caulk remover on the area and let it sit for several hours.
  • Step 3: Let it dry Allow the area to dry for at least two hours.
  • Step 4: Fill the tub Fill the tub with water to weigh the tub down, creating more space to fill with new caulk. Leave the water until your new caulk fully dries.
  • TIP: To make cleanup easier, put strips of painter's tape along the tub and wall bordering the area you will be caulking.
  • Step 5: Apply caulk Cut the tip off the tube of caulk at the point indicated. Starting at one corner of the tub, slowly squeeze the caulk into the gap in a smooth and even line.
  • TIP: Don't be cheap. Invest in higher-quality caulk if you don't want to have to replace it again in a few months.
  • Step 6: Even out the caulk Wet your finger and run it along the new caulk to smooth it out evenly. Wipe any caulk that gets on your finger onto a damp rag.
  • TIP: There are plastic caulking tools you can buy to even out the new caulk, although your finger will work just fine.
  • Step 7: Wipe up excess caulk Use your finger and a paper towel to wipe up any excess caulk.
  • Step 8: Let it dry The new caulk needs to harden for at least 24 hours before you shower or bathe. So it's a good idea to take your shower before starting this project!
  • FACT: In January 2008, teacher Becky Bridger of Offham, England, took a six-hour bath in baked beans to raise money for her school.

You Will Need

  • A utility knife
  • Bleach
  • A small bucket of water
  • A toothbrush
  • A tube of caulk
  • A clean rag
  • Silicon caulk remover
  • A plastic caulking tool
  • Painter's tape

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