What to Consider When Choosing the Perfect Bathtub

When searching for a new home, one of the first questions regarding the bathroom is, “What kind of tub is there?”. The bathtub is also a significant consideration in home renovation with many styles, colors, materials, and shapes.
As a symbol of luxury and comfort and contributing a significant design element, freestanding tubs are a worthwhile investment. Read on to learn more about what bathtubs are dominating the market in 2022.

The Styles of Bathtubs

The first question you want to ask yourself is what you plan to use your bathtub for, long, luxurious evening soaks? Muscle relaxation and recovering after intense workouts? Romantic bubble baths with your partner? Something to stand in while taking a shower? The answers to these questions will help define what kind of tub will work best for your situation.

What to consider when choosing the perfect bathtubSingle and Double Ended Tubs

A single-ended tub has one sloped end while the other is where all the faucet and drain hardware are installed. This is great for one person and what you will usually find installed in homes today. They range from 48″ to 70″ and have predrilled holes for your faucet hardware.
A double-ended tub has two rounded ends, making it great for sharing a bath. The drain is located in the center, and the faucet will be freestanding, so you can choose where the water comes in. These are built a bit larger, at 55″ to 72″, and this style gives you more flexibility with the tub placement, as it lacks the predrilled faucet holes.

Single and Double Slipper TubsWhat to consider when choosing the perfect bathtub

Similar to single and double-ended tubs, what sets this style apart is that it provides more height on the relaxing end. Getting its name from its resemblance to a woman’s slipper, these high-backed tubs offer more comfort and support. Because of the additional height, these are the perfect choice for taller people.
They have the same setup and configuration as the single and double-ended tubs regarding drain and faucet location.

Clawfoot Tubs

This is the style that we all know and love, commonly found in Victorian homes and showcased as the “luxurious” option. The classic clawfoot has been a prominent feature dating back to the mid-1800s and was initially made in cast iron and then covered in porcelain. Modern versions can now be found in the lighter-weight acrylic, making transport and installation much more manageable.
Clawfoot tubs come in many styles and colors, including the single and double-ended and slipper varieties. In their cast-iron form, these tubs can last a long time with minimal upkeep. They are often used in a tub/shower combo, with a shower curtain hung around them from a pole suspended from the ceiling.

Japanese Soaker Tubs

In Japan, many homes have separate rooms for bathing, which is an essential aspect of their everyday routine. Smaller than the average tub but with much higher walls, Japanese soaker tubs make up for the lack of horizontal space by allowing you to soak up to your neck. In addition, these often have temperature control features, which keep the water hot for longer. Finally, these are commonly more circular than the typical oblong shape, with the drain located in the center.
This is an excellent option for those with a smaller bathroom but who really want to enjoy the tub experience. They often come with covers, as the water isn’t meant to be drained every time, keeping things warm. Because these tubs are meant for soaking more than bathing, taking a shower beforehand is recommended. Given their small size, using them as a tub/shower combo is often not feasible.

Tub Materials

There is more to it than just aesthetics when choosing your bathtub construction material. Weight, durability, size, and heat retention all come into play.

What to consider when choosing the perfect bathtubAcrylic

This is one of the most popular construction materials for bathtubs due to its durability, malleability, weight, and customization options. In addition, because acrylic is non-porous, it is resistant to staining and scratches, and any damage can be fixed quickly and inexpensively.
Because they are lightweight, they can be installed above ground level without reinforcing the floor. Acrylic tubs can be made in many shapes, sizes, and colors and offer unlimited customization potential. They are also one of the lowest cost freestanding tubs on the market, yet they rank low in heat retention.

What to consider when choosing the perfect bathtubCast Iron

Cast iron tubs are known for their beautiful style, fantastic heat retention properties, and extensive weight. If you are looking for a classic style and long-lasting durability, this is the place to start. They are heavily resistant to scratching and chipping, but it is more expensive to repair than acrylic if damage does occur. Cast iron tubs will elevate the aesthetic of your bathroom and become a focal point for the design.

CopperWhat to consider when choosing the perfect bathtub

Copper tubs are not commonly found in the United States, but they offer a distinct, elegant appeal with great flexibility in design. Known as a “living finish,” copper interacts with the environment and will organically deepen in color over time. As their tone darkens, they form their own personality, which means that no two tubs are alike. This is perfect for those looking for a unique appeal.

Copper tubs have excellent heat retention properties, as the walls will hold heat longer than other materials. Also, because copper is naturally resistant to mold and bacteria, these are an excellent choice for those with compromised immune systems.

Solid Surface

With a mix of natural and synthetic resins, solid surface tubs can be poured and molded into virtually any shape and size. This gives you infinite options for your freestanding tub and an excellent choice for smaller bathrooms or those working with unique layouts. With excellent heat retention and resistance to stains, mold, and mildew, solid surface tubs are a worthwhile investment. While not the cheapest option, their customization more than makes up for it.

Filling Your Tub

With any tub that you choose, there are going to be many options for faucets and drains. From the standard wall-mounted spout to freestanding spouts that hang over your tub’s side, the designs are endless. With an array of materials, colors, and shapes, depending on the predrilled holes of your tub, you will be able to customize your bathtub down to the knobs.

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