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Best Walk in Tubs for Seniors

One of the most important and useful spaces within any home is the bathroom, and this room is typically used every day by most homeowners. One of the best ways to update and improve the space and add value to the home is to install what is known as a walk-in bathtub.  

One group of homeowners that would specifically benefit from installing a walk-in bathtub are our senior citizens. Walk-in tubs are especially ideal for senior citizens because of the advantages they offer for those with mobility issues or who are aging in place.
Ella's Bubbles Petite - Acrylic Inward Swinging Door Walk-In Tub (27.5″W x 52.25″L) - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

What is a Walk-in Tub

A walk-in tub is exactly that; a bathtub that is specifically designed to be easily entered by just walking into it. Walk-in tubs differ from standard bathtubs as they have a door that is located on the side of the tub that permits easy entry rather than the tall wall in standard bathtubs that bathers have to climb over in order to enter the tub.

The door that is placed on the side of a walk-in tub is fitted with a watertight seal and is made of a different material than the tub, such as tempered glass. The space beneath the door that people have to walk over in order to get into the tub is usually just a few inches tall, permitting easy walking right into the tub.

The watertight seal on the side of the door prevents leaking and either swing inwardly or outwardly. Walk-in tubs that are not lay down models usually have high walls. These high walls permit full immersion, unlike standard tubs. Many walk-in tubs include in water heaters to keep you warm for longer baths, and rapid draining when you are finished.

The Best Walk-in Tubs for Seniors & Elderly

We have reviewed a selection of walk in tub companies and walk in tub manufacturers and have compiled a list of nine of the top models. These models were carefully researched and represent all the potential models a senior homeowner may need. They include the following:

    Ella's Bubbles Elite - Acrylic Inward Swinging Door Walk-In Tub (29.75″W x 52″L)

    Ella's Bubbles Elite - Acrylic Inward Swinging Door Walk-In Tub (29.75″W x 52″L) - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

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    Ella's Bubbles Elite inward swinging door walk in bathtub has recently seen upgrades including a patented swivel tray, and features a contoured shell. This model features a wider seat and backrest, a designer tub spout, and a multifunction pull handle. The Elite also comes standard with an anti-slip textured floor, dual safety grab bars, and a dual drain technology that will let your tub drain and as little as 80 seconds for a quick and worry-free exit.

    This acrylic tub lasts for a lifetime of use and has a high gloss acrylic shell that is scratch resistant, impermeable to mold and bacteria, and is easy to clean. The acrylic tub is reinforced with a rugged stainless steel frame which evenly places its weight over 8 leveling legs. It also features a toe kick access panel and a wall extension kit with end access panels.

    This model of Ella walk-in bathtub can be installed easily into a 2 or 3 wall setting and you can even use it as a freestanding unit, permitting it to be retrofitted into almost any bathroom. Features of interest include:

    • high-quality acrylic grade A
    • high gloss white finish
    • quarter inch acrylic sheet
    • stainless steel frame
    • fiberglass reinforced
    • excellent color uniformity
    • low threshold step for easy access
    • seat width of 21 and 3/4 in
    • stainless steel and tempered glass door, door frame and door seal gasket
    • door is removable for easy cleaning
    • removable rubber back support
    • two safety grab bars for wall and deck mount
    • reversible end panel
    • on/off push controls or digital controller

      This model of Ella's Bubbles walk-in tub also includes a HydroMassage system and air massage system which are both wonderful options. The hydro massage system has many different features including an inline water heater, massage intensity dial control, and strategically positioned Hydro jets for targeted massaging with an on-off push control.

      The air massage system includes an air pump, 3 speed variable push control, and strategically positioned air jet system for the best and therapeutic relief. Digital controller is available with dual air and hydro massage package.

      Ella Ultimate Walk-in Tub - Acrylic Walk-In Tub (29.75″W x 59.75″L) with Hydro & Air Jets & Foot Massage

      Ella Ultimate Walk-in Tub - Acrylic Walk-In Tub (29.75″W x 59.75″L) with Hydro & Air Jets & Foot Massage - Ella's Bubbles - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

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      Ella's Bubbles Ultimate Walk-in Tub has a number of deluxe features that make it ideal for those who have health issues. The ultimate also includes a reversible end panel for right or left corner installation options, and an extension panel kit for 60 inch alcove installations. This walk-in tub has two removable access panels with an additional toe kick access panel for maintenance and access when needed.

      Ella's Bubbles walk-in tubs come with a limited lifetime warranty for the shell, door, and frame. This tub also features dual train technology (DDT) which is made up of two independently operated 2-inch gravity-driven drains. Each of these drains is outfitted with its own overflow and a stainless steel construction cable-operated drain opener that features an extended handle for an easier grip.

      Also included is an optional HydroMassage system, air massage system, and foot massage system. You can engage the lower jets independently which means you just have to fill the lower portion of the tub to enjoy quick foot massage, unlike other tubs where you would need to fill the tub all the way to the overflows to use the hydro jet the system.

      This tub allows you to control the jets on either lower or upper or both sets of jets, and the push controls are easy-to-use, which makes operating this walk-in tub a dream. Features of this tub include:

      • reversible end panel
      • extension panel kit
      • two removable access panels
      • limited lifetime warranty for shell, door, and frame
      • independently operated foot massage system
      • dual drain technology (DDT) with two independently operated 2 in gravity-driven drains
      • stainless steel cable operation for drain opener
      • drainage time is approximately 80 Seconds
      • optional HydroMassage system
      • optional air massage system
      • a digital controller is available with both the hydro massage and the air massage system

        Ella's Bubbles The Companion Two-Seat Inward Swing Door Acrylic Walk-In Bathtub

        Ella's Bubbles The Companion Two-Seat Inward Swing Door Acrylic Walk-In Bathtub - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

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        The Companion by Ella's Bubbles is the first-ever bathtub designed for two people. This best walk-in tub comes standard with a wonderful independent foot massage. You don't need to fill the entire tub because the tub fills in just 2 minutes if you just want to massage your feet. The Companion sports a beautifully designed brushed stainless steel are frosted tempered glass door that is inward swinging.

        It also features a white glossy acrylic shell which is easy to clean and scratch-resistant for a modern and sleek look. The Ella acrylic walk-in tubs are vacuum formed using solid long-lasting acrylic sheets which are molded into a tub shape. This non porous material features a white gloss finish and is impermeable to mold and mildew.

        Beneath the acrylic shell is a rust proof stainless steel frame that you will find reinforced with multiple fiberglass mesh and gelcoat layers for a durable tub structure. The frame for the table has multiple leveling with legs that can be easily adjusted to offer strong support.  This tub comes with two seats, one that is 23 in wide and one that is 24.5 in wide, and includes two therapeutic jetting pack package options.

        Jetting and therapy options for the companion walk-in bathtub includes; air jet massage, hydrotherapy massage, infusion microbubble therapy massage, and independent foot massage.

        The hydro massage system includes a hydro pump with hydro massage intensity dial control, eco-friendly ozone sterilization system, and an inline water heater to keep you warm for the entire time in the tub. The independent Hydro foot massage system runs independently of other systems.

        The air massage system features an air pump with 3 speed variable push control and offers strategically positioned air jets for the ultimate in therapeutic relief. It also contains an auto purge system that will remove any buildup from the air system. A digital controller is available if you get both the hydro massage and air massage systems.

        Ella's Bubble Transfer 30 – Outward Swing Door Wheelchair Accessible Acrylic Walk-In Bathtub with 2″ Dual Drain (29″W x 52″L)

        Ella's Bubble Transfer 30 – Outward Swing Door Wheelchair Accessible Acrylic Walk-In Bathtub with 2″ Dual Drain (29″W x 52″L) - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

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        Ella's Bubbles Transfer 30 acrylic walk-in tub is formed in a vacuum from a solid long-lasting sheet of acrylic. This non porous material has a high white gloss finish which is impermeable to mold and mildew, hard to scratch, and is easy to clean. Just underneath the acrylic shell lies a rust-proof stainless steel frame that is carefully reinforced with multiple fiberglass and gelcoat layers that ensure long-lasting life and durability.

        The frame of the tub has multiple leveling legs that can be easily installed for stronger support. This model of walk-in tub features an aluminum L shape outward swinging door which is good for small spaces. It was designed for wheelchair users and those with mobility issues specifically, yet it is popular amongst everyday users due to easy effortless access in and out of the tub.

        The door has a distinctive shape and is engineered to be an outward swing, permitting the door to clear 21 in tall toilets with easy access from a wheelchair. The rubber handle is sleek and mounted on the inside panel of the door. The L-shaped outswing door is designed with a unique gear and shaft driven 2 latch door lock system that is concealed with an acrylic decorative cover.

        This model of tub features infusion microbubble therapy, and you can combine up to two jetting systems when you order this model. The hydro massage system includes a hydro massage intensity dial control, inline water heater for long bathing, and an eco-friendly ozone sterilization system.

        It also features a strategically positioned hydro jet system for effective and targeted massaging for the ultimate in relief. The infusion microbubble therapy system includes a hydro pump with microbubble tank that breaks down the water molecules into countless tiny bubbles which are sent through a single jet.

        Also available is the Ella 2 piece fast-fill faucet and Ella 5-piece fast-fill faucet options.

        Ella's Bubble Laydown - Acrylic Walk In Bathtub (30″W x 60″L)

        Ella's Bubble Laydown - Acrylic Walk In Bathtub (30″W x 60″L)

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        The main feature of Ella's Bubbles lay down 30 x 60 walk in tub is an inward swinging door with unique tempered glass and a brushed finish aluminum frame. Also, unlike traditional tubs Ella's laydown model comes with Hydrotherapy massage, air jet massage, and infusion microbubble therapy massage system options.

        The tub door was designed to be in the center of the tub wall and establishes a vertical tub wall that creates a wide interior floor space opposed to that of standard tubs. Tub has a low step-in threshold and anti-slip textured floors which reduces the chances of accidents such as tripping or slipping when standing in the shower or entering or exiting the tub.

        You can choose a 2 piece faucet, 5 piece faucet, or have no faucet at all. These acrylic walk-in tubs are formed in a vacuum from a long-lasting solid acrylic sheet. The material is non-porous and has a high white gloss finish and they are easy to clean and impermeable to mildew and mold. Just under the acrylic shell facade lies a rust-proof stainless steel frame that is carefully reinforced with multiple fiberglass mesh which creates a durable long-lasting, structure.

        This frame also features multiple leveling legs which can easily be adjusted for stronger support. It also comes with a single 2-inch drain with emergency pull up chain and has two 2 inch outlets with an overflow cap. This model of walk-in tub is also furnished with a limited lifetime warranty including free replacement parts for the lifetime of the original customer while living at the same address of installation. The warranty is non transferable to other addresses or customers.

        Ella's Bubbles Front Entry – Acrylic Outward Swing Door Walk In Tub (32″W x 40″L)

        Ella's Bubbles Front Entry – Acrylic Outward Swing Door Walk In Tub (32″W x 40″L) - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

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        The Ella's Front Entry walk-in tub is a slim sized model that has an outward swinging door. The tub is specifically designed to fit in bathrooms with limited space. Although it has a small size, it has an extra wide 24 in seat that will fit an average sized bather comfortably. The swinging door has a low 5 in step in threshold and features anti-slip textured floor for quick and safe entry or exit when getting in and out of the tub.

        Also included is a three latch door lock system which virtually guarantees a waterproof tight seal and includes a door handle that is easy to open. This table also features a 2-inch floor drain with an easy grip extended handle and a pull up emergency chain which is carefully connected to the floor drain.

        This model also includes two side panels so it can be installed in a corner or left free standing. You can order this tub as either a soaking or massage model with the massage model offering Hydro or dual therapy massage options. You can order it with either a left or a right hinge door and has an also features a centered drain. Features that come standard in this model include:

        • high-quality acrylic shell
        • can be installed in a freestanding manner
        • high gloss white finish
        • low 5 in step threshold for easy access in and out of the tub
        • wide 24 in stainless steel frame with adjustable leveling legs
        • anti-slip textured floor for safety
        • drain opener with extension handle
        • 2 inch drain with an emergency pull up chain control
        • 3 speed variable push control
        • limited lifetime warranty

          MediTub 3660 Walk-In-Tub 36 x 60 White Bathtub, Whirpool & Air Jets Add-Ons

          MediTub 3660 Walk-In-Tub 36 x 60 White Bathtub, Whirpool & Air Jets Add-Ons - MediTub - Ambient Home

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          The Meditub 3660 is the largest bariatric walk-in tub available. Tub is constructed with quality industrial-grade fiberglass and finished with a triple gel coat. This model is ideal when replacing existing shower stalls and will also fit well in small bathrooms. It features a built-in grab bar 17 and a contoured ADA-compliant seat.

          The tub also features a full-sized curved door which permits easy access without struggling to sit or stand. It is constructed with a stainless steel frame for a long lasting durability and strength and it also includes adjustable easy installation and leveling. This walk-in tub provides an independent safe bathing experience and utilizes the latest in tub crafting techniques with only high-quality industrial-grade materials. This tub features an ADA-compliant design. Features of this model include:

          • 16 air bubble massage injectors powered by a 1 HP air blower
          • 6 directional adjustable water jets powered by a 1 HP pump
          • pneumatic button control
          • built-in tile flange
          • cable operated waste and overflow
          • removable front access panels for easy hassle-free maintenance
          • high grade marine fiberglass with a triple gel coating
          • solid stainless steel frame with 8 laser precision support points
          • ADA-compliant molded bathing seat
          • low threshold entry
          • built-in grab bar for added safety and stability
          • anti-slip textured flooring for comfort and safety
          • 6.5 inch threshold with 17.5 in seat height design
          • alcove style installation
          • safe for bathing salts and aromatic oils for aromatherapy
          • advanced GE water seal
          • backed by a lifetime warranty lifetime warranty
          • capacity of 45 gallons of water
          • inward swinging door

            MediTub 2739 Walk-In-Tub 27 x 39 White Bathtub, Whirpool & Air Jets Add-Ons

            MediTub 2739 Walk-In-Tub 27 x 39 White Bathtub, Whirpool & Air Jets Add-Ons - MediTub - Ambient Home

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            The Meditub 2739 has a unique design with reinforced fiberglass and a right side door. This acrylic walk-in tub allows for installation in tiny areas such as a closet, mobile home, laundry room, or shower stall. Enclosed on three sides, the design allows for freestanding use. The tub is engineered with a stainless steel frame for long-lasting life and strength,

            The tub features adjustable feet for easy installation and simple leveling. The manufacturer of this tub utilizes the latest in tub crafting techniques and high-quality industrial-grade materials and tub is fully ADA compliant in its design. Some of the features in this walk-in tub include:

            • removable front access panels for easy hassle-free maintenance
            • operated waste and overflow
            • high grade marine fiberglass with gel coating
            • solid stainless steel frame with 8 laser Precision support points
            • 16 air bubble massage injectors powered by a 1 HP air blower
            • 6 directional adjustable water jets powered by a 1 HP pump
            • pneumatic button control
            • advance GE water seal back by a lifetime warranty
            • built-in grab bar for added safety and stability
            • anti-slip textured flooring for comfort and safety
            • swinging door back to wall to wall or alcove installation
            • 50 gallon water capacity
            • friction heater will maintain water temperature for extended use
            • lifetime warranty included

              MediTub 3060WC Wheel Chair Accessible 30 x 60 White Bathtub, Whirpool & Air Jets Add-Ons

              MediTub 3060WC Wheel Chair Accessible 30 x 60 White Bathtub, Whirpool & Air Jets Add-Ons - MediTub - Ambient Home

               

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              The Meditub 3060WCA walk-in tub is specifically designed for wheelchair accessibility. The tub also features a 21-inch contoured seat that allows you to be able to slide into it with ease. This palatial tub is very roomy and features an outward swinging door. It comes standard with showering features and allows the luxury of bathing with independence and security.

              This walk-in tub is constructed with high quality fiberglass and composite with a gel coat finish that is both durable and beautiful. It is manufactured with a stainless steel frame that for a long-lasting life and adjustable easy leveling and installation.

              This wheelchair accessible tub utilizes the latest in tub crafting techniques and industrial-grade materials. This walk-in tub has a fully ADA Compliant design and features. Some of the features of the MeditubWCA includes:

              • 16 air bubble massage injectors power powered by a 1 HP air blower
              • removable front access panels for easy hassle-free maintenance
              • 6 directional adjustable water jets powered by a 1 HP pump
              • pneumatic button control
              • friction heater that will maintain water temperature for extended periods of time
              • cable operated waste and overflow
              • constructed with high grade marine fiberglass with a triple gel coating
              • safe for bathing salts and aromatic oils for aromatherapy
              • solid stainless steel frame with 8 laser Precision support points
              • ADA-compliant molded seat
              • safety grab bar
              • low threshold entry
              • wide opening wheelchair-accessible door
              • built-in grab bar
              • advance GE water seal backed by lifetime warranty
              • swinging door
              • hover lift
              • accessible back to wall, 2 wall, or alcove installation capability
              • 15 inch threshold in 21 inch seat height
              • capacity of 45 gallons of water
              • limited lifetime warranty included

                Why Walk in Tubs are Ideal for Seniors

                For younger people, walk-in tubs are more of a luxury than a necessity, however, for seniors, health issues and disabilities make getting a walk-in tub a need due to health issues. There are many different features that walk-in tubs that make walk in tubs ideal for use with seniors and their particular needs.

                For those with health issues who are aging in place, the features of a walk-in tub benefit them in certain key ways. Just take a look at some of these ways walk-in tubs meet the needs of seniors.

                Mobility Issues

                For those with mobility issues or disabilities, getting a walk-in tub are ideals solutions for their level of care if people have a wheelchair, rocker, or find it difficult to walk or move around. Using walk-in tubs  will permit safe and comfortable bathing for those with disabilities or mobility issues.

                Ella's Bubble Transfer 60 – Outward Swing Door Wheelchair Accessible Acrylic Walk-In Bathtub with 2″ Dual Drain (30″W x 60″L x 42″H) - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

                Most manufacturers of walk-in tubs offer models that are compliant with the design standards of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) which promotes accessibility and mobility. Since most seniors have difficulty with mobility, walk-in tubs offer a wide number of features that make bathing safe while also offering therapeutic relief.

                Aging in Place

                For many seniors they find themselves wishing to age in place, walk-in bathtubs are a safe option and features such as hydrotherapy and air jets and massage provide benefits from a therapeutic standpoint. 

                Hydrotherapy and air jets will treat a variety of conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, insomnia, joint pain, ligament pain, headaches, and will even alleviate symptoms of the common cold or flu, offering therapeutic relief. Walk-in tubs are documented to provide optimal therapeutic benefits to those who use them, especially seniors and those who have health issues.

                For those aging in place who need therapeutic benefits as well as safety considerations, walk-in tubs are one of the best solutions available in the marketplace and ultimately are cost effective. The relief seniors can experience is priceless, and well worth the expense of installing a walk-in tub.

                Adding Value to the Home

                One consideration for seniors is the worth of their home when they go to sell it, and having a walk-in tub adds considerable value to the home as well as being a great selling point. If you live in a neighborhood or community that is popular with seniors, having a walk-in tub installed in your home will add an element of prestige that many seniors find desirable.

                Ella's Bubbles Petite - Acrylic Inward Swinging Door Walk-In Tub (27.5″W x 52.25″L) - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

                Sizes and Types of Tubs

                There are several different types and sizes of tubs available, such as the soaker tub, the bariatric tub, and the lay-down tub. Some models also come with shower capability options, and yet others are also built for two people and include two seats. Let's take a look at some of the different types and sizes of tubs you will typically find:

                Bariatric

                One of the downsides of many walk-in tub designs is that they are relatively narrow, which doesn't make them suitable for larger users. Bariatric tubs for suitable for those who are 300 lbs or more and they have a wider frame seat and door entrance to serve them.

                Lay Down

                Lay down walk-in tubs are similar to traditional bathtubs and feature a long design that you can lay down in rather than sit in. The main difference between traditional tubs and lay down walk-in tubs is the door that permits you to easily walk in and out of the tub. 

                Soaker Tubs

                Soaker tubs have high walls and are filled with a greater amount of water than a traditional tub which allow you to be fully submerged and immersed. Usually, soaker tubs also come with a seat or seats that allow bathers to sit while they are fully submerged in the water.

                Shower Tub Combination Walk-in Tubs

                Ella's Bubbles Shower Column Kit for Walk-In Tub Deck Mount Faucets - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

                You don't have to sacrifice a shower if you get a walk-in tub, as many models include shower capability built into the design. If you get a walk-in tub with shower capability, there will usually be a handheld shower head that is used for this purpose.

                Two-person Tubs

                Most walk-in tubs have one seat and fit one person at a time, but some of them are built for two people and contain two seats. These tubs usually have all the features of deluxe model tubs, and I designed them with seats that face each other or sit right next to each other.

                Features Found in Walk in Tubs

                There are advanced features that you can find in many walk in tubs such as hydrotherapy, air jet therapy and massage, but most walk-in tubs come with a standard set of safety and other features that define the walk-in tub experience. There are over 250,000 emergency room visits as a result of accidents inside the bathroom in America every year. Safety is a priority for anyone, especially for those who are seniors or who have mobility issues.

                Some of the tub features that you will find on most models include grab bars or handrails, low step threshold, non-slip textured surfaces, quick drainage, self-cleaning functionality, and inline water heating. There are two types of doors, both inwardly and outwardly swinging types and they have advantages for different types of users, so you should know what they are. 

                Anti-Slip Textured Floors

                Ella's Bubble ShaK Outward Swing Door Acrylic Walk-In Bathtub 36″W x 72″L (91cm x 183cm) OA3672 - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

                Non-slip surfaces provide safety for bathers. Most walk-in tubs offer non-slip surfaces but they are not all created equal modern. Tubs with ideal features have a textured anti-slip surface. You may also want to add a bath mat and traction stickers within the interior of the tub that will also decrease the risk of falls. Including a non-slip rug or mat on the exterior of the tub is also a great idea.

                Handrails and Grab Bars

                Ideal for many seniors and those with mobility issues, handrails and grab bars allow you to safely maneuver your body in the walk-in tub when getting in or out of or moving around. Modern walk-in tubs offer optimal grab bar placement and these handrails and grab bars are designed and engineered specifically for those with mobility issues. You may also want to install them outside of the tub for use while using it.

                Ella's Bubble Transfer 60 – Outward Swing Door Wheelchair Accessible Acrylic Walk-In Bathtub with 2″ Dual Drain (30″W x 60″L x 42″H) - Ella's Bubbles - Ambient Home

                Low Step Threshold 

                The walk-in tub entry thresholds are the amount of height from floor to tub one has when entering the tub.  Many tubs offer between 3 to 7 in thresholds for safe and easy entrance into and exit from the tub. This height of threshold is suitable for seniors and those with mobility issues to safely use the tubs without the risk of falling.

                Inward Vs Outward Swinging Doors

                Walk-in tub doors either open inwardly or outwardly. Outward opening doors are usually easier to move through especially for people with wheelchairs. However you may need an inward opening door if your bathroom is particularly small. Outward opening doors may be difficult for those bathers who have limited range of motion in their arms. If you have an inward opening door, it may pose difficulty for those who have issues with legs and feet to get out of the way when closing it.

                Inline Water Heating

                Inline water heating poses a number of advantages especially if your current water heater is not large enough to handle the volume of water needed for the tub. Certain models of walk-in tubs, especially those with hydrotherapy options, use large quantities of water. Inline water heaters provide all the hot water necessary for use in your tub and will keep the water warm when it is filled and you are using it for long periods of time.

                Materials Used for Tubs and Hardware

                There are several key materials that are used when constructing a walk-in tub and they will affect the cost and its long-term upkeep. Most walk-in tubs are constructed of either acrylic, fiberglass, or enameled steel.

                Acrylic

                Many modern tubs are constructed with acrylic. Acrylic tubs are fabricated by heating acrylic sheets in vacuums and then shaping them into the mold of a tub. Key advantages of this acrylic material are that it is non-porous and they have long-term color retention. These benefits make acrylic the preferred material for walk-in tubs.

                Acrylic tubs tend to have a very long life span with durable, reliable use, although they do cost more money than other materials typically.

                Fiberglass

                Many tubs are constructed with fiberglass materials which are made with interwoven glass strings that are heated and carefully shaped, and then covered with a gel coat or other treatment. The best advantage of fiberglass tubs is that they are less expensive and one of the cheapest tub materials that are currently available in the marketplace.

                The downside to fiberglass tubs as they tend to have a shorter life span and may be prone to damage. They are also more porous which means they are more likely to grow mold and mildew from absorbing water and are more difficult to clean.

                Enameled Steel

                Most traditional bathtubs are fabricated with enameled steel although this is not typically used in walk in tubs. Some drawbacks of enameled steel tubs are they more prone to damage and they are much heavier than modern walk-in tubs. Water interaction with a steel tub will potentially create discoloring and rust conditions. One advantage is that the enameled surface is easy to clean, especially in comparison to fiberglass.

                Steps to Take to Get a Walk-in Tub

                In order to get a walk-in tub that is going to satisfy your needs, be an appropriate model for your comfort, and fit within your budget, you will need to take certain steps. Let's take a quick look at what you will need to do to get a walk in tub of your own:

                Evaluate Different Tubs

                You will need to take the time to understand your needs for a walk-in tub. It would help to write down a list of reasons you are buying a walk-in tub and the features you are looking for. Once you have a list to work with, take another look at the different tubs available and  check off the items on your list and compare the different tubs.

                Talk about the different models with other people, and think about the advantages and disadvantages of each model. Once you have a short list of one or two tubs to choose from, you can then begin other preparations.

                Questions to Ask

                You will want to ask yourself, first of all, what model of tub is best going to fit your needs, which tub has the best features for the money, and what tubs you are going to actually be able to afford. You may want to talk to a contractor and see what the installation costs are going to be, as these can be a expensive and greatly increase the cost of the tub. 

                Ask yourself which features are going to benefit you the most, and which ones you can live without. Understanding the nature of what the features are going to offer and what they will do for you will get you closer to your goal of selecting a tub. 

                Selecting Features

                Features are a big deal and you will want the ones that are going to best suit your needs as well as your desires.  There are standard features in every walk-in tub such as a door, but you have to look at the space that you are working with and decide if it will you better to have an inward or outward swinging door. 

                You need to weigh all of the different factors that affect your daily usage of the tub and use that to help you make your decisions. Factors such as hydrotherapy and air jet options, massage options,  the number of handrails and grab bars, shower capability, and all of the available particular features that are optional on any specific model are all going to influence your decision. 

                In the end, you are going to want to pick the tub that is going to best satisfy you, and have all of the features that you want that you are going to have to live with. Getting a walk-in tub isn't something that you should do without sufficient preparation. 

                Getting a walk-in tub is a major decision that will affect your life and the value of your home.  It can be a considerable investment as well, and you will want to definitely work within your budget and not overextend yourself.

                Contacting your Contractor

                When you have finally decided on which model of tub that you are going to choose, you will want to contact a contractor in your area to get pricing on an installation. A good contractor will offer a free estimate and guarantee their work. You will want to find a reputable contractor as there are many unscrupulous characters in the industry. 

                Checking reviews on website, talking to former customers if available, reading testimonials, and checking the general overall rating online are great ideas. If possible, you will want to check the contractor out on the Better Business Bureau website. 

                Get an estimate in writing before you begin any installation process or even order your tub.

                Ordering your Tub

                When you have your estimate for installation from the contractor in writing, and you have selected the tub you want to order, take a little time to make a final decision. Then weigh all of your options before you order your tub. If you are unsatisfied with a contractor's estimate or are unsure about it before you purchase hold off on your decision until you can rectify the situation.

                Before you sign anything with a contractor, it's a good idea to get several estimates to get the best price. And before you order your tub, make the necessary financial arrangements in order to be able to do so.

                If everything is in order and you are sure about your decision, go ahead and order your tub, Consult your contractor first about the timing in relation to when you get your tub and when they are going to install it and make sure they are coordinated.

                Installing your Walk in Tub

                You will want to schedule your installation well ahead of time with your contractor. You may be excited to get a walk-in tub and you want to get it as soon as possible, but you don't want to do a rush job overall. You want to have things happen on a schedule, and you want to plan every facet of the installation.

                Don't leave things up to the last minute, and if snags happened in the schedule, make sure you have enough time to accommodate things that can come up while installing your tub. If possible, you want to be home or in the area during the installation of your tub to make sure everything is going as planned. 

                If you have to be out of town during the installation of your tub, keep in contact with the contractor to make sure that everything is going as planned. A good contractor will keep you in the loop during every phase of the tub installation.

                Once you've taken all these steps and you are ready to begin your ordering and installation process, consult with your partner or family, make your final decisions, and order your tub and schedule the installation at a time that is convenient for you.

                If you are properly prepared and have taken sufficient steps, you will be able to start enjoying your new walk-in tub and enjoy its benefits in comfort and safety.

                To learn more about walk-in tubs, check out our walk in tubs resource page!