While you might think that a standard bathtub is the most common type of bathtub, the truth is that there are many types available. Alcove bathtubs, for example, are designed to maximize space, while standard bathtubs are more suited to larger bathrooms. These styles can be purchased in a variety of colors, and the fittings may be made of various metals or styles. The final decision will depend on your bathroom's overall design and space.
The most significant difference between a standard and an alcove bathtub is the material. The former is usually made of fiberglass, while the latter is made of acrylic. While fiberglass is the cheapest material, it's porous and cannot handle heavy impacts. Those with a smaller bathroom may want to opt for a fiberglass tub. Fiberglass bathtubs are lightweight, so they can be easily installed.
Alcove bathtubs are taller than average tubs, with a door on the side that allows the bather to step in. The alcove tub was designed with this in mind: to make it easier for people with balance, mobility issues, or general infirmity to take a bath. Its design is shaped like an alcove, and it is anchored to two walls by a rim.
The size of an alcove bathtub is usually about five feet long. Alcove tubs can vary in size from four feet to six feet, with some being larger than others. Alcove bathtubs are usually designed to fit into a standard bathroom, while a smaller one may not fit. So, it's important to make sure that the size you choose will fit in your bathroom.
The differences between the two bathtubs are primarily cosmetic. The alcove tub is set into an alcove, where the bathtub is set into a large frame. Its rim is wider, but it requires a substantial amount of space. For this reason, these bathtubs are generally located in larger bathrooms. Moreover, these tubs are usually customizable. They can be either 60 inches long or 30 inches wide, and up to 16 inches deep.
The difference between an alcove tub and a freestanding tub is primarily the design. The former is designed to be walked around on all sides, whereas the latter is designed to be installed flush against the wall. An alcove bathtub can be either narrow or long, allowing you more freedom when it comes to layout and style. An alcove tub can be a great choice for smaller bathrooms, while a freestanding tub is not always possible.
Installation requires a bit more work than a freestanding tub. The main installation expense is the filler. Floor-mounted fillers require under-floor access. Lastly, the alcove bathtub requires floor reinforcement to keep the water inside. Generally speaking, alcove bathtubs are a more complicated installation and require several hours of work. So, if you are thinking about installing a freestanding tub, take this into consideration when making your decision.