Replacing your bathtub is a great way to give your Chicago home’s bathroom a new look and increase the value of your home. You can also make bathing feel more comfortable and luxurious. There are many bathtub options available, and you’ll need to consider a variety of factors to choose the best tub for your bathroom. Here’s some more information about bathtub sizes and the most popular bathtub styles.

Choosing a Bathtub Size 

Before you decide what type of tub you want, you should make sure that it will fit in your bathroom. Measure the space where you want to put the tub as well as the dimensions of your bathroom door.

You should also consider the capacity of the tub you want and compare it to the capacity of your water heater. For example, a 100-gallon tub usually needs a water heater that can hold at least 75 gallons. That way, you can fill the bathtub without running out of hot water. With a tankless water heater, you won’t need to worry about this because you can produce a constant stream of hot water.

Think about how you want to sit or lie in your new tub. Some people prefer a shorter, more shallow tub, while others would rather have a bathtub they can stretch out in and use to submerge themselves completely. Shorter tubs are better for tub and shower combinations since many people won’t want to climb into a deep bathtub every day.

If you have enough space, you can choose a soaking tub. Soaking tubs are usually deeper and wider than most other styles, and some units can be as long as 6.5 feet. Soaking tubs are available in many styles, and some can even accommodate two people. That way, you can enjoy romantic baths with your spouse.

Freestanding Bathtubs

Newly Installed Bathtub
Image via Flickr under CC BY 2.0 by Sharon Hahn Darlin

Freestanding bathtubs are easy to install because they don’t have to be connected to any walls. They can fit in many spaces and provide a variety of distinctive looks. Clawfoot or traditional tubs have four legs that support them. In the Victorian era, it was popular to make these legs look like the paws of an animal, complete with claws. These tubs are still very popular, and the legs and clawfoot styles vary.

Modern or regular freestanding tubs are similar to clawfoot models, but they don’t have legs. They sit on the floor for a sleeker, more uniform look. Clawfoot and modern tubs are both available in oval or angled shapes.

An oval tub looks the same at both ends, and it’s ideal for people who don’t have much space. It also looks great next to the sharp angles and corners in other parts of most bathrooms. Angled tubs are higher on one side than another, and one side is often sloped. That way, it’s easy for people to lean back and relax while taking a bath. They’re available in a wide range of sizes.

Alcove or Three-Wall Tubs 

These types of tubs are very popular. The bathtub is inside an alcove with three walls, and it can work as a shower as well. If your bathroom is too big to place a tub so that three walls border it, you can have an additional wall built to enclose three sides of the tub. Many people have a cabinet installed next to this wall for additional storage. Since only one side of the tub is visible, it’s the only one that’s finished and is called the apron.

Alcove tubs are always rectangular, and you should check the position of the drain before you choose one. If the drain is on the wrong end of the tub, you won’t be able to turn the tub around because only the apron is finished. You can decorate the apron with wood, tile, stone, and other materials. Alcove tubs are excellent for maximizing a small amount of space, and they’re usually easy to clean. However, an alcove tub could be difficult to fit through your bathroom door. Most of these tubs are added during the initial construction to avoid that problem.

Drop-in Tubs

A drop-in tub fits inside an enclosure called the deck. None of the sides are finished because the deck covers them. The deck is usually attached to one or two walls, and it matches the counters or cabinets in the bathroom. Some drop-in tubs are also alcove tubs with the deck connected to three walls. A drop-in tub can give your bathroom a more permanent, finished look, and the sides of the deck are ideal for holding soap, shampoo, candles, and other items.

Corner Tubs

A corner tub is shaped like a triangle, and it fits into a corner of the bathroom. One wall is finished, and the other two are unfinished. These bathtubs are large, and they often hold two or more people. Many corner tubs use massaging jets of water or air. You can also choose heaters that warm the water as it circulates through the jets, multiple speed settings, and underwater footrests with jets for foot massages.

Other options include underwater LED mood lighting, speakers that can connect to your smartphone or computer, and convenient digital controls. You can even place glass walls around a corner tub to create a spacious combination bathtub and shower.

Walk-in Tubs

A walk-in bathtub is ideal for people with mobility issues who may have trouble climbing in and out of another type of tub. Walk-in tubs are usually rectangular, and they have a door on one side that’s watertight when closed. You can open it and walk straight into your tub. Many of these tubs also work as showers, and they often have grab bars to make moving around even easier.

Allied Plumbing & Heating Supply is a family-owned business with more than 30 years of experience, and we can help you choose the best bathtub for your home. Contact us to learn more about your bathtub options. Our knowledgeable team members will be happy to answer all of your questions.