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5 Popular Bathtub Materials


Different bath materials affect the appearance, feel, heat retention, weight and price of this plumbing fixture. As tubs are difficult to replace, it's really important to be sure of what you're getting so you can be satisfied with your choice. Here is an overview of different bath materials. Read on so you know what to pick when purchasing a new tub.


Stainless steel tub (porcelain enameled steel)


Stainless steel tub is a very popular and affordable option. These tubs are made of stainless steel that's coated with enamel porcelain. They are heavier than fiberglass or acrylic tubs but not considerably so. The baths are very affordable, fairly lightweight, easy to clean and durable.


Acrylic tubs


Stainless steel bathtubs are getting more and popular, possibly due to their durability, versatility, variety of options, and affordability. Acrylic tubs are made from acrylic that is reinforced with fiberglass. They are fairly easy to install and lightweight. They are also durable, affordable, and available in many sizes, shapes, and colors.


Enameled cast iron


Enameled cast iron is a very heavy and durable bath material. This type of bath is made from molded iron with an enamel coat. It's a very durable and higher-end option. The only real downside is the weight. It can be quite hard to install this bath as it's very heavy and may need structural reinforcement on the floor.


Fiberglass bathtub


This is another very inexpensive bathtub material. It's made of polyester resin, surface coat layers, with fiberglass coating. Fiberglass bathtubs are cheaper than acrylic tubs but less durable as well. They are also lightweight, easy to install, easy to maintain and clean, and a great choice for a tub/shower combination. For more info about bathtubs, visit https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bathing.


Cast polymer tubs (cultured granite, marble or onyx)


These bath materials are a kind of solid surface or engineered natural stone material. They are manufactured by molding together polymeric materials, resins, and minerals to create a solid surface, typically finished with a gel coating finish. Cast polymer tubs are affordable and come in many options and colors. They are also stain-resistant and easy to clean.


Cast polymer is a little more expensive than acrylic but its surface does not hold up as well. Over time, the gel coat finish on this tub can get fragile and expose the underlying material, resulting in cracks.


Bathtubs are made of a variety of materials and each has its own pros and cons. Whichever type of material you choose, make sure it suits your needs as well as style.