Nothing is more pleasant than sinking into a hot bath, turning on the jets, and simply relaxing. People facing mobility challenges should not have to forgo that pleasure. Getting into a bathtub or standing in a shower can be difficult for those with mobility issues. In the 1940s, some brilliant minds came up with the walk-in tub. The concept has become more sophisticated over the years, and added options are now available in modern walk-in tubs.
Since walk-in tubs are considered clinical, consumers do not realize how luxurious and beautiful they can be. Bath Makeover aims to give our clients a functional, safe bathtub that also impresses aesthetically.
What are Walk-In Tubs?
Walk-in bathtubs are taller than standard tubs. You can think of them as a box with a door. The door allows users to step over a very low threshold to enter the tub. This design will enable people with mobility challenges to get into the bath more manageably.
These steel structures are usually covered with an acrylic outer shell. Standardly, there is a bench on one end and a spout on the other. Typically, there is a showerhead made for handheld use built-in too.
Other options featured in walk-in tubs are as follows:
- Anti-slip surfaces
- Reliable grab bars
- Comfortable contoured seating
- Turbo flushing system for water
- Relaxing hydrotherapy jets
Not only are walk-in tubs practical, but they can also be spa-like and luxurious. Mobility issues do not mean that a person experiencing them should not be able to enjoy a little extravagance around bath time.
How Walk-In Tubs Work
In regular bathtubs, you typically run a bath and then get in. Walk-in tubs are operated the opposite way. You open the door on the side of the tub and enter. Close the door and then fill the tub with water.
The pressure from the water seals the gasket around the door and keeps it shut and all the water inside the bath. This is a function borrowed from a submarine’s hatch.
Walk-In Tub Sizes
The average-sized bathtub in a standard bathroom is 60 inches by 30 inches. A typical walk-in tub can range from 40 to 60 inches long with a width of 32 to 26 inches. Usually, these tubs will feature a single bench.
When installing a walk-in tub in a space formerly occupied by a standard-sized bathtub, you may prefer adding a deck extension kit to fill the space left between the end of the new tub and the wall. At Bath Makeover, an enormous part of our job is ensuring that your walk-in tub is as stylish and beautiful as safe, convenient, and luxurious.
When installing walk-in tubs in an existing home, there are often challenges due to the size of the unit. When our contractor meets with you to assess your needs, we can discuss how to access your bathroom best. It may require that we remove doors, door frames, and even walls.
Walk-In Tub Installation
The first step in beginning a walk-in tub installation in a bathroom remodel, the current bathtub must be removed. In addition to removing the bathtub, the plumbing fixtures that are presently in place must also be removed.
As discussed above, any doors, frames, or walls that need to be removed will be taken down. This clears the way for removing the old tub and bringing in the new one. Other changes may be required, like moving the toilet or vanity.
The space is then prepared for the new walk-in bathtub. Plumbing will be moved, and electrical service will be run to the new bathtub. Next, the walk-in tub is placed in the opening for plumbing and electrical connections to be made. Installing a walk-in tub can be challenging, and the job demands a licensed plumber and electrician.
Is It a DIY Project?
It really is not. The unit is not inexpensive, so you will not want to try to get it in yourself and risk damaging it. Having professionals to do the plumbing and electrical work is a surefire way to circumvent what could possibly be a “shockingly” dangerous situation.
Concerns to Take Into Consideration When Installing a Walk-In Tub
Installing a walk-in tub is an expensive purchase. It is always wise to weigh the pros and cons before entering into large, costly remodeling projects. Here are a few to consider when creating your own pros and cons list:
Pros of Installing a Walk-In Tub
It is important to make sure that your needs and priorities are well thought out before beginning a big remodeling project if you are asking yourself if you should install a new walk-in tub. Some of the pros are listed below:
- A safe setting to enjoy a bath is why a walk-in tub is installed. Walk-in tubs eliminate many of the risks associated with slip and fall accidents in the bathroom, especially for those facing mobility challenges.
- Hydrotherapy jets can provide a therapeutic environment as well as a relaxing one. These can aid in alleviating discomfort, soreness, and pain in the back, neck, lumbar, and feet through the use of warm water and air.
- More freedom to age at home is one of the key reasons that walk-in tubs are beneficial. Mobility challenges are one of the biggest reasons that people have to give up their beloved homes. Installing a walk-in tub overcomes one of the most difficult barriers to staying home, being able to bathe safely.
Cons to Consider
While the pros far outweigh the cons regarding the usefulness of a walk-in tub, you must consider a few things. These are listed here:
- They take up a lot of space. Our contractors can come to your home and evaluate the area where you are considering installing one to ensure you have the necessary space.
- Demolition is required to put a walk-in tub in an existing bathroom. Bath Makeover is happy to consult with you about how much demolition your particular tub will actually require.
- They can be expensive.
Bath Makeover is Ready to Makeover Your Bath
If you are in the Boston area and are considering installing a walk-in tub, Bath Makeover by Capital is ready to help you get started. Reach out today, and we can answer any questions you may have. Our goal is to create the safest, most therapeutic, functional, and luxurious bathrooms that are also beautiful.