How To Tell What Your Bathtub Is Made Of

Do you know how to tell what your bathtub is made of? If you don’t, I will point out the important features that can help someone to know the type of material that’s in their …

How To Tell What Your Bathtub Is Made Of

Do you know how to tell what your bathtub is made of? If you don’t, I will point out the important features that can help someone to know the type of material that’s in their bathtub!

Certain fixtures in your house, such as the bathtub, are generally going to be installed for the long run. If you know how to maintain them properly, they are going to last you for a long time to come.

homemakeover banner footer

You might have already discovered this when moving to a new house. You may have seen a hot tub that’s been there for a while, and you are thinking of replacing it, but are not sure what the hot tub is made out of.

Learning how to tell what your bathtub is made of is very important, as it will give you a better idea about what kind of replacement you should opt for.

There are several reasons why this is important. Determining what your tub is made of can give you a better idea of how much load the floor is capable of holding.

For instance, there are certain cast iron tubs that can weigh several hundreds of pounds. It will also give you a better idea about how to renovate your bathroom properly.

For instance, if you have a fiberglass tub, you should know that they usually last around 10 years. Therefore, if the tub was installed five to seven years ago, it’s already past its half-life, and you may want to think about replacing it in the future.

Most fiberglass bathtubs are going to last you between 10 and 15 years. On the other hand, cast iron tubs, or stainless steel tubs can easily last for years to come.

There’s a difference in pricing as well, with cast iron hot tubs costing much more. There are plenty of companies that offer tub refinishing services, so you can get in touch with them to figure out the best option.

How to Tell What Your Bathtub Is Made of

There are several ways to tell what your bathtub is made of. First of all, it’s pretty easy to tell the difference about whether the bathtub is metallic or acrylic.

Once you have a clearer idea about whether you have a metallic tub or an acrylic one, the next step is to figure out the characteristics between the two.

How Do I Tell the Difference Between Fiberglass and Acrylic Tubs?

There are a couple of simple tests that you can run to determine whether you have an acrylic tub or a fiberglass one. Fiberglass bathtubs are generally famous for their color fading from the bottom with the passage of time.

So, the first thing you need to do is to look at the bottom of the bathtub. Do you see any kind of discoloration? If you notice the discoloration as compared to the walls, it’s a clear sign that your bathtub is made of fiberglass.

On the other hand, acrylic bathtubs usually start spacing out after a while. Try to push the tub from the side and see if there’s any kind of give. If you notice the bathtub shifting a bit, it’s probably made of acrylic.

The surfaces of both acrylic and fiberglass generally look similar, but you should know that fiberglass is a bit thicker than acrylic. It might be a wise idea to look around the edges and see if the bathtub appears thinner from the side.

This is a clear indication that the bathtub is made from acrylic. Acrylic tubs are also available in a multitude of different colors.

They are usually available in a series of different shades that you can choose to mix and match with the colors in your bathroom. On the other hand, acrylic also feels much warmer to touch compared to fiberglass.

You will notice a slight difference in the texture as well, with an acrylic bathtub feeling much smoother to touch compared to a fiberglass one. Fiberglass tubs, on the other hand, are usually available in the conventional white ones.

If you are going to install the bathtub and can weigh it, you should know that the weight of an acrylic tub is much greater than that of fiberglass.

When kept in a freestanding position, the acrylic is going to weigh around 100 pounds. Fiberglass tubs are almost 30 pounds lighter on average, and they are also much more flexible.

You can easily pull the edges around and the tub will start moving. The modern tubs nowadays are generally designed in a variety of different shapes.

They are available in several price ranges and styles, so you can easily find one that best fits your needs. There are claw-footed bathtubs, as well as freestanding tubs that you can buy depending on your requirements.

Benefits and Drawbacks

Fiberglass tubs have a protective coating on them. This is designed to prevent any kind of leakage from the tub. As the protective coating starts to wear off, the porous fiberglass is going to be exposed.

With time, the tub will start warping. Acrylic tubs simply do not sustain damage as easily as fiberglass, mainly because they are able to withstand much more weight.

In case you drop something heavy in a fiberglass tub, it’s likely to break as well. This isn’t a problem with acrylic tubs; they can withstand much more weight.

Ideally, because they do not need any kind of reinforcement, both of these tubs are a great choice for installations on second stories.

They are not as heavy as metallic tubs, so you don’t have to worry about reinforcing the floors before installation. More importantly, the prices are quite competitive as well.

On average, you will have to pay between $300 and $500 for a fiberglass bathtub. Obviously, the prices can increase depending on the make and finish of the tub.

On the other hand, the costs of an acrylic bathtub are slightly higher, starting from $500 and going all the way to $1,200.

There is one important thing that you need to know: repair costs. Fiberglass bathtubs are generally less expensive to repair than their acrylic counterparts.

Cleaning and Maintenance

If you compare maintenance and regular cleaning, there’s little doubt that acrylic tubs are the better choice. They are much more resistant to scratches and chipping when compared with fiberglass, which is a slightly flimsier material than acrylic.

More importantly, you can easily clean the tub using a mixture of soapy water and some vinegar.

Many people also prefer using conventional abrasive cleaning materials, though it’s important that you check whether the material is suitable for tub cleaning or not.

A common mistake that many people make is that they tend to use steel wool to remove scratches. You will only end up putting more scratches on the tub as a result, so avoid doing that.

Instead, it’s recommended that you consider using a brush with soft bristles. That’s all you need to keep the bathtub clean. Just make sure that you regularly clean the bathtub to prevent any kind of permanent stains.

If you want to use homemade cleaners, a mixture of baking soda and vinegar, along with a sponge and some soapy water is all you are going to need to keep the tub in prime condition for years to come.

Leave a Comment