Bathtub material guide. Everything you need to know

The material your bathtub uses is very important. Some have shortcomings that can't be overlooked, and others are built for durability. So, to help our readers find a top tub for their home, we've compiled a list below that will go into each in more detail, offering an insight into their advantages and disadvantages.

Acrylic - Often finished with a resin, the acrylic units are made with sheets of fiberglass that get molded into a shape that provides suitable back support, allowing your body to relax in a more natural position.

They are reasonably light and easy to carry, and can be quite flexible in how they're installed. However, some people feel that the material itself is too thin and doesn't feel sturdy enough. Another complaint we see is that they tend to pick up scratches easily which can effect the aesthetic appeal of the bathroom as a whole.

Cast iron - If durability is something high on your list of priorities, a cast iron option could be a welcome addition to your washroom.

Coated with enamel, they are known for their strength and ability to fend off damage. What's more, they are well insulated, keeping the water temperature higher for longer.

But, as you would expect, something made of cast iron is going to be quite heavy. Depending on your households structure, it may not be suitable for implementation upstairs. If it is, then you may need to ensure the appropriate support is there to handle the extra weight.

Keep in mind that these are not the best choice for people working with a low budget. Where quality and longevity is concerned, things can get expensive when compared to plastic options.

Fiberglass - Shares some similarities with acrylic units. One of its main positives is how lightweight it is. Ideal for someone needing to carry it up a flight of stairs. You can also expect these models to be cheaper.

If you are interested in overall maintenance and things like how easy they are to clean, you need not worry, for these are often covered with a resin surface that is smooth.

However, don't expect them to feel sturdy, because they aren't. What's more, scratches and damage occur far more easily on them then other types.

Cast polymer - This includes a number of options throughout the market such as cultured marble and granite. A common misconception for these is that they are rather expensive. This isn't always the case.

Typical advantages include the amount of choice in color themes. Some units just don't have enough options inthe respect, which can be quite limiting when it comes to interior design.

They are also fairly stain resistant. However, durability is not on the same level as iron products.

It doesn't matter what type you've decided to go with, be it an alcove, jetted, or even stand alone bathtub

Want to learn more about bathtubs? Check out our glossary page which explains the terms plumbers often use. We also have a section providing answers to frequently asked questions.