How Much Does A Walk In Tub Cost? A Comprehensive Guide
What is a walk-in tub?
A walk-in tub is exactly as it sounds: a tub designed for easy access where users can simply walk into it instead of needing to step over the edge. Walk-in bathtubs provide a convenient and secure bathing solution for individuals facing physical disabilities or limited mobility. These bathtubs offer various customizable features, including different sizes and the option of having a shower combined. Additionally, they come equipped with desirable elements such as therapeutic or whirlpool jets, hydromassage capabilities, and safety accessories like grab bars. By incorporating a walk-in bath into their home, older adults can comfortably age in place, maintain their hygiene, and enjoy the multitude of health advantages associated with bathing.
Benefits of Walk-In Bathtubs
The benefits of walk-in tubs extend beyond just convenience. They offer a safer environment, reducing the risk of slips and falls. Many models even come with features like built-in seats, grab bars, and non-slip floors. They also offer therapeutic benefits, with options like hydrotherapy jets and heated backrests, providing a spa-like experience right at home.
Some walk-in tubs offer a level of ease when entering and exiting that is comparable to showers, eliminating the need for users to navigate the high-sided edge of a standard tub. Customer of Empava asserts that walk-in tubs are not only safer but also more comfortable than traditional bathtubs. These tubs are equipped with convenient features such as low-entry doors, nonslip flooring, built-in seating, and safety grab bars, effectively reducing the potential hazards of slips and falls. Furthermore, the secure and effortless access provided by walk-in tubs can be a life-saving advantage for individuals with mobility issues.
Enhanced comfort and hygiene improvements
As we age or face physical disabilities, bathing can pose a greater challenge. However, the ability to bathe safely and with ease is a significant health benefit. It allows many older adults to comfortably age in place within the familiarity of their own homes. Some variants of walk-in tubs are designed with additional features such as heated seats and neck rests, providing enhanced comfort during bathing. Maintaining personal hygiene becomes more manageable and contributes to the overall well-being of individuals in these circumstances.
The benefits of therapy
Walk-in tubs equipped with water jets offer hydrotherapy, targeting specific areas such as the back, legs, and feet to relieve pain by focusing on sore muscles and joints. Combining heat, buoyancy, and massage, whirlpool tubs with air jets enhance blood circulation, alleviate arthritis discomfort, and help alleviate certain symptoms of fibromyalgia. The deep soaking capacity provided by these taller tubs allows users to fully submerge their bodies, resulting in inflammation reduction, relaxation of stiff joints, improved oxygenation in the body, lower blood sugar levels, stress relief, relaxation, and an increase in serotonin levels.
The presence of an accessible bath actively promotes an individual's health and overall well-being. Additionally, it plays a vital role in allowing individuals to age comfortably in their own homes and maintain their independence during bathing, eliminating the need for assistance from family members or healthcare professionals. Experts from Empava emphasize that for those facing mobility challenges, having a walk-in tub can make a substantial difference by enabling independent bathing. Achieving self-reliance can greatly enhance one's quality of life and self-confidence.
Elevated Home Value
In assisted living and retirement communities, having a walk-in tub can significantly enhance the value of a home. Furthermore, since most walk-in tubs are professionally installed, they offer a competitive edge when it comes to selling a property. According to a survey conducted by the BOBVILA, 51 percent of home buyers prioritize having a bathtub in the primary bathroom rather than just a shower stall. Tubs tend to provide a higher level of privacy compared to most showers, thus meeting the preferences of potential buyers
Factors Affecting the Cost of Walk-In Bathtubs
1. Material of the Tub
Walk-in tubs are typically manufactured using gelcoat, acrylic, or porcelain. Gelcoat tends to be the most affordable option, ranging from approximately $1,500 to $4,500, but it is less durable and susceptible to issues like fading, scratching, and cracking. Porcelain tubs fall within a mid-range price point. Acrylic, on the other hand, is a popular material known for its low-maintenance qualities. However, it comes with a higher price tag and remains susceptible to minor scratches.
Walk-in tubs are commonly crafted using three primary materials: gelcoat, acrylic, and fiberglass. Here are the main materials utilized in the manufacturing of walk-in tubs:
- Gelcoat: This material is frequently employed in walk-in tub production. It is cost-effective, but less durable than other options. Gelcoat tubs may be susceptible to fading, scratching, and cracking over time.
- Acrylic: Acrylic tubs utilize layers of fiberglass-reinforced plastic, resulting in a highly durable tub that demands minimal maintenance. It can be more expensive, acrylic tubs offer excellent longevity and resistance to wear.
- Fiberglass: Fiberglass tubs employ a combination of glass fibers and plastic layers, resulting in a tub that offers superior durability compared to gelcoat. Fiberglass tubs are lightweight and resistant to staining, but they may not be as long-lasting as acrylic options.
Both gelcoat and acrylic walk-in bathtubs generally fall within a similar price range, starting from approximately $2,000 to $6,500. On the other hand, fiberglass tubs exhibit a broader price range, starting from around $1,000 and going up to $11,000. If you prioritize a combination of affordability and durability, acrylic tubs offer an attractive option. They require minimal maintenance and are available at a comparatively lower cost.
2. Size and Design
The cost of a walk-in tub is significantly influenced by its size and design. Larger tubs or those with more intricate designs generally come at a higher price.
For those seeking a basic walk-in tub without additional features, the cost can start as low as $1,500. However, individuals who prefer a longer tub that allows for stretching out their legs should expect a considerable increase in price. These longer tubs may also require bathroom renovations to accommodate them. Common tub lengths include 53, 60, 66, and 72 inches, while widths can range from 27 to 50 inches.
The labor costs associated with a straightforward retrofit, which entails removing the existing tub, installing the new walk-in tub, and replacing any necessary tiles, can vary from $700 to $3,500. However, certain walk-in tub models may necessitate electrical connections that require the expertise of an electrician. Additionally, longer tubs or two-seater tubs may require more extensive bathroom renovations, including plumbing upgrades. These complex installation scenarios can result in higher labor costs.
Below are factors that can increase the installation cost:
- Fixing a clogged drain or replacing inadequate drain piping to improve water drainage. Walk-in tubs often have a fast-drain feature, but drainage can be affected by clogs or faulty piping, costing between $300 and $2,300.
- Replacing or relocating water supply hardware, which can cost between $500 and $2,500.
- Installing new tile or drywall to repair wall damage caused by accessing water supply lines, with a price range of $1,000 to $4,500.
- Installing new flooring or tile due to the different dimensions of a walk-in tub compared to the old tub, costing between $600 and $3,500.
- Widening the bathroom door or making other renovations to accommodate the installation of a walk-in tub. This renovation can cost between $1,500 and $4,000.
The installation cost can differ based on whether it involves a straightforward replacement or a comprehensive bathroom remodel.
4. Additional Features
Additional features such as hydrotherapy jets, heated backrests, and quick drain systems can significantly increase the cost of the tub. Those features may include:
- Custom grab bars or textured floor ($50 to $300)
- Fast filling and draining ($200 to $250)
- Outward-swinging door ($150)
- Handheld shower head ($200)
- Larger, deeper tubs ($300)
- Heated backrest ($250)
- Water jets and/or air jets ($1,000 to $2,500)
- Chromatherapy (light therapy) ($500 to $600)
- Aromatherapy These tubs use air jets (similar to the water jets in a hydrotherapy tub) that gently massage the body and promote relaxation. These jets have less pressure than hydrotherapy jets, since they spray air rather than water. Prices start at $300–$1,000.
- Foot massager ($200 to $350)
- Thermostatic valve ($250 to $400)
5. Installation Costs - The average cost of a walk-in tub installed
An individual with limited mobility can benefit from the convenience provided by a walk-in tub. The cost of walk-in tubs typically falls within the range of $1,500 to $11,000, with a national average of $4,000 for the tub itself, including professional installation. The average expense of installing a walk-in tub ranges from $1,400 to $2,000, depending on the complexity of the project. Factors such as plumbing reconfiguration, electrical motor installation, or bathroom remodeling to accommodate a larger-than-standard tub can increase labor costs.
6. Tub Brand Value
Walk-in tub prices can vary depending on the brand chosen. Price variations are influenced by factors such as the quality of materials used, warranty offerings, and the features provided by each specific model. Among the brands available, Kohler tends to have some of the highest-priced tubs, with their most expensive models costing up to $15,000 before installation. Empava and Ella offer more moderately-priced options, ranging from approximately $1,200 to $7,000. These price ranges solely reflect the cost of the tub itself and do not include installation expenses. Homeowners are encouraged to consider labor costs when estimating the overall installed cost of a walk-in tub.
Average Cost of a Walk-In Bathtub
1. General Price Range for a Basic Walk-In Tub
A basic walk-in tub typically falls within the price range of $2,000 to $5,000, excluding installation costs. These tubs usually offer essential features such as a door, a built-in seat, and grab bars. While they may not have all the bells and whistles of higher-end models, they still provide the necessary accessibility and safety benefits.
2. Price Comparison Between Different Brands/Models
The pricing of walk-in tubs can vary significantly between different brands and models. Renowned brands known for their quality and innovative features may charge upwards of $5,000 for their tubs. These higher-priced models often come with additional features such as hydrotherapy jets, air massage systems, chromotherapy lighting, heated seats, and other customizable options. While they may be more expensive, they offer enhanced comfort and therapeutic benefits.
On the other hand, lesser-known brands or more budget-friendly options may offer basic walk-in tubs starting at around $2,000. These models may have fewer features but still provide the necessary safety and accessibility features.
3. Cost of a Luxury Walk-In Tub
Luxury walk-in tubs, with all the bells and whistles, can cost up to $10,000 or more. These high-end models often offer a range of advanced features such as advanced hydrotherapy systems with multiple jets, customizable massage options, aromatherapy dispensers, built-in sound systems, and even waterproof TVs.
In addition to the luxurious features, the higher price tag can also be attributed to the use of premium materials, superior craftsmanship, and extended warranty coverage. Luxury walk-in tubs are typically designed to provide the ultimate spa-like experience and cater to individuals seeking the highest level of comfort and relaxation.
The average cost of a walk-in bathtub can vary depending on several factors, such as the size, features, and installation requirements. On average, a basic walk-in bathtub can cost between $2,500 and $5,000. However, more advanced models with additional features like hydrotherapy jets or heated seats can cost upwards of $10,000 or more. Additionally, installation costs can vary depending on the complexity of the project and any necessary modifications to the bathroom. It is recommended to get quotes from multiple suppliers and contractors to get a more accurate estimate for your specific needs.
How to Save Money on Walk-In Tub Cost？
Walk-in tubs can be expensive, but there are practical strategies to save money. For instance, when retrofitting the bathroom, sticking within the existing plumbing, tub, and wall footprint can help keep project costs down. The more extensive the alterations required, the higher the overall cost.
Choosing a basic tub without advanced technological features is another way to save. If luxuries like lying down in the tub or massage jets are not essential, there are plenty of lower-cost options available.
Depending on the circumstances, it may be possible to qualify for a tax deduction or tax credit. There is also a chance of having the cost covered by insurance. Some homeowners have even successfully negotiated a deal with tub sellers who offer installation services. Don’t forget to search for rebates and sales, as not all manufacturer rebates are heavily advertised. Additionally, inquiring about a military discount, if applicable, can be worthwhile.
- Explore Medicare and Medicaid options. It's worth investigating whether walk-in tubs can be claimed as a medical necessity under Medicare and potentially receive reimbursement for the cost of the tub. Additionally, Medicaid may cover installation expenses. Checking eligibility beforehand is important to avoid any disappointments.
- Purchase from the same company for installation benefits. Sometimes, if you buy the walk-in tub from the same company that handles the installation, you may be eligible for a discounted rate on the installation service.
- Opt for a smaller size. If you anticipate not regularly utilizing a two-seater or long tub, there may be no need to install a larger model. Choosing a smaller-sized tub can help reduce costs.
- Choose features wisely. Consider how frequently you will utilize features like whirlpool jets or colored lights realistically. If you believe their usage will be minimal, particularly in the long term, it might be worth forgoing these pricier options.
- Shopping During Sales. Get quotes from multiple installers and brands so you can ensure you’re getting the best price.
- Compromise on materials. Consider gelcoat or acrylic instead of costly porcelain.
Additional Costs & Factors for Walk-In Bathtubs
When considering the installation of a walk-in tub, customers should take several factors into account. While the process itself is generally straightforward, there are important aspects to consider before purchasing a unit. Ensuring the tub fits within the available space is crucial. In cases where the walk-in tub is being installed in a new location or when converting from a shower-only setup, significant construction work may be required.
Even for simpler retrofit jobs, certain renovations might still be necessary to complete the installation. Aside from plumbing and electrical considerations, tile work may be needed to provide a finished look to the surrounding area.
Opting for a walk-in tub with special features not only increases the cost of the unit itself but also leads to higher installation expenses due to the additional work required to accommodate those specific features.
Old Tub Removal Project
Removing an old bathtub is a necessary but less thrilling aspect of bathtub replacement expenses. This involves disconnecting plumbing connections and disposing of the old tub. Homeowners can opt to handle the task of removing the old bathtub themselves, as long as they feel confident in performing manual labor and take precautions to avoid damaging existing plumbing and electrical systems. However, hiring a professional for this service can increase the cost of installing a walk-in tub by $200 to $1,200.
Bathroom Floor Reinforcement
Walk-in tubs have a larger water capacity compared to standard bathtubs, making them significantly heavier when filled. To ensure a secure installation, it might be necessary to reinforce the floor beneath the walk-in tub, particularly if the tub material is exceptionally weighty. The cost of floor reinforcement typically ranges from $500 to $1,000.
Tiling, Plumbing and Electrical
Depending on the extent of the renovation, it may be necessary to tile around the tub and part of the wall behind the tub. This helps finish the look of the bathroom and integrates the new tub. It also creates a watertight seal, protecting the wall and tub surround from moisture. Typical costs of installing ceramic or porcelain tile are $900 to $2,600, depending on tub size and type.
Depending on the scope of the renovation, tiling around the tub and a portion of the wall behind it might be required. This not only enhances the overall appearance of the bathroom but also seamlessly integrates the new tub. Moreover, it creates a water-resistant barrier, safeguarding the wall and tub surround from moisture damage. On average, the cost of installing ceramic or porcelain tiles ranges from $1,000 to $2,600, varying based on the size and type of the tub.
Walk-in tubs often necessitate plumbing modifications to accommodate larger pipes for quick filling and draining. This additional plumbing work can typically increase the project cost by $800 to $1,600. Moreover, walk-in tubs frequently come with features that require electrical connections, such as heating systems or jets. This may involve running new electrical lines, installing GFCI outlets, or even upgrading your electrical panel if the existing capacity is insufficient to support the new load. These electrical enhancements should be factored into the overall project considerations and budget. Working with water and electricity can be complex and potentially hazardous, so it's best to leave it to the experts. A professional plumber and electrician charge $40 to $100 per hour.
Showers require less floor space compared to tubs, with showers typically occupying 9 square feet while tubs take up 13 square feet. Due to this difference in size, the installation costs tend to increase, ranging from $3,500 to $6,000. Additionally, other factors that influence the cost include the need to demolish a section of the existing shower walls, remove the floor pan, replumb the pipes to accommodate a higher tub spigot, and install tiling in the area where the shower head used to be. These considerations should be taken into account when determining the overall cost of the project.
If you're considering a walk-in tub but don't want to convert your existing shower to a tub, a shower walk-in tub combo could be the perfect solution. With Empava-53WIT02 53 in. Walk-in Whirlpool Bathtub, you can enjoy the benefits of easy accessibility and safety while still having the option to take quick showers when needed.
Read more: How to convert bathtub to walk in shower
Prior to homeowners making a choice regarding the installation or selection of a walk-in tub, it is crucial for them to comprehend the expenses, return on investment, advantages, and challenges associated with owning one. While they can be pricey, the benefits of improved health, convenience, enhanced independence, and increased home value might make the investment justified.
What are the cons of a walk-in tub?
- Installation: Improper installation can be a disadvantage when it comes to walk-in tubs.
- Water Usage: Walk-in tubs have a higher water capacity compared to traditional bathtubs.
- Cost: The price of walk-in tubs is generally higher than that of regular bathtubs.
Why are walk in tubs so expensive?
The cost of a walk-in tub can vary based on its features. The inclusion of different features can have a significant impact on the overall cost. For instance, a tub with jets will be more expensive compared to a basic soaker tub without jets. It's important to note that certain features, like jets or heated surfaces, may necessitate additional electrical or plumbing work, consequently increasing the cost.
Do walk in tubs take a lot of water?
Walk-in tubs generally use more water than standard bathtubs. About 50 to 80 gallons is a common volume for a walk-in tub, compared to 30 to 60 gallons for a standard tub.
Walk-in tubs typically require more water compared to standard bathtubs. A common volume range for walk-in tubs is around 50 to 90 gallons, while standard tubs generally hold between 30 to 60 gallons of water. Empava tub’s max capacity is 94 gallons.
Does Medicare cover walk-in tub installation?
Generally, Medicare doesn't cover the installation of walk-in tubs. Medicare typically focuses on covering medically necessary services and prescribed durable medical equipment. Although walk-in tubs may offer health advantages, they are generally categorized as convenience items rather than essential medical equipment. To get the most accurate and up-to-date information about coverage, it's always a good idea to reach out to Medicare or your specific insurance provider. They will provide you with the best guidance tailored to your situation.
How long will installation take?
On average, walk-in tub installation can take anywhere from 1 to 3 days. It is recommended to consult with a professional installer or contact the manufacturer of the walk-in tub for a more accurate estimate based on your specific circumstances.
In conclusion, walk-in tubs provide a practical and beneficial bathing solution for individuals with limited mobility or physical disabilities. They offer safety features, enhanced comfort, therapeutic benefits, and the opportunity to maintain independence during bathing. Choosing more affordable materials like gelcoat or acrylic instead of costly porcelain for the construction of the walk-in tub. This can help reduce the overall cost without compromising functionality. When considering a walk-in tub, please research models, compare prices, and explore available funding options to make an informed decision that suits both personal needs and budgetary considerations.
Get Competing Offers from Empava Walk-In Tub
Looking to explore your options for an Walk-In Tub? Get started by choosing Empava walk-in bathtub. By making quotes from Empava support services, you can make an informed decision that best suits your needs and budget. Experience the convenience, safety, and luxury that Empava Walk-In Tubs offer while ensuring you get the most competitive offer available.
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