Last updated: August 29th 2016
Many people would like to migrate from just shower to at least a combination of both, but not always implementing a bathtub is simple or as affordable as an old school freestanding tub. They are the typical bathtub, designed for soaking bathing immersion and able to work easily with shower systems. Freestanding tubs are more accessible than hydro massage tubs or most built-in tubs that require the building of decks or similar structures to embed them to the bathroom and, as a plus, freestanding tubs are the most beautiful tubs, with eye popping designs that will make them shine on your bathroom like sculptures.We did a list with some of the best freestanding tubs available in the market for 2016, including all you need to know about the standard high quality models of the market. Check after our reviews a quick guide on the critical points you must not miss when purchasing your freestanding bathtub.
Best Free Standing Tub with Reviews
Ariel Bath AM128JDCLZ Whirlpool Tub
Quite unlike most freestanding tubs in the market, this Ariel Bath’s model is a great combo of many features into one single freestanding tub. You will not see in our list any other model like this one, as well as this is our top cost tub for obvious reasons. It is not just a freestanding tub, as it is also an acrylic based whirlpool bathtub, with 14 massage jet heads to make the bathing a relaxing experience for real. To complement that experience, the tub includes a set of chromotherapy lighting LED bulbs that will alternate colors or bright only one color of your preference. As a plus, there is a FM radio built-in on the the computer control panel with a digital interface, through which you can set your preferences and tune the radio. The whirlpool system is powered by a 1.5 horsepower pump for very immersing, massaging bath session.Talking about numbers, the dimensions of this tub are quite generous, 71-inch wide, 37,5-inch long and 35-inch tall, enough to fill 91 gallons of water!
As it includes an electrical system for the operation of the tub, you need to wire it appropriately to the home wiring of your house. It doesn’t work with a plug, so the installation should be handled by a professional electrician. This freestanding tub is works only with 110v, though can work on 220v networks once you have a transformer to adapt the input. To save energy in case you end up sleeping with such wonder, the tub is designed with an auto-shutdown mechanism. After 1 hour, it will turn off automatically so, if you are still there and quite awake, you have to turn it on again, as well as it work as an alert for the time you have been there already, alongside your wrinkled fingers!With all these features, surely the brand would not miss the inclusion of essential attachments: a handheld showerhead with the hose included and a thermostatic faucet and the whole pipe system of the tub has an auto-cleaning mechanism.
Wyndham Collection’s Mermaid Freestanding Tub
The first of the more “down-to-earth” models that follow in our list, the Mermaid is a traditional, fancy and high quality freestanding tub, made in acrylic, the standard material for this kind of tub, and with drain fixture included finished on polished chrome or brushed nickel. The drain has a pop-up lid chained for easy handling, as you can start emptying the tub while you are still there and with no need to have visibility.Mermaid is also a spacious freestanding tub: it is 67-inch wide, 32-inch long and 23-inch tall. It can comport up to 60 gallons of water. As we said, this is the traditional kind of freestanding tub. There are no massage jets or anything fancier to complement, as it is a soaking kind of bathing tub. The faucets are not included either but the brand has several different sets that can be purchased separately.
Wyndham Collection’s Soho Freestanding Tub
This second Wyndham Collection model comes with a design a little bit wider, as it is 68-inch wide, even though, 30-inch long – a bit slimmer than Mermaid and 23-inch tall. While these differences seem too subtle, they are outside measures. The shape of Soho favors a more gracious, curved designed in detriment to gallons capacity, as it supports 43,5 gallons. The bottom edges are curved, so there is less water coming in, on the other hand, 68 inches is enough to make someone 5′ 6” tall (1,75m) float free at the top of the bottom.Soho likewise doesn’t include faucets and other attachments but the drain fixture, which can be ordered with a polished chrome finish or nickel brushed. The base of this bathtub is adjustable so you can level it accurately and keep it quite stable on the ground.
AKDY produces a lot of famous shower heads in the market. Their free standing tubs are no little thing compared to other manufacturers, as they can design beautiful tubs with great water capacity and high quality materials. The AZ-F274 is made on acrylic and is quite big guy: 70-inch wide – someone 5′ 8” (1,77m) tall can float here, 31.5-inch long and 28-inch tall. The interior bottom of the tub is made with an anti-skidding design, so you can really install this tub in the center of a room with no need of walls or anything around.With these bold dimensions, even with a curved design this bathtub can comport up to 95 gallons. As usual, faucets and shower heads are not included, only the drain fixture, made on brass and finished on polished chrome, including a flexible pipe that can make it quite versatile upon installation.The support feet of the bathtub are made on stainless steel and have the same finish, and are also included for free with the tub.
American Standard Cadet (2764014M202.011)
This is another brand that is famous for their shower head models, specially when it comes to alternatives and innovation with a budget in mind. They provided also a very interesting freestanding bathtub model with this Cadet tub. It is the closest we can get from the sturdy Ariel Bath model, as it includes a handheld shower head and the tub filler faucet, not only the drain fixture. That probably is an addition possible due to the fact the base material for this tub is not 100% acrylic, but an ABS plastic reinforced with fiberglass and capped with acrylic. This makes this tub more economic and light, as well as it works as a good thermal insulant.When it comes to the size and capacity it doesn’t disappoint either: 66” wide, 32” long and 23” tall, comporting 58 gallons of water.
AKDY F210 Freestanding Bathtub
The last model of our list is another AKDY. The F210 is one more sleek, modern and elegant design of the brand, resembling a concave shell that is quite tall compared to other models, as it is almost 31” tall. It’s width is a standard 66” and the length a 30,5”, able to comport 79 gallons of water as its walls are designed with less depth on the inside. This tub is also made on acrylic and includes the anti-skidding patterns and the drain fixture and metal feet parts are included for free.Like the other AKDY model of our list, the drain includes a flexible pipe, which is quite useful to install this versatile tub anywhere with no concerns about the drain.
Quick Purchase Guide: What exactly is a freestanding bathtub?
There are several different models of bathtubs in the market these days, but the difference between them is not only about the shape, but also about how they are supposed to be implemented. Freestanding bathtubs are, as the name suggests, free from the requirement of walls or pre-projected designs to include it in the bathroom. Their design is often the most beautiful for bathtubs as it shows body, is often designed with artistic care and can resemble sculptures. Not in vain they are freestanding, as they can stand anywhere where you can connect a water pipe and a drain fixture, able to be installed right in the middle of the bathroom, in the corner, in the shower stall, wherever you wish. The other option of bathtubs, considering installation, are the built-in tubs, they are either the traditional rectangular tubs, the corner tubs or hydro massage bathtubs. All these designs do not have a full finish on all sides to be exposed the way the freestanding tubs do, so they often require to be embedded like a swimming pool on the floor or affixed on one or more walls. Freestanding tubs may cost less than most built-in tubs as they don’t require the infrastructure to build around them.
What are the benefits of freestanding bathtubs?
As we mentioned before, they are quite flexible to be installed and require less resources, money and planning to be implemented. As a plus, they can be in fact art pieces, with very beautiful shapes, so is a good choice to make your bathroom a more stylish concept of decoration. Freestanding tubs are also easy to manage and install, they only require connection to the plumbing system of the house, including the waste pipe systems. Some models a bit more complex like the Ariel Bath though will require electrical implementation too, but that is quite an exception.
What to Look for on the best freestanding bathtub?
While these bathtubs are quite flexible to be installed, you have to cherish their quality to avoid getting a white elephant in the middle of your bathroom. This kind of bathtub gets much more exposed to the ambient, so it requires some features that make it efficient, resilient and worth the purchase overall:
- Thermal Insulant Material: Most bathtubs, regardless of the type, are made of acrylic, because this is the best kind of material source to keep the water on the bathtub warm for longer. Acrylic is a thermal insulant, so it does the job to prevent the water loosing heat to the exterior since it is already loosing some heat to the surface in open contact with the air.Not all bathtubs must be crafted on acrylic as there are other thermal insulant materials. As you have seen, there are alloys of other materials like glass fiber with ABS plastic, in the case of the American Standard model, as well as there are other synthetic polymers that are really great to work as insulants. Bear in mind that synthetic materials will often result in much lighter bathtubs, while acrylic is a heavy material, even though it is more resistant.Lighter bathtubs are easier to manage and install, but they may be more susceptible to impact damages so choose wisely something that is insulant but also resilient enough.
- Gallons vs. Size: You have noticed that not always a wide or tall tub will result in a deep, immersive experience as it seems. Beware that the size measures manufacturers offer for their bathtubs are often referring to the outside dimensions. The interior or bathtubs are always smaller and in some models they can be way too much smaller. The amount of gallons is as important to determine how deep is a tub as the height, so pay attention to this ratio as tall tubs with short gallons capacity are not exactly a good deal as they may not only be too shallow, but also not too comfortable and spacious. Check pictures of visuals inside the tub and always prefer higher gallons than bigger bathtubs as size doesn’t matter that much when it comes to immersion.
- Compatibility: Most manufacturers will not sell their bathtubs with the faucets systems for a similar reasons steam generators are not sold with controllers and steamheads(#20): there are several different options of design for the complementary fixture of the equipment, so you may purchase one specific freestanding bathtub model but it can be compatible with several different faucet lines of the brand. Be careful with bathtubs that offer all the fixture system with the tub, be sure it at least works with standard plumbing measures – 0,5-inch pipes, for instance – otherwise this complete kit may become an obsolete burden in the future whenever you want to replace faucets and other components.
Choosing the right freestanding bathtub is not a very complicated mission, it is much more about pleasing your taste and matching the decor set of your bathroom than anything else. Just be sure, of course, that your bathroom can really comport the bathtub. While these tubs don’t need you to start a building site inside your bathroom, they require spacious ambient. You can also check the inflatable hot tubs(#24) as an option for bathroom with few space and for those who are running in a short budget and would like just the convenience of a bathtub.
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