Large Print:

Print This Page:

Walk-In Tubs: Acrylic versus Fiberglass

Once you decide to purchase a walk-in tub for your New York home, it goes without saying that you should do some research to decide which material you should purchase. Walk-in tubs are intended for seniors with limited mobility or for those who want the spa experience at home. They take safety to the next level, but that does not mean that these are one-size-fits all solutions. There are so many bathtub features and accessories to choose from that many potential buyers tend to overlook their own desire to customize.

The manufacturing material should align with the way you intend to use your walk-in tub. Acrylic and fiberglass tubs are the two of the main options. As a consumer, you should spend some time learning about both materials. Both of these materials come in different shapes, colors, and styles. Still, many buyers are unable to determine which material is which. Both are molded with plastic, which makes it hard to see how they are different. Plastic does not require a lot of maintenance, so thorough cleaning is not always a requirement. Learning the differences between both types of walk-in tubs will help you make an informed decision.


Acrylic walk-in tubs are very durable, so they last a long time. It is very difficult to scratch acrylic, and it is also very shiny. The end result is a tub that looks luxurious. Additionally, the color of acrylic tubs usually does not fade. These qualities make this version a little more expensive than other types of tubs.

During the process of manufacturing, acrylic is heated and then stretched over a mold to form the shape. During the process, some of the acrylic is stretched too thin, which weakens the walls and corners of the tub. As a result, acrylic seems to deteriorate slower than other tub materials. In newer versions of acrylic tubs, fiberglass is used to strengthen the mold.


Fiberglass walk-in tubs are the most cost-effective because they are more affordable. This is usually the first choice for consumers who are shopping for a tub that is durable but inexpensive. Fiberglass is formed into a gel and then spread evenly into a mold. Sometimes the fiberglass mold is then coated with acrylic to make it shiny and easier to clean.

Fiberglass walk-in tubs are less resistant to scratches compared to other versions. Unfortunately, fiberglass also tends to fade easier. For these reasons, it usually does not last very long and may need to be replaced.

Acrylic and fiberglass walk-in tubs both have advantages and disadvantages. As the buyer, you should outweigh the options of purchasing both and make a determination based on budget, durability, and manufacturing material. The importance of selecting a walk-in tub that meets the standard for your use is imperative. Once you make a selection, you should be sure to clean and maintain the tub in that way that is best for that version.