Bath Materials – A Brief Overview on the Choice Available
When we begin the search for a new bath our thoughts are typically that of size, style, design and practicality and never taking into account the materials used in the baths creation. The material used and its quality reflects in the overall presentation of the bath and effectively, how rigid it is. Acrylic tends to be the main material used for consumer baths whilst steel is often used from a commercial perspective and seen within many hotels, due to the fact that they are durable and hard wearing.
Acrylic is a lightweight and durable material and is flexible enough to mould into an array of bath shapes and designs from the standard rectangular bath to the shower bath and even the corner bath. As the bath is lighter it is easier to transport and ultimately faster to move into your bathroom and install, especially with the majority of bathrooms being upstairs. The majority of acrylic baths, and even steel baths, are supplied with adjustable feet in order to align onto an uneven surface, as very few bathroom floors are completely level.
In years gone by you would sometimes question the rigidity of your bath, hearing it creak and rattle as you lowered yourself in, waiting for that last big crack, though the quality of these products has increased dramatically in recent years to provide a truly safe and solid structure. In production the acrylic bath on its own resembles that of a piece of wobbly plastic though with modern day technology each bath as reinforced with fiberglass and a solid back board beneath it, with thickness varying between 5mm and 8mm depending on the brand and overall quality required. Some baths in the market place are currently offering an 18mm thick encapsulated back board and with it, creating one of the most secure baths available to the consumer and having the ability to take a far greater amount of weight than standard baths. Acrylic is always used as it acts as an insulator in maintaining the water temperature and allowing you to spend more time having a long and luxurious soak.
Steel baths differ from that in acrylic baths in that they are stronger, as a result of their material makeup and with it are heavier in weight; with manual handling somewhat more difficult with steel baths being delivered in crates to ensure they are fully protected. Whilst dropping a steel bath could result it in being smashed the product itself is extremely resilient to continual use, hence its popularity within commercial and hotel settings i.e. travel inns, since the more elite hotels have now made a move towards acrylic for additional luxury. Steel baths are more difficult to mould and therefore are typically only available in a standard rectangular shape though tend to look no different than their acrylic counterparts, the most significant difference between them being in their feel/finish and sound. Steel baths, like their acrylic counterpart, retain the heat of the water, are extremely durable and are able to take consistent use from numerous occupants, all differing in weight.
Depending on the brand you are looking at the steel bath can often be a cheaper alternative to the latest fashionable and stylish acrylic bath and whilst durability may be equal between the two types of bath in the end it is aesthetics, with acrylic baths providing that additional shine to a bathroom, not to mention the array of styles and designs available to the consumer. Acrylic baths are the number one choice for the home and this is easy to see why since not only are they the number one choice to display in showrooms (and therefore you buy what you see) but leading industry manufacturers have produced new and exciting ranges that has seen the bathroom transformed into a fashionable commodity for the modern day home.