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How Long Do Bathtubs Last?

By September 20, 2021 No Comments

How Long Do Bathtubs Last? Let’s face it, your Hattiesburg bathroom is one of the most important rooms in your home so why not make it a comfortable, functional space that fits your lifestyle? As one of the most used rooms in your home, your bathroom should be a place you enjoy spending time getting ready in the morning or relaxing after a long day. 

A simple upgrade to your bathroom can go a long way toward making the space more enjoyable for you and your family. If you’re looking to add some extra luxury, or just want to remodel without breaking the bank, a new shower or tub can be a great option. 

A complete bathroom renovation is a big investment, and it’s important to make sure it’s the right fit for your lifestyle. To help you on your way, we’ve put together a list of features that will give you an idea of what you might expect from a bathroom renovation, particularly on choosing the bathtub perfect for your space.

How Long Do Bathtubs Last?

Lifespan of a Bathtub

A good bathtub can last decades, but major factors that impact its lifespan include how often you use it and how well it’s maintained. A dirty bathtub will most likely cause drain cleaning services that are needed, which will shorten the life of your tub and may also lead to more expensive repairs. The material your tub is made of also impacts its lifespan—most fiberglass-reinforced polyester tubs today are designed to withstand heavy wear and tear, so they tend to last longer than other materials. 

How Long do Fiberglass Tubs Last?

Fiberglass bathtubs are one of the most affordable choices for homeowners, and also one of the easiest types of installations to complete compared to cast-iron, steel and other types of tubs. Because fiberglass is so lightweight, a homeowner with any level of handyman experience can have their own bathtub installed in a matter of a few hours with very basic tools. A popular option among homeowners today because it’s much quieter than other types of baths, its durability makes it easy to clean, and its structure maintains its integrity over time unlike other materials that may crack or fall apart. Additionally, fiberglass offers strength and rigidity making it more ideal for people with disabilities or physical limitations. Despite these advantages, there are a few cons to fiberglass tubs that shorten the lifespan of the tub: 

  • Poor durability. A fiberglass bathtub is a relative newcomer to the home design scene. One of the reasons for this popularity is being lightweight, which makes it easier to move around and install. However, because it’s made from such a delicate material, fiberglass can crack or even develop leaks over time. Over time, repeated exposure to heat and cold can cause cracks in the tub itself or in the gelcoat layer underneath. In some cases, if the crack is severe enough, water will leak through even on a calm day. The lack of durability might not be a big deal if you’re just planning on using your tub once every few years, but if you’re using your tub on a regular basis then this is something to consider.
  • Soft finish. The epoxy finish on fiberglass tubs is prone to fading over time, leaving you with an uneven appearance. Epoxy coatings are also vulnerable to damage from moisture and mold, which makes cleaning the tub more difficult.  In addition, when an epoxy tub cracks due to water damage or heat, the crack will spread much more quickly than on a solid surface because of how the material contracts and fractures under stress.  
  • Too flexible. Caulk provides a water-resistant sealant between the tub and the mortar joint. The problem with using caulk is that it is too flexible. Since fiberglass isn’t a super hard material, it has the tendency to warp and bend over time. This can cause the caulk sealant to peel and crack, leading to water damage. The other problem with using caulk is that it can be difficult to remove without damaging the surrounding surfaces such as paint. 

A fiberglass tub kit is the best and most expensive way to repair your bathtub. However, Taking all of these factors into consideration, a gel-coat fiberglass tub kit only lasts an average of two to five years before it begins deteriorating. After this five-year point, the chances of the fiberglass tub kit failing become more likely, which means you will have to buy another new one.

How Long do Acrylic Tubs Last?

Acrylic-coated bathtubs and showers are a premium choice for homeowners who want the benefits of cast-iron or steel without the maintenance. They are easy to clean, which means you can spend less time maintaining your tub and more time relaxing in it. Acrylic is a much better insulator of heat than cast-iron and steel, creating a pleasant bathing experience with less stress on your muscles after a long day. Unlike cast-iron and steel tubs, acrylic does not heat up or lose heat as you swim, creating a more enjoyable bathing experience each time. Acrylic bathtubs also are made using a unique manufacturing method that results in a stronger, lighter product that holds up well over time. 

Unlike Fiberglass, acrylic is an affordable and durable option for your bathtub, especially when combined with another strong foundational material, like a high-tech polymer. On average, acrylic tubs last around 10 to 15 years, significantly longer than a fiberglass tub. Acrylic tends to hold up well to wear and tear as well–it’s rather difficult to break or cause extensive damage with regular use in any sort of household environment.

Signs You Need a Bathtub Replacement

If you’re unsure whether a new bathtub needs to be part of your bathroom upgrade, ask yourself these questions:

Is the Bathtub Stained or Scratched?

Even with proper cleaning and maintenance, it’s common for tubs to deteriorate over time. Not only does staining and scratching diminish the appearance of your bathroom, but it also breeds harmful bacteria and viruses that can make you and your family ill.

Does the Bathtub Leak?

When a bathtub or shower is made of a soft material, such as fiberglass, it can warp and crack with repeated use. This allows water to leak around and under the tub into the drywall and wooden support beams. Water damage can cause serious structural issues and encourage dangerous mold and mildew growth. Not only is this unsanitary, but it’s also expensive. Keeping your bathtub protected from water damage is important because warping allows the metal to rust out and become unrepairable. 

Is Mold or Mildew Present?

The growth of mold and mildew in your tub can be a serious health problem. It creates an environment that is not only unsanitary but also uncomfortable. Mold and mildew are known to cause respiratory problems, especially for children, the elderly, and those with existing allergies, asthma or other respiratory illnesses. Dark patches growing along the grout and caulking are a sure sign that an action needs to be taken immediately. The longer the problem goes untreated, the further it spreads throughout your home, damaging walls, floors, ceilings and even electrical fixtures.

Is the Bathtub Difficult to Use?

Our bathtubs are a great way to upgrade your bathroom and enjoy a relaxing, invigorating experience every day. Whether you need a more therapeutic or accessible option, or you simply don’t enjoy using your current bathtub, consider upgrading to a bathtub that you’ll feel comfortable using each day. 

The Benefits of a Long Baths™ Bathtub

A long and luxurious bath is the perfect way to relax and restore your mind, body, and soul. 

When it comes to choosing your bathtub, trust the Long Baths™ team to transform your bathtub from outdated to outstanding. The Matlock Baths™ bathtub line offers a full line of high-quality tubs are non-porous, antimicrobial, and engineered to be mold, mildew, soap scum, rust and stain-resistant and fit any style or budget. With an unparalleled commitment to excellence and customer satisfaction, we will work with you to create a high quality, beautiful product that is unique to your needs. Designed for outstanding durability, our bathtubs are made from high-density ABS plastic, the same material used in bowling balls and boat hulls. Unlike porcelain, which is sensitive to temperature change and easily chipped, Matlock Baths™ tubs can withstand years of hard use and are more scratch resistant than traditional porcelain, steel and cast-iron bathtubs.

In addition to durability, Matlock Bath offers customization you just can’t get with a fiberglass kit from a big box store. We offer a variety of colors and patterns, tub skirts, fixtures, and accessories, including custom-built shelving to give our customers a perfect bathtub built to their exact specifications and preferences.

Each bathtub replacement is guaranteed by our lifetime warranty to give our customers peace of mind knowing they’ll be able to enjoy their bathtub for years to come.

Transform Your Bathroom Today

At Matlock Bath, we specialize in providing customers with a superior customer experience through hard work, dedication, and innovation. We’ve made it our mission to improve the overall bathtub buying experience. Whether you need an upgrade, replacement, repair or cleaning our team of skilled professionals is ready to help you manage all your bathtub needs. If you’re looking to upgrade your bathtub, call Matlock Roofing & Construction at 601-299-4048 or visit us online today to get a quote or schedule a free, in-home consultation in Sumrall, Petal, Purvis, and Hattiesburg, MS!