House & Beyond is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
An alcove bathtub is a luxurious bathtub that is designed to be installed in the alcove section of your bathroom, with 3 of its sides perfectly enclosed by a wall. You can place a bathtub door or a shower curtain to provide privacy. Alcove bathtubs are perfect for people who find it difficult to get in and out of a drop in a bathtub. You can easily install a safety grab or a rail to assist in exiting and entering the tub. Whether you have a large or a small bathroom, the alcove bathtub will be good for you. Unlike other bathtubs out there, the best alcove bathtubs are stylishly designed to take very little space and to give you an excellent bathing experience. Since it was designed with durable materials, you can be confident that it will last you for a very long time. It’s a must-have for everyone who wants to improve their bathing experience without spending a fortune.
In this article, we are going to be looking at the best features of an alcove bathtub. You will come to learn why alcove bathtubs are safer to use and maintain. Also, we are also going to shed light on some important features you should consider when buying an alcove bathtub. If you are able to get a firm grasp of these features, it will be easier for you to make an informed decision and narrow down the best bathtub for your specific needs.
Finding the best alcove bathtub on the market is likely going to take a lot of time and effort. See, you don’t have to stress yourself; we have done all the hard work for you. We spent countless hours researching to find out all there is to know about alcove bathtubs and reading through hundreds of review on reputable sites. The guide begins with an overview of our top picks in the table, followed by an in-depth review of each product. At the end of the article is a comprehensive buying guide that will provide you with everything you need to find a bathtub that will suit your needs.
The Kohler expanse is definitely one of the best bathtubs on the market because of its space saving and compact design that is perfect for a smaller bathroom. Its large size makes it perfect for soaking and relaxing. The expanse is large enough for two adults to sit comfortably in it.
Another notable thing about the expanse is its sophisticated design. Its integral apron and curved basin will take your bathing experience to another stratosphere. The size of the expanse makes it super easy to install and update. Its modern style makes it fit perfectly with different bathroom fixtures.
The plumbing and drain holes on the left side of the bathtub can comfortably accommodate the components from different manufacturers. The special tile flanges skirts that sit around both ends of the tub makes it easy to install against 3 walls. Unlike other bathtubs out there, the expanse comes with a stylish flange that prevents water spills from getting behind or inside the walls.
The expanse has a well-textured floor that is designed to prevent a fall and slip accident.
The downside of this amazing bathtub is that it can only work with drains located on the left. Also, it uses acrylic instead of a blend that most bathtubs use. Note that the tub is very deep and will be difficult for some to get out without a grab bar.
So, if you are looking for a large bathtub you can comfortably soak and relax in, the expanse will be perfect for you.
Why did it make our list?
It is large and can comfortably accommodate two people
Made with durable materials
Textured floor prevents fall accidents and slips
Its special flange protects the floor and wall from water spill
This is definitely one of the best cast-iron bathtubs on the market that is endowed with remarkable features that will take your bathing experience to the next level. Toto, the manufacturer of this bathtub is a global leader dedicated to making high-quality products that will connect you with water in ways you cannot imagine. They have been able to make a name for their self in the bathtub industry because their products are always of very high quality.
The unique dimensions of this bathtub are what make it stand out from others out there. Unlike others, it can comfortably fit into any bathroom. Its contemporary apron front, compact design and the sleek look makes it a perfect fit for most modern bathrooms decor.
Since it was made from iron cast, which is a very durable material, you can be confident that it will last for a very long time. When installing it, ensure that the floor support underneath the bath can provide a minimum of 80Ibs/square foot.
The bathtub comes with a high-quality slip-resistant coating that will reduce the risk of an accident occurring when you are entering or leaving your bathtub.
So, if you are a convenience seeker looking for a bathtub with a stylish look that is easy to install, this bathtub will be perfect for you.
The only downside of this bathtub is that it is very heavy. This is likely going to make it difficult for you to transport it from place to place. Aside from this, The Toto FBY1515RPNo.01is one of the best iron-cast bathtubs you can find.
The PROFLO PFS6042LSKWH is a top-notch bathtub made from durable and premium quality acrylic material and can hold up to 75gallons of water. It is perfect for soaking, relaxing and stretching.
PROFLO, the manufacture of this bathtub, knows the importance of quality and that is why they test run their product before they are distributed. When you buy this tub, you will be covered under the PROFLO’s 5-year tub warranty.
The PROFLO PFS6042LSKWH is equipped with a unique overflow drain and a high-grade slip resistant bottom. Its single exposed side base makes it easy to install and a perfect fit for most comfort seekers.
This plumbing system of this PROFLO bathtub is remarkable. Its plumbing system utilizes a bespoke waterway and high-pressure air tubing. The joints of this bathtub are pressure tested and solvent welded. As previously mentioned, every unit of this bathtub’s performance is tested before leaving the production factory.
While the installation process of this bathtub is straightforward and easy, you may need to spend extra money on a good frame to hold it in place. Also, you may need to level the ground it is going to sit on so that it will be stable and balanced.
If you are looking for a stylish and luxurious bathtub that is large, spacious and super comfortable then you should go for The PROFLO PFS6042LSKWH.
The Kaldewei Cayono is a high-grade bathtub made from luxury steel. Its compact and super sleek design gives it the flexibility to fit into different spaces. Since it is portable and at the same time spacious, it can easily be installed in a small bathroom.
Presented in a modern, distinctly minimalist style, the Cayono from leading bath giant Kaldewei is a perfect choice for those looking to create a contemporary bathing area. Its porcelain finishing is appealing to the eyes. One notable thing that makes this bathtub stand out from others out there is that it is scratch resistant and doesn’t need a mortar base for support.
This bathtub is also perfect for bathing little children because it is not too deep and safe to lean over. The materials used in making the Cayono are durable and of superior quality. That is obviously the reason why it comes with a 30-year guarantee.
The Kaldewei Cayono is presently one of the best steel alcove bathtubs on the market with a lot of amazing features. However, the only downside of this bathtub is its water holding capacity. It is designed to hold only 30 gallons of water. While this may be perfect for average adults, it may be a pain to larger people.
So, if you are looking for a bathtub that will last you for years and years to come, the Cayono will be perfect for you.
Function and style are brought together in perfect harmony with the American Standard. It has a height of 5ft and can comfortably accommodate a single person. As one of the best plumbing brands, the American Standard is determined to deliver innovation and quality that will wow their customers. The American Standard 2461.002.020 Cambridge is one of the best alcove bathtubs on the market you can get for a budget-friendly price.
Its elegant enamel surfaces are molded and reinforced with high-quality metal. The special material that was used to put this bathtub together is lighter than cast iron.
Unlike its counterparts, the American Standard is durable and will provide its owner with more and more value as time slowly rolls by. The type of material used in finishing this bathtub is of supreme quality. This is the obvious reason why the American Standard look more elegant and stylish, especially when compared to others out there.
The luxurious interior of the American Standard will not only take your breath away but will also open you to a new level of comfort. With this tub, you can be confident that you are going to have a safe and relaxing experience. Since it is deep, you will be able to soak comfortably in it for as long as you want. This bathtub may not be a good choice for people with physical limitations, as getting in and out will be a challenge.
So, if you are looking for a premium alcove bathtub but on a tight budget, the American Standard 2461.002.020 Cambridge will be good for you.
What are our favorite features?
It is budget friendly
Made from premium Americast
It is large and spacious
What could be better?
Deep so might be difficult to get out of it
Things to Consider
Now that you are familiar with some of the best alcove bathtubs on the market, we are next going to be looking at some important things you need to know to narrow down the best bathtub for your unique needs.
The best decision for your bathroom – great features of an alcove bathtub
Since you are likely going to be using your bathtub every day, it is important that you choose a good one. Most people choose alcove bathtub over others out there because of the following reasons:
A sleek design that improves the look of every bathroom;
Takes close to no space;
Is easy to install and fit;
Can be upgraded with accessories;
Cost less than regular bathtubs
What you should know about an alcove tub
As you probably know, the bathtub is an old invention that dates back to ancient Rome. It was gradually modernized as time went by. In the 1900s, companies like Kohler pioneered the modernization and upgrade of this bathtub. Their goal was to make it suit people with small bathrooms.
The modern alcove bathtub is a far cry from what it used to be back in the days. It is now endowed with a lot of amazing features. Even more, it is now easier to install and customize. In fact, there are some models that are fitted with powered jets among others.
Beyond space saving and a variety of new features, the alcove bathtub also offers a better bathing and soaking experience. Since it can accommodate more water, it can give you a deeper soak when bathing with oil.
Tips on installation of an alcove bathtub
Installing an alcove bathtub isn’t as complicated or difficult as you may think. All you got to do is to follow the step by step instructions that come with it.
Measure the area where you want to install your bathtub, carefully roll the bathtub into the space you have prepared for it and measure it with a ledger board.
Measure the height of the tub and measure that exact same distance just below the reference line of each stud.
Use deck screws to fasten some 2x4s to the studs.
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to set up and assemble the shoe fitting that sits below the waste pipe and the bathtub.
Apply 2-3 inch of mortar, move the bathtub into place and secure the flanges with nails.
If you lack the skill or expertise to install it on your own, then employ the services of a trained professional.
Features to consider while buying the best alcove bathtub
As you probably know, there are different types of alcove bathtubs on the market with wonderful designs and amazing features. Before you head to the local bath store in your area or buy the first one that catches your attention online, there are some important features you first need to consider. Considering these features will put you in a better position to find a bathtub that will suit your needs perfectly
Before buying any bathtub, it is important that you consider the size of your bathroom and the area where you are going fit it in. If you have a large and spacious bathroom, then you should buy the longest bathtub you can find. This will ensure that no matter who lives in your house at any given time, you will be able to offer them a bath they can comfortably fit in and use.
On the other hand, if your bathroom is small and cramp, then you should opt for smaller model bathtubs that will fit into it well.
Another thing you should consider is who is going to be using it. If you are going to be using it to bathe your kids, for instance then smaller bathtubs will be a good choice. However, if you tend to relax and stretch in it, then you should find a tub that allows you to do so.
Do you know that the material your bathtub is made from can make or break your soaking experience? Granted, there are materials that are easy to clean and have a long lifespan, but that doesn’t mean they will be good for you. It is best you look for a soaking tub that is made from any of the following materials;
Cast Iron – if you are looking for something strong and rugged, then you should get a tub made from cast iron.
Solid Surface – with these types of bathtubs, you will be getting somewhere between binding agents and natural minerals. Solid surface bathtubs are scratch and stain resistant and can be easily repaired through polishing.
Acrylic – if you want a lightweight and solid material, then you consider acrylic. One notable thing about acrylic bathtubs is that they are scratch resistant and can easily be buffed if they happen to get damaged. On of the best examples of acrylic bathtubs would be the KOHLER K-1118-RA-0 Expanse with a sleek design and glossy finish.
Another important thing you should consider before buying a tub is its water and person capacity. Some tubs are designed to comfortably accommodate two bathers at once. If you are single or you live on your own, a single capacity bathtub will be good for you.
When it comes to water capacity, you definitely need to make sure that the bathtub you want to purchase can accommodate enough water to cover your entire body.
If your bathroom is spacious, then you should choose a tub that you can comfortably relax in. For an alcove bathtub, you should be looking at a minimum depth of 15″. When you buy a deep tub, you can be sure that water will cover most of your body when bathing. If you are looking for a deep bathtub, then the PROFLO PFS6042LSKWH will be good for you.
That been said, before buying a deep tub, it is important that you consider the people that are going to be using it. For example, if the person who is going to be using the tub has some physical limitations, then a very deep tub will not be a good option.
The alcove bathtubs that are reviewed in this guide have anti-slip surfaces, like in Toto FBY1515RPNo.01 and Kaldewei Cayono. This will make it impossible for you to slip or fall when getting in or out of it.
Is it easy to install?
While you have the option of installing your alcove bathtub on your own, it is wise that you employ the service of a professional crew. However, if you want to install it on your own, you have to follow the manufacturer’s instructions to the letter
The bottom surfaces of the tubs reviewed in this guide are comfortable to sit and relax on. Even more, they have slip resistant bottoms. This means that you won’t slip and fall when you stand on them.
The drain system of a bathtub is something most buyers overlook or pay little or no attention to. Most of them later regret not paying attention to it. The drain location of a bathtub can give you insight as to whether it is designed for one or two persons. Most times, bathtubs that have its drain at the middle can accommodate two people.
A warranty on large purchases is always very important. An alcove bathtub can be fairly expensive, and a warranty will help protect your investment. As you probably know warranties can vary from product to product. The Kaldewei Cayono, for example, has a 30-year warranty period.
Keep in mind that customer service goes hand in hand with the warranty. So if the customer service has negative reviews and the warranty is for a short period, it will be wise you leave that product for one that has a better customer support and warranty coverage.
The weight of an alcove is what determines how easy or difficult it will be for you to move it around. But, after you have installed or mounted an alcove bathtub, its weight is going to be of no significance.
If you are looking for the best alcove bathtub on the market, then our editor’s choice, the KOHLER K-1118-RA-0 Expanse will be perfect for you. With an impressive water capacity of 55 gallons and a size of 60x 30 x17’’, you can be assured that you will fit comfortably in it and will be covered with water at all times. The sleek design, modern look and excellent finish of this tub are what make it better than its contemporaries.
The Toto FBY1515RPNo.01 is certainly one of the best Iron cast alcove bathtubs you can get for a fair price. It is made from premium enameled cast iron and is backed by a lifetime warranty.
The American Standard Cambridge makes luxury affordable. The amazing finish of this bathtub makes it a perfect fit for any modern interior décor. Since it was made from premium American cast, you can be confident that it will last for a long time.
We hope this guide has helped you silence the noise and narrow down the best alcove bathtub on the market.