A new bath is a big purchase and it is very important to gather all the information about the different types of makes and models that are on the market before committing to buy. Here at Bathshop321, we stock two types of bath: steel baths and acrylic baths. But which material should you choose for your bathroom? Here we we talk you through the pros and cons of steel baths vs acrylic baths so you can make an informed decision. We will also be introducing you to a third option which we think brings you the best of both worlds, but more on that later… for now let’s talk through what you need to know about when choosing your new bath.
Advantages Of Steel Baths
Heat Retaining Properties
Although initially cold to the touch, steel baths are fantastic at retaining heat for long periods of time compared to acrylic baths. As a metal, steel holds in heat for longer against thinner, more flexible acrylic baths. However Bathshop321 is able to offer you a compromise so you can get the best of both worlds, with our Premier Finish acrylic baths! Read more about our Premier Finish option at the end of this post.
Steel is a natural material that is able to be recycled after its use has come to an end, making it a more appealing option for all you eco-warriors out there!
Kaldewei is the brand of steel bath that we stock, with 80 different options available – including the Ambiente Puro Star model pictured above which we retail at a starting price of £479. This bath brand comes in different shapes and sizes, including double ended, twin gripped, octagonal, corner and more. There are freestanding varieties available, however the starting price is higher than the rest of the range, and the whole range of steel baths have less variety than their acrylic counterparts.
Advantages Of Acrylic Baths
Variety Of Design
Acrylic baths are a lot more popular and widespread in design than steel baths, so you will find that there is a lot more choice available to you when looking for an acrylic bath. This is because acrylic is much easier to mould into different shapes than steel, meaning you get a huge array of unique, eye-catching bath designs to pick and choose from. One of our favourite examples of great acrylic bath design is the Synergy Square Modern Double Ended Bath, which showcases beautiful, sharp, angular corners and high edges.
This is the big one. However much you love an item, whether you buy it or not almost always depends on the price. Steel baths are generally more expensive than acrylic baths due to the higher production costs and as we have discovered you also have less design options with a steel bath.
One of our popular baths is the Trojan Cascade Acrylic Bath pictured above, which we retail at just £98.99 (RRP £199). This a step down from the starting price of a steel bath, the cheapest of which we sell is the Kaldewei Eurowa Steel Bath which starts at £117. Our range of steel baths reaches a top price of £2,561 which is a huge amount of money to part with for one single item. In contrast, the top price for one of our freestanding acrylic baths is £1,400 – that’s over £1,100 more expensive.
Where Steel And Acrylic Are On Equal Footing
Although you would think that steel baths are much stronger than acrylic baths, this is actually a very common mistake. The advances in manufacturing in recent years means that almost every acrylic bath is now reinforced with extra layers of fibreglass for strength and baseboards for rigidity. Steel baths in their very nature as a metal are strong, so if the strength of your bath is a deciding factor – there is no major discernible difference!
There are benefits both to choosing a steel bath and benefits to choosing an acrylic bath – it simply depends on your priorities for your new bath. It also clearly depends on your budget. If you’re looking for a more cost-effective option then an acrylic bath is your best bet, however if you are looking to invest more money into a bath that you want to last you for many years to come, then a steel bath is the clear option. For those looking for a cheaper, durable bath for their family bathroom that is resistant to scratches and stains, we would recommend an acrylic bath. If you are renovating a high-end property and are looking for a designer item to bring an expensive feel to a bathroom, then a steel bath is the perfect choice for you. But what if you want a mixture of both?
There is another option…
Why not opt for the perfect middle ground and go for a less expensive acrylic bath, but give it the feel of a steel bath by coating it with our Premier Finish? This added reinforcement will give your acrylic bath an extra 25 year guarantee and the strength similar to that of a traditional iron cast bath. The Premier Finish option is available on a great deal of our acrylic baths, including on our shower baths, for an additional cost of around £65.
Have you made your mind up yet?