Clawfoot Tub Buying Guide

Whether you’re renovating an existing bathroom or building a new home, purchasing a bathtub is a big decision. There are many styles, features, and materials to choose from, which can make picking the perfect tub for your bathroom difficult. Fortunately, at Vintage Tub & Bath we can help you choose the best bathtub for your needs. 

Bathtub Designs

Clawfoot Tubs – If you’re looking for a traditional style bathtub that combines practical function with timeless beauty, then a clawfoot tub may be the best choice for your bathroom. Perfect for lounging and relaxing after a long day, clawfoot bathtubs are available in a variety of styles, materials, and foot options.

Freestanding Tubs – Also referred to as standalone tubs, freestanding tubs offer a modern design that can serve as the focal point of a bathroom. These tubs are available in a variety of materials; however, acrylic freestanding tubs offer more shape and style options. Freestanding tubs stand on the floor without legs or a pedestal. Some models are molded as one piece, while others come in two pieces – a skirt and a drop-in tub. These types of tubs are versatile in placement.

Alcove Tubs – Typically installed adjacent to three walls, these types of tubs only feature one side and often have wall mounted faucets that can be easily configured to incorporate a shower.

Walk-In Tubs – Designed for people who are unable to step into a standard bathtub, walk-in bathtubs typically include a seat or chair and have jetted air features.

Pedestal Tubs – Pedestal tubs mimic the art-deco style tubs that appeared in the 1920s and 1930s. Instead of clawfeet, the pedestal tub sits on a base.

Drop-In Tubs – Typically used in larger bathrooms, drop-in tubs are designed to be dropped into a pre-built deck or walls. They’re exposed on all sides and feature a rim, which sits on top of the deck. These tubs are easy to clean and offer an assortment of placement possibilities.

Corner Bathtubs – These tubs are variations of the alcove and drop-in tub designs. They’re great for saving on space and can often fit two people.

Clawfoot Tubs Freestanding Tubs Alcove Tubs Walk-In Bathtubs


Pedestal Tubs Drop-In Tubs Corner Tubs



Classic Tubs – Available in freestanding and clawfoot designs, classic roll rim bathtubs are the most familiar types of clawfoot tubs. Our roll rim clawfoot tubs are based on the original cast iron clawfoot bathtubs which were made by the millions between 1890 and 1940. The typical vintage roll rim clawfoot tub measures five feet long – just big enough to fit into the standard post-World War I American bathroom.

Double Ended Tubs – Equipped with two rounded ends, double ended bathtubs allow for your choice of bathing positions. These clawfoot bathtubs have a center drain configuration and side-mounting faucet. Depending on the length, they may be able to fit two people.

Slipper Tubs – Distinguished by their high-back construction which provides a more comfortable seating position, one end of these tubs is designed for lounging while the other end is reserved for plumbing. If you prefer to lounge in the tub with a place to rest your head, the slipper bathtub gives you all the support you’ll need.

Double Slipper Tubs – These lounging tubs are designed similarly to double ended tubs, but both ends feature a high-back slipper construction for comfortable lounging from either end of the tub. Double slipper bathtubs have a center drain configuration and side-mounting faucet. Depending on the length of the tub, double slipper tubs can accommodate two people.

Whirlpool Tubs – Create a spa-like retreat in your home with a whirlpool bathtub. These relaxing tubs use adjustable water jets to soothe sore muscles and help you relax. Whirlpool tubs also have a special heater that’s used to keep the water warm throughout your bath.

Air Tubs – Similar to whirlpool tubs, air tubs use jets to shoot bubbles into the tub, which massage and relax the body. Unlike a whirlpool tub, these jets cannot be controlled, but the jets used in air bathtubs don’t become clogged as easily as those used in whirlpool tubs.

Classic Roll Rim Tubs Double Ended Tubs Slipper Tubs Double Slipper Tubs Whirlpool Tubs Air Tubs



Acrylic Bathtubs – The interior surface of an acrylic tub is easier to scratch than the extremely hard porcelain glass interior surface of a cast iron tub. However, scratches on an acrylic surface can be easily repaired by sanding and polishing methods. Acrylic tubs typically warm up faster than cast iron tubs, although once heated, a cast iron tub tends to keep the water warmer longer than an acrylic tub because of the greater thermal mass of the cast iron tub.

Cast Iron – The porcelain surface on a cast iron tub is harder and more scratch-resistant than acrylic tubs. Cast iron tubs also have a more substantial “feel” and “sound” to them than lighter acrylic tubs. Finally, cast iron tubs tend to appear more historically authentic to the eye than acrylic tubs. A disadvantage is once you scratch or otherwise damage the porcelain in a cast iron tub it will be a permanent blemish. These tubs require a good support structure underneath, as they are heavy.

While the two most common materials for bathtubs are acrylic and cast iron, you can also find beautifully crafted bathtubs made of stone, steel, copper, and even wood.

Acrylic Tubs Cast Iron Tubs


Bathtub Buying Tips:

  • Measure the bathtub. Consider the amount of space in your bathroom, and measure the space before purchasing a tub to ensure it will fit properly.
  • Ask yourself what you’ll be using the tub for. If you’re looking for a bathtub to soak and relax in after a long day then you’ll want a tub that retains heat and provides comfort. If the bathtub will be used everyday then look for a material that will stand up to daily wear and tear.
  • Think about size. The tub should be big enough to comfortably fit the tallest person in your home with their legs outstretched.

Still having trouble choosing the best bathtub for your needs? Call us today at 877-868-1369  or email us at One of our friendly representatives will be happy to answer any questions you may have.