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Top 10 Best Walk-in Bathtubs/Shower (for Seniors)

What is the best walk-in tub for seniors? American Standard walk-in tubs hold the highest rating score of 9.9. But there’s no one-size-fits-all! Consider your specific needs and desired features to find the perfect senior bath solution. Meditub’s walk-in baths are cheap, ideal for small bathrooms, and offer extra strength horsepower jets if you prefer a deep tissue massage. On the other hand, for those of you who played in the NFL or NBA and weigh 200+ pounds, Boca’s bariatric walk-in tubs, with extra-wide seats and reinforced doors might be a better fit for you. There are various category winners to consider, including–

This guide, developed by a licensed occupational therapist, examines the best walk-in tubs for seniors in 2024. You’ll also receive a free lesson on walk-in tubs. We’ll discuss prices, pros and cons, and explain the risks and dangers of jetted walk-in tubs, as well as whether Medicare covers walk-in tubs for seniors.

Melanie Paquin
Licensed Occupational Therapist

Why trust Trusted Company Reviews

  • Comprehensive review rating system.
  • We work closely with consumers and experts to create editorial ratings.
Our process aggregates a company or product's market share, reputation, service, values, consumer interest, pricing, fees and features to generate a fair rating and comprehensive review. Some of our Trusted Experts who write reviews have appeared in U.S. News & World Report, Forbes, Angi.com and many other publications.

Trusted Company Reviews #1 Pick for 2024

Top Walk-in Tubs Company
American Standard
American Standard
9.9
  • Free In-Home Evaluation and Price Quote
  • Excellent Customer Service Reviews
  • Lifetime Warranty

Why we love it 💖

American Standard – 94 years in business and one of the most trusted brands!

Our Highest Rated Walk-in Tubs Companies

1
Our Top Pick for June 2024
9.9 Excellent

top pick illustration
2
9.8 Excellent

  • Excellent Customer Reviews
  • BBB A+Rated and Accredited
  • Free Online Quotes
  • Strong Lifetime Warranty on all components
  • Variety of sizes, including two-seat model
  • Discounts for military
3
9.7 Excellent

  • No BBB Complaints, A+ Rated
  • Average Customer Rating of 4.9/5
  • Customers say “drains in 60 seconds”
  • Excellent customer service
  • 30 walk-in tub models
  • Wheelchair accessible models
  • Foot and Calf massage options
  • Military and Senior citizens’ discounts
4
9.5 Excellent

  • 29+ years in business
  • Walk-in tub cost includes installation
  • Has its own network of installers
  • A+BBB Rated and Accredited
  • Excellent Customer Reviews
  • Built to order
  • Fills and drains quickly
5
9.2 Great

  • The oldest company on this list
  • Fits in same space as a regular bath
  • Certified Kohler walk-in tub installers
  • Bariatric-friendly (walk-in tubs for larger people)
  • Price Promise, Guaranteed!
  • A large and trustworthy company
6
9.1 Great

  • Affordable pricing
  • A+BBB Rated and Accredited
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Acrylic or Fiberglass Tubs
  • Known for its luxury spa features
  • Fast drain and fill technology
7
8.3 Very Good

  • Free Consultation
  • 10 hydro massage jets
  • Built-in ozone sanitation system to keep the tub clean
  • Lots of safety features and built-in grab bars
  • Walk-in tubs with dual rain shower heads
  • Handheld Shower Wand
  • Low step-in height
  • Inward-swinging door
  • Commercial grade no-slip floor
  • Emergency call button
8
8.1 Very Good

  • Affordable prices
  • A+ BBB Rated and Accredited
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Walk-in bathtubs for disabled people
  • Lots of options and features
9
8.0 Very Good

  • Access to Costco’s reliable customer service
  • Free 30-Day Trial and Money-Back Guarantee
  • Quality assurance with Costco’s return policy
  • Fast fill and quick drain technology
  • Safe transfers in and out of the tub
  • 16 air jets for gentle massage
  • Aromatherapy feature
  • Same size as a regular bathtub
10
7.9 Good

  • Wide range of models available
  • Sells Universal, Ella, and American Standard
  • Competitive pricing and promotions
  • Financing options
  • Access to customer reviews
  • Compare prices online
  • Military discounts
  • Expedited shipping

Best Walk-in Tub Reviews

Choosing the appropriate walk-in tub for elderly individuals has a profound effect on their ability to maintain independent living and enhance their overall well-being. Research conducted by the National Institute on Aging has shown that accessible bathing solutions with safety features such as slip-resistant surfaces, grab bars, and handrails can effectively reduce the risk of falls, which are a leading cause of injuries and fatalities among adults aged 65 and older, with approximately 50%–60% of these falls occurring at home [1] [2].

Another beneficial feature for older individuals is hydrotherapy, which involves using pressurized jets to massage muscles. Studies published in the National Library of Medicine highlight the positive effects of hydrotherapy on relieving joint and arthritis pain and improving circulation in seniors.

Meditub offers to upgrade the strength of its jets from the standard one horsepower to 1.5 horsepower for an extra $250 for those seniors who prefer stronger massage jets in their walk-in tub. With this in mind, we ensured that all the tubs on our list include options for air jets or hydrotherapy whirlpool massage jets, allowing for a personalized experience that promotes relaxation and pain relief [3].

How do walk-in tubs work?

Attention seniors: Walk In Tubs can make life easier and better, allowing you to bathe in luxury and with ease.

  1. Prepare for your bath: Undress and have a towel or bathrobe within reach. Ensure that the bathroom floor is dry to prevent slips or falls.
  2. Open the door: Depending on the design, gently open the door either inward or outward.
  3. Get in and relax: Step into the walk-in tub. Sit on the comfortable gel or foam seat. The highest-rated walk-in tubs have contoured seats that support your body’s natural curves. Some models, like Boca’s walk-in tubs, resemble luxurious reclining poolside chairs, offering the ultimate relaxation during your bath.
  4. Close the door: After entering the walk-in tub, close and lock the door securely. Top-rated walk-in tubs feature the most reliable sealing mechanisms designed to prevent leaks. 
  5. Fill tub at desired temperature: Turn on the faucets or controls to fill the tub with warm water. With the help of advanced fast-fill technology, top-rated walk-in tubs can fill up to shoulder height within minutes.
  6. Adjust the water temperature: Use the temperature controls to set the water to a comfortable and safe level.
  7. Explore optional features: If your walk-in tub offers additional features such as hydrotherapy jets, chromotherapy lights, or aromatherapy options, take the opportunity to activate and customize them according to your preferences.
  8. Explore optional features: If your walk-in tub has hydrotherapy jets, chromotherapy lights, or aromatherapy options, try using them to enhance your bathing experience. Certain features, like hydrotherapy, have proven health benefits for seniors, including reducing arthritis pain [3].
  9. Drain the tub safely: When you’re ready to finish your bath, depending on your tub’s model, either pull the lever, press the button, or twist the handle to activate the drain system. The best walk-in bathtubs are made with specialized fast-drain technology, allowing the tub to drain in as little as 2-3 minutes or even faster. According to customer reviews, Ella’s Bubbles walk-in tubs drain in 60 seconds.
  10. Open the door and exit cautiously: Once the tub is drained, unlock and open the door carefully. Be mindful of the potentially wet floor and use any grab bars or support rails available for added stability and balance.

Remember, specific instructions may vary depending on the model and manufacturer of your walk-in tub. Always refer to the user manual or instructions provided by the manufacturer for detailed guidance tailored to your specific walk-in tub model. By following these simple steps, you can confidently and comfortably use your walk-in tub, enjoying the benefits of a safe and luxurious bathing experience tailored to your needs as a senior or older adult.

Dangers & Risks Associated with Walk-in Tubs for Seniors to Know About

Walk-in tubs offer many benefits for seniors, such as improved safety, comfort when taking a bath, and accessibility. However, one must know the potential dangers and risks of walk-in tubs before purchasing one.

The biggest risk of walk-in tubs is the risk of getting trapped inside one with an inward opening door. This is especially concerning for seniors, who are likelier to slip and fall in the tub. If a senior falls and gets wedged behind the door, they may be unable to get out on their own, leading to serious injury or even death. Consequently, medical alert systems for seniors are another product you may want to consider: a button on your wall near the tub to press if any accidents require emergency assistance.

Another potential risk of walk-in tubs is the growth of bacteria in the tub’s water and plumbing. This is especially true for jetted walk-in tubs, which can provide a breeding ground for bacteria. Bacteria can cause a variety of health problems, including skin infections, respiratory infections, and urinary tract infections.

To reduce the risk of bacteria growth, it is important to clean and disinfect your walk-in tub regularly. You should also follow the manufacturer’s instructions for using the tub and its sanitation system.

Here are some tips for choosing a safe and sanitary walk-in tub:

  • Choose a walk-in tub with an outward opening door.
  • Choose a walk-in tub with a sanitation system that is proven to be effective at killing bacteria.
  • Make sure the walk-in tub is easy to clean and disinfect.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for using the tub and its sanitation system.

Best Walk-in Tub Sanitation Systems

Unfortunately, not all walk-in tubs have sanitation systems (e.g., an ozone system) to kill bacteria and germs, keeping your tub clean over the long term. However, some of the best walk-in tubs do have an ozone system. Let’s take a look at some that do.

Safe Step walk-in tubs have the best sanitation system because they use an Ozone Cleaning System that continuously purifies the water through the jets, preventing bacteria from entering the tub.

American Standard walk-in tubs have a MicroSoothe air and water therapy system that helps to loosen and remove dirt and debris.

Walk-In Tub Company tubs have the SaniComplete system that uses ozone to sanitize the tub and its plumbing.

Ella’s Bubbles walk-in tubs have the SaniClean system that uses ozone to sanitize the tub and its plumbing.

Rating Methodology: 15 Criteria

When evaluating walk-in tubs, our rating algorithm strongly emphasizes the manufacturer’s reputation – customer reviews, the tub’s warranty, the number of years a company has been in business, and customer complaints.

Specifically, we closely scrutinize customer complaints about warranty coverage, poor-quality materials and leaks, customer service problems, and installation delays. These factors significantly influence a company’s rating on our top ten list of the best walk-in tubs.

Most online reviews of walk-in tubs are biased paid advertisements that can be misleading and potentially lead to overpriced purchases. Trusted Company Reviews ensures unbiased product and walk-in tub reviews by industry experts and licensed healthcare providers, including a licensed occupational therapist and Certified Senior Advisor (CSA).

15-Point Walk-in Bathtub Rating Criteria:

  1. Cost: Comparing prices of walk-in tubs, favoring lower prices for equal quality.
  2. Average customer review rating: Assessing customer reviews from reputable sources like BBB, Consumer Affairs, Home Depot, and Google.
  3. Reputation: Considering time in business, positive-to-negative review ratio, and BBB complaints. Manufacturers with many complaints, like Meditub, receive lower scores. Ella’s Bubbles, with 17 years in business, over 220 reviews at BBB and Consumer Affairs, and an average rating of 4.7/5, earned a high reputation score.
  4. Accessibility and Step-in threshold: Evaluating wheelchair user entry and exit ease, including low step-in thresholds and wide door entry.
  5. Safety features: Assessing grab bars, handrails, wheelchair support, ADA compliance, slip-resistant surfaces, low step-in height, secure doors, and temperature controls.
  6. User Experience: Evaluating the user experience involves considering various factors such as fast-fill and quick-drain capabilities, maintenance and cleaning convenience, dual-drain technology, jetted tub technology, easy-to-reach controls, ergonomic seating, noise level of operation, ability to customize the tub, in-line heaters, and overall ease of operation tailored to seniors’ needs.
  7. Ease of installation: This includes evaluating factors such as clear installation instructions, compatibility with existing bathroom setups, and the availability of manufacturer-certified installers for professional assistance. A seamless and hassle-free installation process ensures that seniors can quickly and safely start enjoying their walk-in tubs.
  8. Expensive Renovations: Evaluating the availability of customization options that do not require costly renovations.
  9. Comfort: Evaluate the comfort level of the walk-in baths by considering factors such as seat design, armrest support, jet comfort, and tub size to ensure they can accommodate individual preferences.
  10. Spa and Therapeutic Features: Evaluate the presence and effectiveness of whirlpool jets, air jets, aromatherapy, chromotherapy, heated surfaces, in-line water heaters, and hydrotherapy options. Assign higher points for stronger jets, higher horsepower, and enhanced functionality of these features.
  11. Warranty: Examine the length of the warranty, coverage details (including the shell, door seal, frame, pumps, and heaters), transferability, low deductibles, and the convenience of the claims process.
  12. Guarantees: Evaluate whether the walk-in bath companies offer guarantees such as money-back guarantees, leak-proof guarantees, structural and electrical guarantees, or installation guarantees.
  13. Luxury Wall and Design Options: Consider the availability of customization features, built-in lighting options, sound systems, and the use of high-end materials such as acrylic or fiberglass. These materials should be selected for their durability, ease of cleaning, and heat retention properties, enhancing the overall luxurious feel of the walk-in baths.
  14. Customization Options: Evaluate the range and extent of customization options offered by walk-in tub companies. This includes assessing the ability to choose finishes, colors, accessories, and additional features to tailor the walk-in tubs according to individual preferences and needs.
  15. Overall purchasing experience: Evaluating the smoothness of the sales process, customer service responsiveness after the sale, and whether walk-in tubs get installed in a timely fashion or if there are known delays associated with the manufacturer’s installation.

Our rating algorithm aims to provide reliable and unbiased information to guide consumers in selecting the best walk-in tub to suit their needs.

 

Top 3 Category Picks

Best Walk-in Tub for Seniors in 2024

Review American Standard Walk-in Bath Deep Soaker Price and Option

Introducing our top pick for the best walk-in tubs for seniors in 2024: American Standard. With a solid reputation for excellence and reliability, American Standard is a trusted brand known for high-quality bathroom fixtures. After carefully evaluating features, pricing, and customer satisfaction, we confidently declare American Standard the Best Walk-in Bathtub for Seniors in 2024. Here’s why:

  • Competitive Pricing: Transparent pricing without hidden fees ensures customers know what to expect.
  • Wide Range of Models: Choose from various models that provide functionality and seamlessly blend with any bathroom decor.
  • Safety Features: Built-in seats, safety grab bars, and textured floors minimize slips and falls, enhancing the bathing experience and providing peace of mind.
  • Customizable Options: Customize your tub with different coating materials and jet types for a soothing bathing experience.
  • Reliable Warranty: American Standard provides a trustworthy warranty, offering seniors protection and peace of mind.
  • Responsive Customer Service: A large and responsive customer service department is dedicated to supporting customers and addressing concerns.
  • Over 94 Years in Business: With a history spanning over 94 years, American Standard has established itself as a trusted and experienced company.

American Standard’s commitment to quality, safety, customization, reliable warranty, responsive customer service, and extensive experience makes them the clear choice for seniors seeking a comfortable and accessible bathing experience. With American Standard, seniors can enjoy the independence and peace of mind they deserve.

 

Best Walk-In Tub Shower Combination

best walk in tub shower combo: Boca walk in tub with shower

What is the best walk-in tub-shower combo?

After carefully considering various options, including Boca, Ella’s Bubbles, Kohler, and Safe Step, we have determined that the Boca Walk-In Tub with a Rainfall Showerhead stands out as the best-rated walk-in bath with shower combo available. While the other mentioned brands are excellent choices worth exploring, we will focus on the exceptional features of the Boca Walk-In Tub.

Boca offers a range of customizable tub models designed to provide a convenient and relaxing bathing experience while prioritizing safety, especially for older adults or individuals with limited mobility. The standout feature of the Boca Walk-In Tub is its adjustable rainfall showerhead, which allows users to enjoy the comforts of a shower while benefiting from the safety features of a walk-in tub.

In addition to the luxurious rainfall showerhead, Boca Walk-In Tubs feature:

  • A low 2-inch threshold allows for easy access in and out of the tub without the risk of tripping or falling.
  • Handrails and ergonomic seats enhance safety and comfort during use.
  • Boca offers customization options, allowing homeowners to tailor the tub size to their specific needs.
  • The tubs include a fiberglass coating that ensures easy cleaning and maintenance.
  • A lifetime limited warranty covers the tub shell, including any manufacturing defects, door and seal, faucet, drain, controls, pumps, blowers, and heaters.

Lifetime warranty boca walk in tubs(1)

How much does the Boca walk-in tub with shower combo cost? Including installation, adding the rainshower to a walk-in tub could cost around $1,000 extra. Review our detailed breakdown for more specific details about the cost of Boca walk-in tubs.

 

Ella’s Bubbles Walk-in Tubs for Seniors

Ellas Bubbles Best Walk In Bathtub Shower Combination

Best Lay Down Walk-in Tubs

Ella’s Bubbles has the best walk-in tubs for seniors in several different categories, from wheelchairs to its popular lay-down walk-in tubs.

Introducing Ella’s Acrylic Lay Down Walk-In Tubs – the perfect combination of style, safety, and functionality designed specifically for seniors. 

Style and Sophistication: These luxurious bathtubs feature a modern tempered glass inward swing door with a brushed finish aluminum frame, adding a sophisticated touch to your bathroom. The centrally placed door allows for easier access and a wider glass screen than side-placed doors.

Enhanced Safety Features: The vertical tub wall design provides a wider interior floor, reducing slip and fall hazards often associated with curved walls in standard bathtubs. The glass and steel low-threshold door combines aesthetics and practicality, making entry and exit easier.

Ella’s Acrylic Lay Down Walk-In Tubs are among the best small walk-in bathtubs. 

Ella’s Acrylic Lay Down Walk-In Tubs are also ideal for small bathrooms.

Choose from two spacious sizes – 32″ x 72″ and 30″ x 60″ – to perfectly suit your preferences and bathroom dimensions. Ella’s Lay Down Walk-In Tubs are thoughtfully designed with your comfort in mind, ensuring a perfect fit for your space.

Customizable Bathing Experience: Enhance your relaxation with multiple jetting options. Experience the therapeutic benefits of hydro massage or the soothing sensation of air massage. Create your personalized spa-like experience.

Practical and Convenient: The inward swing glass door seamlessly blends elegance and functionality. For added versatility, you can include a bi-fold tempered glass screen for showering. Ella’s Acrylic Lay Down Walk-In Tubs prioritize your comfort and convenience.

Key Dimensions and Specifications:

  • Laydown 30×60:
    • Tub Dimensions: 30″ x 60″ x 22″
    • Floor Dimensions: 20″ x 46″
    • Door Width: 16.5″
    • Gallons USA (Unoccupied): 61
    • Gallons USA (Occupied): 30-50
    • Approximate Drainage Time: +/- 80 seconds
    • Drain/Door Location: Center
    • Product Net Weight: 160 lbs
    • Features: Textured Floor, Hydro Jets (8), Air Jets (20), In-line Water Heater (H)
  • Laydown 32×72:
    • Tub Dimensions: 32″ x 72″ x 21″
    • Floor Dimensions: 22″ x 54″
    • Door Width: 16.5″
    • Gallons USA (Unoccupied): 75
    • Gallons USA (Occupied): 35-55
    • Approximate Drainage Time: +/- 80 seconds
    • Drain/Door Location: Center
    • Product Net Weight: 205 lbs
    • Features: Textured Floor, Hydro Jets (8), Air Jets (20), In-line Water Heater (H)

Ella’s Acrylic Lay Down Walk-In Tubs offer a range of additional features and benefits tailored to meet your specific needs. From textured floors for added safety to optional heated seats for extra comfort, these tubs prioritize your well-being.

Experience contemporary design, unmatched safety, and unparalleled comfort like never before.

Read the latest review about Ella’s Bubbles walk-in tubs, including the company’s pros and cons and detailed information. To purchase one of these lay-down walk-in tubs, visit Ella’s Bubbles website directly.

Best Walk-in Bathtubs (by category)

  • Top-Rated Walk-In Tub for the Price: Meditub (cheapest)
  • Best Walk-In Tub for a Mobile Home:  The American Standard Gelcoat Premium Series Walk-In Tub
  • Top-Rated Walk-in Tub With a Shower Enclosure: The Sanctuary Small Shower Enclosure American Standard Walk-in Tub
  • Best-Rated Powerful Jetted Walk-In Tubs: The American Standard Whirlpool and Air
  • Top Choice for Corner Walk-In Tubs: The Ariel EZWT-3052 Dual Series Walk-in Bathtub
  • Best Pick for Freestanding Walk-In Tubs: The Sanctuary Walk-In Tub by Signature Hardware

Walk-In Tubs Cost

How much do walk-in tubs cost? Installed, walk-in bathtub prices can vary depending on various factors such as the brand, size, features, materials, and installation requirements. 

What is the average cost of a walk-in tub installed? The average price of walk-in tubs for seniors is around $8,700including installation. Remember that older adults are often entitled to senior discounts and financial assistance. 

However, it’s important to note that this is a general estimate based on the figures our team of experts has compiled.

Average Cost of the Top 10 Best Walk-In Tubs, With Installation 

  1. American Standard Tub Average Cost with Installation: $10,000
  2. Boca Walk In Tubs Average Cost Including Installation: $12,500
  3. Ella’s Bubbles Average Cost of Tub with Installation: $9,000
  4. Hydro Dimensions Walk-in Tub & Installation Average Cost: $10,000
  5. Kohler Walk in Bathtub with Installation Average Cost: $8,000
  6. Independent Home Bath with Installation: $7,000
  7. Safe Step Walk in Tub and Shower Cost with Installation: $10,000+
  8. Meditub Cost for Walk-in Tub with Installation: $6,000
  9. Costco’s Access Walk-in Tubs Cost with Installation: (information not available)
  10. Home Depot Walk in Tubs Average Cost with Installation: $10,000

Keep in mind that prices can vary depending on the specific model, additional features, and customization options you choose.

Cost to Install a Walk-in Tub

The cost of installing a walk-in tub can vary significantly depending on various factors and the company you choose for the installation. Safe Step walk-in tubs, which are considered the top-selling walk-in tub and shower combo according to AARP, have received customer complaints about the total cost exceeding $20,000 for a $12,000 walk-in bathtub when installation is included.

In contrast, Boca Walk-In Tubs offers a flat fee of approximately $2,500 for installation, which covers any necessary electrical and plumbing work.

Boca walk in tub installation cost and price breakdown.

The installation cost of a walk-in tub typically ranges from $2,500 to $5,000 on average. However, installation costs can vary significantly depending on factors such as the complexity of the project and any additional requirements.

In some cases, the cost to install a walk-in tub can be as low as $1,000, while others may face higher expenses to get the job done, resulting in the total cost exceeding $20,000. Factors that can contribute to higher installation costs include the need for plumbing reconfiguration, extensive electrical work, and bathroom remodeling.

Apart from the tub itself, labor costs for the installation can range from $700 to $5,000. Therefore, obtaining multiple quotes from different installation companies is advisable to ensure a competitive price and quality service.

Companies like Boca Walk-in Tubs streamline the installation process and provide customers with a simplified pricing structure. They offer a flat fee of $2,500 for installation, regardless of the scope of work and labor required.

8 Tips to Lower Cost

To save money on the cost of a walk-in tub and installation, consider the following tips:

  1. Compare Prices: Take the time to compare prices from reputable manufacturers to get an idea of the average cost and find the best deal available.
  2. Request an Itemized Breakdown: Ask for an itemized cost breakdown that includes fees for add-ons, features, and installation. This will help you understand exactly what you’re paying for and identify potential areas for cost savings.
  3. Customize the Quote: Work with the manufacturer to customize the quote by including only the features you truly need. By removing unnecessary additions, you can significantly lower the overall cost of the walk-in tub.
  4. Use Competitor’s Quotes: If you have received a quote from one manufacturer, use it to negotiate with other brands. Mention that you have a lower offer and see if they are willing to match or beat the price.
  5. Inquire about Discounts: Ask about senior, disability, and veteran discounts. Many manufacturers offer special pricing for these groups. Additionally, inquire about any special offers or waived fees for immediate purchases. Don’t be afraid to ask as you may receive favorable pricing.
  6. Explore Financial Aid Options: Research financial aid options available for elderly individuals in your state. Government grants or financial assistance programs may be available to help offset the cost of a walk-in tub installation.
  7. Choose a Manufacturer with Included Installation: How can I save money on a walk-in tub installation? Select a manufacturer that includes installation in the overall cost and offers a price guarantee, such as Boca Walk-In Tub. This ensures that all necessary electrical and plumbing-related renovations are taken care of by the manufacturer, saving you from hiring additional contractors.
  8. Consider Luxury Wall Wrap-Arounds: Some manufacturers offer luxury wall wrap-arounds that eliminate the need for extensive renovations. Opting for this option can help save money on remodeling costs.

Remember, gathering multiple quotes and carefully reviewing all the details is crucial before making a final decision. By following these tips, you can find the best walk-in tub at a cost that fits your budget and meets your specific needs.

Best Walk-In Tubs Covered by Medicare

Does Medicare pay for walk-in tubs for seniors? Medicare’s coverage for these tubs is limited. However, there are specific situations where reimbursement may be possible. Let’s explore your options.

Medicare Reimbursement Process: 

To be considered for reimbursement, you must obtain a medical prescription from a healthcare provider that clearly states why you need the walk-in tub and specifies the specific features required. Discuss your particular needs with your healthcare provider to ensure the prescription accurately reflects your situation.

Additionally, provide Medicare with a letter of medical necessity from your healthcare provider, explaining why specific features are essential for your safety and well-being.

Medicare does not pay upfront for the walk-in tub. Instead, reimbursement is provided after you have purchased and installed the tub. However, reimbursement is not guaranteed, as there have been cases where Medicare denied reimbursement claims, leaving individuals responsible for the full cost of the walk-in tub. 

To better understand the specific coverage limitations and requirements in your situation, it’s advisable to contact Medicare or consult with a Medicare specialist.

Financial Assistance: 

While Medicare coverage for walk-in tubs is limited, there are alternative avenues for financial assistance that you can explore:

  1. Medicaid: Some Medicaid programs in certain states may cover part or all of the cost of a walk-in bathtub.
  2. Veterans Assistance: Veterans may be eligible for financial aid through grants or insurance programs such as TRICARE or CHAMPVA. Home modification grants for aging veterans may also assist. 
  3. USDA Rural Repair and Rehabilitation Grants: The USDA offers grants and loans for low-income aging adults in rural areas to make modifications that improve safety in their homes. Walk-in tubs may be eligible for this grant as they contribute to reducing the risk of slips and falls.
  4. Private Insurance: Some private insurance companies may cover some costs of walk-in tubs with a doctor’s prescription. Each insurer has different policies but often recommends lower-cost options to minimize overall costs.
  5. Payment Plans: Some walk-in tub companies offer payment plans, allowing for manageable payments over time. Review the terms and conditions of any payment plan carefully before agreeing to ensure a clear understanding of the total amount, payment frequency, and duration.

Research and understand your state’s Medicaid program options, coverage, and available financial assistance options before purchasing a walk-in tub. Contact your state’s Medicaid office and Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) for more information.

Best Walk-in Bathtubs Covered by Medicare: 

While Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co. is one example of a company that has reportedly helped customers navigate the reimbursement process and work with insurance providers, it’s always beneficial to explore multiple brands and gather information from other sources to make an informed decision.

Remember to consult with healthcare professionals and experts to find the best walk-in tub that suits your needs while maximizing available coverage options.

Walk-in-Tub Rating Factors

Criteria Possible Points
Cost / Value Rating
  • Most Expensive (over $12K) Tubs: 1-10
  • Mid-Range Cost $8K-$12K: 10-15 points
  • Under $8,000: 15-20 points(Combine Cost / Value
    A subjective rating)(Maximum: 20 points)
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews
  • Under 3.5 stars: 0 points
  • 3.5 to 4.5 stars: 1-5 points
  • Maximum: 6-10 points
    (Excluding company websites and paid advertisements)
    1-10 points are allocated based on the assessment of complaints about:

    • Installation scheduling
    • Customer service
    • Problems and malfunctions
    • Door leaks

    (Maximum: 20 points)

User Experience: Ease of Installation: 1.) Do they handle it all for you through their network of installers? Do they provide a free in-house assessment for a total quote and complete disclosures?

2.) Renovations Required or Can it fit in the same space as a regular bath? Do they provide a wrap-around wall making it easy to install?

3.) Fast-fill and Quick-drain Features: Are all the features present?

4.) Comfort: Assessing seating, jet strength and location, including heated seats and temperature control. Are the controls easy to reach?

(Maximum: 10 points)

Warranty Tubs are awarded points based on warranty factors. Higher points are given for longer durations, comprehensive coverage, transferability to new owners, low deductibles or service fees, and a straightforward claims process. (Maximum: 10 points)
BBB Rating and Accreditation
  • BBB A+ rating = 5
  • BBB accredited = 5

(Maximum: 10 points)

Material Rating: Evaluating the Quality of Walk-in Tub Materials

 

 

  • Stainless Steel: A durable and corrosion-resistant material, known for its strength and longevity.
  • Fiberglass: Lightweight and versatile material with good durability.
  • Acrylic: Highly popular material for walk-in tubs due to its durability, easy maintenance, and glossy appearance.
  • Gel Coat: Provides a smooth, glossy finish and good resistance to stains and scratches.
  • Complaints about poor quality material also taken into consideration. (Maximum: 10 points)
Expert Opinion Rating Expert Opinion Rating: Evaluating Walk-in Tub Based on Reviews, Expert Feedback, and Company Reputation.

(Maximum 20 Points)

Detailed Breakdown of the Top Ten Walk-in-Tubs

1. American Standard Walk-In Bath

american standard walk in bathtubs

Pros

  • Excellent Customer Service Reviews: American Standard walk-in tub customers have reported excellent customer service and response time.
  • Lifetime Warranty: American Standard walk-in tubs come with a lifetime warranty when installed by an American Standard-certified installer.
  • Fast Drain Technology: Quick drain technology allows for complete tub drainage within two minutes.
  • Wheelchair Accessibility: Options for outward-opening door models improve access for wheelchair users.
  • Self-Cleaning: American Standard walk-in tubs come with a self-cleaning sanitary ozone system.
  • Automatic Water Purging System: The purpose of the Automatic Water Purging System in American Standard tubs is to help maintain clean and hygienic bathing water by automatically removing any stagnant water that may remain in the pipes or jets after use.

Cons

  • Better Business Bureau (BBB) Reviews: American Standard is not BBB accredited and has an average customer review rating of 1 out of 5 stars, based on two customer reviews.
  • The Cost: It is somewhat difficult to get a baseline cost without contacting American Standard’s customer service, as there are many options, and the website does not allow for clear navigation for pricing information.
  • Overall Expense: American Standard tends to be higher in price than other walk-in tub companies.
  • Installation Time: The installation process can take longer than expected, sometimes up to several days, depending on the complexity of the installation.
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 18
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 18
User Experience 9
Warranty 10
BBB Rating and Accreditation 5
Durability and Quality of Material 10
Expert Opinion Rating 19
Total 89

2. Boca Walk-in Bath

Cost and Prices: Review Boca Walk in Tubs Baths and Showers

Pros

  • Free Online Quotes: To get a free quote visit BocaWalkInTubs.com and click Request a Quote or contact Boca walk-in tubs customer service
  • Strong Lifetime Warranty: Boca walk-in baths include a lifetime warranty, and it’s valid regardless of who installs it. This warranty covers most components, including the tub shell, tub door and seal, faucet, drain, controls, pumps, blowers, and heaters.
  • Low step-in threshold: Boca walk-in tubs have a low step-in threshold of two inches, making it easier and safer for people with mobility issues, such as seniors or those with disabilities, to enter and exit the tub.
  • Variety of Sizes: Boca walk-in tubs come in seven different sizes.
  • Companion bathing: Two-seat tub model, allowing you and your loved one to enjoy the bath together or for individuals who require assistance from a caregiver during bathing.
  • Comfortable Warmth: Heated surfaces for warmth when the tub fills and empties. There is no need to keep adding more hot water, making it energy efficient.
  • Safety Features: Boca tubs include safety features, including grab bars, slip-resistant surfaces, and anti-scald technology.
  • Discounts for Military: Active and retired veterans can get discounts on Boca walk-in tubs.

Cons

  • Lacks Transparency in Price on Website: There is a lack of transparency regarding the pricing of Boca walk-in baths on their website. To obtain a quote, you must contact the sales team of Boca walk-in tubs. (see its walk-in tub prices below)
  • Limited Availability: Can not purchase anywhere other than through a Boca dealer.
  • Accessibility Limitation: No wheelchair-accessible options.
  • Limited Colors: Boca walk-in bathtubs come in limited colors, including white and cream.
  • A la Carte Pricing: Each additional add-on will cost extra, including features such as Boca’s walk-in bath with a shower, chromotherapy, and heated seats.
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 18
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 18
User Experience 9
Warranty 10
BBB Rating and Accreditation 10
Durability and Quality of Material 9
Expert Opinion Rating 14
Total 88

3. Ella’s Bubbles Walk-in Tubs

Ella's Bubbles Reviews: Standard Walk-in tub with shower

Pros

  • Free online quotes.
  • Lifetime warranty for parts for the original owner.
  • Almost 30 models to choose from.
  • Two-seat tub models.
  • Wheelchair-accessible models.
  • Heated surfaces for additional warmth when the tub is filling and emptying.
  • Quick drain technology.
  • Foot and calf massage options.
  • Military discount offered.
  • Senior citizens discount offered.

Cons

  • It is difficult to get a baseline cost of Ella walk-in tubs without contacting customer service, as there are no prices listed online.
  • Ella’s Bubbles does not offer installation.
  • Some models have a higher step-in threshold of up to 7 inches.
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 19
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 19
User Experience 10
Warranty 5
BBB Rating and Accreditation 10
Durability and Quality of Material 9
Expert Opinion Rating 15
Total 87

4. Hydro Dimensions™️ Walk-In Tub

Hydro Dimensions Walk-in-Bathtub

Pros

  • 17 tub models to choose from
  • Various options to enhance your tub experience
  • High-design upgrades available
  • Pricing includes installation
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Built to order

Cons

  • Only available through dealers, so pricing and tub options will vary
  • 17 tub models to choose from (for some, this is a con)
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 10
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 19
User Experience 9
Warranty 9
BBB Rating and Accreditation 10
Durability and Quality of Material 9
Expert Opinion Rating 19
Total 85

5. Kohler Walk-in Bath

Considering a Kohler walk-in bath? Reviews from online can help you better understand how customers of this product rate it, helping you make an more informed buying decision.

Pros

  • Space-efficient, Easy-installation: The Kohler walk-in bath is designed to fit into the same space as a traditional bathtub, making it easy to install without extensive renovations.
  • Expert installation: Installation specialists are trained and certified by Kohler to install the walk-in bath and to handle all plumbing and electrical work.
  • Price Promise: Guarantees that the cost of your bath will be the same as the quote you received at your in-home appointment. No surprises on installation day!
  • Safe accessibility: With a low 3-inch step-in threshold and wide entry door, the Kohler walk-in bath is easy to enter and exit safely.
  • Comfortable and Cozy: Heated surfaces for additional warmth when the tub is filling and emptying.
  • Bariatric-friendly: A bariatric walk-in tub with a wider door and seat to accommodate larger bathers is available.

Cons

  • Limited transparency on pricing: The pricing for Kohler walk-in tubs can vary widely depending on the options chosen, making it challenging to determine a baseline cost without contacting customer service.
  • Restricted purchasing options: Kohler walk-in tubs are exclusively available through authorized Kohler dealers and are not sold in retail stores, which may limit accessibility for some customers.
  • Lack of wheelchair accessibility: Kohler currently does not offer specific models that cater to individuals who use wheelchairs, which may limit the options for those with mobility challenges.
  • Installation Costs: Installation costs for Kohler walk-in tubs can be expensive, ranging from $2,500 to $8,000 or more, depending on the complexity of the installation.
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 18
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 17
User Experience 9
Warranty 8
BBB Rating and Accreditation 3
Durability and Quality of Material 9
Expert Opinion Rating 18
Total 82

6. Independent Home Walk-in Tubs

Reviews: Independent Home Walk in Tubs Photo

Pros

  • Established brand: Independent Home walk-in tubs have been in business for 14 years and have a 5-Star Consumer Affairs rating based on 1,000+ reviews and an A+ BBB rating.
  • Accessible: Tubs are wheelchair accessible, featuring ADA-compliant seats, low thresholds, grab bars, and handrails.
  • Safe: Users stay safe thanks to anti-slip floors, an overflow valve, and a quick drain feature that can empty the tub in minutes.
  • Spa features: Chromatherapy, aromatherapy, hydrotherapy, heated seats, and backrests enhance the bathing experience.
  • Comfortable: Tub models feature extendable shower wands and faucets within arm’s reach. An electronic keypad makes it simple to change bubbles, jets, and other controls.
  • Warranty: Lifetime warranty options are available for each purchase.

Cons

  • Independent Home walk-in tub complaints: BBB illustrates 33 complaints filed against Independent Home. Complaints related to warranty problems, leaks, missing or broken parts, and difficulty reaching customer service.
  • Water heater issues: The spacious capacity of this tub may affect water heater efficiency for some people.
  • No online pricing: Independent Home walk-in tub prices must be obtained after an in-home consultation.
  • No monitoring tools: These tubs don’t feature devices that can alert other family members if issues arise
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 18
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 18
User Experience 8
Warranty 9
BBB Rating and Accreditation 10
Durability and Quality of Material 9
Expert Opinion Rating 9
Total 81

7. Safe Step Walk-In Tub

Safe Step Walk In Tubs Reviews, Complaints, Cost and More

Pros

  • Luxury and safety features: Safe Step walk-in tubs feature unique additions like the Microsoothe® Air Therapy System, chromotherapy, and massage hydro-jets without sacrificing safety needs like grab bars and slip-proof flooring.
  • Accessibility: Low entry thresholds, wheelchair-accessible seating, and all the features you need within reach make these tubs friendly to those with disabilities.
  • Quick drains and faucets: Fill and empty tubs easily thanks to highly efficient drain and faucet systems.
  • Options: Customers can choose from three distinct models, selecting the tub, shower, or Safe Step’s walk-in tub and shower combination model, based on their preferred lifestyle.
  • Potential for Medicare coverage: While getting Medicare coverage for walk-in tubs can be difficult to obtain and exclusive to specific medical needs, Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co. offers assistance to their customers in the reimbursement process and can even work directly with your coverage provider.

Cons

  • High price point: As luxury walk-in tubs, Safe Step products come with a higher price tag than other options.
  • Limited hydro-jets: While other brands may sell tubs with 15 or more jets, Safe Step models come with fewer hydro-jets.
  • Inconsistent customer experiences: Customer reviews on Safe Step walk-in tubs are more mixed and generally lower than options from other leading brands.
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 12
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 17
User Experience 8
Warranty 9
BBB Rating and Accreditation 10
Durability and Quality of Material 8
Expert Opinion Rating 9
Total 73

8. Meditub Walk-in Tubs

Meditub Walk-in Tub Reviews are a smart place to start your research as you contemplate purchasing a walk in bath because you'll get details that the company may not share on its website. For example, customer complaints won't be shared on Meditub's website. In the following Meditub walk in tub review you'll get both the good and the bad.

Pros

  • Free online quotes.
  • Lifetime guarantee on the door seal.
  • The low step-in threshold is 3.5 to 7 inches, depending on the model.
  • 15 models to choose from.
  • Wheelchair-accessible models.
  • Inline friction water heater on all hydrotherapy units.
  • Offers one of the smallest and most affordable walk-in tubs for seniors: The Meditub 2646 Series tub for $3,048.34!
  • Lowest prices compared to other top walk-in bath brands.
  • Meditub is willing to reduce its prices and extend its warranty period to get a sale, allowing consumers to get lower prices.

Cons

  • It is difficult to get a baseline cost of Meditub walk-in tubs without contacting customer service, as there are no prices listed on Meditub’s website. (see details on cost below)
  • Poor customer ratings on Better Business Bureau.
  • Overall, there are few customer reviews about Meditub walk-in tubs online, making it difficult for people to evaluate the product.
  • Some walk-in tub models have a high step-in threshold compared to others on the market.
  • Meditub does not install walk-in baths. Therefore, customers must outsource the work, finding their own contractors to install the tub.
  • Meditub’s warranty policy for replacement parts is only one year. (See details below about its warranty for additional information)
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 17
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 12
User Experience 6
Warranty 9
BBB Rating and Accreditation 10
Durability and Quality of Material 8
Expert Opinion Rating 9
Total 71

9. Costco Walk-In Tubs

Costco Tub Pic

Pros

  • Competitive pricing due to Costco’s buying power
  • Access to Costco’s reliable customer service
  • Quality assurance with Costco’s return policy
  • Includes dual drain technology for fast fill and drain.

Cons

  • Limited selection compared to specialized retailers
  • Membership is required to purchase
  • Installation not included
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 16
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 12
User Experience 6
Warranty 9
BBB Rating and Accreditation 7
Durability and Quality of Material 8
Expert Opinion Rating 12
Total 70

10. Home Depot Walk-in Tubs

Home Depot Walk In Tubs and Showers Review, Installation Cost and Comparison Guide for 2023

Pros

  • Expanded Range of Options: Home Depot offers a variety of brands for walk-in tubs, providing you with more choices to suit your needs.
  • Access to Customer Reviews: The ability to access ratings and unbiased Home Depot walk-in bath customer reviews helps you evaluate your options and make an informed decision.
  • Comparison Shopping: You can compare prices received in a quote with those listed online to find the best deal for your desired walk-in tub.
  • Expedited Shipping: Home Depot’s large-scale operation may facilitate faster shipping, ensuring prompt delivery of your walk-in tub.
  • Military Discount: Active military, veterans, and their spouses can enjoy a 10% discount, up to $400 annually, on eligible purchases of walk-in tubs at Home Depot.

Cons

  • Limited Room for Negotiation: Home Depot’s established prices for walk-in tubs leave little room for negotiation, reducing the possibility of obtaining a lower cost.
  • Lack of Customization: Purchasing premade models from Home Depot may restrict your ability to add custom features to your walk-in tub.
  • Potential Higher Cost: Home Depot’s pricing for certain walk-in tubs might be inflated to generate profits for the store.
  • Installation Coordination: Coordinating installation either through outsourcing labor or working within Home Depot’s system may introduce additional steps and complexities.
  • Delivery Issues: Several customer reviews raise concerns about items arriving damaged, missing parts, or having defects when purchasing walk-in tubs from Home Depot.
  • Limited Warranty Coverage: The warranty offered by Home Depot for walk-in tubs may not provide as extensive coverage as warranties offered directly by manufacturers.
Criteria Points
Cost / Value Rating 13
Reputation, Customer Service & Reviews 12
User Experience 6
Warranty 8
BBB Rating and Accreditation 10
Durability and Quality of Material 8
Expert Opinion Rating 12
Total 69

Frequently Asked Questions

How to Get a Free Walk-In Tub?

For seniors, walk-in tubs can be considered “medically necessary.” If that’s the case for you or one of your family members, here are some ways to help you get a free walk-in tub. 

Best Ways to Get a Walk-In Tub For Free:

  1. Nonprofit Organizations: Some nonprofit organizations, such as disability support groups or organizations focused on helping seniors, may offer programs or grants to assist individuals in acquiring a free walk-in tub. These organizations aim to improve accessibility and quality of life for individuals with mobility issues. Research local and national nonprofits that specialize in assisting individuals with disabilities or seniors in inquiring about any available programs or financial assistance.
  2. Government Assistance Programs: Government assistance programs may provide financial aid or grants for home modifications, including walk-in tub installations. These programs are typically targeted at low-income individuals or those with specific disabilities. Contact your local government agencies or housing departments to inquire about any available programs and eligibility criteria.
  3. Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Waivers: Medicaid waivers vary by state but may cover the cost of home modifications, including walk-in tubs, for eligible individuals. HCBS waivers are designed to support individuals who require long-term care services but prefer to receive them in their own homes instead of institutional settings. California, Texas, Colorado, Florida, Ohio, and New York are examples of states that provide financial support to seniors who require long-term care services and may cover the cost of home modifications, including walk-in tubs. 
  4. Veterans Administration (VA) Benefits: Veterans who qualify for VA benefits may be eligible for financial assistance for home modifications, including walk-in tubs. The VA offers various programs and grants, such as the Veterans Directed Home and Community Based Services (VD-HCBS), that provide flexibility in using allocated funds for necessary home modifications. Contact your local VA office or visit their website to explore available benefits and programs.
  5. Manufacturer’s Assistance Programs: Some walk-in tub manufacturers offer assistance programs or discounts for individuals who meet specific criteria. These programs are typically aimed at individuals with limited financial means or specific medical conditions. Research different manufacturers and reach out to them directly to inquire about any available programs or discounts.
  6. Fundraising and Community Support: Engaging your community through fundraising efforts or seeking support from local organizations, churches, or charitable groups might help you raise funds to cover the cost of a walk-in tub. Consider organizing events, creating online fundraising campaigns, or reaching out to community leaders who may be willing to support your cause.

Getting a free walk-in tub can be a challenging task. Be prepared to research, gather documentation, and potentially wait for resources or funding opportunities. Exploring multiple avenues and getting advice from professionals, such as social workers or disability advocates, can increase your chances of finding a suitable solution. 

What are the best walk-in tubs covered by Medicare?

Getting Reimbursement for Your Walk-in Tub with Medicare

While Medicare typically doesn’t directly cover walk-in tubs, there are potential avenues for reimbursement if it’s deemed medically necessary. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Medicare Advantage plans and supplemental insurance: Certain plans may offer coverage for walk-in tubs if they are medically necessary. If you have mobility issues, difficulty walking, a high risk of falling, or severe arthritis, making bathing challenging, you may qualify. Contact your insurance provider to check if this option is available to you.
  2. Doctor’s letter describing medical condition: Ask your doctor for a letter of recommendation outlining the “medical reason” why you need the walk-in bathtub. This letter should explain your medical condition and the benefits of the tub in treating it. Provide a copy of this letter to your insurance provider or local Medicare office. 
  3. Trusted walk-in tub manufacturers: Companies like Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co. and American Tubs have a proven record of assisting customers with reimbursement. Online customer reviews indicate their success in helping seniors work with insurance providers to get walk-in tubs covered.
  4. Explore Medicaid assistance: If you qualify for Medicaid, your state program may provide financial aid for purchasing and installing a walk-in tub. Medicaid acknowledges the importance of safety and accessibility, considering walk-in tubs as a medical necessity.
  5. Tax deductions: In some cases, the cost of a walk-in tub and its installation may be tax-deductible as a medical expense. Consult with a tax professional to ensure you meet the requirements and can take advantage of potential deductions.
How much is a walk in tub for seniors?

walk in bathtubs cost: Safe Step vs American Standard walk-in tubs reviews

The cost of a walk-in bathtub for seniors depends on various factors, including the tub’s size, features, installation requirements, and customization options. Additional features such as air jets, hydrotherapy massage jets, acrylic material, and the inclusion of a shower can all contribute to the overall cost. Acrylic is commonly used for high-end walk-in tubs due to its durability and elegant appearance.

According to our research at Trusted Company Reviews, the average cost for a walk-in bathtub, including installation, is $8,700.

Next, let’s examine what other industry-leading review websites and experts have to say about the cost.

Retirement Living states that basic walk-in tubs typically range from $2,500 to $5,000, while higher-end models with advanced features can cost $10,000 or more. Installation costs are usually not included in these figures and can vary based on location and complexity.

Modernize provides a breakdown of walk-in tub costs, stating that standard tub installations range from $1,500 to $5,000, while premium models with additional features can cost between $5,000 and $20,000. This estimate includes both the tub and installation expenses.

The National Council on Aging (NCOA) mentions that basic walk-in tub models can start around $1,500, while more luxurious options can exceed $10,000. Additionally, installation costs typically range from $700 to $1,500, depending on the project’s complexity and necessary bathroom modifications.

When requesting a price quote, it is recommended to contact the manufacturer directly. Some companies, like Safe Step, may schedule an in-house assessment to evaluate the location and customize the tub based on your specifications before giving you a quote.

What are the disadvantages of a walk-in tub?

Based on customer reviews and complaints online, here are the nine biggest disadvantages of walk-in bathtubs to consider:

  1. Installation can be complex and may involve electrical and plumbing work.
  2. Walk-in tubs tend to hold more water than traditional bathtubs, resulting in increased water usage.
  3. The cost of walk-in tubs is generally higher compared to regular bathtubs.
  4. Medicare coverage may not extend to walk-in tubs.
  5. There is a risk of water leakage if the door is not properly closed prior to turning on the water.
  6. Temperature control can be challenging since the tub needs to be filled before use, and the water temperature may increase while waiting for it to fill.
  7. Some customers have reported difficulties in cleaning the tub or managing maintenance-related issues.
  8. According to certain medical professionals, walk-in tubs may not be suitable for individuals with high or low blood pressure or those with pacemakers.
  9. You may need to buy a larger water heater, which can be very expensive.

Please note that these disadvantages are based on customer reviews and complaints, and individual experiences may vary. It’s important to thoroughly research and consider these factors before deciding on a walk-in bathtub.

How does a walk-in tub work?

Using a walk-in tub is relatively straightforward. Just open the tub door, similar to opening a car door. Step inside by crossing a small threshold of about 3-4 inches. Close the door behind you and either sit down or stand up, depending on your preference. There are also walk-in tubs available that combine a tub and shower, allowing seniors to comfortably sit, recline, and shower all in one tub.

Certain walk-in tubs offer luxurious features such as massage jets and heated seats to enhance relaxation. However, the most important aspect of walk-in tubs for senior citizens is their safety features. These tubs are equipped with grab bars strategically placed within reach, ensuring you have something to hold onto while in the tub. Everything, including the faucets, is designed to be easily reachable from your seat.

You might be wondering about water spilling out when you open the door to exit the tub. The best walk-in tubs are designed with special technology for fast draining and quick filling. Some tubs, like Ellas Bubbles and Costco’s Access Tubs, claim to drain in as little as 2-3 minutes, or even faster.

Overall, walk-in tubs are user-friendly, comfortable and prioritize safety for seniors, making bathing a more enjoyable and secure experience.

How to clean a walk-in tub?

How to Clean a Walk-In Tub: Tips to Follow

Proper maintenance and regular cleaning are essential for keeping your walk-in tub clean, safe, and in optimal condition. We have gathered information from reputable sources such as Safe Step, American Standard, and Ellas Bubbles to ensure that you have the most accurate and reliable information for maintaining your walk-in tub.

Daily Cleaning: After each use, perform a quick surface-level cleaning to ensure that your tub remains clean and ready for the next use. 

Follow these steps:

  1. Rinse off the tub and fixtures with warm water. Try to remove any body oils or soap residue, just like you would clean your normal tub. 
  2. Set the shower wand to “warm” and thoroughly rinse out the tub.

Weekly or Monthly Cleaning: To remove any built-up soap residue, body oils, or other materials, a deeper cleaning is recommended on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Fill your tub with hot water to about seat height.
  2. Add 2-3 tablespoons of low-foaming detergent, such as dishwasher granules.
  3. Run the jets for 10-15 minutes to activate the detergent.

After running the soap throughout the tub, drain it completely, refill it with clean water, and run the jets for another 15 minutes to serve as a rinse cycle.

Deep Cleaning: Performing a deep cleaning of your walk-in tub every one to two months ensures that all components continue to function properly and the tub stays as clean as possible. Follow these steps for a thorough deep cleaning:

  1. Fill the tub to seat height.
  2. Put on rubber gloves and wear safety glasses to protect yourself from splashing.
  3. Add two tablespoons of dishwashing detergent granules and half a cup of bleach.
  4. Continue filling the tub with hot water until the water level is above the jets.
  5. Run the jets for 10-15 minutes to activate the detergent.
  6. Afterward, let them sit for 5 minutes before running the jets for an additional 15 minutes.
  7. Drain the tub. Refill it with clean water.
  8. Run the jets with clean water for about 15 minutes to thoroughly rinse the tub.

Important Reminders: When cleaning your walk-in tub, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Avoid using harsh scrubbers or abrasive tools that can scratch the tub’s surface. Instead, use mild household detergents like dishwashing detergent.
  • Light scratches or dull areas can be restored by rubbing an automotive cleaning compound into the affected areas.
  • Never run the jets when the tub is dry.

Conclusion: Proper cleaning and maintenance keeps your walk-in tub clean, hygienic, and functioning optimally. By following these guidelines, your walk-in tub remains a safe and relaxing haven for years to come. Remember to consult your tub’s manufacturer for specific cleaning instructions and recommendations.

Are Walk-in Tubs Worth the Money?

Top-rated walk-in bathtubs for seniors offer a combination of –

  • 1.) safety
  • 2.) comfort
  • 3.) luxury
  • 4.) therapeutic benefits.

That sounds like a lot from a bathtub, but does it justify the cost?

The average cost of a walk-in tub, including installation, is around $8,700. Not cheap!

However, despite the high cost of a walk-in tub, the long-term benefits tailored to seniors’ needs make it a worthwhile investment. Let’s explore this point in a little more detail.

Falls are the leading cause of injuries among older adults, making safety a primary advantage [8]. These tubs can prevent falls and potential injuries. Just imagine how many people are saved from severe injuries and even death in a year due to some of these top-rated walk-in tubs. We’re talking thousands.

But in addition to the safety benefits of a walk-in tub, seniors can also reap the following:

  • A luxurious spa-like experience with whirlpool jets for massages
  • Aromatherapy for holistic healing
  • Chromotherapy for emotional and mental well-being
  • Therapeutic benefits, such as whirlpool massage jets providing hydrotherapy which, also helps reduce arthritis pain, according to the National Library of Medicine [3].
  • Accessibility for older adults who have trouble walking and wheelchair-handicapped people
  • Independence, privacy, and dignity!
Are Walk-in Tubs Tax Deductible?

Yes, walk-in tubs can be tax deductible if purchased and installed in your home for an older person or someone with a disability who requires a special bathtub for health or safety reasons. To claim the deduction, you must provide medical proof, such as a documented letter from a doctor, to support the claim.

Here are the steps to claim a walk-in tub as a tax deduction for a senior or person with a disability:

Step 1: Verify Medical Necessity: Obtain a written statement from a doctor confirming the medical necessity of the walk-in tub for the individual’s health and well-being.

Step 2: Understand Tax Regulations: Familiarize yourself with the tax regulations governing medical expenses and deductions, particularly the guidelines provided by the IRS for claiming deductions under Medical and Dental Expense rules. For more information visit the IRS website here.

Step 3: Gather Documentation: Collect all relevant documentation related to the purchase and installation of the walk-in tub, including receipts, invoices, and any supporting documents that demonstrate the cost of the tub and its installation.

Step 4: Calculate Eligible Expenses: Determine the total amount of eligible expenses, including the purchase price, installation fees, and any modifications made to accommodate the tub.

Step 5: Evaluate Eligibility Criteria: Assess whether the total medical expenses, including the cost of the walk-in tub, exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) for the tax year. If they meet or exceed this threshold, they may qualify for deduction.

Step 6: Consult a Tax Professional: Seek guidance from a qualified tax professional or accountant to ensure a proper understanding and application of the tax laws and regulations related to medical expense deductions.

Step 7: File Taxes: Complete the appropriate sections or forms related to medical expenses on your federal income tax return. Provide the necessary information, including the amount of eligible expenses and any required supporting documentation as specified by the IRS.

Step 8: Maintain Records: Keep copies of all documentation and records pertaining to the purchase and installation of the walk-in tub. These records will serve as evidence in case of an audit or future inquiries from the IRS.

Remember that tax laws can change, so it’s important to stay updated and consult with a tax professional to ensure compliance with the current rules and to maximize your potential deductions.

Does a walk-in tub devalue your home?

Here’s why a walk-in tub is worth it and doesn’t hurt resale value:

  1. Increased Home Value: Adding a new tub to your home generally increases its resale value. Potential buyers appreciate the convenience and accessibility offered by a walk-in tub, especially if they include seniors or families with small children. By providing a desirable feature, you may attract a wider range of interested buyers and potentially sell your home at a higher price.
  2. Aging Population: With the aging population, there is an increasing demand for homes that cater to the needs of older adults. Walk-in tubs are specifically designed to enhance safety and accessibility, making them an attractive feature for seniors or individuals with limited mobility. By incorporating a walk-in tub, you make your home more appealing to a growing demographic.
  3. Multi-Generational Benefits: Walk-in tubs aren’t just beneficial for seniors. They provide safety and convenience for people of all ages. Families with young children or individuals with disabilities can also benefit from the accessibility features offered by a walk-in tub. This versatility adds value to your home and appeals to a broader range of potential buyers.
  4. Lifestyle Enhancement: Beyond the potential financial benefits, a walk-in tub enhances the quality of life for you and your loved ones. The therapeutic features such as massage jets and hydrotherapy can alleviate muscle tension, reduce pain, and offer therapeutic benefits to individuals of all ages. You will look forward to taking a bath every night as if it’s “spa time!” 
How many gallons does a walk-in tub hold?

A regular bath in a standard bathtub can typically hold an average of 40 to 60 gallons of water. Walk-in tubs, on the other hand, generally have a capacity ranging from 40 to 80 gallons. For two-person walk-in tubs, the capacity usually increases to around 70 to 100 gallons of water.

What are the biggest complaints about walk in tubs?

Here are the biggest complaints about walk-in tubs, as reported by users:

  1. High cost: Walk-in tubs can be more expensive than traditional bathtubs due to specialized features and installation requirements, requiring a significant upfront investment.
  2. Limited space: Walk-in tubs require more bathroom space, which can be challenging for smaller bathrooms, potentially requiring additional remodeling or fixture rearrangement.
  3. Longer filling and draining times: Walk-in tubs hold more water, resulting in longer filling and draining times, which some users find inconvenient.
  4. Limited mobility inside the tub: While providing convenient entry and exit, some users find the interior space of walk-in tubs more confined, limiting mobility and maneuverability.
  5. Maintenance and repairs: Like any complex plumbing fixture, walk-in tubs may require occasional maintenance or repairs, particularly for components like door seals, faucets, or jets that may need professional assistance.
  6. Temperature fluctuations: Some users have experienced fluctuations in water temperature during bathing, which can be influenced by factors like water heater capacity, plumbing system, or tub design.
  7. Installation delays: Some consumers have faced significant delays in the installation of their walk-in tubs, waiting for several months beyond the expected timeframe.
  8. Rejected warranty claims: Customers have reported instances of warranty claims being rejected, especially for missing parts, leaks, or breakage attributed to poor-quality materials that were not covered by the warranty.
  9. Weak Jets: Many older individuals suffering from arthritis who desire a deep tissue massage often express dissatisfaction with the perceived lack of strength in the jets. To experience stronger massage jets, it is necessary to request an upgrade to higher horsepower jets. Meditub walk-in bathtubs provide customers with the option to enhance jet strength, increasing it from 1 horsepower to 1.5 horsepower for an additional cost of $250.

Considering these factors is crucial when purchasing a walk-in tub. Thorough research, reading reviews, consulting professionals, and comparing different models can help you find a tub that meets your needs while minimizing the likelihood of experiencing these complaints.

In recent news, falls among seniors have been a growing concern. Walk-in tubs can provide a safer bathing experience, reducing the risk of falls and promoting independence. Stay informed and take steps towards a safer and more enjoyable bathing routine with the right walk-in tub for you.

Do Walk In Bathtubs Leak:

If you search online for “walk-in tub leak complaints,” you’ll find plenty of stories to read. For instance, take a look at Safe Step’s BBB profile and read reviews mentioning “leak.”
While leaks in walk-in bathtubs can happen, they are not common. Here’s what you should know:
Choose quality: To minimize the chances of leaks, select a well-built walk-in bathtub from a reliable manufacturer.
Professional installation: Proper installation by certified installers and experienced plumbers helps prevent leaks.
Regular maintenance: Check seals and connections regularly, following the manufacturer’s maintenance guidelines, to keep them in good condition.
Seek assistance if needed: If you notice any leaks or water seepage, reach out to a professional plumber or technician for help.
Remember, reputable walk-in tubs have effective sealing mechanisms to reduce the risk of leaks. By choosing a quality tub, ensuring proper installation, maintaining it regularly, and seeking professional assistance when necessary, you can minimize the chances of leaks.
It’s worth noting that while leaks can occur, most issues can be easily resolved by replacing a part. Therefore, it is essential to purchase a walk-in tub from a reliable manufacturer that offers a strong warranty covering parts and labor for at least 10-15 years. This ensures peace of mind and customer satisfaction.

Can the VA Pay for a Walk-In Tub?

If you’re a veteran needing a walk-in tub and require financial assistance, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers programs to help. Here’s what you should know:
Specially Adapted Housing (SAH) Grants: SAH grants assist eligible veterans with service-connected disabilities in making home modifications for enhanced accessibility. Walk-in tubs can significantly improve bathing for individuals with mobility issues, making them potentially eligible for this program.
Home Improvements and Structural Alterations (HISA) Grants: HISA grants support veterans in making necessary home modifications for medical treatment or disability-related accessibility. To be considered for coverage, obtain a letter from your doctor explaining the necessity of a walk-in bathtub for your health condition.
These VA programs provide financial support to make walk-in tubs more accessible to veterans. For detailed information, including any available discounts for veterans, contact the VA directly or consult with a Veterans Service Organization.

AdultReferences:

  1. National Institute on Aging. Aging in Place: Tips on Making Home Safe and Accessible: https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/infographics/aging-place-tips-making-home-safe-and-accessible
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). Important Facts about Falls. https://blogs.cdc.gov/publichealthmatters/2017/06/take-a-stand-against-older-adult-falls/
  3. National Library of Medicine. The effectiveness of hydrotherapy in the management of rheumatoid arthritis: a systematic review. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22806987/
  4. Arthritis Foundation. Safe Step walk-in tub, https://www.arthritis.org/partnership/ease-of-use-products/safe-step-walk-in-tub/
  5. American Standard. Walk-In Baths. https://www.americanstandard-us.com/bathroom/walk-in-tubs/
  6. Kohler. Walk-In Baths for the elderly. https://www.kohlerwalkinbath.com/
  7. Boca Walk-in Tubs. https://www.bocawalkintubs.com/
  8. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2021). Deaths from older adult falls. https://www.cdc.gov/falls/data/fall-deaths.html