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7 Biggest Pros & Cons of Cast Iron freestanding Tubs

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White rectangular cast iron double ended pedestal tub on a brown wooden floor against a white wooden wall
Aqua Eden 72″ x 32″ Pedestal Soaking Bathtub by Kingston Brass. See it at Wayfair

Cast iron tubs offer numerous benefits that make them a great investment for any bathroom. Made from high-quality materials, these tubs are built to last and can withstand the wear and tear of daily use.

Unlike other types of tubs, cast iron tubs are able to retain heat for longer periods of time, which means you can enjoy a longer, more relaxing soak.

Key Takeaways

  • Cast iron tubs are durable and built to last, making them a great investment for any bathroom.
  • These tubs are known for their heat retention, allowing for longer, more relaxing soaks.
  • While there are some drawbacks to cast iron tubs, such as their weight and cost, the benefits often outweigh these factors.

4 Benefits of Cast Iron Tubs

White cast iron claw foot tub used as a plant pot filled with deep pink flowers

If you’re considering a new bathtub, cast iron tubs are a great option. They have many great benefits that make them a popular choice for homeowners.

I spoke to Terin Lewis, a showroom sales consultant at Expressions Home Gallery by Reece in Austin, Texas. She told me:

“The best bathtub material depends on what you’re looking for. Cast iron is great for retaining heat just like stone composite tubs. Cast iron models typically have a more traditional look, whereas stone resin tubs come in different shapes and sizes. Acrylic tubs tend to be lighter and available in a variety of shapes, sizes and styles.”

Let’s have a look at some of the benefits of cast iron tubs:

1. Chip and Scratch-resistant

Cast iron is a durable material that is resistant to chips and scratches. This means that your cast iron bathtub will look great for years to come, even with regular use. The enamel coating on cast iron bathtubs is also chip and scratch-resistant, which further protects the tub from damage.

2. Retains Heat Well

Cast iron is an excellent material for retaining heat, which means that your bathwater will stay warm for longer. This is great for those who enjoy long, relaxing baths. Cast iron tubs also have a porcelain enamel finish, which helps to insulate the tub and keep the water warm.

3. Quiet While Filling

Cast iron tubs are known for being quiet while filling up with water. This is because the cast iron material absorbs sound, which means that you won’t hear the loud gurgling or splashing sounds that you might hear with other types of tubs.

4. Long Lasting

Cast iron tubs are built to last. They are extremely durable and can withstand years of use without showing signs of wear and tear. Always clean your cast iron bathtub with a gentle cleaner to avoid damaging the enamel coating. With proper care and maintenance, a cast iron bathtub can last for decades.

This table summarizes all the great benefits of cast iron tubs:

Cast Iron Tub Features
Chip and scratch resistanceYes
Heat retentionExcellent
Noise level while fillingQuiet
LongevityLong-lasting

3 Disadvantages of Cast Iron Tubs

Acrylic vs Cast Iron Tub

Cast iron tubs are known for their durability and classic look, but they do come with some drawbacks that you should consider before making a purchase.

1. Cast iron tubs Can Crack

One of the biggest drawbacks of a cast iron tub is that it can crack. While cast iron is a strong and durable material, it is also brittle and can crack under pressure. This is especially true if the tub is not properly supported or if it is dropped during installation.

If your cast iron tub does crack, it can be expensive to repair or replace. You may need to hire a professional to fix the crack, and the cost can add up quickly.

2. Cast Iron Tubs are Very Heavy

Cast iron tubs are very heavy, which can make installation difficult. You may need to hire a professional to help you install the tub, and you may need to reinforce your bathroom floor to support the weight of the tub.

Transporting a cast iron tub can also be a challenge due to its weight. You may need to hire a professional moving company to transport the tub, which can add to the overall cost of the tub.

3. Cast Iron Tubs have Limited Shapes and Sizes

Another drawback of cast iron tubs is that they come in limited shapes and sizes. While you can find cast iron tubs in a variety of styles, they are typically only available in standard sizes.

If you have a small bathroom or an unusual space, you may have trouble finding a cast iron tub that fits your needs. If you need a tub with a unique shape or design, you may need to look at other materials.

Alternatives to Cast Iron Bathtubs

White oval freestanding tub on a white tiled floor in front of a colorful wall
Gloria 2 Freestanding Acrylic Bathtub. See it at Aquatica

While cast-iron bathtubs are a popular choice due to their durability and classic look, there are other options available that may better suit your needs. Here are a few alternatives to consider:

Double-Walled Acrylic Bathtubs

If you’re looking for a lightweight and affordable option, a double-walled acrylic bathtub may be a good choice for you. These bathtubs are made of a durable acrylic material that is resistant to scratches and stains, and they are easy to clean and maintain.

Double-walled acrylic freestanding bathtubs are available in a variety of colors and styles, making it easy to find one that matches your bathroom decor.

Acrylic bathtubs can be prone to cracking and fading over time. They are also less heat-retentive than cast iron, meaning the water may cool down faster. If you’re looking for a bathtub that will last for decades, cast iron may be a better option.

Solid Surface Bathtubs

Solid surface bathtubs (also called stone resin) are a luxurious option that are made of a composite material that includes crushed stone and resin. They are known for their durability and resistance to scratches and stains and are available in a variety of colors and styles, making it easy to find one that matches your bathroom decor.

Solid surface bathtubs are typically more expensive than cast iron or acrylic options. They are heavy and may require additional support during installation. If you’re looking for a high-end bathtub that will last for decades, a stone resin bathtub may be a good choice.

Comparison Table

Keep in mind that each bathtub material has its own pros and cons. Consider your budget, style preferences, and maintenance needs when choosing the best bathtub for your home.

The below table provides a quick breakdown of each tub material type:

Bathtub MaterialDurabilityWeightHeat RetentionPrice Range
Cast IronVery durableHeavyExcellent$500.00 – $10,000.00
Double-Walled AcrylicLess durableLightweightFair$200.00 – $17,000.00
Solid SurfaceVery durableHeavyExcellent$1000.00 – $4,000.00

Find out the price and installation costs of your perfect tub using this handy cost calculator from homewyse.

Top Picks For Cast Iron Tubs

1. Best Cast Iron Soaking Tub

White clawfoot cast iron soaking tub on a dark brown wooden floor

Callaway Clawfoot Soaking Tub

The Callaway cast iron oval-shaped soaking tub is designed for comfort. With an overall length of 61″ (154.9 cm) and a soaking depth of 13.5″ (34.2 cm), this slipper tub has a gently sloped backrest for maximum relaxation.

The interior of the tub is coated with white porcelain enamel, and the exterior is hand-smoothed and painted white. The feet of this freestanding clawfoot tub are cast iron and powder coated. An extended pop-up overflow drain is included, and overflow and faucet holes are pre-cut

The finishes are available in a variety of colors allowing you to mix and match with your current decor. The overall effect is a stunning focal point in any bathroom.


2. Best Cast Iron Double Ended Slipper Tub

7 Biggest Pros & Cons of Cast Iron freestanding Tubs

Cambridge Double Ended Slipper Tub

The Cambridge 71″ (180.3 cm) cast iron double-ended slipper tub is great value for money. It comes as a complete package – a freestanding tub filler with a hand-held shower, and all the assembly hardware is included.

Crafted from cast iron with a brushed finish, a white porcelain interior, and a soaking depth of 16″ (40.6 cm), this tub is large enough for 2 people to bathe comfortably.

As this is a freestanding tub, installation is not difficult. but you will require the services of a professional plumber. A full manufacturer’s warranty is provided with the tub.


3. Best Cast Iron Pedestal Tub

Black freestanding cast iron pedestal tub

Fernando Cast Iron Pedestal Tub

This freestanding cast iron pedestal tub is designed to be the focal point of your bathroom. The tub is available in a matte black finish, but custom painting is available, allowing you to match your existing bathroom decor.

The double slipper design with a riveted metal skirt is beautiful to look at but is functional, too, with a soaking depth of 15.6″ (39.6 cm), providing a comfortable bathing experience for 2 bathers at a time.

A pre-drilled overflow and a center drain are provided with this tub, but faucet drillings are not provided. Match this tub with a stylish floor-mounted tub for extra comfort and style.

Is a Freestanding Cast Iron Tub The Right Tub For Me?

Cast iron tubs are a great choice for those who are looking for a durable, long-lasting bathtub that retains heat well and is quiet while filling up with water. The chip and scratch-resistant enamel coating on cast iron bathtubs helps to protect the tub from damage, which means that it will look great for years to come. If you’re looking for a bathtub that combines style and functionality, a cast iron tub is definitely worth considering.

Tags: benefits of cast iron tubs, cast iron bathtubs, freestanding tubs

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