|55 Hours of Research
|22 Walk-In Tubs Considered
|5 Ranking Criteria Evaluated
|10 Finalists Selected
What You Should Know About Walk-In Tubs
- According to the Centers for Disease Control, 36 million falls are reported among seniors every year throughout the United States.
- Walk-in tubs are an option for reducing the chances of a fall in the bathroom.
- Walk-in tubs feature a hinged door that allows seniors to step in without stepping over the rim of the tub.
- According to Consumer Reports, walk-in tubs can cost $15,000 or more, including an inspection, plumbing modifications, and installation.
- A variety of financial assistance options are available to help seniors pay for a walk-in tub and its installation.
Soaking in a nice warm bath is a great way to relax after a stressful day and relieve pain that’s caused by arthritis, overused muscles and numerous injuries, which is why many physicians and physiotherapists recommend hydrotherapy. Unfortunately, many seniors and people with limited mobility are unable to use traditional bathtubs due to the high risk of slipping and falling as well as difficulties getting in and out of a tub.
The good news is that walk-in tubs offer the perfect solution for anyone who wants to enjoy a bath or whirlpool in comfort and safety. These tubs are common in care facilities for seniors, and there are now a number of walk-in tubs available for residential use that range in price from about $2,000 to $10,000 plus the costs of installation.
Today’s walk-in tubs come in a variety of styles and include an assortment of features, such as whirlpool jets, heated seats and backrests, LED colored light therapy systems, retractable shower heads and integrated water heaters. There are models designed to retrofit directly into an existing bathtub space, and units that can even accommodate two bathers at once. Although walk-in tubs tend to be marketed towards seniors, adults of all ages may want to take a look at these premium bathtubs when planning a bathroom renovation.
How We Chose the Best Walk-In Tubs
Our research team looked at a number of factors when coming up with our picks for the best walk-in tubs. At first glance, many of these tubs offer similar features at comparable price points, so we identified a number of factors to narrow down our choices.
With prices starting at around $2,000 plus installation costs, a walk-in bathtub is a major investment. We’ve included walk-in tubs geared towards a wide variety of budgets, so consumers can pick the one that meets their particular needs and budget.
While almost all the walk-in tub manufacturers have impressive marketing materials promoting their products, we believe actual customer experiences provide an accurate reflection of the quality and usability of a walk-in tub. That’s why we took the time to find out what real-world consumers had to say about each of the walk-in tubs on our list, and why we omitted some well-known brands plagued by negative feedback from customers.
Product warranty is important when making a big purchase, so we searched for walk-in tubs that included consumer-friendly warranties that covered major components, such as the tub’s door and shell.
Made In The USA
We focused on finding high-quality walk-in tubs that were either made in America or designed in the United States to ensure the tubs meet or exceed all relevant safety standards.
We considered the overall design of each of the walk-in tubs on our list. Our reviewers looked for features that make bathers safer, such as non-slip surfaces, integrated grab bars and temperature controls to prevent scalding. We also included a number of tubs that fit into a standard bathtub opening along with a few smaller-sized freestanding units.
|Highlights and Optional Features
|Ella Ultimate Walk-In Dual Air and Whirlpool Bathtub with Foot Massage
|59.5″ L x 29.625″ W x 35.75″ H
|Dual 2” drains Clear door Adjustable intensity hydro jets
Independent foot massage
Optional shower column and/or screen, head support and/or pillow, seat riser, extra end panel, seat riser
|Lifetime limited warranty on shell, frame, door. 5-year on parts
|Kohler Walk-In Bath
|21.5″ W x 17″ H
|52″-60” L x 28”-32” W x 39” HH
|Hydrotherapy Heated surfaces Ultra-low Step-in height Fast-drain technology Factory-trained installers
Optional shower arm and/or bath screen, unique bathwall designs
|Lifetime limited warranty
|American Standard Gelcoat Premium Series 60″ x 30″ Walk-In Soaking Bathtub
|Built-in 17” high and 20.5” wide seat with 16” soaking depth
|60″ L x 30″ W x 37″ H
|Quick drain Gelcoat finish Arthritis-friendly construction Left or Right Hand Configuration Watertight Door System Slip-resistant Texturing
2 Color choices, customizable length, choice of drain location
|Lifetime warranty on door seal 10-year on shell 5-year on components
|Ella Transfer26 Wheelchair Accessible Walk-In Tub
|19″ W x 16.75” L
|52″ L x 26″ W x 40” H
|13 hydro jets Ozone sterilization Dual two” floor drains Integrated grab bars
Optional shower column and/or screen, head support or pillow, seat riser, extra end panel
|Lifetime limited warranty on shell, frame, door. 5-year on parts.
|Universal Tubs HD Series 60″ Step-In Walk-In Soaking Bathtub
|Molded-in 16” W x 1.5” H with a 17” soaking depth
|58.5″ L x 29.5″ W x 23.75″ H
|Marine-grade, glossy-white acrylic finish Deep-soak Choice of drain location
|10-year limited warranty on shell, 1 year on parts, lifetime on door seal
|Ella Companion 60″ Walk-In Whirlpool
|Smaller 23” wide seat and larger 25” wide seat
|60″ L x 32″ W x 40″ H
|14 hydro jets, 10 air jets, Auto-purge, Chromotherapy, Seating for two people
Optional shower column and/or screen, head support or pillow, extra end panel, and seat riser
|Lifetime limited warranty on shell, frame and door Five years on parts
|ANZZI 56.5” x 60” Walk-In Whirlpool and Air Tub With Total Spa Suite
|23″ W x 12.5”L x 17.75″ H
|52.5″ L x 26.5″ W x 40″ H
|18 air-massage jets 12 hydro-powered water jets, Three integrated grab bars, 4.25″ H threshold
Left and right drain configurations
|Lifetime warranty on door seal, 10-year for covered defects on shell, frame, and finish
|Therapeutic Tubs HandiTub 60″ x 30″ Whirlpool and Air Jetted Wheelchair Accessible Bathtub
|29″ W x 10″ H
|60″ L x 30″ W x 43″ H
|ADA compliant with wheelchair-accessible door 26 air injectors Triple gelcoat reinforced with fiberglass
Available in left and right drain configurations.
|10-year warranty on shell, 1-year on parts, lifetime on door seal
|Ella TransferXXXL Walk-in Bathtub With Hydro Massage
|29″ W x 17.75” L
|55″ L x 36″ W x 40″ H
|36” wide 2-latch door lock, Extra wide seat, 13 Hydro Jets, 5 Piece Fast Fill Faucet., Ozone sterilization
Optional shower column and/or screen, head support, seat riser, pillow, heated seat, and end panel
|Lifetime limited warranty on shell, frame and door five years on parts
|Universal Tubs Rampart Nova Heated 3.3 ft. Right Hand Right Drain Walk-In Whirlpool Bathtub in White
|17” W x 14”H with 28.5” soaking depth
|38.75″ L x 27″ W x 35.75″ H
|13 adjustable water jets Wall surround with corner caddies included Multicolor chromatherapy Heated backrest
Choice of color, drain location, door swing direction
|10-year limited warranty on shell and wall surround, 1-year on components, lifetime on door seals, 3-month on labor
*Prices are for the tub only and do not include installation costs. These prices may vary depending on the retailer and whether or not they offer promotions. Prices valid as of September 2023 and are subjec to change.
Walk-In Tub Reviews
Ella Ultimate Walk-In Dual Air and Whirlpool Bathtub with Foot Massage
Best Overall Walk-In Tub
The Ella Ultimate Walk-In Dual Air and Whirlpool Bathtub with Foot Massage ranks as the best overall walk-in tub on our list because it offers a great combination of user-friendly features. It is expertly designed with high-quality materials and is the perfect size to replace a standard bathtub. This walk-in tub is also backed by an impressive lifetime limited warranty that covers the shell, frame, and door.
Features of this premium whirlpool tub include an 18 GPM fast-fill faucet, two safety grab bars, dual two-inch drains, and a triple massage system with a separate leg and foot-only option. Measuring 29.625″ x 59.5,″ this unit is the same length and width as a standard residential bathtub, making it an easy upgrade of an existing tub. Unlike most other walk-in tubs that have solid doors, this tub has a transparent door trimmed in chrome for a sleek, high-end look and feel.
Ella’s Bubbles sells its walk-in tubs nationwide through a network of authorized retailers, including Home Depot, Amazon, and Wayfair.
- Transparent frosted tempered glass door with brushed stainless steel frame
- Easy-to-clean, white acrylic finish over a reinforced fiberglass shell and a stainless steel frame
- Adjustable legs for leveling
- Dual two” drains fully empty the tub in about 80 seconds
- Gravity-driven drainage eliminates the need for an electric pump
- Includes two overflow valves and four T-type 2” drain ports
- Ports can easily be sealed or connected to match the home drain configuration
- Features 17 hydro jets, 17 air jets, and a hand shower with 5 water flow settings
- Foot-massage system can be operated without completely filling the tub
- 1000W in-line water heater to maintain a comfortable temperature
- Equipped with an ozone sterilization system and LED chromatherapy lighting
- Limited lifetime warranty on door, frame, shell and 5-year warranty on parts
Consumers looking for a safe, comfortable full-featured walk-in tub that can be easily retrofitted into an existing bathtub space should take a look at this premium unit from Ella’s Bubbles. It’s designed to deliver a truly spa-like experience, with three separate water massage systems that can be adjusted, and a stunning LED chromotherapy lighting system. The tub includes Ella’s rapid-drain technology that completely clears the tub of water in as little as 80 seconds, while the dual grab bars and non-slip flooring help to make this walk-in tub safe for users of all ages and abilities.
What Customers Like
Ella’s Bubbles is an industry-leading manufacturer of walk-in tubs that consistently ranks high for quality and user satisfaction. Reviewers commented on this tub’s relaxing, adjustable water massage, the tub’s durable and high-quality design, and the overall aesthetic appeal of this tub, which has a high-end appearance. They especially liked the distinctive clear door and the fact that this tub fits into a standard-size bathtub space.
What Customers Don’t Like
Some customers commented that they had to pay more for installation than they expected due to the fact that two 110/120V hard-wired connections with dedicated GFCI breakers are required, which involved hiring an electrician. A few reviewers also mentioned that the tub wasn’t as warm as they would like. To combat this issue, one customer had dual tanks installed, which was a large additional expense.
Kohler Walk-In Bath
Lowest Entry Threshold Height
The Kohler Walk-In Bath is designed for ease of use, with a best-in-class three-inch threshold that’s easy to navigate. Assembled at Kohler’s headquarters in Kohler, Wisconsin, installation is available directly from Kohler through a nationwide network of factory-trained installers.
Because each Kohler walk-in tub is customized and has installation costs that depend on plumbing and electrical modifications, pricing is not given online or over the phone. Instead, it is provided by a local Kohler authorized dealer who will evaluate your property before giving a quote that includes bath, accessory, and installation costs and is guaranteed for up to one year. However, according to the Kohler website, costs for a Kohler Walk-in Bath (excluding installation) may range from $2,000 to $ 5,000 for the most basic unit without water or air jets.
- Convenient quick-draining technology as well as among the fastest fill times
- Heated backrest for comfort while water empties
- Industry-leading three” threshold and extra wide door for easy entry and exit
- Ergonomic hand shower with three adjustable settings allows for one-hand use
- Extra-wide seat designed with an optimal recline and is 30% deeper than most other walk-in tubs
- Customers can customize their tub with handrails, hydrotherapy massage jets, designer Kohler LuxStone bath walls, and more
- Factory-authorized installers ensure the tub is installed correctly
- Quoted prices are exact to the penny and will not change due to surprise fees according to Kohler’s “Price Promise”
- Backed by Kohler’s Limited Lifetime Warranty
Consumers looking for a high-quality, customizable walk-in tub that offers an exceptionally low threshold should consider the Kohler Walk-In Bath. Installation can be completed in just one day by a factory-trained installer, and optional LuxStone walls add an elegant appeal to any bathroom.
What Customers Like
With a 96% satisfaction rating, the Kohler Walk-In Bath has multiple positive reviews from users who comment on the quality, comfort and safety of the unit. One happy customer states, “I’m really glad I waited for Kohler to make a walk-in bath, because of the great name. It is so soothing, comfortable, and more importantly safe.” Another mentioned the quick and easy installation, saying “The installer was prompt and clean. They were able to thoroughly explain what they did, and how to use my new tub…The tub has been a life saver”
What Customers Don’t Like
Customers commented on the lack of up-front pricing, which isn’t available online or over the phone. Some customers found the overall cost to be high while others loved their tub but had difficulties with the company they used to finance their purchase.
American Standard Gelcoat Premium Series 60” x 30” Walk-In Soaking Bathtub
Best Design for Arthritis and/or Partial Grip
The American Standard Gelcoat Premium Series 60″ x 30″ Soaking Tub is designed to be accessible to those with a partial grip or arthritis. It features an ergonomic and easy-to-use door handle and requires minimal closing effort to seal the door securely, thanks in part to watertight door system technology. Constructed with durable, hi-gloss gelcoat and a premium faucet and showering wand, the tub is both well-made and visually appealing. A built-in safety grab bar and slip-proof floor allow users to enter and exit the tub safely and a neck rest and contoured built-in seat promote relaxation and comfort.
American Standard has been a household name in plumbing fixtures for 150 years. The brand is well-known for its sinks, toilets, bathtubs, showers and related products and accessories which can be purchased at your local Lowe’s and/or Home Depot. This walk-in tub costs $6,037 and is available nationwide through Home Depot.
- Lifetime warranty on door seal, 10-year on shell, 5-year on components
- Patented Quick Drain system rapidly removes all water
- Premium faucet and handheld shower wand
- Easy button controls and ergonomic door handle for pain-free operation
- Built-in safety bar and textured anti-slip floor
- Durable, hi-gloss finish
- Waterproof neck rest for additional support
- Integrated chair-height seat is contoured to provide room and comfort
- Available in left hand or right hand configurations, in white or linen, and with a customizable length of 59.5” or 60”
Consumers with arthritis pain and/or limited grip strength who are looking for a relaxing and therapeutic soak in a walk-in tub will appreciate this model, designed for ease of use and with multiple built-in safety features. It’s available nationwide through Home Depot, and American Standard backs the tub with a 10-year limited warranty, while the door seal has a lifetime warranty against manufacturer defects.
What Customers Like
Customers like the sturdy construction as well as the style of this walk-in tub and how it looks in their bathroom. One customer noted that “it seems to be constructed very well and is very nice in appearance.” Multiple people mentioned the quick power drain as working well and emptying the tub quickly.
What Customers Don’t Like
One customer found the door opening to be small and noted that it takes a long time for the tub to fill, but realized that this is “not unusual for such a large tub.” Another customer found that the drain cap has a screw that is too short and ended up needing to find a longer screw for it to work properly.
Ella Transfer26 Wheelchair Accessible Walk-In Tub
Best Walk-In Tub for Narrow Doors
The Ella Transfer26 Walk-In Tub is a great option for homes with narrow doorways and/or small bathrooms where a standard-sized tub can’t be installed. This ADA-compliant premium unit is built with all of the same features offered in larger models, including dual two-inch drains, a secure two-latch door, a reversible end panel for left or right installation, and one extension panel kit to fit in 60” alcoves.
The L-shaped door makes for easy access and allows the door to swing over an adjacent toilet, allowing for installation in areas where space is limited. Wall and deck-mounted safety bars are standard, and the unit is built with adjustable leveling legs to enable easy draining. The Transfer26 is available in a variety of packages with options, such as hydro massage and microbubble therapy. Pricing for this walk-in tub starts at $4,673 without jets and is $5,468 for added hydro jets, the next least expensive option .
- Measures just 26″ W x 52″ L, making it perfect for installation in homes with narrow doorways
- Two preinstalled grab bars for safety
- ADA compliant
- Easy-to-clean acrylic finish with textured, slip-resistant floor
- Comfortable 19″ W molded seat
- 75-gallon capacity and fast fill 2-piece faucet set
- L-shaped outward-swing door with 2 latch gear and shaft mechanism
- Dual drains for rapid draining
- Extension panel included for a clean installation in 60″ L openings
- 5-setting 5’ retractable handheld shower head included
The Ella Transfer26 makes enjoying a safe, comfortable walk-in tub possible for those who have older homes with narrow hallways and doors. This unit has all of the same high-quality features offered in Ella’s larger tubs, so customers don’t have to compromise on quality or comfort.
What Customers Like
Customers commented on the high quality and comfort of this walk-in tub. One happy user said, “My mom has had major hip issues and this has been a blessing to us! The jetting placement hits the hips and all around, it definitely is helping with the pain.” Installation was also described as “a breeze.”
What Customers Don’t Like
Some users had to upgrade their water heater to fill the Ella Transfer 26. Others needed to hire an electrician to install a dedicated breaker in order to use certain optional features.One user encountered difficulties with a plumber who first said that he’d charge extra because of the tub type and then refused to install it.
Universal Tubs HD Series 60" Step-In Walk-In Soaking Bath Tub
Best Budget-Friendly Walk-In Soaker Bathtub
With prices for walk-in tubs reaching upwards of $20,000, finding one that’s budget-friendly can be a real challenge. Thankfully, there’s an option for consumers who want to enjoy the safety of a walk-in bathtub without spending several thousands of dollars.
Sold exclusively through Home Depot and made in the United States, Universal Tubs HD Series 60″ Step-In Walk-In Soaking Bath Tub is priced at just $2,687 with a right-hand drain configuration and $2,689 with the drain on the left, making it one of the most economical options on the market today.
The tub measures 58.5″ L x 29.5″ W, and it has an overall height of 23.75 inches with a soaking depth of 17 inches. It holds between 40 and 50 gallons of water, depending on the occupant, which means the average residential water heater is large enough to fill this tub, saving consumers the cost of upgrading their water heater. It’s backed with a 10-year warranty on the shell, a 1 year warranty on parts, and a lifetime warranty on the door seal. Home Depot also has a 30-day return policy.
- Priced under $2,700
- ADA-compliant with a low step threshold and slip-resistant flooring
- Includes a quick-fill faucet, handheld shower with 60″ reach
- Drain empties water in approximately one minute
- Constructed with marine-grade, glossy-white acrylic reinforced with fiberglass over a freestanding steel frame
- Wide-opening door with watertight pressure seal protected by a lifetime warranty
- Designed for easy installation in place of a standard bathtub
- Curbside delivery to most residential addresses in the United States
- Financing available through the Home Depot Consumer Card and customers can pay with cash (in-store only), credit card or PayPal
If you’re looking for a low-cost walk-in tub that’s designed to replace standard tubs, this unit from Universal Tubs may be a great option. It lacks many of the bells and whistles found on more expensive models, such as a seat heater and whirlpool jets, but those savings are passed on to the consumer. Because it holds less water than some other walk-in tubs, most standard residential water heaters are large enough to service the tub.
What Customers Like
Multiple customers found this tub to be exactly what they were looking for. One happy reviewer commented, “Excellent walk-in tub that not only I can use, but my whole family.” Another reviewer appreciated the tub’s space-saving design with its inswinging door, saying “The door opens into the tub. Thus, it was possible to install it right next to the toilet. It’s designed very well…” Others also commented on the tub’s high-quality construction as well as its excellent door seal.
What Customers Don’t Like
One customer mentioned that the 45 degree slope from the elevated back of the tub to the lower front of the tub can be slippery when wet and may be a fall hazard. Because this is designed as a soaking tub with a low built-in seat that lacks the support provided by seats in other walk-in tub models, this particular tub may be unusable for those who cannot pull themselves up easily from a low-seated position.
Ella Companion 60" Walk-In Whirlpool
Best Two-Person Walk-In Tub
Designed and built in Chicago, Illinois, the two-seat Ella Companion 60” Walk-In Whirlpool allows two adults to bathe together in safety and comfort while enjoying a relaxing water massage from 20 water jets.
This innovative walk-in tub holds up to 100 gallons of water, has an integrated deck-mounted safety grab bar with stainless steel chrome finish, and features a textured floor for secure footing. As with all Ella tubs, it’s covered by a lifetime limited warranty on the acrylic shell, metal frame and door as well as a five-year warranty on parts. The unit costs vary slightly depending on the retailer, and currently range from approximately $8,186 to $8,302.
- Two-person, walk-in whirlpool that fits into a standard bathtub opening
- 20 high-powered jets provide a relaxing whirlpool experience
- Dual two” drains, four 2” outlets, 2 overflows, 2 drain openers for fast drainage
- 2 piece fast-fill faucet set
- Includes a retractable, handheld shower head
- Center door for easy access
- Extra-low threshold for safe enter and exit and textured anti-slip floor
- Hydro jets controlled by digital touchpad and intensity dial
- Attached swivel tray for beverages and built-in rack to hang towels
- Independent foot massage option
- Height-adjustable legs for leveling the tub
- Integrated ozone sterilization unit for sanitation
- 100-gallon capacity
If you’re looking to enjoy an in-home spa experience with that special someone, the Ella Companion 60″ may be the right walk-in tub for you. It’s designed and manufactured in Chicago and available through a network of nationwide dealers.
What Customers Like
As with all other Ella’s Bubbles bathtubs, this unit is well-loved by consumers. One reviewer commented, “Great small two seater for 2 people to enjoy bathing.” This same customer went on to say, “Lots of fun and the door looks very nice with LED light in it.” Others mention the tub’s quick draining system, low threshold, and overall high quality construction.
What Customers Don’t Like
Although the overall satisfaction level with this tub is high, some consumers were concerned about space and noted that “it can be used by petite or no bigger than average size bathers.” Others disliked the head cushions and had difficulty with them sticking and with the tub maintaining an ideal temperature.
ANZZI 56.5” x 60” Walk-In Whirlpool and Air Tub With Total Spa Suite
Best Full-Featured, Great-Value Walk-In Tub
Based in Miami, Florida, ANZZI makes and distributes a wide variety of bathroom fixtures, including sinks, showers and bathtubs. Its 52.5″ L x 26.5″ W walk-in tub retails for around $2,750, making it one of the least expensive jetted walk-in tubs available.
ANZZI’s walk-in whirlpool and air tub is packed with high-end features that usually only come with more expensive units, such as 18 air-massage jets, 12 hydro-powered jets, aroma-infused bubbles, and a massive 93-gallon capacity. There’s a remote operated drain and the unit comes with a safety-lock feature that prevents the water temperature from exceeding 104 degrees F.
- 18 air-massage jets and 12 hydro-powered water jets
- Three-setting shower head with 60″ retractable hose
- Color LED lighting and soothing scented bubbles
- Remote operated drain and touch digital controlled air and hydro jets
- In-line heater to maintain a comfortable water temperature
- 93-gallon capacity
- 104 degree F safety lock on integrated thermostatic mixing valve to prevent scalding
- Three built-in grab bars, anti-slip flooring, low 4.25″ step-over height
- Generous 23″ x 12.5” sitting area and 33” soaking depth
- Included extension kit to fit into 60” alcoves
- Attractive polished chrome trimmed control buttons
Although ANZZI isn’t one of the better-known brands, their walk-in tub could be a real bargain for consumers who want all the attractive accessories normally found in units that cost thousands more. This walk-in whirlpool tub could be a great option for anyone who’s looking for a full-featured walk-in tub that delivers a truly luxurious experience.
What Customers Like
Reviewers say they love the sleek, high-quality fit and finish of this walk-in tub. Its surprisingly low price is also something consumers commented on. Users describe this tub as enjoyable to bathe in, well-priced, and a very good purchase.
What Customers Don’t Like
Multiple customers compliment the tub overall while mentioning elements that could be improved upon. One customer shared that the tub’s chroma therapy lighting died 20 minutes after installation of the tub and that it “was a waste of $250-$300.” Another found that the bottom jets were too weak, but was told that they were designed to have a lower flow rate.
Therapeutic Tubs HandiTub 60" x 30" Whirlpool and Air Jetted Wheelchair Accessible Bathtub
Best ADA-Compliant, Wheelchair-Accessible Walk-In Tub
While walk-in tubs are easier and safer to use than standard bathtubs, most walk-in tubs aren’t fully wheelchair accessible because the doors are too small to transfer directly from a mobility device. The good news is that the Therapeutic Tubs makes a fully ADA-compliant whirlpool tub designed especially for wheelchair use.
This 60″ L x 30″ W walk-in tub fits into any standard bathtub space, making it perfect for use when upgrading a bathroom. The oversized door swings out for ease of access, while the large 29-inch wide seat makes for smooth chair-to-tub transfers.
The tub holds 80 gallons of water and includes 26 air injectors to deliver a relaxing, spa-style bathing experience. It’s priced at approximately $5,970.
- ADA-compliant walk-in tub with oversized wheelchair-accessible door
- Grab bar, non-slip floor and low threshold make this tub safe and easy to use
- Four-piece, tub-mounted Roman-style faucet set with shower head included
- Up to 80-gallon capacity
- Integrated aromatherapy and chromotherapy (color-light therapy)
- Sturdy stainless steel frame
- Low molded seat for comfortable soaking
- Included purge cycle to keep jets clean
- Constructed with triple gel coat and fiberglass reinforcing
- 10-year warranty on shell, 1 year on parts, lifetime on door seal
Consumers who are searching for a true ADA-compliant, wheelchair-accessible tub should take a look at the HandiTub from Therapeutic Tubs. With its oversized, swing-out door and large seat, transferring in and out from a wheelchair is safe and comfortable, while more than two-dozen jets provide bathers with a relaxing water massage.
What Customers Like
In general, customers are very happy with this tub, and one reviewer wrote, “I am over the moon for my new tub! It’s impressively beautiful.” Another says, “Excellent quality, full of features such as jets, pumps, lights, accessories, and it looks great” and went on to add “If you are totally disabled and in need of help in order to bathe OR you like pampering yourself while taking a bath, this is the unit for you.”
What Customers Don’t Like
Despite the high ratings for this wheelchair-accessible tub, consumers have mentioned the large 12” threshold as well as the lack of useful handles to assist bathers while entering or exiting the tub. Further, limited interior space may make it difficult to move around to wash certain parts of the body quickly or easily. Another mentioned that they needed to install a new water heater just to fill the tub, which added to installation costs.
Ella TransferXXXL Acrylic Walk-In Bathtub with Hydro Massage
Best Bariatric Walk-In Tub
Customers who want a walk-in tub that offers plenty of room without compromising on features can appreciate the spacious and well-equipped Ella TransferXXXL walk-in tub. It offers a spacious 29” wide seat combined with 7 upper and 6 lower hydro jets to provide a therapeutic bathing experience.
This walk-in tub can be ordered with either a left or right-hand door (the left-hand option costs approximately $450 more), and it holds between 55 and 75 gallons of water when occupied, depending on the size of the bather. It’s important to know that a dedicated GFCI protected electrical line is required.
- Large 132-gallon capacity and comfortable 29″ W seat
- 13 hydro jets with intensity dial control for customized full-body massage
- Integrated in-line heater maintains comfortable bathing temperature
- Five-piece faucet set fills tub at a rate of up to 18 GPM
- Hand-held showerhead with 5 water flow settings and a 5’ reach
- Slip-resistant floor and U-shape stainless steel grab bars
- Fast emptying dual 2” gravity-driven drains
- Outward swinging door with 2-latch locking mechanism
- Acrylic gloss shell reinforced with a fiberglass gelcoat
- Removable front apron, one reversible end panel, and one 5” extension panel
- Eco-friendly ozone sterilization system cleans and clarifies water
Customers who are in the market for a high-quality, walk-in whirlpool tub that’s spacious, comfortable and safe to use should take a look at the Ella TransferXXXL Walk-In Bathtub. It features the widest tub width Ella offers of 36-inches across, while the 55-inch length is made to fit into a standard-sized bathtub opening.
What Customers Like
Multiple customers describe this tub from Ella’s Bubbles as being a better option when compared to similar tubs offered by other companies. Customers like the tub’s features as well as the customer service provided by the company. One customer wrote, “I liked the number of jets, adjustability, and accessories. Also, the reps were very professional and courteous.” Another customer commented, “ It’s like having a home spa at your house. The bathtub was delivered on time and the contractors were great.”
What Customers Don’t Like
One customer said that other locations had lower prices, but that Ella’s Bubbles reduced their price until it was lower. Another customer had issues with the heater in the tub not working. They contacted the company and a replacement heater was sent.
Universal Tubs Rampart Nova Heated 3.3 ft. Right Hand Right Drain Walk-In Whirlpool Bathtub in White
Best Combination Walk-In Tub
Based in Miami, Florida, Universal Tubs is a U.S. manufacturer of quality bathtubs, tub surrounds and faucets. Its lineup of walk-in tubs includes the Rampart Nova Heated 3.3 ft Walk-in Whirlpool Bathtub that comes complete with an easy-up adhesive shower surround to create a functional combination tub-shower unit.
With an overall length of 38.75 inches, a width of 27 inches and a height of 35.75 inches, this walk-in tub has a relatively small footprint compared to other models, making it perfect for installation in small bathrooms where space is limited. It also includes a wall surround complete with corner caddies to create a combination walk-in tub and shower stall that costs only approximately $5,340.
Sold exclusively at Home Depot stores nationwide, Universal Tubs are available for curbside home delivery to most locations within the continental US.
- Compact design with a 50-gallon capacity and 28″ soaking depth
- LED colored light chromatherapy
- Auto drain empties tub in less than 60 seconds
- 13 adjustable whirlpool jets powered by a 1 HP pump
- Heated seat backrest
- 4 piece fast-fill faucet set and extendable handheld showerhead
- Marine-grade fiberglass with triple gel coating and a solid stainless steel frame
- Designed for alcove-style installation
- Integrated friction heater to maintain a comfortable water temperature
- Includes shower-height wall surround sheets, two corner caddies, clear silicone, caulking and double-sided adhesive strips for installation
- Lifetime warranty on door seal,10-year on shell and wall surround, 1-year on components, 3-month on labor
While smaller in size than many other walk-in whirlpool tubs, this combination unit includes many of the same features you’ll find on higher-priced, full-sized models, making it ideal for consumers who want a tub-shower combo that’s affordable and functional. This product may be perfect for those who live in smaller homes or anyone who’s looking for a walk-in tub that requires less than half the amount of water than many larger units.
What Customers Like
Customers commented on the convenience of having a walk-in tub that also functions as a shower, which is particularly important in homes with only one full bathroom. Others mention that the tub ships quickly, is easy to install, and has the perfect dimensions to fit their available space. Multiple reviewers mention that the tub makes bathing easier. According to one happy customer, her father “can safely get his baths stress free for all of us.”
What Customers Don’t Like
Despite the overall high satisfaction ratings of this combination walk-in tub and shower, consumers mentioned the lack of an owner’s manual made it difficult to figure out how all the features work. In the words of one reviewer, “The only shortcoming that I see with this tub is that mine came without any sort of owners manual. I got most of the controls figured out … if anything need[s] service in the future, I’d like a working parts list to work from.”
How to Pick the Best Walk-In Tubs
Buying the best walk-in tub involves a number of choices around price, design, features and installation. Below we outline the steps you should take when starting the process of buying a walk-in tub.
Set a Budget
Prices for walk-in bathtubs start at about $2,000 for a basic soaker model and go up to $20,000 for customized units complete with all the bells and whistles. Narrow down your options by deciding how much you’re willing to spend before you start shopping.
Think About Your Needs
Consider why you’re looking for a walk-in tub. Are you simply looking for a luxurious soaker whirlpool tub for comfort and relaxation, or do you have mobility issues that make using a traditional bathtub dangerous or impractical? Are massaging whirlpool jets a must-have, or would you prefer a non-jetted soaker tub?
Also think about who will be using your walk-in tub. Is it to be the only bathtub in your home, and if so, do you need your tub to also serve as a shower? Would you like a tub that’s just the right size for one bather, or are you looking for a unit built to accommodate two adults?
Consumers who rely on mobility devices, such as a wheelchair or medical scooter, may want to focus on bathtubs that are wheelchair accessible, as these units have extra-wide doors and seats designed for easy transferring. Even if you don’t use an assistive device, you may have medical issues that impact your balance, so a walk-in tub with plenty of safety bars would be the best choice.
Decide on Must-Have Features
Today’s walk-in tubs are available with a host of features ranging from heated seats to waterproof LED lighting and adjustable water-massage jets.
Many manufacturers offer the exact same walk-in tub shell in a variety of models, so start by picking the size and style of tub that you prefer. Decide which features are must-have items of your walk-in tub, and make a list of the things you don’t need. Ask your dealer to price out different models that have the same basic design, so you can make an informed decision about which features are worth the added cost.
Check Your Measurements
Another critical factor to consider when buying a walk-in tub is the amount of space you have available in your bathroom. Many walk-in tubs we’ve featured here are designed to fit into a standard 30″ x 60″ bathtub opening, requiring a relatively simple installation that doesn’t need extensive renovations when replacing a traditional tub.
Take the time to carefully measure the space where you’ll be installing your new walk-in tub. Also measure the clearance by checking the height and width of all doors and hallways the tub has to be transported through, as you don’t want to wind up with a walk-in tub that won’t fit into your home.
Consult With a Licensed Contractor
Walk-in tubs often include mechanical systems that require dedicated electrical connections. These tubs also come equipped with extra drains that may involve moving existing water pipes or even installing new fittings. Remember, walk-in tubs are usually twice as tall as traditional bathtubs, so your existing tub surround will likely need to be upgraded.
Before purchasing a walk-in tub, it’s a good idea to consult with one or more licensed contractors who have experience installing whirlpools, spas and other similar fixtures. Ask for written quotes that cover the entire installation, so you’ll know exactly what your entire walk-in tub project costs before you make a purchase.
Financial Assistance for Seniors Buying Walk-In Tubs
A walk-in tub may be a great option for seniors with limited mobility and balance issues. However, the cost of these tubs can be hard to cover on a fixed income. Fortunately, there are many financial programs and insurances that can help cover part or all of the cost of installing a walk-in tub.
Private insurance, federal and state coverage programs, Veterans Affairs, and other assistance options are available for seniors who could benefit from a walk-in tub. Typically, a senior will need a primary care physician to declare that they need to have a walk-in tub in order to bathe safely. Installing a tub is considered a home modification in the eyes of insurance companies, so insurance coverage for home modifications will be a necessity.
Below are a few paths seniors can take to obtain a walk-in tub for their home:
Medicare Coverage for Walk-In Tubs
Medicare Parts A and B can cover a wide variety of healthcare bills for seniors, but unfortunately, neither program will cover the cost of a walk-in tub or the related installation costs. Medicare Part A covers hospital stays and services related to being in the hospital. Medicare Part B offers coverage for outpatient care, such as doctor visits, x-rays, and outpatient surgeries.
Medicare Part C works differently from Parts A and B. These are independently managed health insurance plans that meet basic requirements set by Medicare. They can also provide additional coverages, such as assistance for home modifications. Each Medicare Part C plan is unique, so it’s important to understand what is covered before signing up.
Medicaid Coverage for Walk-In Tubs
One of the goals of the Medicaid program is to make it as easy as possible for seniors and the disabled to age safely in their homes. Moving to a nursing home is more expensive and jarring for a senior compared to making home modifications.
Medicaid offers funds to cover home modifications in a variety of situations. These include:
- When a home modification is recommended by a healthcare provider
- When a home modification could prevent a beneficiary from having to leave their home
- When a home modification would cost much less than an alternative option
Every state has different rules and regulations in regard to funding for home modifications. While walk-in tubs may be classified as a home modification, certain states may only cover the cost of the tub and not the labor to install it. Other states may see a walk-in tub as durable medical equipment and not cover the cost at all.
Each state provides coverage for home modifications in its own way, using one of the following programs:
- Waivers: Also known as Home and Community Based Services (HCBS), waivers are given by Medicaid to those who need a home modification for a medical reason. These waivers allow a certain amount of money to be spent on Medicaid-directed modifications and may also cover labor costs.
- Managed Care: Similar to waivers, managed care programs handle home modification through Managed Care Organizations (MCOs). These groups administer the modifications, helping to choose the products that will be installed and scheduling installation.
- Money Follows the Person: As the name implies, this program ensures that the person who needs funding for their healthcare receives it wherever they may go. These programs often come into play when someone is temporarily in a nursing home and will be moving home in the future, but also require a home modification when they get home.
- Consumer-Directed Care: These programs allow more autonomy for the beneficiary so they can choose the products and installers they want for a home modification. Beneficiaries are given a budget and allowed to shop around for exactly what they need.
Below is a list of states and home modification coverage information. Be sure to contact your state’s Medicaid office for more details.
|Coverage for Home Modifications for Seniors?
|State Medicaid Website
|State Medicaid Contact
|District of Columbia
Medicaid programs can change their rules over time, so it’s important to contact your local Medicaid office to confirm what is covered before purchasing a walk-in tub.
Veterans Resources for Walk-In Tubs
Veterans Affairs provides eligible military veterans with a variety of grant opportunities that can be used for home modification:
- Specially Adapted Housing (SAH) Grant: Through this program, disabled veterans can receive funds to help purchase or update a home to make everyday living easier. Applicants must be in the process of buying a home or own the home, as well as have a service-related disability. A total of 120 grants are provided every year and grants can be as high as $109,986. These grants are primarily for disabled veterans who need many upgrades for their homes in order to stay in their residences.
- Special Home Adaptation (SHA) Grant: The requirements for this grant are less strict compared to the SAH grant. Disabled veterans or their family members can qualify for up to $22,036 in financing for home improvements. Veterans must have a qualifying, service-related disability.
- Home Improvements and Structural Alterations (HISA) Grant: Through this program, veterans can obtain financing to cover home modifications based on their current health issues, related to service or not. Veterans with a service-connected disability (or compensable disability) can receive up to $6,800, and veterans with other types of disabilities can receive up to $2,000 for home modifications.
Additional Financial Resources for Walk-In Tubs
For seniors who need more assistance or cannot obtain the assistance mentioned above for a walk-in tub, there are a few other options for helping pay for a walk-in tub home modification:
Many different charitable organizations focus on providing funds for those who need home modifications to help them lead a normal and safe life. A wide range of national organizations provide financial assistance, low-cost installation, or both. Below are a few charities that could help those who need home modifications:
|Habitat for Humanity – Repair and Accessibility Modification Program (RAMP)
|The goal of the RAMP program is to create a safe environment for those who struggle with activities of daily living. Applicants can receive funding for home modifications to help make daily living easier for the disabled.
|This program is for Maryland residents but other local Habitat offices may have similar programs. Homeowners must have property insurance, be willing to pay for part of the project, and have a qualifying level of income.
|Rebuilding Together – Safe at Home
|Safe at Home is designed to provide low-income seniors with home modifications to help them stay as safe as possible in their homes. The program can cover modifications to bathrooms among other rooms.
|Those in need can contact a Rebuild Together local office to begin the application process.
|Contact a local office
|Operation Homefront – Critical Financial Assistance
|Operation Homefront provides assistance for veterans and their families. The Critical Financial Assistance program provides finances for a wide range of needs, including home modifications.
|Applicants must prove veteran status and contact Operation Homefront to apply for help.
|Elks clubs often raise money to provide many services to their local area. Members can contact a local lodge to learn about home repair projects that could cover home modifications or installation services.
|Requirements vary by specific Elks Club and program.
|Find a Lodge
GreatNonProfits.org has a large list of charitable organizations that could assist those who need home modifications. Many small organizations are listed, so visitors can research their local area for financial assistance.
Home Modification Grants
A variety of home modification grants are available outside of Medicaid, the VA, and other health-related programs. The USDA Section 504 Home Repair program provides a loan of up to $40,000 and/or a grant of up to $10,000 to rural and very-low-income homeowners who need home modifications for safety and/or health reasons. The Housing Improvement Program also offers up to $7,500 in financing to Native Americans who live in substandard housing to fund home renovations or repairs.
Many local-level programs are also available. The Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Older Adult Home Modification Program (OAHMP) provides financing to many local programs that determine eligibility based on the needs of the local people in their area.
Small personal loans are always an option for those who need money quickly to handle a serious home modification. These loans vary in size from situation to situation and can feature low-interest rates. Paying off the loan as quickly as possible can also help seniors keep costs under control.
Reverse mortgages provide seniors a way to use the equity in their homes to pay for home modifications. Seniors can obtain a loan based on their home’s equity and pay off the loan at whatever pace works for them.
Walk-In Tub Manufacturer Discounts and Financing
Companies that manufacture and sell walk-in tubs want to make it as easy as possible for seniors to buy their products. They often provide in-house financing, essentially providing a loan to the buyer in order to cover the cost of the product and possibly even installation. These in-house loans may also come with a 0% interest rate for a certain number of months.
Manufacturers of walk-in tubs may also have older model tubs available that they could not sell in the past. Rather than take a loss of these tubs, they may be willing to sell them to a senior at a discounted rate. This can help greatly reduce the overall cost of obtaining a walk-in tub.
What Additional Costs Should I Expect When Purchasing a Walk-In Bathtub?
You may need to pay for shipping from the manufacturer to your local dealer, and there’s often a delivery charge to bring the tub into your home.
Installation should be done by a licensed plumber, and you may also need to hire an electrician, as most walk-in tubs are powered by a dedicated GFCI circuit. Some tub manufacturers have a network of factory-trained installers that customers must use, otherwise, the warranty on the tub may be invalid, so be sure to ask about installation in advance.
What's Special About Wheelchair-Accessible Walk-In Tubs?
One common misconception about walk-in tubs is that they’re all wheelchair-accessible. The reality is that while these bathtubs are designed to be safe and comfortable for users who may have mobility issues, wheelchair users may want to look for a unit that’s specifically designed with their needs in mind.
On wheelchair-accessible walk-in tubs, the door is much larger than what you’ll find on many walk-in tubs, allowing for easy transfer onto the bath seat from a mobility device. Wheelchair walk-in tubs also must meet ADA standards for safety, which includes features such as a slip-resistant floor and grab bars.
Do Walk-In Tubs Hold More Water Than Regular Bathtubs?
In some cases, yes.
Small, shallow bathtubs that are often found in older homes often hold as few as 40 gallons, while larger soaker-style tubs hold about 80 gallons. Depending on which walk-in tub you pick, you may find that you’ll either use more or less water than you did with your previous bathtub once you upgrade to a walk-in tub.
Will I Need a Larger Hot Water Heater?
Some smaller walk-in tubs only require 45 gallons to fill, while many larger walk-in tubs hold upwards of 80 gallons, and the biggest models hold more than 100 gallons. Residential water heaters come in 20, 40, 80 and 100-gallon sizes. Whether or not you’ll need to upgrade your water heater to service a walk-in tub depends on both the size of the tub you pick and the capacity of your existing water heater.
Does My Bathroom Floor Need to be Reinforced Before Installing a Walk-In Tub?
If you plan on installing a walk-in tub it’s always a good idea to consult with a licensed contractor or building engineer to ensure your bathroom floor can handle the added weight from both the tub and additional water.
Will My Insurance Cover the Cost of a Walk-In Bathtub?
Whether or not you can get partial or full insurance reimbursement for a walk-in bathtub depends on your insurance provider, where you live and any medical reasons you may have for needing a walk-in tub.
Depending on which state you live in, Medicaid may provide partial coverage for a walk-in bathtub when it’s proven to be medically necessary and allows a Medicaid-insured individual to remain in their own home and avoid institutionalization.
Medicare doesn’t currently cover walk-in tubs because they’re excluded from Medicare’s Durable Medical Equipment list, as these units are classified as convenience rather than medical devices. However, in some rare situations, post-purchase reimbursement may be provided if the consumer can show that the walk-in tub is medically necessary.
I Can't Afford a Walk-In Tub — What Other Options Do I Have?
There’s no doubt about it, a walk-in tub is a major purchase for most people, and those on a limited budget may have difficulty financing such a large expense.
If you can’t afford the cost of a new walk-in tub, consider looking for a used one online at buy and sell sites, such as Facebook Marketplace or Kijiji. Check with your local disability resource center, as some organizations collect donated medical items for distribution to low-income people. Also ask walk-in tub retailers about discounts on floor models, discontinued styles or scratch-and-dent units.
Many medical supply companies and retailers also offer financing on large purchases to spread the cost of a walk-in tub out over a number of months or even years.