Bathtubs are one of the more durable fixtures in your home, but over time, even tubs wear out. If your bathtub is made of plastic, for example, abrasive cleaners can damage the surface. If your tub is made of porcelain or steel, it may be prone to chipping, and if it’s made of a cast polymer, the finish will eventually wear off. Here are 7 signs that it might be time to replace your bathtub:
A tiny chip in your bathtub may not seem like a big deal at first, but it can grow into a larger crack. Any place where there is a chip, it means the tub’s barrier to moisture is gone, making it prone to potential rusting or leaking. Not to mention, chips are not aesthetically pleasing and may feel uncomfortable against your skin when you sit in the tub. A chip in the bathtub might be a sign that it’s time to replace your tub.
Leaks in a bathtub are a big problem. Leaks can cause damage to your foundation or dangerous mold growth. If you see puddles on the floor after taking a bath, this could be a sign that there’s a leak somewhere in the tub. Additionally, if you fill your tub up, plug it, and then the water level lowers after a few hours, you may have a leak. This is a sign that you either need to have the leak repaired or replace your bathtub entirely.
3. Difficult To Clean
Is your bathtub starting to look dull? Are stains becoming harder to remove? Over time, the finish on your tub wears off, and it will start to look perpetually dirty. This is because your bathtub is more porous without its protective finish—that means dirt, bacteria, and germs are all seeping into your tub.
Mold and mildew not only look gross, but they can be downright dangerous. Mold and mildew are both types of fungi that can cause structural damage to your home, as well as cause respiratory issues, allergic reactions, migraines, and joint pain. Even if you aren’t using the bathtub, mold from the tub can still affect you.
Your bathtub is constantly exposed to moisture, so bacteria and mold collect on the walls of your tub. Hard water is a problem for 85 percent of households in the U.S., and that can lead to a buildup of soap scum in the tub. As previously mentioned, over time, the protective finish on a tub wears off. Once that happens, you may find you have a ring of dirt and grime around the tub that simply won’t go away no matter how much you scrub.
6. Out-Of-Date Color
It’s hard to believe, but once upon a time, pink, blue, and mint green bathtubs were all the rage. Anyone with a house built between the 1920s and the 1970s may have to contend with these colorful bathroom fixtures. Obviously, it’s a look that is out of fashion and can significantly date a house and hurt its resale value, so it might be a sign that it’s time to replace your tub.
7. Uncomfortable Or Inaccessible
Slipping into a soothing bathtub can be extremely relaxing and therapeutic to the body, but not if your tub is too small, uncomfortable to sit in, or simply doesn’t fit the contours of your body correctly. If you can’t enjoy your bathtub, you probably won’t take a bath, and then your tub becomes wasted space. Today’s soaking tubs are ergonomically contoured to hold the body for a comfortable, deep soaking experience. There are tubs with neck rests and armrests, and Whirlpool baths can help soothe sore muscles. Additionally, if you or someone in your household has mobility issues and can no longer climb in or out of the bathtub safely, it may be time to think about a replacement, such as a walk-in tub or a tub-to-shower conversion.