The choice between installing a shower or a bathtub for your bathroom renovation or remodeling project can leave some homeowners confused about what the best option is. While there are advantages and disadvantages to tubs and showers, both have their place depending on the lifestyle of the homeowners. In this podcast, you’ll learn everything you need to know so you can make the choice that’s right for you.

JOE DEMARCO: Hey everyone. Joe DeMarco here, general manager of Perry Brothers Construction, a home remodeling company based out of Newbury, Massachusetts. Today we’ll be discussing the advantages and disadvantages of bathtubs versus showers. 

What Are The Advantages Of Taking A Bath Instead Of A Shower?

The first question on my mind is, what are the advantages of taking a bath instead of a shower? I would say the biggest advantage of a bath for sure is the therapeutic benefits that baths offer. Baths are more of an experience while showers are more you’re rushing off to get to work.

A shower is when you’re trying to get clean. A bath is when you’re trying to go to the spa. There’s relaxation and stress relief with a bath. 

Baths are an immersive experience, a soothing experience. You de-stress after a long day. The warm water, laying in that comfortable position, having your personal indulgences, some chocolate, some vanilla ice cream, cabernet. These benefits are more than value to your home. It’s bonding time with yourself. Immersing your entire body in water, soaking your skin and it’s actually good for certain skin conditions like eczema or psoriasis or any other rashes, poison ivy, take an oatmeal bath. Anything that’s going to give you some pleasure, essential oils, scented soaps, bath salts, whatever it may be. You want to enjoy being in your bathtub. 

What Are The Disadvantages Of Taking A Bath Instead Of A Shower?

And if those are the advantages of taking a bath compared to a shower, what are the disadvantages of taking a bath? I would say the number one disadvantage for sure would be the water consumption that a bath uses. If you have a giant round porcelain tub, you’re going to be using about four showers worth of water to fill that thing up. And not only are you using tons of water, you’re also wasting tons of time because you’re just sitting there waiting for the bath to fill.

And I know it’d be easy enough to go downstairs, maybe get a couple of things done in the kitchen, but if you forget about your bathtub, you’re going to end up with an overflowed tub. So yeah, using more water is a big disadvantage for bathtubs. 

Heating water is also a significant portion of your energy bill. Showers, especially when you take shorter ones just for the purpose of cleaning yourself, it just requires less hot water to be heated compared to when you’re having to fill up a bathtub. Smaller amounts of water translate to lower energy consumption and we all want to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and help this planet. 

And another disadvantage also between bathtubs and showers is that bathtubs are not time efficient. When you take a shower, you’re trying to get somewhere, you’re just taking a shower because you’re going to work, you got a date, I don’t know. Bathtubs, they’re more for sitting back, relaxing and enjoying the rest of your night. 

And just as we said, I’d say the biggest disadvantage is that bathtubs are not the most environmentally friendly products. And I’m sure there are some eco-friendly bathtub models, but they could be very expensive. You could get a jetted jacuzzi energy-star-rated tub, but it’s still going to add to your water bill pretty significantly.

What’s Safer Between A Bathtub And A Shower?

And the next question I’d like to ask is what’s safer between a bathtub and a shower? A bathroom is a place where accidents happen in the house, that’s probably one of the top places they can happen. Bathtub safety, things you’d want to look out for would definitely be slipping and falling. Just getting in and out of a bathtub is risky. The surface is slippery and there’s the potential for you to slip on anything in the bathroom from the toilet to the vanity, back into the tub, especially for individuals who have mobility issues, older adults, and even children. And as we said, you want your bathroom to be accessible to all. 

A good idea to prevent slips and falls is just to install grab bars and non-slip bathtub mats. Slip-resistant bathtub pans are possible too. You get a threshold that’s high, and they come in all sorts of different versions, trans solid, swan, Woodbridge, and flex stone. They can be rectangular, or square, they could have a neo angle, or they could be round. There’s plenty of different types of non-slip bathtubs and shower pans. 

And also there’s the drowning hazard with a bathtub, particularly for infants and young children. You’re filling up bathtub water higher up than them. It’s crucial you never leave young children in the bathtub alone. That’s why if you have kids, you’re probably better off getting a shower.

Showers, they also have their own problems though. Showers, they have slippery surfaces. And sure, you could get a slip-resistant shower floor and that’s going to help a lot. You want to get some slip-resistant bath mats. I would also get slip-resistant flooring all over your entire house. You can get slip-resistant tiles that have more of a groove to them. It just keeps the water from pooling up and it absorbs it a bit. It’s beautiful stuff.

You have to have more enhanced safety in our bathtubs and showers. So whether you’re installing a bathtub or a shower, install grab bars, handrails, or just anything that can help people have stability and balance in your bathtub, shower, and throughout your whole bathroom, throughout your whole home. Have these aging-in-place accessories accessible and reachable. Have an emergency phone or some kind of communication device in your bathroom. 

You want to make sure your bathroom has proper lighting. In the bathroom you should minimize all tripping hazards, assess and address these potential issues because they can create a dangerous bathroom and you want to have a safe bathing environment for everyone, regardless of their age or specific needs.

How Does The Choice Between A Bathtub And A Shower Affect The Overall Design Of A Bathroom?

The next question I’d like to ask is how does the choice between a bathtub and a shower affect the overall design of your bathroom remodel? The choice between a bathtub and a shower does have a significant impact on the overall design when deciding to renovate or remodel your bathroom. It changes the layout. A bathtub, for one example, can sometimes become the central piece, the focal point of your bathroom. Bathtubs, if you’re trying to have a nice one, I mean, you’re trying to make it aesthetically pleasing, and you’re trying to create a sense of luxury and beautiful elegance within your bathroom. You want it to look like an oasis, like a spa, so your bathtub might require more space, or it could require less space. It depends on the size and the style of your bathroom. 

Showers are just so much more versatile in their design. They have a wider range of options, like different shapes and sizes, materials, and shower door configurations. The versatility that showers provide just lets you create a bathroom that meets your unique design choices, and your personal design aesthetic. If you’re going for a sleekly modern bathroom, or maybe you’re going for something simple and traditional, you just want the simple white tiles and the non-slip shower pan with just one simple shower head up top. Or you could be going for the high-end charcoal tiles, and you have different niches in different places. A shower chair, shower heads coming from all directions, some handheld, and even a recycled waterfall shower head. There are a lot of different design options you could have when building a shower, just like a bathtub. But showers just allow you to utilize your space, in my personal opinion, more effectively. 

If you install a shower instead of a bathtub, you might be able to free up some space for another storage closet or a bigger vanity. You could even still get a separate bathtub if you want, or you could get a tub-shower combo. So there are flexible options for everyone because if you’re trying to allocate space in your bathroom, you should make sure everyone is going to be satisfied with the functional results. So in my opinion, if there was a fight between a bathtub and a shower, I think the shower would come on top. Godzilla always beats Mecha Godzilla.

So anyways, I hope that was some great information for everyone here. I’m happy to share my thoughts on the advantages and disadvantages of bathtubs versus showers anytime. If you need help choosing between a tub or a shower or you’re thinking about a tub shower combo, or just any bathroom renovation or remodeling services you might need, please visit Perry Brothers Construction. You can call our office at (781) 233-7511. That’s (781) 233-7511. And yeah, thanks for listening guys and gals. I hope you got something out of this.