Acrylic vs Fiberglass Tub – The Difference Explained

Acrylic vs fiberglass tub

Acrylic vs fiberglass tubs are one of the most popular interior design features in modern bathrooms, but choosing between the two can be confusing. Before purchasing your new tub, it’s important to know that both types of tubs have their own pros and cons, so you can make an informed decision that will suit your needs and your style perfectly.

In this article, we’ll discuss the differences between acrylic and fiberglass tubs so you can easily choose which option fits you best!


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What’s the difference between fiberglass vs acrylic tubs?
Acrylic Bathtub
Fiberglass Bathtub

Comparison of Fiberglass vs Acrylic tub
Pros and Cons for Acrylic vs Fiberglass tub


What’s the difference between fiberglass vs acrylic tubs?

To many people, it sounds like the same thing with two different names. However, you’ll find that there are significant differences between the two types of tubs, as well as between their manufacturing processes.

Although both acrylic and fiberglass tubs can be used in any bathroom setting and come in a variety of styles, they have key differences that you’ll want to be aware of before making your final decision.

Here are some things to keep in mind when deciding whether to choose an acrylic or fiberglass tub.

Acrylic Bathtub

Acrylic bathtub
Free standing acrylic bathtub

Acrylic tubs are manufactured from vacuum-formed acrylic sheets. These sheets are then placed in a mold and pressed together to form a tub that’s strong, durable, and easy to clean.

Acrylic can be used in the bathtub, shower stall, or even as a pool liner. They come in a variety of sizes and shapes so you can find the one that matches your bathroom décor perfectly!

The main advantage of acrylic tubs is that they are easy to clean and maintain. They are also lightweight and won’t rust or corrode like cast iron can.

Related: Best free standing tubs

Fiberglass Bathtub

Fiberglass bathtub
Free standing fiberglass tub

Fiberglass tubs are made out of fiberglass reinforced plastic. These tubs are typically made from a single piece of material that is molded and then curved in a tub.

Fiberglass material offers the same level of durability, strength, and affordability as acrylic tubs, but with a few key differences. Fiberglass tubs are lighter than acrylic tubs and can be moved around easier.

The other benefit of having fiberglass tub over cast iron or any other type is that it doesn’t rust easily.

Related: How to remove rust stains from fiberglass tub

Cast Iron tubs will corrode over time if not properly cared for; while this isn’t true of fiberglass reinforced plastic (which will continue to look like new), it will be easier for people who live in humid environments like Florida or California where there’s always water around them to maintain their fiberglass bathtubs.

Related: Best One Piece Bathtubs Shower Combo

Comparison of Fiberglass vs Acrylic tub

The decision between an acrylic tub or fiberglass tub can be confusing and difficult, since there are many similarities between the two. Here’s what you need to know about each type of tub so you can make the right choice that’s right for your bathroom.

Related: Acrylic vs Cast Iron tub

Material

Fiberglass is a lightweight material that’s often used in the manufacturing of tubs, boats, airplanes and other large objects. It can be dyed to match the color of the object it’s being used on, and is usually made up of glass fibers that are tightly woven together to create a strong yet flexible material.

Acrylic sheets, on the other hand, are vacuum formed sheets of plastic.

Acrylic is a popular material for both interior and exterior applications. Its strength makes it an excellent choice for heavy-duty projects such as cabinets, counter tops or walls. It also has great resistance to heat and cold so you can use it in cold climates without worrying about rotting or cracking your project over time

Durability

Fiberglass is a durable material, but not by much. Acrylic can withstand more abuse than fiberglass because it has a higher melting point and greater tensile strength.

Fiberglass is good for creating objects that you will not use frequently, like window frames or boat hulls, whereas acrylic is better for creating objects that are used often and are meant to last a long time (like tubs, signage etc.).

Related: How to fix crack in fiberglass tub

Weight

When it comes to bathroom tubs, weight is a major factor. This is because the weight of a bathtub will determine how much work you have to do to install it.

Fiberglass tubs are much lighter in weight as compared to Acrylic tubs, which can make installation easier.

So, if you are looking for a bathtub that has a lighter weight than others available in the market, then fiberglass will be your best bet.

Related: How much does an acrylic tub weigh?

Cost

Acrylic tub is costly as compared to fiberglass, but it is worth the cost. This material is often used for luxury homes and hotels because it is so durable and beautiful. Acrylic bathtubs can last for decades with proper care, which makes them an excellent investment in your home.

Fiberglass bathtubs are less expensive than acrylic tubs. But they are popular because they are easy to install and maintain, as well as being affordable. Many people choose fiberglass over other options because they do not want a tub that will require constant maintenance or replacement in order to keep looking good over time.

Maintenance

Both fiberglass and acrylic tubs are easy to maintain, but if you compare Fiberglass with acrylic tubs in maintenance. Acrylic tubs are definitely more difficult to maintain than fiberglass tubs.

Acrylic is a tougher material, so it can be tougher to clean and keep clean. Fiberglass is softer and easier to keep clean because it doesn’t scratch as easily as acrylic does.

Heat Retention

Acrylic tubs tend to hold heat better than fiberglass tubs because they’re denser and less porous. This can be helpful if you want a warm comfortable bath in the winters.

Acrylic is also more porous than fiberglass, so it doesn’t soak up water and become damaged by moisture as easily.

Scratches or Dents

Acrylic bathtubs are less prone to damage from scratches and dents than fiberglass tubs are because they’re harder to damage by scratching or denting them with objects like fingernails or jewelry.

However, if you have children or animals around who are prone to banging on things with their foots (or paws!), acrylic may not be the best option for your family due to its fragility against impacts from outside forces like those.

Pros and Cons for Acrylic vs Fiberglass tub

Fiberglass tubs and acrylic tubs both have their pros and cons, we take an in depth look at their benefits and drawbacks here.

Pros of Fiberglass Tubs

Fiberglass tubs are lightweight, which means they’re easier to install and take up less space in your bathroom. They’re also less costly than other types of tubs, which makes them a great option for people who are looking for a budget-friendly way to update their bathroom. In addition, fiberglass tubs are easy to repair and maintain—you can easily fix chips or cracks in the surface without having to call in a professional.

Cons of Fiberglass Tubs

One of the biggest cons of fiberglass tubs is that they have a shorter life span than acrylic tubs. If you’re looking for something longer lasting, then it might be worth investing in another type of material instead. Another con is that fiberglass doesn’t hold heat very well, so if you like taking baths with warm water then this might not be the best choice for you either.

Pros of Acrylic Tubs

Acrylic tubs are great for those who want a sturdy, long-lasting product that won’t lose its shape or crack over time. Below are few Pros of Acrylic tubs:

Durable

Acrylic tubs are extremely sturdy and can withstand a lot of wear and tear. They are less porous than other materials, which means they don’t soak up water or soap scum as easily.

Ease of maintenance

Unlike porcelain or enameled tubs, acrylic tubs don’t require any special cleaning products or methods to keep them looking shiny and new. Just use a mild soap and water, then rinse off with clear water to prevent scratches from dirt or debris getting trapped in the surface.

Heat retention

The material is designed to retain heat so that you get more out of every bath you take—and if you’re like us (and many others!), baths are one of the most relaxing parts of your day! Cons:

Cons of Acrylic Tubs

However, acrylic tubs do have some drawbacks. Acrylic tubs tend to be more expensive than other options on the market, so if budget is an issue for you this may not be the best option for your home improvement project(s). It’s important to consider all costs associated with installing new fixtures before making any final decisions about what type will work best for your needs!

They can be expensive, especially if you’re looking for designer styles or colors that aren’t available in other materials. And because they’re heavier than fiberglass tubs, they can be difficult to move around once installed into your bathroom flooring plan.

What should you buy Acrylic or Fiberglass tub?

Acrylic tubs are the priciest of the bunch, but they’re also the most durable. They can withstand a lot of abuse and still feel like your bathtub is brand new for years to come.

Fiberglass tubs are cheaper than acrylic ones, but they’re not as sturdy. So if you have a large family or want to use your tub as a place to relax after a long day at work, acrylic is probably the way to go.

What are benefits of Fiberglass tubs over acrylic tubs?

Fiberglass tubs have a lot of benefits over acrylic tubs. They are easier to clean, durable and less expensive than acrylic. The downside of fiberglass is that it can be scratched or damaged more easily than acrylic if you are not careful with your cleaning supplies.

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