Since the dawn of tile, people have searched for good ways to clean stained grout. While many have accomplished this feat, the labor is, at the very least, a hassle. Though the look of tile has an almost nostalgic feel in a bathroom, many folks are ditching this older building material in favor of something a bit more updated. A tub surround is an excellent choice for today’s busy lifestyle or for those whose tile has seen better days.
Benefits of a Tub Surround
A bathtub surround provides a smooth, even surface for the walls around your tub or tub/shower. This surface has none of the cleaning and maintenance problems associated with tile and grout; there are no cracks to scour, and no tiles to crack.
Tub surrounds are available made from many different materials, from acrylic to granite. Each material will be available in several colors, so you’re sure to find something that will fit your bathroom.
Installing a tub surround is generally an easy to moderately easy process. Often, they come in kits designed especially for those with little installation experience. Since the materials used to make tub surrounds is non-porous (unlike grout) even a novice can do a great job of protecting the underlying walls from moisture damage simply by following the directions.
The continuous surface of a bathtub surround gives a modern feel to your bathroom. Installing one is a quick and efficient way to update your bath and shower. The ease of maintenance and contemporary look of a tub surround has made it a very popular upgrade item in homes and hotels across the nation.
Bathtub Surround Pricing
Since a tub surround can be made of inexpensive acrylic, solid surface synthetics, or genuine granite, the difference in price can be quite large. A lower end tub surround can be purchased for a few hundred dollars, and the price goes up from there. When compared to tile, the DIY price of an inexpensive tub surround is very comparable to the DIY price of inexpensive tile. The labor time of the bathtub surround, however, will be far less.
Tub Surround Drawbacks
For some, the even, modern look of a tub surround is a selling point, while others prefer the vintage look of tile. Tub surrounds haven’t been around long enough to look retro, much less classic.
Though bathtub surrounds are easier to install than tile, and easier to clean, they are much less versatile. Tile can easily be laid into patterns, and comes in a plethora of color and style choices. With a tub surround, what you see is basically what you get.
When one tile breaks, you can simply replace the tile. When a tub surround is damaged, fixing the problem will most likely take more time and require professional assistance. They are, however, constructed strong enough that damage doesn’t happen easily.
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