Is a Walk in Tub a Good Investment?

A freestanding tub

What is a walk in tub?

As we get older, it gets hard getting around, including getting in and out of the bathtub or shower. In fact, it can be dangerous. Fortunately, there is the walk in tub design that is perfect for the older person or a disabled person, even somebody that is mending from surgery and in rehab can benefit from a walk in tub. 

Sometimes referred to as an accessible tub, some basics come with a walk in tub, and there are add-ons and upgrades. Some safety features like the door that allows walk-in instead of lifting a leg up over the tub wall are standard.  Features that you may want to make sure are included, or available are: 

  • A door that opens inward and outward: This is basic and standard for a walk-in tub
  • ADA-Compliant Contoured Seat: Should be ADA compliant at 17-inch-high for the user’s comfort and safety. 
  • U-Bar by the faucet: An added level of safety that enables the user to get adjusted once inside the tub and provide them balance as they enter and exit the tub. 
  • Bathing Harness: Soft and sturdy to support a user with mobility issues. 
  • Door Drain: Drains the water quickly and minimizes falls.
  • Non-slip Floor: A textured floor is essential to provide a non-slip bottom. 
  • Low Entry Point: Next to the dual swing door, this is a significant benefit of the walk-in tub.

Other features that you can order for your walk-in tub are comfort items, like a seat cushion and neck pillow. Some walk in tubs offer upgrades like : 

Spa Settings 

  • Hydromassage system
  • Air massage system
  • Microbubbles
  • Leg massage
  • Chromotherapy
  • Aromatherapy

Can you have a shower with a walk in tub?

Commonly, walk in tub installation is replacing an existing bathtub. There is walk in tubs with an option to add a sitting shower attachment or stand up shower. The current plumbing will need to be altered to fit, which will be an extra cost. Depending on the brand of walk in tub and where you purchase it, there is an option to have a glass shower door instead of a shower-and-walk-in-tub combination.

Will insurance cover a walk in tub?     

It depends on your insurance coverage. In some situations, health insurance will provide financial assistance with walk in tub costs or reimbursement. You would need to have valid proof from a doctor that the walk-in tub is a medical necessity. Guidelines and policies vary from insurance company to insurance company. You should contact your insurance company and confirm their coverage before committing to ordering a walk in tub. 

Are walk in tubs covered by Medicare?

Typically, no Medicate will not cover the expense of a walk-in tubs; however, some states offer financial assistance through a Medicaid plan. There is help through the Department of Veterans Affairs with some of the programs they offer. As we suggested with insurance coverage, it is up to you to research and confirm any coverage that will help with the cost of a walk in tub.  

Is a walk in tub tax deductible?

Yes, if you purchase a walk in tub for medical safety reasons, it is a tax deduction like other dental and medical expenses.  

Are walk in tubs worth it?  A walk-in tub is an investment, much like a spa or swimming pool. In addition to the walk in tub, consider the installation expense and any additional plumbing or electrical work that required to fit the walk in tub. If you’re not going to be in the house for a long time, it isn’t necessary and upgrade that most home buyers seek, so the ROI is only in how much you will use it. 

tub behind door for privacy

What is the difference between walk in tub vs shower? 

Purchasing a walk in tub  is a personal decision, and the person that is going to be the primary user should be a part of the decision. There are several factors to take into consideration, like the size of the bathroom, who will be using this unit the most, and what features are you or the person that will use it looking for? 

Let’s look at the pros of a walk in tub: 

  • Safer than the traditional bathtub because you step into it from the floor, no need to lift the leg up while trying to maintain balance. 
  • Therapy options for relaxation and improves circulation and increases mobility.
  • Provides symptom relief for arthritis, diabetes, fibromyalgia, and more. A stress-relieving bath can improve your quality of sleep and the upgrades of air massage, hydrotherapy, soothing Chroma therapy.

While a walk in shower takes less footprint, is the person that will be using it an elderly or disabled person? They may do better sitting to bath than standing the entire time. Visiting a showroom that has both can be a great help in making this decision. Want to get started? Call (972) 581-9865 today for your walk in tub appointment today.