A stained or scratched, chipped bathtub can reduce the value of your home as well as your quality of life. Learn how much Bath Fitter’s custom tub liners cost and why it may be a good option for you.
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- Bath Liner vs Replacement Cost
- Tub Liner Pros and Cons
- Bath Fitter Suppliers
- Other Options
- Get a Quote
- What Does Bath Fitter Cost?
- Frequently Asked Questions
What Does Bath Fitter Cost?
Covering your existing facilities with a precisely measured liner is a less expensive option to replacing a tub or shower. But the pricing is not quite as straight forward as you may think.
The low-cost options consist of simply installing a liner on the bathtub. It’s going to cost more if you’re covering an entire bathtub enclosure or adding accessories such as shelving.
Bath Fitter Cost
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Other costly remodeling options include converting a tub to a shower, or converting a shower to a tub. You will also pay more for walk-in tubs and non-slip flooring.
Materials may also affect the cost. Some liners may be made of vinyl, which is less expensive than the much more popular and durable acrylic. Read on to learn what Bath Fitter costs (on average) and other alternatives.
Bath Liner Cost vs Replacement Cost
Covering your old bathtub with a new liner can be a much less expensive home improvement than replacing the tub. Nationwide, the average cost to install a bathtub is $2,800.
Tub Replacement Cost
The range of charges to replace a tub goes from about $1,000 to about $5,400. The least you can expect to pay is $180. But it could go up to more than $9,000.
The costs will vary by geographic region. The type and number of modifications is another consideration. If plumbing has to be rerouted or new tile installed, costs will ramp up.
That installation costs does not include the cost of the actual tub, either. You can get bathtubs made of several materials. Each has a different price tag. At the low end are acrylic tubs. These can go for $500 to $900.
Material Affects Cost
Bath liners generally use acrylic bathtub liners. So it’s sensible to use tubs made of this material when comparing costs of lining to replacing. Acrylic is not the least expensive bathtub material. Fiberglass tubs may cost as little as $200.
If you replace your tub with one made of the more expensive materials, costs can skyrocket. A new tub made of cultured marble, enameled steel or enameled cast iron can cost up to about $2,000.
Although it’s low-cost, acrylic is a solid choice for a bathtub or shower. It’s easy to clean, lightweight, and wears well.
The much more expensive cultured marble requires lots of care and is easy to scratch. Marble tubs are also heavy. Sometimes you may have to reinforce the floor to support a marble tub.
All told, Bath Fitter’s cost to install a bathtub or shower liner is lower than replacing the tub or shower. And there are more reasons to consider a liner that don’t have anything to do with money.
Other Bath Liner Pros
One appealing feature of a bath liner is that you can often get it installed in a single day. The liner goes right over the existing tub. Muss and fuss is minimal. Replacing a tub is likely to be a multi-day project.
It could take weeks. And removing the existing tub and modifying the plumbing, tile, and other infrastructure will turn your bathroom into a construction zone for the entire time.
Lower Chance of Leaks
A bath liner is installed as a single sheet of custom-formed acrylic. It covers the tile, grout and corners seamlessly. Using a single sheet of acrylic means there is less risk of leaking. It’s also much easier to keep clean than tile and grout.
Bath Liner Cons
Bath liners have many advantages over other solutions to old, worn, or just plain ugly tubs. One indication of this is that the technique is popular with the hotel and motel industry as a way to keep their properties in good condition.
They Aren’t Universal
However, bath liners do have downsides. For one thing, they’re not suitable for all kinds of tubs. Most claw-foot tubs can’t be fitted with a liner, for instance. Same with tubs that have water jets.
And some bathtubs may be too damaged to be relined. If you have a bad case of mold or rot on or around your bathtub, ripping out and replacing the tub may be the only option.
Another limitation is that once you have your tub or shower measured and the acrylic liner has been shipped, you are committed. You can’t make last-minute changes if you think of another design you’d prefer.
It Takes Time
Also, you have to plan ahead for a bath lining project much as you would for a replacement. The installation is the only thing anyone promises to complete in a day.
After the initial sales call a fitter will usually have to come out to make the careful measurements to ensure a precise fit.
Then the liner has to be manufactured and shipped. From the start to settling into your re-lined bath for a soak, the entire process can take several weeks.
They Can Crack
Finally, while the seamless sheet of acrylic is unlikely to leak, it can develop cracks if not installed properly. Also, leaks can occur on the edges where it is sealed to the wall or around the drain.
If cracks, holes, or other leaks develop water can get behind the liner. This can lead to a distinctive squishy feeling when a bather steps on the tub bottom.
Trapped water can become stagnant and create odor problems. It can also prompt the growth of mold and mildew that can be difficult to remove.
Bath Liner Suppliers
One variable that can affect price and quality is the company you choose to do your tub liner project. There are a number of providers to choose from. We’ve outlined a few of the most popular vendors below.
This company is one of the biggest names in bath and tub liners. The company has been around since 1984 and done more than two million installations.
Bath Fitter does acrylic bathtub and shower renovations and tub-to-shower conversions. They also offer a number of choices for faucets, shelves, shower doors, safety bars and other add-ons.
They have a limited lifetime warranty for as long as you own your home. With hundreds of locations across the U.S. and Canada, you can likely find a local business to give you a free consultation to get the job started.
Bath Planet is another bath liner specialist company. In addition to doing acrylic liners, they can replace regular tubs with walk-in tubs.
Like other bath liner firms, Bath Planet promises the installation will take as little as a day. The company also offers a limited lifetime warranty.
Bath Planet dealers are scattered across the U.S. and Canada. However, there aren’t as many Bath Planet dealers as some of the others.
Our favorite home improvement store also sells acrylic tub liners. The company employs independent local companies to do the installation. Installers are licensed, insured, and background screened.
Home Depot will send out an estimator for free. The company promises to get the job completed in a couple of days. Financing is one plus when you get your tub liner from Home Depot. You can use your credit card to pay for it.
Another option is a Home Depot Project Loan. However, you can’t get tub lining from every Home Depot location. The company only offers the products in a limited number of areas.
If the Bath Fitter cost sounds too expensive and replacement is too messy, there are many other options available to you. These range from refinishing to replacing. Here are our favorite alternatives:
Refinishing the Tub
This involves applying a new surface to your existing tub. It’s more like painting than covering it with a new sheet of acrylic. Refinishing costs a fraction as much as lining and can restore an old tub to like-new appearance.
Tub refinishing usually costs a few hundred dollars. And it should take a day or less. You don’t have to limit yourself to refinishing the tub.
You can also refinish the tile surround. The cost for doing both tub and surround ranges from $800 to $1,200. Refinishing also can be done to tub designs that aren’t suitable for lining.
If you have an antique clawfoot tub you don’t want to replace, refinishing may be the best option. The recoating may need to be done again in as soon as two to five years.
Compare this to the limited lifetime warranty of many bath liners. Refinishing could be a good choice for a more temporary solution, but not for the long haul.
Replacing the Tub
Do-it-yourself tub liner installation may suggest itself as another way you can go. However, remember that acrylic liners can crack if not installed properly. Installing a bath tub liner is a skilled job.
The liners usually come in two pieces, one for the tub and one for the three-wall surround. The liner and surround are glued down first.
Then the seam between them is sealed. Gluing down the tub offers lots of opportunity for things to go wrong. Another key consideration is the need for an accurate fit.
Bathtub liner companies can make liners to precisely fit any of the approximately 1,500 different models from different manufacturers.
Hiring a Contractor
To be honest, a bath fitter is simply buying a tub liner that’s custom made for your home. However, this is nothing a contractor can’t do with material from a home improvement store.
In fact, we think that hiring a contractor is a great way to save some money. After all, they don’t have as much overhead to cover as Bath Fitter or Bath Planet.
For this reason, they can often pass along these savings to you in the form of lower installation prices. If that peaks your interest, enter your information into the form below to connect with a contractor for a free estimate.
So, What Does Bath Fitter Cost?
If you’re looking at doing something to improve the look of your bathroom, bath lining deserves consideration.
The cost, convenience and permanence of lining a tub or shower with acrylic makes it a serious competitor to replacement and other alternatives. And who better to do the work than Bath Fitter themselves?
However, this average includes liner jobs that involve extras like replacing wall panels or shower surrounds. Options like safety grab bars and built-in soap dishes also ramp up the cost.
You can get an old bathtub lined for $1,000 if you skip the add-ons. Typical prices for average jobs, which could include some extras, range from about $1,500 to more than $4,500.
On the low end, the minimum is $500 for a simple tub liner. At the top, the job could cost you as much as $7,800.
Overall, we love the concept of bath fitters. They are affordable, effective, and quick. Be sure to check out our Bath Planet Review and take our quiz above.