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How Do I Choose the Best Bathtub Fixtures?

Article Details
  • Written By: Gregory Hanson
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 17 June 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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When shopping for bathtub fixtures, a consumer should select fixtures that are appropriate for the structure of the bathtub in which they will be installed, coordinate well with the other fittings and design elements in the bathroom, and are constructed well and priced reasonably. Several different types of bathtub plumbing installation are commonly used, and most fixtures will work with only one variety. Most modern bathrooms are intended to be decorative as well as utilitarian, and the color, style, and finish of different elements in a bathroom are typically coordinated. Durability and value are important when shopping for any household goods, but are especially important when purchasing plumbing fixtures because defects can cause a great deal of damage.

A majority of bathtub fixtures are designed to mount to the wall of a tub surround, where one or more holes are cut to allow controls to be mounted and, possibly, a shower head to be attached. When shopping for this sort of fixture, it is important to either plan on remodeling the surround or to match the number and type of components in the previous installation. Other bathtub fixtures may mount at the edge of a tub installation, where they are typically installed horizontally. Free-standing tubs may be served by a third type of fixture, which mounts on pipes extending out from a wall or up from a floor.

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Coordination between design elements in a bathroom is important, especially if the room features some fixtures or accents that are especially distinctive. Bathtub fixtures generally come in a variety of metals, ranging from utilitarian chrome to more expensive and unique distressed metal finishes. Bringing in an old fixture can help in the matching process. The visual style of a fixture is just as important as the finish, and should also match.

Older homes may be fitted with very old bathtub fixtures, and some homeowners may feel very strongly about preserving the look and feel of vintage bathrooms. Architectural salvage firms often recover and refurbish older bathtub fixtures and may be able to supply appropriate fixtures to match an existing bathroom. Some craftsmen also specialize in fabricating unique replacement components, although these can be expensive.

The durability of bathtub fixtures is of crucial importance. Online reviews or consumer rating agencies can offer some indication of the quality of specific brands, and a visual examination to spot manufacturing defects can also be helpful. It is often possible to save some money by purchasing more basic fixtures, but quality should not be compromised as the cost of even a small flood caused by a faulty fixture will often greatly exceed any savings on bathtub fixtures.

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