In our AmeriGlide walk-in tub evaluation, we take a close look at the brand’s reputation for walk-in tubs and senior care products, as well as evaluate the best walk-in tub this brand has to offer. In addition, we take a look at the the walk-in tub conversion kit, which provides seniors with an affordable option, though it’s not without its issues. They are also one of the few brands with a virtual consultation policy and no-contact installation, which is essential during this coronavirus pandemic. And with transparent pricing and good options, AmeriGlide is an excellent choice for a walk-in tub.
AmeriGlide’s focus on creating accessible products for people with limited mobility is what sets them apart from other brands we evaluate, as they make everything from pool lifts to stairlifts. This broad approach means AmeriGlide understands your situation better than most brands out there and wants to help you get the products you need to live independently. And this approach is most apparent with the walk-in tubs.
While the standard AmeriGlide walk-in tubs start at roughly $2,200, this is the only company to offer a walk-in tub conversion kit, allowing you to convert your existing tub into a walk-in tub for less than $600. Of course, converting a regular tub into a roll-in tub means you won’t have the deep soak or seat of a standard walk-in tub, but this puts the cost of a walk-in tub at a considerably more affordable price point.
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AmeriGlide started in 2004 on the premise of providing “the correct mobility and accessibility solutions for clients' needs at the best possible prices, by streamlining the manufacturing, fulfillment, and installation/assembly process.” Never has this been more apparent than during the coronavirus pandemic. AmeriGlide understands that a high number of people with mobility issues are at a high risk for the virus. As such, they are making sure to do their part in ensuring you feel safe and protected by offering virtual consultations, no-contact installations, and no-contact repairs. With most walk-in tub brands, the consultation is still in-person and few of the brands have any Covid-19 policies stated on their websites.
AmeriGlide’s reputation online is a little cloudy and perhaps a reason for pause. While nearly all of the reviews are of the brand’s stairlifts, which is what the brand is mostly known for, there aren’t enough reviews to get a reliable view of the walk-in tubs. That said, the brand has a Consumeraffairs.com rating of 2.75 stars out of 5 stars based on 36 reviews. And the D+ rating on Better Business Bureau, which grades according to how a company responds to complaints (not the number of complaints), is not encouraging.
The best walk-in tub for affordability
A walk-in tub is a major purchase. Even if you purchase a basic soaker tub, you’re looking at spending close to $2,000, not including installation costs, which can cost just as much. This is why the walk-in tub conversion kit offered by AmeriGlide has such an incredible value. At less than $600, you can convert your existing bathtub into a walk-in or roll-in tub. The process involves making a cut to the tub and installing a water-tight door that can lower down so you don’t have to step over the high edge of the tub.
There are some drawbacks to going with a conversion kit. For starters, the conversion kit can’t be used on a cast-iron enamel tub. You’re simply not going to cut through the solid iron without some type of industrial equipment. Secondly, stepping over a high tub is only the first obstacle if you have limited mobility. Getting into and out of a lying position is risky enough for many seniors, which means you can only safely use the tub as a shower with a sitting stool. That said, not everyone is a fan of baths or needs hydrotherapy. A shower with a sitting stool might very well be exactly what you want.
As for the best walk-in tub made by AmeriGlide, the 75-gallon fiberglass Sanctuary medium wheelchair accessible tub is the best model. Even if you don’t use a wheelchair, this fiberglass gelcoat tub includes an easy to access seat that you can sit down in without having to step over the 6.5-inch threshold, making it one of the safest walk-in tubs to get in and out of. You can get the tub with either a left-hand or right-hand outward swinging door. And it features a waterjet, air jet, dualjet, and chromatherapy options, though each adds to the overall cost considerably. And an auto-drain option (for $299) promises to drain the tub in less than a minute.
A downside to the Sanctuary is the lack of jets. At nearly $5,000, it doesn’t feature nearly as many water jets or air jets as high-end models from other brands. Nor do the jets have self-cleaning features. Also, we’d prefer the fast draining feature be a standard feature rather than an add-on.
Comparing cost between walk-in tubs is difficult, which is why we recommend you get at least three quotes from different brands. Most brands don’t list their price and require you to get an expert quote from a technician who can assess your home’s plumbing and electrical needs. That said, AmeriGlide is transparent on how much the walk-in tubs cost, including the optional features. What isn’t provided, however, is the installation costs. Still, the most expensive tub costing roughly $4,800 and the most affordable tub costing about $2,200, you can get the tub for a competitive price compared to brands like American Standard and Universal Tubs.
Of course, the $592 walk-in tub conversion kit is the most affordable option on the market. The installation costs are minimal, as they don’t require a change to plumbing or electrical, nor does it require significant demolition. But as mentioned earlier, there are drawbacks to a conversion kit. If you’re just looking for a safe way to get into your existing tub, this is the most affordable option.
The walk-in tub conversion kit may not be for everyone, but we love that it provides seniors with an affordable option. Not every senior can afford to remodel their bathroom to accommodate a large walk-in tub, so offering a product that gives you a safe way to enter and exit your bathtub is excellent.
We like AmeriGlide’s 75 gallon wheelchair accessible walk-in tub, even if you’re not in a wheelchair. The design, which features a wide outward swinging door, opens directly to the seat, allowing you to sit without having to step over a threshold. AmeriGlide’s pricing is great, as you can get a solid walk-in tub with spa features for a reasonable price. However, the price doesn’t include installation, so be prepared to receive a different quote for a professional installation.