The basic types of bathtubs are defined by the method of installation.

> Drop-in tubs fit inside a finished surround or a platform.

> Recessed or alcove tubs are installed against walls on three sides and are the most popular.

> Free-standing tubs might have feet or legs, or they might sit on top of a pedestal.

The main materials used in manufacturing tubs are:

> Fiberglass (inexpensive, light, able to be molded into different shapes, but shows wear and scratches), RemodelOrMove.com: Bathroom Remodeling Workbook by Dan Fritschen

> Acrylic (light and easy to mold into different shapes and more durable than fiberglass),

> Porcelain over cast iron (a very traditional material, virtually indestructible, but very heavy, and therefore if installed after the house has been built, might require some structural support to carry the weight),

> Enamel over Cast Iron (also indestructible and very heavy; also a very traditional material),

> Procelain or Enamel over Steel (lighter than cast iron, but heavier than fiberglass or acrylic; it will chip and rust),

> Copper (beautiful and durable but very expensive and very high-maintenance),

> Stainless Steel (lovely and durable, more expensive than fiberglass or acrylic but less than copper, and high-maintenance), or

> Teak

> Concrete and

> Stone (lovely and unique but very expensive, very high-maintenance and easily damaged).

Bathtubs are available today in almost any style you can imagine (and maybe a few you couldn’t imagine). From the traditional to the futuristic or even the whimsical.