A bathtub faucet serves both functional and visual purposes, making your selection an important decision. Home improvement stores offer a wide range of bathtub fixtures, with different handle options, styles and finishes. To choose the best bathtub faucet, you will need to consider the overall style of your bathroom, your price range, the mounting type and the faucet style. A faucet made specifically for bathtubs will be necessary to accommodate the high water flow.
The price range for bathtub fixtures varies based on brand, style and materials used. A budget for the faucet purchase will help target your search and prevent overspending. Balancing cost with quality ensures that your bathtub faucet selection is a good investment. Spending more initially for a higher-quality fixture might mean fewer repairs and longer use before you need to replace it.
Assessing your current bathtub setup helps narrow your selection of bathtub faucets. If the existing faucet is being replaced, choosing a faucet with the same mounting style is the easiest option, because holes already exist for the faucets and handles. The option of single or double handles also is a consideration. The style of tub will influence your faucet selection, whether it is a tub-and-shower combination, a garden tub, an antique clawfoot tub or a freestanding Roman-style tub. The freestanding tubs require specialty faucets that attach to the tub itself, and a tub-and-shower combination needs a faucet that attaches to the wall.
The bathtub faucet options include several types of metal finishes. Brass, gold, copper, chrome and brushed nickel are common finishes. The same finish on all fixtures in the bathroom creates a more cohesive look, so noting the finishes on your sink, towel bar and other fixtures makes your tub fixture decision easier. The style of the other fixtures also should carry over to the bathtub fixtures. If the general style of your bathroom and the other fixtures is modern, your new bathtub fixtures should stick with the modern theme.
Beyond the look of the bathtub faucet, safety features are another thing to consider when you are choosing new fixtures. A pressure-balanced faucet or one fitted with a thermostatic valve prevents scalding by keeping a steady water temperature. Even if the water entering the pipes drastically decreases or increases in temperature, the valves even it out.
Comparison shopping is key to choosing the best faucet option. Home improvement stores typically have models of their bathtub faucets on display, either mounted to an actual tub or attached to a display wall. This gives you a chance to feel the fixtures, test them out and inspect the quality of the workmanship. The in-store test along with the predetermined criteria help narrow down the options and help you choose the best bathtub faucet for your bathroom.