Plumber: Rediscover the basic bathtub

Ed Del Grande
Tribune News Service

Hi Ed: We are remodeling our bathroom, and my goal is to create a high-end mini-relaxation center. While doing my research I have found that some baths are called “soaking tubs” and would like to get your take on this. Can you please explain the soaking tub concept to me?

— Holly, Florida

Dear Holly: Soaking tub features may vary from tub to tub. But in general, they are usually free-standing, oversized, deep bathtubs with very simple features. If you have the time to take a long bath, soaking tubs are great, since they usually have no distracting features.

While extra options found in whirlpool-jet tubs are nice, a whirlpool is geared more toward a massage than just soaking. Since a long soak is the goal, some soaking tubs include built-in heaters to keep the water nice and warm. Aside from comfort, these tubs are often the design centerpiece for many bathrooms.

Bottom line: Soaking tubs combine style and simplicity and can help you soak in all the benefits of a high-end bathroom.

Master contractor/plumber Ed Del Grande is known internationally as the author of the book “Ed Del Grande’s House Call,” the host of TV and internet shows, and a LEED green associate. Visit or write