When you think about the most dangerous parts of your home, your mind may not immediately think of the bathroom. However, statistically, this is the one room where the most accidents happen. This is especially true if you are elderly or suffer from a disability. According to the National Institute on Aging (NIA), more than one in every three people aged over 65 suffer one fall a year, and over 80% of those falls occur in the bathroom.
There are many combined factors that make the bathroom (and the bathtub in particular) a particularly hazardous environment. The wetness, when added to an already slippery surface of a bathtub, can make for a very bad situation. It only takes one loss of footing and you can suffer a life-changing injury.
Fortunately, there are very easy ways to ensuring your safety and that you nor a loved one ever have to risk going through such a potentially catastrophic experience. Which is a very steep price to pay for something that was so easily avoidable.
Top 10 Bathtub Transfer Benches: 2019 Comparison Table
|Image||Product Name||Material||Weight Capacity||Price|
|Carousel Premium, Padded, Sliding Transfer Bench||Polyurethane padding and aluminum frame||330 lbs||$298.00|
|Drive Medical Heavy Duty Transfer Bench||Plastic||500 lbs||$81.25|
|Duro-Med Heavy-Duty Sliding Transfer Bench||Textured, plastic seat and aluminum frame||400 lbs||$139.95|
|Eagle Health Swivel Sliding Bath Transfer Bench||Plastic/Aluminum||400 lbs||$209.00|
|Tub Transfer Bench by Vive||Textured, plastic seat and aluminum frame||300 lbs||$94.99|
|Tub-Mount Swivel Sliding Bath Transfer Bench||Textured, plastic seat and aluminum frame||350 lbs||$267.00|
|Medline Bariatric Heavy Duty Medical Transfer Bench||Plastic seat and aluminum frame||550 lbs||$97.99|
|Eagle Health Bariatric Swivel Sliding Bath Transfer Bench||Textured, plastic seat and aluminum frame||400 lbs||$384.00|
|Complete Medical 1178D Bariatric Transfer Bench||Blow-molded plastic bench and backrest; aluminum frame||600 lbs||View on Massgenie|
|HydroGlyde Premium Heavy Duty Sliding Bathtub Transfer Bench and Shower Chair||Plastic seat, aluminum frame||420 lbs||$167.11|
What to Look for in a Bathtub Transfer Bench
Before delving into this, lets take a look at how a tub transfer bench is used in the video below.
You need to check the product description to make sure that the chair can support your weight. If you weigh more than 300 pounds, for example, you don’t want to purchase a chair that has a maximum weight capacity of 250 pounds.
This is another important factor that you should consider when you’re in the market for a tub transfer bench. If you’re unsure of the bench size that you should get, measure your bathtub and check the dimensions of the tub to make sure that it will fit in your tub area.
You need to check that the bench has non-slip suction feet or suction cups at the base for stability. Some tub transfer benches come with a seatbelt for extra security.
If you want a bench that stands the test of time and doesn’t pose a safety risk, look for one made from durable plastic and a rust-resistant frame.
Preferably, you want to purchase a chair that offers several height adjustments and a reversible backrest to fit in almost any bathtub or shower.
Best Bathtub Transfer Benches for Persons Weighing 350 pounds or Less
Number 1 Recommendation: Carousel Premium, Padded, Sliding Transfer Bench
Dimensions: Max height 25.5″, Width – 33″, Depth 19.5″ | Item Weight: 20 pounds| Color: Blue | Weight Capacity: 330 pounds | Material: Polyurethane padding and aluminum frame
High-quality professional grade transfer bench. This product shows versatility as it can also be used as a bath and shower chair. With a significant amount of padding to allow for the most optimal amount of comfort, this product has shown its quality by being picked for use in hospitals and care homes around the world.
The seat can swivel, allowing for greater flexibility for the user. Its bright blue coloring increases its visibility, meaning users with poor eyesight or suffering from illnesses such as dementia have a much easier time seeing the key parts of the bench.
- Its high contrast coloring making it easier for vision impaired and dementia-afflicted users to see.
- Very easy to set up, assembly only takes 5 minutes.
- It is very sturdy.
- Swivel seat is a lot more comfortable than a standard fixed seat.
- Item weight is a little on the heavier side.
- Width is not adjustable so it doesn’t fit in smaller bathrooms.
Tub Transfer Bench by Vive
Dimensions: 30.5″ x 23.5″ | Item Weight: 14.4 pounds | Color: White | Weight Capacity: 300 pounds | Material: Textured, plastic seat and aluminum frame
This bench has drainage holes that will allow water to pass through, meaning that it won’t collect on your seat while you are using the shower. Its non-slip feature means it has rubber bottoms that create friction so there is a much lower chance of you slipping while you are on the bench.
Its assembly is quick and simple, although the instruction can take a little time to get your head around. It is strong; however, it does have quite a low weight limit.
- It has drainage holes.
- Assembly is very quick and easy.
- Reduced risk of any injury with the non-slip feet feature.
- Weight capacity could be higher.
- It could be stronger and sturdier.
Tub-Mount Swivel Sliding Bath Transfer Bench
Dimensions: 17.5″ x 14.75″ | Item Weight: 17.2 pounds | Color: White | Weight Capacity: 350 pounds | Material: Molded plastic with textured finish and aluminum frame
The tub-mount swivel sliding bath transfer bench makes it easier to get in and out of the tub. It offers those with mobility issues more confidence and security when bathing without assistance. If you or someone you know has limited mobility, this bath transfer bench may provide more freedom.
It features a set of legs that rest inside the far side of the tub along with a set of clamps that attach to the outer wall of the tub. These clamps should work on most tub walls.
The swivel sliding bath transfer bench is designed to install on almost any tub, thanks to the adjustable legs and frame that can be lengthened or shortened to suit different heights and widths. No tools or equipment are needed for installation.
After assembling and installing the bench, you simply buckle yourself into the seat and swivel the seat to enter the tub. The seat locks securely in place to keep you from sliding around.
You also get several configuration options. The bench can be set up with the seat facing to the left or right. You may also adjust the height of the seat, providing more confidence for the user or clearance over the tub.
- The space-saving design works with most tubs.
- It includes a comfortable plastic seat with drainage holes.
- It features a durable design with an aluminum frame.
- The 350-pound weight capacity should hold most users.
- Some users may have difficulty with the buttons.
- The seat can become slippery when wet.
- The clamps do not always lock in place.
The drawbacks may not impact every user. However, those with limited mobility in their hands may have difficulty grasping the lever to swivel the chair or the buttons to lock it in place. Overall, it still provides an effective solution for greater mobility in the tub.
Best Heavy-Duty Tub Transfer Benches for Persons Weighing Over 350 Pounds
Number 1 Recommendation: Medline Bariatric Heavy Duty Medical Transfer Bench
Dimensions: 30″ (L) x 22″(W) x 17″(H) | Item Weight: 16.2 pounds | Color: Gray | Weight Capacity: 500 pounds | Material: Plastic
One of the best features about this shower bench is that the frame easily adjusts in one-inch increments, which means that you can make adjustments to it to ensure that the bench will be safe to use.
The seat back can easily be removed and attached to the other side of the bench if you want to reverse the direction of the seat back, and since you don’t need tools, this can be completed inside the bathroom.
With a total of six legs, it’s easy to see how much support you will enjoy from this bench and how well it will stand up even to regular use.
While there is some assembly required, it can be completed without tools, which means that you don’t have to worry about it taking a long time and preventing your family member from being able to shower and take care of themselves.
- The back is removable so you can set this bench up to perfectly meet your needs.
- It’s easy to insert the shower curtain into a slot between the two bench tops, which prevents a mess in your bathroom.
- Suction cups on the feet help to ensure that the bench doesn’t slip.
- Can hold up to 550 pounds.
- Does not come fully assembled.
- Does not have handles to help users support themselves while they are transferring to or from the bath.
- The legs are angled and take up a lot of space in the shower.
Drive Medical Heavy Duty Transfer Bench
Dimensions: 32.5″(L) x 24″(W) x 30″(H) | Item Weight: 16.2 pounds | Color: Gray | Weight Capacity: 500 pounds | Material: Plastic
This bench has the nifty feature of being reversible, allowing it to be able to accommodate any bathroom layout. It can be easily assembled without the use of tools, and its A-frame provides plenty of great sturdiness and stability. It has a Euro-style clip that will give you extra security while you are on the bench.
Its plastic seat is both comfortable and durable. The assembly is easy, but it can take time to understand as there aren’t many instructions provided.
- Provides a lot of height.
- Very strong, sturdy and reliable.
- Is reversible so can be attached from either side.
- Little assembly instructions provided.
- The color scheme is not very eye-catching.
Duro-Med Heavy-Duty Sliding Transfer Bench
Dimensions: 39″ x 18″ x 37″ | Item Weight: 14.5 pounds | Color: Gray | Weight Capacity: 400 pounds | Material: Textured, plastic seat and aluminum frame
A bestselling transfer bench that can work in conjunction with wheelchairs and walkers to provide a smooth transfer process. The seat is covered with textured plastic, as is the back giving the user a strong non-slip surface to maintain them throughout the transfer.
The legs are adjustable, with suctions on the bottom creating strong grip and friction. The bench is easy to set up, with no tools required for assembly. It is quite large, so you need to make sure you have sufficient space in your bathroom.
- Seat has wide range of adjustability (4 inches).
- Legs are also adjustable, allowing you more flexible positioning.
- Is compatible with wheelchairs and walkers.
- Color scheme is a little drab.
- Quite large and may not fit well in a small bathroom.
Eagle Health Swivel Sliding Bath Transfer Bench
Dimensions: 20.5″ x 49.8″ x 23.2″ | Item Weight: 14.2 pounds | Color: White | Weight Capacity: 400 pounds | Material: Plastic/Aluminum
This bench features a very impressive swiveling, flexible seat. Unlike other benches, this seat moves with the user, rather than the user having to slide across it. This adds a layer of trust, as you know the seat will not slide out from underneath you.
There is a huge range of potential positioning it allows you to have while you use the bench, allowing the user to stay in the position that best creates stability for them. It is very sturdy and has a decent weight limit.
- Superb seat mobility.
- High level of flexibility and effective positioning.
- Very sturdy.
- Questionable latch quality.
- May not fit well in smaller bathrooms.
Eagle Health Bariatric Swivel Sliding Bath Transfer Bench
Dimensions: Standard base length, 39–40″; seat, 19.5–23.5″ (H) x 20.25″ (W) x 18.5″ (D); back, 14.75″ (W) x 7″ (H); base, 39.0–39.5″ (W) x 20.5–22.0″ (D) | Weight Capacity: 400 pounds | Material: Plastic/Aluminum
Unlike some other bath transfer benches that require the person using the seat to physically move from one side of the bench when they are getting into the tub, this bath transfer bench makes it incredibly easy as it will swivel and glide, slowly moving from one side to the other so that the person sitting on the bench doesn’t have to try to physically move their weight on their own.
This is ideal if you are taking care of someone who struggles to move at all and needs to be transferred into the bath without having to lift their own weight.
Thanks to the adjustable safety belt, you won’t have to worry about the safety of the person using this chair, as it is easy to adjust the size of the belt and then secure the person into the chair. This means that even people who are prone to falls or slipping off of a seat can easily use this bench, move from one side to another when getting in or out of the bath, and won’t be at risk.
Other great features of this bath transfer bench include the molded plastic seat that features drainage holes to negate any standing water, tool-less assembly so you can get it set up quickly, and special sliding rings that can lock the seat into place at either side of the rails.
- Wider seat makes sitting on the chair much more comfortable.
- Aluminum frame is lightweight, very strong, and rust proof.
- The bench is height-adjustable.
- Includes safety belt.
- Includes anti-slip rubber tips.
- Seat turns 360° and can lock into position every 90°.
- Additional safety arms are available, but aren’t to be used to bear full body weight.
Complete Medical 1178D Bariatric Transfer Bench
Dimensions: 27″ (W) x 16″ (D) | Item Weight: 38 pounds | Color: White | Weight Capacity: 600 pounds | Material: Plastic/Aluminum
This is a very basic tub transfer bench, but if you are helping care for someone who has a little more control over their body and doesn’t need to be slid into the bath, then it can be a great option.
Thanks to the cross-body design underneath the chair, you don’t have to worry about whether or not the chair will be able to hold up to 600 pounds without failing. This will give you and the user peace of mind that they are not going to be in danger when using this chair to transfer into the bathtub.
Additionally, this is a much smaller option than others on the market, which makes it ideal if you do not have a lot of room in your bathroom for an extended transfer bench.
At 38 pounds you can see that this bench isn’t going to accidentally slip out of the way, and thanks to the middle legs that are included for additional support, it won’t fail you while in use.
- Bench and backrest are durable and molded for comfort and strength.
- Back position can be adjusted for increased comfort.
- Comes fully assembled so there isn’t any set up time.
- 1” aluminum tubing is strong, yet very lightweight, making the bench easy to lift.
- Has non-slip feet for improved protection and safety.
- User has to be able to move from one side of the bench to the other.
- There is only one armrest on one side.
HydroGlyde Premium Heavy Duty Sliding Bathtub Transfer Bench and Shower Chair
Dimensions: Height from floor to top of backrest, 35″ at highest and 30″ at lowest; frame overall width, 34″ at highest and 33″ at lowest; frame overall height, 35″ at highest and 30″ at lowest; frame overall depth, 20″ at highest and 22″ at lowest; seat, 13″ x 16″ | Item Weight: 12 pounds | Color: Blue | Weight Capacity: 420 pounds | Material: Plastic/Aluminum
Not only can you quickly and easily adjust this shower bench to fit around most tubs or showers, but it is made of a durable aluminum that means you don’t need to worry about it rusting or being difficult to clean.
The removable cut out in the seat is easy to put back into place when you want the solid support of the entire seat, and it even has a mounting bracket on the bench so that you don’t accidentally lose it when you take it out.
Thanks to the padded assist handle, users will be able to help themselves glide across the top of the bench, which reduces the concern or risk of skin tears or other damage.
The high contrast of the blue seat, back, and handle make this chair very easy for patients who have vision problems or are suffering from memory loss, to see. This means that they are going to have an easier time using the bench and won’t be at such a high risk for falling.
- Seat is cut out so that it can be used over a commode, as well.
- Cut out section makes it easy to clean the perineal area safely.
- Safety belt is included to reduce the risk of falls or slips.
- Chair glides smoothly from one side to the other so that the user doesn’t have to try to transfer their body weight on their own.
- Can be easily reversed so that it will work with left or right side access tubs and showers
- Due to the size of the bench, it won’t work on tubs with very wide edges, such as some garden tubs.
- The back can’t be raised or lowered.
- Doesn’t swivel.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Are bathtub transfer benches covered by Medicare?
2. Do private insurance companies cover the cost of bathtub benches?
3. I don’t have a disability. Do I need a bathtub bench?
You do not necessarily need to have a disability to benefit from a tub transfer bench. If your health is declining or you’re having mobility issues, you might need a tub bench.
4. What is the difference between a bariatric and a standard bathtub transfer bench?
The difference is mainly based on the weight capacity of the bench. If you’re looking forward to buying a bariatric bathtub transfer bench, you should aim to purchase one for persons > 250 pounds (113 Kg) for safety.
5. Should I buy a padded or unpadded tub transfer bench?
These two types differ in terms of cost and comfort. If you’re on a tight budget, you might want to go for an unpadded transfer bench. However, unpadded tub transfer benches may not provide the level of comfort that can be achieved with padded tub transfer benches.
Using the best tub transfer bench will help to keep you or your loved one safe. By buying a high-quality bench, you can rest easy knowing that you are taking steps to improve your health and safety or that of your loved one. Compare the pros and cons of each bench on this list to help you make the right choice for you and your family and to make bathing much safer and more enjoyable.
Did you find this post helpful? If you liked this article, you might also be interested in knowing how to choose the best bathroom grab bars for the elderly.
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