Planning A New Bathroom


Planning A New BathroomAs with any room in the house, you must have a good think about what how your bathroom will be used and who will use it. Think about your heating needs and preferences. Consider what you are going to store in your bathroom. This is also the perfect opportunity to create a custom-made sanctuary to relax and enjoy in your down time; the possibilities for going all out and indulging in a beautiful space are endless.


Finding Inspiration
If you’re struggling for creative ideas or finding it hard to imagine a layout, order a stack of bathroom catalogues from showrooms and put together a scrapbook of room sets, fittings and sanitary-ware. Interior magazines are also a great source of inspiration as well as friends’ bathrooms. Pay attention to hotel bathrooms and restrooms in restaurants and bars. Plan your design early on in the build stage and work out exactly where all your sanitaryware will go and the kind of plumbing you will need. Get your plumber and bathroom supplier to liaise with your architect on the design and layout.

The Basics
The starting point in putting your bathroom together will be deciding on what sanitaryware you want. The secret is to keep your bathroom as functional and as practical as possible, without scrimping on style. Generally the bath is the first consideration when picking out sanitaryware and you should be realistic about what will suit your space and your needs.

Make sure there’s plenty of room to partly dry yourself within the unit and you will need space to raise your arms and bend to reach your feet. Where space is tight give yourself as many options as possible within the space you have by fitting a shower over your bath. The type of shower you get will depend on your water pressure and how your hot water is produced. Since the styles of wash basins are so many and varied, you’re best to consider where you should put it and how can you mount it. Back specialists advise that you don’t lean down to use your sink, so ignore the standard height of 815mm from the floor if necessary when installing one. If you share your bathroom with another, a double basin is an option and you should allow at least 36 inches between them for maximum comfort. When it comes to the toilet you’ll need to think about comfort and hygiene, as well as the actual look of the toilet. Do you want to conceal the cistern and pipes or maybe hang the toilet off the wall? Make sure there is plenty of room for manoeuvrability. Never install it facing a door and allow for 15 inches of clearance either side. The toilet bowl should be low enough for your feet to rest on the floor when sitting and there should also be enough headroom for standing upright.

Once you’ve assessed your needs and chosen your style, you then need to plan what goes where. Mistakes can occur when ideas are vague, so creating a drawing will ensure that you get what you’re after insofar as this is possible. Draw up a floor plan of your bathroom, accurately measuring all recesses and awkward spaces, heights from floor to sloping ceiling and don’t forget to mark out windows, doors and radiators. Don’t worry if this is not to scale, most suppliers will call to your house to take measurements themselves and discuss a layout so if you have any questions they should be able to sort out the final plan.

Dos and Don’ts

  • Do your research thoroughly before you pull out your chequebook. Visit lots of showrooms and trawl through lots of catalogues so that you get a clear idea of what’s available.
  • Don’t pay a deposit of more than 25% of the total contract value for the bathroom.
  • Do install thermostatic taps as they regulate temperature and can protect from scalding.
  • Don’t put a lock on the door – for obvious safety reasons. A sign outside the doors should let people know when it’s in use.
  • Do put attention into the finish. The bathroom is a potential breeding ground for germs so make sure that where fixtures meet walls and where tiles join, all is perfect.
  • Don’t skimp on really good fixtures and fittings – it’s the finishing touches that will make all the difference.
  • Do avoid trailing flexes and wires.
  • Don’t install sockets near the sink or bath – water and electricity do not mix.
  • Do try to vary textures and shapes in your bathroom for interest.
  • Don’t clutter your bathroom with lots of sanitary-ware and furniture. Even big bathrooms need space to breathe.

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