Renovating or remodeling a bathroom can be a fun and exciting time. It’s a treat to design a space that fits your own style and routines. It’s also a great time to think about designing a space that will be both comfortable and safe for you now and in the future.
Luckily, the development of products that look great and provide smart solutions for creating a safer space have come a long way in the past few years. It’s no longer necessary to make a choice between safety and style when you are thinking about your dream bathroom.
For the past several years companies have released some great products that can be considered for any dream bathroom. For example, Delta Faucets has a great line of towel bars, toilet paper holders and soap dishes that have grab bars elegantly and subtly integrated into them. What these acknowledge is that if I lose my balance I am going to grab for the closest thing attached to the wall, and these products solve for this. Their stand-alone grab bars are great too, designed with all the flair and style to match great plumbing fixtures. They have become a considered element of the entire shower composition.
Another great solution which has been increasing in popularity in recent years is a linear drain. These are the key to creating “barrier-free” showers, which means nothing to trip on while getting into and out of the shower! When Michael Graves became paralyzed in 2003, he had to renovate his bathroom to make a barrier-free shower that he could access with a wheelchair. By using a linear drain from Quick Drain or others, the threshold can be eliminated, and also prevent any water from running out of the shower.Contractors like it because it also simplifies the shower pan install. They only need to pitch the floor one way, instead of four ways on a typical center-drain.
Quickdrain Linear Drains
If you have the space, definitely consider a built-in bench. The experience of sitting down in the shower is a luxury everyone should experience if possible. Make sure you get the height right. Normal chairs are 18” high, so you may want to consider making your bench as high as 19”. A higher seat makes sitting down and standing up tremendously easier, just like the taller toilets (more on that in another post).
When you are looking at beautiful shower heads, it’s smart to consider a coordinating handheld shower sprayer. It seems like every shower collection these days has a handheld sprayer compliment. These are essential if you are sitting down, and just plain useful for anyone. There are even sprayers out there today that have on/off switches built into them, as well as color-changing lights to indicate safe and unsafe water temperatures.
Lastly, don’t overlook the small details. When you select hardware for drawers and vanities stay away from simple knobs. Pick a drawer pull that is easy to grab with wet or dry hands, like a classic banker’s pull, or an elegant handle. They have all the style but offer superior ease-of-use.
Another great tip for making your shower future-friendly is to have your contractor put ¾” plywood up as a backer in the shower. This would go between the studs and the cement board. This will allow you to easily and safely mount hardware anywhere in the future, without having to find a stud, or worse, cut out tile and add additional structural “blocking.” If you are simply doing a remodel and want to add some hardware to your walls without cutting them open, there are some great solutions for that too. Moen makes an anchor called Secure Mount that is rated to support 300lbs on drywall, no stud required.
Secure Mount Universal Solution
Whether you are doing a remodel or full renovation, the process is rewarding and the results can be fabulous. Hopefully some of these tips will help you make you and your bathroom a lot smarter, safer and more comfortable without sacrificing the look you want. Hop over to the curated collection of bathroom fixtures & hardware to see all of these solutions and more.