Can we do a bathroom lessons learned thread?

(142 Posts)
dontcallmemam Sun 12-Jan-14 06:51:19

My Pinterest and Houzz are full of gorgeous bathrooms but thinking practically are there any good tips?
It seems a decent extractor & an open window are important.
Good flooring?
Adequate storage?
Any tips gratefully received.

Towel rails don't heat a room (or even a towel!) as much as a radiator will. Everybody on hear told me, but I refused to listen and now have a v pretty but frosty bathroom. Next time I will either have a towel rail with under floor heating or a radiator with a towel rail going around it.

I like my vinyl floor, basin with drawers underneath (sanuex) and bath that is square shaped inside so it holds more DC water.

coraltoes Sun 12-Jan-14 08:13:58

Marble floor looks amazing but turns into an ice rink with the merest drop of water. Chrome taps/shower controls always have watermarks if you live in a hard water area (i do). Natural stone baths do not like you putting foam shapes on (they absorb the colour a bit) and you'll panic like a freaking loon to get the stain out (it does come out).

When you do a shower area with a high up shower head always have a hand held shower installed too (i do, it is fab as can wash the glass down, or body without getting hair wet).

Pay up for good taps. Grohe are worth the money (other good brands exist too!)

Underfloor heating feels like heaven every morning and when you have to sit on the floor for kids bath time it stops your bum dying from cold.

Towel rails are fine if you size them correctly for the size of the room. We have a large one that is v good but DH checked it had enough BTU output for the size of the room. There are websites that will help,you calculate, it varies according to number/size of windows and if walls are exterior or not.

Good storage essential, I have a large cabinet that can fit the bleach and cleaning bottles in so that around the loo isn't cluttered by any cleaning stuff.

Quodlibet Sun 12-Jan-14 08:21:56

Do not tile wet areas with those stupid bastard tiny mosaic tiles. There is too much grout and not enough tile and they will leak water. Unfortunately huge expanses of my bathroom were done with them by previous owner. They are also very difficult to replace. Work of the devil in my opinion.

Finlaggan Sun 12-Jan-14 08:25:36

watching with interest as I'll by doing my bathroom this year.

I deeply regret not going for my separate shower and freestanding bath dream.

I love my double sink and Grohe taps.

Btw our towel rail does heat the room, size matters wink you need a good plumber to calculate how much output you need for the size of the room.

Storage is an issue. Would love a built in unit to hide all towels and toiletries in.

missmagnum Sun 12-Jan-14 08:29:29

Don't use white tiles on the floor. Looked amazing for the first 10 minutes but has not looked clean since, despite daily cleaning, sweeping etc. Hate it!

EasterHoliday Sun 12-Jan-14 08:31:14

Cheap tiles can look good if really well laid and an expensive metal edge used if you aren't going to ceiling. Cheap edging makes the whole thing look cheap.
Spend money on the things that move - taps and shower screens. I have a chip of a cheap shower screen forever in my hand after the bastard shattered on me. Turns out it's remarkably common, given the number of people who have said me too

fresh Sun 12-Jan-14 08:34:53

Always try to build a niche in one wall of the shower (pref a studwork wall, much easier) for bottles. Saves floor space, removes need for shelves.

dontcallmemam Sun 12-Jan-14 08:44:56

These are brilliant, thank you.

Tyranasaurus Sun 12-Jan-14 08:54:35

If you have room a separate shower and bath are great. If you do have a separate shower it's still useful to have a shower head over the bath for cleaning and rinsing hair.
Small baths are crap- personally I'd rather have a large shower over a small bath.
If you have a shower screen buy one of those wax sprays they really do stop limescale.
If buying offwhite tiles carefully check the colour as what looks white on a single tile in the shop turns very pink once laid over the whole floor sad
Never ever use white grout on floor tiles
Underfloor heating is lovely as are double ended baths

BombayBunty Sun 12-Jan-14 08:57:03

Always sit in your proposed bath before buying it. We chose a bath that looked nice, it wasn't deep enough.
Had it taken out after two uses and got a bigger one!

schoolnurse Sun 12-Jan-14 09:00:49

Having agonised over the bathroom for weeks I'm just about to purchase all the bits for mine so am reading this avidly. We going for a heated towel rail and under floor heating which is surprisingly cheap, we've chosen a German make of taps, shower etc, wall hung loo and basin, Gerberit concealed cistern /flush, 10mm glass for shower. I just can't decide on the floor currently looking at porcelains tiles that looks like limestone and costs nearly as much (we've got dogs and the floor extends into the utility/dog bedroom so have been advised against limestone itself) or tiles that look like wood. Does anyone have any experience?
We"re thinking about white metro tiles nothing rustic just plain simple ones all seem cheap when compared to "hand made" ones any suggestions for good quality ones.

YY to a big bath! And no white grout. We have 2 different shades of grey (darker on floor, lighter on wall) with the matching grout colours.
Go for expensive grout and use the most expensive undertile mats which will dampen the sound and make sure the tiles/grout do not crack (assuming you are putting tiles onto wooden floor).

schoolnurse Sun 12-Jan-14 09:02:26

Wax sprays to prevent lime scale????
I've never heard of these where do I get it from? We have a serious problem with lime scale.

Rooners Sun 12-Jan-14 09:06:43

Agree on the marble tiles - ours are slippery as fuck - not good when you have small dc.

We've been renting for 6 years in a house without a bathroom window. It's not terrible, but it is so sad to have to have a bath with the extractor fan rattling away overhead constantly.

We're now moving (hopefully) to a house with a proper, large bathroom with an actual enormous sash window in it and I'm like this smile when I think about it.

I wouldn't have a towel rail as I think they are boring and ugly, but I will be incorporating a lot of towle storage if possible and putting the washing machine in the bathroom, too, instead of in the kitchen which always seems a bit insanitary to me. If I could have a futility room I would.

Always fork out for a really good toilet seat that doesn't keep moving and coming off. I'm taking ours with me when we go.

The previous owners at the new place have donw quite a good job on the bathroom, well it's basic, it's got white tiles and vinyl over floorboards (which I guess you need? To prevent leaks - or can you seal floorboards effectively?) and a white suite which is kind of clunky old fashioned, but still, it'll do fine till we have the money to do it up.

Watching with interest! Thanks for all these.

Rooners Sun 12-Jan-14 09:08:38

Also - definitely get a metal bath. They are amazing.

It might take a little while for them to heat up, but once they have, they keep the water warm for so much longer...ours is still tepid often about 12 hours later. And they are much stronger obviously than acrylic, and nicer all round.

mousmous Sun 12-Jan-14 09:11:42

get aquapaneling throughout. not just near bath/shower.

and measure measure measure, and then calculate how much room the bath etc takes. we first wanted a showerbath but then realised that the room would be narrower after fitting extra insulation and the tiles so it wouln't fit anymore. and are still left with an akward corner between bath and wall where the shelves we ordered don't fit because it's too narrow by 2mm

BombayBunty Sun 12-Jan-14 09:12:19

We have a Carronite bath. I was a bit sceptical as we had always have metal baths in the past, but I can report that it is just as good! Make sure it's Carronite not plain Carron.

MrsDeVere Sun 12-Jan-14 09:15:02

I have a very small upstairs bathroom. I have not done anything to it yet because any small change would mean ripping out loads of tiles etc.
So if I am going to do anything I might as well do the whole thing.

I am hoping to do it this year. It has a small enamel bath and I know it will be a total pain to get a new one to fit (and I don't want a plastic one) so I am going for a shower room.

The kids are old enough to use a shower and I never use the bath because its too small.

I am really nervous about it all and don't know where to start.

My tip for a bathroom? If you have a wet room DO NOT go for the grainy, non slip floor (the type with the tiny bobbles) because it is impossible to keep clean. The dirt gets trapped and no amount of steaming or scrubbing will remove it. Look for a different type of non slip.

mousmous Sun 12-Jan-14 09:16:34

we have an thermaform bath tub (acrylic extra insulated) holds heat very well and doesn't feel like stepping onto ice when getting into the shower on winter mornings.

MrsDeVere Sun 12-Jan-14 09:18:08

Toilet seats!
If you have lots of boys don't bother going for a nice seat with metal fixings. We used to go through at least two seats a year because the fixings would be destroyed by their pee.

I gave in and got a good quality soft close plastic seat and it has lasted for about two years now.

Boring but true.

dimsum123 Sun 12-Jan-14 09:26:34

We've gone for fully tiled shower but half tiled everywhere else. Makes the room less clinical and wall contrasts beautifully with the tiles. I second the wax spray for the shower doors, it really repels the water and we don't get any limescale marks. I also sprayed tile and grout protector before we started using the bathroom and so far it seems to be working. It stops the tiles and grout from dirt and limescale.

Rooners Sun 12-Jan-14 09:28:09

Oh cool - things have moved on in bath technology! Ignore me then everyone grin

Btw would appreciate advice on whether to keep the bathroom as one big room, or divide it off into the bath bit and the toilet/sink as it used to be? The original door is still there and an extra window, so we could do it - and there's me and three growing boys, and nowhere else to put an extra toilet or bathroom.

So would you divide, or leave it as one big room?

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