Tips for Remodeling Your Bathroom

Remodeling your bathroom turns outdated spaces into luxurious, modern oases, reworks your powder room into a space that better fits your needs. Whatever the reason behind your desire for a bathroom remodel, there are some points to consider before you start. The Indianapolis plumbers of Mr. Plumber share our professional tips to help you when you are remodeling your bathroom.

Choose a Layout

A common reason why homeowners choose to remodel a bathroom is to rework the layout. The old layout isn’t very functional, or you want to add a fixture but there isn’t space how things currently sit. Remodeling your bathroom typically changes the layout, so you want to be sure your new layout is able to resolve the issues you have with your current space.

With a bathroom remodel, you are not necessarily restricted to the area of your current bathroom. Depending on the layout of your home, you may be able to expand the space to allow more room for the upgrades you want to make. It’s best to consult a professional bathroom remodeling contractor who is able to help you plan the new space and account for the changes that need to be made to alter the area, such as construction, rewiring, moving plumbing lines, and more.

Think about how you want your newly remodeled bathroom to function. This helps you decide where to place showers, bathtubs, double sinks with wide vanities, toilet chambers, and more. Choose a layout that makes efficient use of the available space – you don’t want to take up too much square footage that could be better allocated to other uses.

Traditional Bathrooms or Wet Rooms?

Creation of a wet room is something to consider when remodeling your bathroom. In a wet room, everything is waterproofed. There is a shower but not an enclosure – a floor drain allows wastewater to exit the space. A wet room is often wide open, without anything separating the shower, toilet, and sinks.

In a wet room, all flooring and cabinetry must be able to withstand moisture, or you are going to have problems. Often, homeowners choose to use the same tiling throughout the room, on floors and up walls.

Wet rooms are popular in households with members who have mobility issues. Navigating around partitions or even climbing in and out of a tub or shower enclosure is a real challenge. Wet rooms eliminate these obstacles to allow everyone to use the facilities with easier access.

Upgrade to Save Energy

Remodeling your bathroom is a costly project – why not create ways to save when it’s finished? Upgrade old bathroom fixtures to new, low flow fixtures that save water. See just how much they save:

  • Low flow toilets use as little as 1.28 gallons of water per flush. The federal standard for new toilets is 1.6 gallons per flush. Older toilets can use as much as 7 gallons each time you flush! Installing one helps you reduce water use 20 to 60 percent, generating a yearly savings of $140 or more in water costs.
  • 17 percent of a home’s indoor water use comes from the shower – the average household uses about 40 gallons of water each day from the shower. Low flow showerheads deliver less than 2 gallons of water per minute, while standard showerheads use 2.5 gallons per minute.
  • Standard flow for bathroom faucets is 2.2 gallons per minute. Low flow faucets reduce water flow by 30 percent, at a maximum of 1.5 gallons per minute.

When it comes to low flow fixtures for your bathroom remodel, there are tons of options in different shapes, sizes, styles, and finishes. Bathroom fixtures that meet the Environmental Protection Agency’s criteria are marked with the WaterSense label, which makes it easier for homeowners to identify water smart fixtures for their bathrooms.

Ventilation is Key

Many older bathroom designs have no ventilation, which leads to moisture problems and mold growth in the home. When remodeling your bathroom, ventilation is necessary to protect your home and this new space, as well as to increase comfort and ease of use.

Bathroom ventilation typically uses overhead exhaust fans. This equipment sucks out warm, damp air created by the shower and sinks. This removes the mugginess and extra heat while protecting fixtures such as cabinetry, moldings, wall coverings, and flooring from damage caused by moisture buildup in the bathroom.

Many homeowners use exhaust fans that run on timers. The fan runs for a set amount of time and turns off when done to conserve energy, but clears the room of moist air even after you’re done in the bathroom. 

Another option is ventilation with a dehumidistat. When the dehumidistat detects excess moisture in the air, the ventilation system is turned on automatically and runs until it is no longer needed. This is a great option for families with children and others who do not remember to use or turn off the bathroom fan. Motion sensors are another way to incorporate effortless bathroom ventilation and energy savings.

In addition to mechanical ventilation solutions, your design needs to incorporate good ventilation when remodeling your bathroom. For example, shower enclosures should not extend all the way to the ceiling – this allows better air circulation and prevents stagnate pockets of air in the bathroom as well as moisture buildup. In steam showers, the use of a transom panel above the door helps you dry the space when not in use and allow air to circulate.

Adding a window when remodeling your bathroom is a way to add natural ventilation to the space. Some balk at the idea of a window in a bathroom, as others could peer in on your private moments, but there are many options to erase this worry. Frosted and one-way glass panes, higher window heights, and more help you maintain privacy while improving ventilation. And a bonus – windows allow natural light!

Bathroom Lighting Design

When remodeling your bathroom, lighting is just as important to function as the plumbing changes you make! Lighting is both functional as well as aesthetic, and a fine mix helps you create a beautiful space that is easy to use. 

Overhead lighting is critical in bathroom spaces for function. Perimeter lighting and specialty wall fixtures enhance the aesthetic appeal of the space. Many choose lighting options that provide targeted overhead light for each use of the space – the shower, the bathtub, the sinks, and the toilet.

Set a Budget

Once you have an idea of what you want to do and the products you want to use, before you set out to do any work remodeling your bathroom you need to budget. If you plan to DIY portions of this project, find out what elements require professional help (running plumbing lines, relocating plumbing, installing fixtures, etc.) and contact your plumber for a quote. Price out your fixtures, lighting, flooring, and all materials.

If you cannot do all that you wish within your budget, reprioritize your project. Is it important to you to get the space and layout you want then add fixtures and finishes as you are able to, or do you want a fully finished bathroom remodel and you are willing to sacrifice on things upfront to get it done? In any budget, always allow some cushion to account for the unexpected – it’s unlikely that remodeling your bathroom will come without a single surprise expense!

Talk to a Professional

Sometimes it’s difficult to translate ideas into reality, especially if you are not familiar with plumbing or construction. When you work with a professional plumber who has experience in bathroom remodeling, you have a guide who is able to show you what works and what doesn’t, and more importantly, why.

Many homeowners want to do part or all of the work themselves. You need to be really honest with yourself about your skillset before you break ground remodeling your bathroom. Doing things the wrong way makes your remodeling project more expensive due to rework as well as potential damage to your home. 

Many plumbing projects typically require permits, which a professional knows to obtain and knows how to do the work up to code. You don’t want to risk doing unpermitted work in your home, as this is costly to correct and impacts the value of your home. Your best bet when remodeling your bathroom is to work with a licensed plumber for the major elements, like the installation of a new toilet or other fixture. If you are capable, you may save money performing other work yourself.

Remodeling Your Bathroom with Mr. Plumber!

Remodeling your bathroom is a hefty project, but when done right, it enhances function, increases home value, and leaves you with a beautiful bathroom you enjoy using. Mr. Plumber helps Indianapolis area homeowners remodel bathrooms with plumbing and fixture installation. Let’s discuss your bathroom remodeling ideas and we’ll show you how we can help – contact us today!