Handicap Bathroom Remodeling Ideas

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When a family member or relative becomes disabled, plans to alter a home for mobility must be executed. Designing a handicap accessible bathroom in your home is a big project, which requires a certain amount of detail in order to ensure safety. The type of bathroom will depend upon the needs of the disabled persons condition and the space available. Designs for the bathroom may include access for a wheelchair bound person or an elderly person who has trouble moving around or seeing.

When designing and creating a handicap accessible bathroom do consider that the bathroom needs to be much more safe, easy and comfortable than a regular bathroom. A well-designed handicap bathroom offers a disabled person the freedom to bathe and use a bathroom on his or her own without the assistance of anyone else. The bathroom should also have the space for a disabled person who may need assistance too.

Handicap Bathroom Remodeling Ideas: Essential Information

  • Needing 60-inches of floor space along
  • Low countertops
  • Low toilets
  • Low handrails
  • Lights switches must be accessible as should be water faucets, bathtubs and showers
  • Widening doors is a necessary consideration for the mobility and physical needs of having wheelchair handicap accessible bathroom.
  • For the elderly, nightlights are a good idea to install for assisting with weak vision and mobility
handicap bathroom remodeling ideas handicap bathroom remodeling ideas

 

The bathroom entrance should be on one level and have no steps as well as be easy to access. An entrance should be no less than 32-inches across and to accommodate a wheelchair the entrance should be at least 36-inches. For an easy entrance, a sliding door or a wraparound entrance can be created. A toilet seat height should be 18-inches and add-ons are available to raise seat heights. Make sure grab bars have enough space for grabbing and are not too close together.

Handicap Bathroom Remodeling Ideas: Sinks

A person who is wheelchair bound needs a sink height of 34-inches and room for the chair to roll up to the sink is absolutely necessary. In addition, a mirror should be low placed and faucets must be easy to reach. Towel racks should also be at a proper height for wheelchair user as well as cabinets for toiletry items.

Handicap Bathroom Remodeling Ideas: Bathtubs 

Bathtubs and showers are available at many home construction stores. These items have doors, which allow access without having to lift legs over ledges. Walk in tubs and showers need well-placed grab bars. A walk-in tub is empty upon use and fills once in the tub and remaining until all the water is drained. Walk-in tubs do have rapid drainage designs available. In a walk-in shower, a seat is a good idea as is a handheld shower because it is easier to control. See Walk In Bathtubs.

Handicap Bathroom Remodeling Ideas: Flooring

Flooring for the bathroom should be non-slip even when wet. In addition, non-slip flooring is necessary for the entire bathroom including the shower or tub. Consider a non-slip floor that will also help with minimizing water damage.

Other considerations for designing a handicap bathroom such as:

  • Door handles, light switches and other necessary fixtures need to be easily operated devices
  • Low-level light switches need to be properly placed and faucets should be easy to operate with very little pressure needed by the user
  • The toilet flush should also have the same considerations-very easy to use with very little strength needed by a hand.
  • See The Best Non Slip Flooring To Prevent Falls.

The design of a handicap bathroom is a space that is pleasant and simple. It cannot have a great deal of clutter, corners and edges should be rounded and fixtures have to be very accessible. In addition, the basic bathroom functions should allow for easy use and comfort, which positioning and construction will dictate. The resources for creating a handicap bathroom are available at home building stores and through contractors. When deciding upon the type of design for a handicap bathroom, it's important to know the availability of your bathroom space to create a comfortable bathroom facility. Visiting home improvement stores and talking with contractors will be helpful for the design and can also be cost effective.

It's important to understand the regulations and requirements for disabled persons. Depending upon the bathroom your home needs, requirements do range in form and function. A larger and more elaborate bathroom will require a great deal more consideration for using the bathroom. Keeping the bathroom simple and very functional is important for handicap and elderly persons. For more information on regulations for designing a regulation handicap bathroom are available at www.ada.gov.

Last Updated: March 21, 2012
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About Sabina Dana Plasse Sabina Dana Plasse holds a bachelor's degree in history from Bucknell University, a master's in liberal arts from Johns Hopkins University and a master's in film and video from American University. She is an award-winning writer and editor living in Sun Valley, Idaho. Besides writing on fine arts, lifestyle, home and garden, entertainment, philanthropy and business, she enjoys teaching film and writing screenplays. Sabina has served as the arts and events editor and living writer for the Idaho Mountain Express newspaper, a twice weekly national award-winning newspaper serving Idaho's Wood River Valley. Sabina adores mountain town living where she is an active snowboarding, skier, mountain biker, hiker, supporter of the arts and an avid seeker of practical living ideas.  

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