Make Room in Your Life For a Bath
With all the emphasis on showers and wet rooms in recent years, baths have found themselves unjustly omitted from many bathroom suites. Yes, there has been concern over its usage of water (but recent studies have shown that it is often similar to that of the average shower, especially in the case of power showers) and yes, it takes longer, but isn’t bathing the most luxurious experience?
Make time and space in your life for a good bath. On a purely practical level, a house or flat without a bath tends to have a smaller market potential and lower value than one with: many older people prefer to use a bath and generally, its presence just ticks one more box in the desirability rating of your home.
Full-stretch or slipper bath?
Bath designers know that space is often at a premium. Baths start at just 1.2m in length and rise to 1.8m, the longest standard size. The standard rectangular bath tends to be 700mm wide, rising to 800mm when you get up to the longer, more luxurious models or those with irregular shapes, such as a slipper bath.
The most popular and economical models are cast in acrylic, typically 5mm thick. These used to suffer from flexing and crazing but look for models that have built-in encapsulated base boards underneath and reinforcement on the bath itself, to make it more robust.
They also come with steel frameworks and adjustable legs for secure, convenient installation. Often the tap or waste holes won't have been drilled, giving you options when fitting the pipework and allowing you to plan how the bath’s fittings will look.
No more Cold Steel?
A more traditional and arguably more environmentally-friendly material is steel, coated with vitreous enamel. This is cooler to the touch at first but holds the heat longer once warm. It's also more resistant to scouring or harsh chemical cleaning.
It's important to check your floor loadings, before installing, as these are heavy baths that can be 50kg or more (plus the water and you!). The steel gauge varies: standard models may be 1.6mm, rising to 1.9mm.
Baths take Centre Stage
A stylish alternative is a roll-top or freestanding bath, both can create a stunning feature in your bathroom. Careful consideration is needed when installing a freestanding bath, as you need to think about the positioning of the pipework and your water supply. If possible it's best to make the pipework invisible as this will make your bath safer and more stylish.
Not just Standing Room only
Shower baths offer a useful compromise where space is tight. They can provide both a relaxing bath or shower without taking up too much space. A lot of shower baths are P or L shaped, meaning one end of the bath is slightly wider than the other, helping to provide more space for bathing or showering.
A shower bath is perfect for a family bathroom as it provides plenty of practical space for children, allowing them to splash around and enjoy bath time.
Give it a Whirl
Finally, we can't ignore the wonderfully luxurious whirlpool bath. Jets of water are supplied by 6 or more pre-installed nozzles, which you can easily control the pressure of. The forced water movement raises the heat next to your skin, helping to relieve pain and tension and provide a truly relaxing experience. There is a need for maintenance of motors and cleaning of pipework from time to time, but whirlpools are a luxurious option to consider.
So there are baths for all tastes, and there really is no excuse not to allow yourself an indulgent relaxing soak once in a while…
Claire has a Journalism degree and loves writing about all things relating to bathroom and kitchen design. In her spare time, she enjoys photography and following the latest home styling trends on social media.
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