Should You Modernise Your Traditional Bathroom?

Caroline Nixon Caroline Nixon
Should You Modernise Your Traditional Bathroom?, Press profile homify Press profile homify Modern Bathroom
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New houses are designed with current needs and aesthetics in mind, often using the newest appliances on offer and adhering to the newest building standards for room zoning and feature placement. However, what is considered to be contemporary changes slowly over time as new materials, designs, and building laws enter the market. Your house will eventually become outdated and you may not realise how much things have actually changed.

You may find yourself wondering whether you should actually make changes now. Won’t any new design simply become outdated again in the future?

Consider this: older traditional style homes often come with bathrooms that use spacious interiors and large ornate features that favour form over function. Modern houses, by comparison, are smaller and more compact in design but also provide a more efficient standard of living. These tend to capture a simpler aesthetic that is more minimalist and favour function over flashy appearance.

When it comes to refurbishing or remodelling your ageing bathroom, you might be inclined to opt for more of the same. Don’t restrict yourself. Modern bathroom designs and features will work in an older house. You can often make upgrades without any significant changes to underlying infrastructure.

Updating your home can be a costly affair, and one that will potentially have a significant impact on your daily life and finances for years to come. Touching up your bathroom is a great opportunity to make changes that are efficient and environmentally friendly and will help you to save you time and money in the future.

The best part about the planning process is that you don’t need to commit to anything up front. Everything from browsing and purchasing your dream features, to finding a local plumber to help you with installation can be done online from the comfort of your own home.

Save water with a modern shower

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The main purpose of your bathroom is to wash yourself, but how are you doing it?

It was once a common practice to draw a bath and relax at the end of a tough day. However, as our schedules become busier this has been reduced to an occasional luxury. One that is increasingly seen as time consuming, needlessly wasteful of water, and less hygienic than a quick scrub in the shower.

In fact, for many people the bathroom routine is now one of the quickest parts of an increasingly busy schedule. People are more conscious of time and water usage than ever before, and science shows that there may in fact be health benefits to keeping your daily cleansing ritual short with a 3 to 8 minute rinse.

If you like your comfort though, you may still spend some time running the hot water in your shower before you jump in to get the temperature right. With some older basic shower systems this can take minutes and will quickly lead to quite a bit of water being wasted.

These days, however, it’s possible to find new showering solutions that provide you with better control over water flow rates and minimum and maximum temperature ranges. You can even pre-select a specific temperature and flow rate on more advanced shower systems.

Depending on the age of your house and where you live, it’s highly likely your bathroom has a traditional wall mounted shower head with no special features. But there are a wide range of shower heads available to suit different tastes and requirements.

Shower heads come in three different basic forms:

●     Wall mounted

●     Handheld

●     Ceiling mounted (rain)

Shower heads can also come with various adaptations to improve your shower experience, including:

●     Filtered heads

●     High pressure heads

●     Low pressure heads

●     Shower panel heads

The pros and cons of each shower head and shower type is a lengthy topic for another time, but one worth looking into. The shower is your star feature and the biggest use of water in your bathroom.

Note: It’s important to note that unless you already have one installed, if you opt for a ceiling mounted (rain) showerhead you will need to factor in the additional plumbing work required to run pipes up into your ceiling. Likewise, some showers that tout improved water control will require additional plumbing work to install temperature or water flow control valves.

In most locations, any renovation work that involves connecting new or additional plumbing lines in a household is legally required to be done by a licensed plumber. Contact your local council to find out if this applies in your area.

Do away with toilet paper and invest in a bidet or smart toilet

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How many nightmare stories about a trip to the bathroom involve toilet paper?

Far too many. Luckily our hero, the bidet, is here to save you from having a tale of your own to tell.

Although they are yet to gain popularity with American or British families, bidets are already widely used around the world. In fact, not only are they commonly found in homes throughout Asia, Middle East, Europe, and parts of South America, but they are required by law in some countries to meet a required level of hygiene.

A bidet can help you significantly cut down on the amount of toilet paper you use, although they may not completely eliminate your need for toilet paper. They’re also considerably more hygienic than the traditional method, although it may take you a bit of time to learn how to effectively use one.

If you don’t have the additional space for a bidet, or if you just want something a little more compact and easier to use, you can check out the range of smart toilets available on the market. Smart toilets are the evolution of the humble toilet and merge the functionality of a bidet into the seat of the toilet itself.

Note: Unlike a shower, replacing your toilet is one of the more basic tasks that you can complete on your own if you have the appropriate tools, time, and knowledge. In many instances (or if you’re unsure) however, it’s still recommended to contact a professional plumber.

Give your vanity a lift

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Vanity gets a bad rap when we talk about it, but is all vanity bad?

Your bathroom vanity is actually kind of important! In a typical bathroom, it’s where you go to wash your hands, brush your teeth, store your various bathroom items, and maybe put on makeup.

Older traditional style vanities consist of a cabinet that sits on the floor with a sink mounted into the top. In many homes you will also find a mirror mounted on the wall above the vanity. This setup is very basic in functionality, and often straightforward in design.

Floating vanities are fixed to the wall and, as the name suggests, sit above the ground. As an aesthetic choice, floating features will make your bathroom look and feel more open and spacious. As a functional choice, having free space beneath them makes cleaning easier, can provide a bit more room for you to move around, and reduces the likelihood of water damage in the future.

They can be a bit more expensive than traditional styled bathroom features, but overall, they will make your bathroom easier to navigate and maintain in the long term, and can provide you with more versatility for any future plans you have.

Note: Depending on what features you have in your existing and planned vanity arrangements, you may require the services of a licensed plumber to create or modify the necessary plumbing. To be safe, it’s recommended that you consult your local plumbing experts before undertaking any work.

Untap better water economy with a smart tap

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Are you smarter than a tap?

Well of course the answer is yes, but taps are getting smarter all the time! And while they’re still gaining traction, smart taps are now more affordable than ever. As you might have guessed it by now—they can also help you cut down on water waste.

Smart taps are available in touch and motion sensor variants and are great for providing you with a more hygienic and environmentally friendly bathroom experience. Some of the advanced features you might find on offer include time and volume-based water flow controls, temperature controls, and more.

By upgrading to a smart tap, you’ll never have to worry about accidentally leaving the tap running, setting the water too hot, or getting grime or slimy soap all over your tap every time you need to turn it on or off.

If you’re willing and able to spend a bit more than the average household, some modern taps are now even able to provide an additional function of hand drying. Because these are new to the market however, they are still typically commercial in nature, with prices beginning in the hundreds and quickly going into the thousands.

Note: This is another considerably basic task that you can complete on your own if you have the tools, time, and knowledge. It’s still recommended to contact a professional plumber to ensure the tap is installed correctly.

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