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Thread: Need assistance of tub/shower location (and type)

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  1. #1
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    Default Need assistance of tub/shower location (and type)

    First post !

    Main question relates to where to put the new tub and shower....

    See pic below. We are renovating our 25 year old ensuite - its time! In the new layout we want to accomondate a large tiled shower, large tub, double vanity, a makeup table, and perhaps a tower/pantry for storage. We are gutting and extending the room as well. We would likely tile halfway up the wall.

    In Plan A, which is what we are toying with now, I think I would be okay re access to the corner tub plumbing (ie via skirts or access via the indoor walls) .... but my main concern is the aesthetics. Normally one would have only two 5' walls to deal with, but as shown I need to deal with 3 walls as I dont have many option for the main door. And there is no room for any tiling around the tub (no lip)...I can only tile on the walls, and in front (if I dont go for the acrylic skirt). I am concerned it might look like an alcove setup vs a conventional corner tub setup. Is that a valid concern???

    If that corner doesnt really make sense, I suppose I could put a corner tub in on the opposite concern per Plan B, and build a shorter shower by the main entrance. This assumes there is nothing behind the existing bulkheads that are there now. Would also need to move the toilet so more work/cost there re plumbing. Here I would have more options re drop-in, tiling etc. although I would likely need to do the skirt option for access ( I think?).

    Another option, Plan C, would be to forget the corner tub and go with an alcove type tub ( kinnda like now). Not liking that too much.

    Would really appreciate some guidance, thoughts on this...
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by mediaman; 04-03-2013 at 04:07 PM.

  2. #2

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    I like plan B the best.

    In plan A, I personally think that the corner tub doesn't make sense being in an alcove. Why not put in a drop-in or alcove tub that's wider? Some of them can be 42" wide. That will be a nice upgrade from your current tub. Another thing I don't like in plan A is the shower door being so close to the toilet. What's the grey box in the shower? A bench? If you move the bench to the opposite side you can move the shower door away from the toilet. Or what's the dark grey box next to the shower? Is it a closet? If you don't mind losing the closet you can have a bigger shower and move that shower door as well. Since the toilet is the most difficult item to relocate, if you want to keep the budget and scope of work as small as possible, plan A may still be the best with some modifications.

    As for plan C, if you are a shower person, go for it (you probably want to make the shower as big as your space allows). If you are a tub person, don't miss this chance to get a nice tub.

    Just my 2c. Wished I could have such straightforward plans in our remodel! We had 20 drawings! And we had to move all the plumbing!
    Last edited by rapida; 04-04-2013 at 11:39 PM.

  3. #3
    DIY Senior Member suceress's Avatar
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    I take it having the corner tub in the lower left corner and the shower next to it on the lower wall and putting the toilet in the alcove is not an option? With the toilet in the alcove it would afford some privacy and you could mount a toilet paper holder on the wall and maybe have a little storage thing to hold toilet paper and cleaning supplies, plungers, etc directly next to the toilet. Maybe a magazine rack with crossword puzzles and such for those long stays. This would also put the toilet rather close to the entrance in case someone needed to get there in a hurry. Or would that not fit? I suck at proportions and don't know the actual measurements of things. It might be too cramped that way.

    Other than that, I say Plan B looks nice.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by suceress View Post
    I take it having the corner tub in the lower left corner and the shower next to it on the lower wall and putting the toilet in the alcove is not an option? With the toilet in the alcove it would afford some privacy and you could mount a toilet paper holder on the wall and maybe have a little storage thing to hold toilet paper and cleaning supplies, plungers, etc directly next to the toilet. Maybe a magazine rack with crossword puzzles and such for those long stays. This would also put the toilet rather close to the entrance in case someone needed to get there in a hurry. Or would that not fit? I suck at proportions and don't know the actual measurements of things. It might be too cramped that way.

    Other than that, I say Plan B looks nice.
    If the drawings are proportional the toilet will be taking too much space being in the alcove, kind of wasteful. And relocating the toilet to that far away can be extremely costly, even impossible. And there won't be enough space in front of the vanity, if the shower is big enough.

    I had to move my toilet 5 feet away from where it was, and the cost of labor for this part only was $2000. Some plumber looked at it and asked for $5000 just for moving the toilet. It all depends on what kind of stuff are there and their layout in the floor joists, whether you can lose some ceiling height in the lower level, etc.

    Mediaman, if your floor joists run a long your outside wall, you can move your toilet in plan B relatively easily, providing there is not much stuff in that floor space. Otherwise, be prepared to have a boxed soffit in the room down below (if it's finished) for plan B.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by rapida View Post
    I like plan B the best.

    In plan A, I personally think that the corner tub doesn't make sense being in an alcove. Why not put in a drop-in or alcove tub that's wider? Some of them can be 42" wide. That will be a nice upgrade from your current tub. Another thing I don't like in plan A is the shower door being so close to the toilet. What's the grey box in the shower? A bench? If you move the bench to the opposite side you can move the shower door away from the toilet. Or what's the dark grey box next to the shower? Is it a closet? If you don't mind losing the closet you can have a bigger shower and move that shower door as well. Since the toilet is the most difficult item to relocate, if you want to keep the budget and scope of work as small as possible, plan A may still be the best with some modifications.

    As for plan C, if you are a shower person, go for it (you probably want to make the shower as big as your space allows). If you are a tub person, don't miss this chance to get a nice tub.

    Just my 2c. Wished I could have such straightforward plans in our remodel! We had 20 drawings! And we had to move all the plumbing!
    Yes I would have to completely agree, everything you stated makes since I would have to also say that the one I least liked would be B.

  6. #6
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    If everything is to scale, then you appear to have a 1'-8" door into the bathroom, and if so, that is too small. Without knowing WHAT is around the outside of the room, we also have to assume that the space you show is the only size and shape possible.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  7. #7
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    Many thanks for all the comments. What a pleasure getting some unbiased points of view! This has really helped, so thanks your so much.

    Clarification to the question posed:

    Re 1'-8" door into the bathroom, , oops. that was not drawn to scale ; was intended to be 24" - still small but doable- that's what we have now.

    Re the grey box in the shower - yes that a bench

    Re Plan A corner tub not making sense in an alcove, agree- that was my concern, makes more sense to put the shower there. Toilet doesn't work in that large area as it leaves me no spot to place the tub or shower.

    Re Plan A shower door too close to toilet - agree

    Re Plan A/C dark grey box behind - that's an existing bulkhead - can be removed ( I assume there is nothing behind it)

    Re the floor joist direction, based on that fact the I see a floor register parallel to the vanity, I assume the joists run parallel to the short walls.

    Re number of drawings, I only showed the most recent three - must have gone through a dozen already , so I am almost at 20 !!

    Re it being hard to gauge eithout knowing what is around the outside of the room, fair comments. Its an ensuite as part of the bed room. I am constrained by outside walla, hallways and steps. Tried to show this in the revision below.

    Based on the comments and some re-thinking, we are now on Plan D !!

    This one:
    - leaves the toilet as is
    - puts the shower in the alcove by the entrance (still plenty of room for a large 5' x 3' shower with bench). Door not near toilet.
    - put the tub approx where it is today, but
    • centered in the area (bulkheads removed)
    • freestanding configuration (vs todays drop-in). Looking at Neptune Ulysse
    • 6 foot tub in an 8 foot space.
    • wall to have cutouts/ledges (either between the studs or vis a fake wall in front).
    • going for the 'look' per the pic below. That pic has the side bulkhead (my plans don't), which is why I slid the vanity out a bit
    • not sure if we can pull off that arch without blowing the budget


    Any cautions I should be aware of re Plan D?
    Attached Images Attached Images    
    Last edited by mediaman; 04-07-2013 at 10:15 AM.

  8. #8

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    Wow, mediaman, it seems you can afford the space for a 8'x14' (minus a small corner) bathroom. Lucky you!

    I thought your short wall was 6 or 7 feet. If it's 8 feet long, that's a whole lot difference. You will have endless possibilities.

    Since your new bathroom will be pretty big (over 100 sqft), and it will be a complete makeover (not just face lifting), it will be very costly. I'd suggest you first have an accurate floor plan of your current bath and surroundings, then make a prioritized list of the things you want to achieve in your new bathroom. You are not doing your bath remodel because you fall in love with a certain tub or certain look. Your new bathroom will be a complete package that serves all your specific needs. In your floor plan, I'd suggest you mark walls that cannot be moved (exterior walls, walls next to a staircase, etc) and walls that can (hallway and other rooms); what's on the other side of those movable walls, and how big the spaces are in those areas.

    Since you will be moving walls and some plumbing anyway, that already defines the big scope of the work. Sometimes a little extra work will get you much more enjoyment. And don't limit yourself in, say, keeping the same bedroom wall. You may not notice it if your bedroom is 6" smaller on one side (depending on how big the bedroom is), but 6" in a bathroom can make a huge difference, and can dictate whether something is doable or not. You also need to consider what's underneath the space you are remodeling. Say, sometimes due to the layout the only place you can put an access panel to the tub plumbing is on the ceiling below the tub. I am sure you don't want that if the tub is above your dining room. That's why you need a full picture of the whole house.And if you want specific advise from others, they need to have as much information as possible to give you relevant opinions.

    Say, by just looking your new plan D, I'd suggest to open your bathroom door from the hall way side (next to your toilet), because it always looks better to have a wide bathroom (door on the long wall) than a deep bathroom (door on the short wall). But if you tell that me the bathroom should be en-suite with the master bedroom, I won't say that.

    Anyway, some of my 2c:
    1. 24" door to the bathroom is too small both practically and visually for a bathroom over 100 sqft. If you do that, make sure to have your tub in the bathroom before building that door and wall, otherwise it cannot come in.
    2. a free standing tub is best positioned in unobstructed view, meaning there is nothing in front of the whole length of the tub (small decor items ok, toilet or cabinets no).
    3. it seems that you'll be doing rain shower from the ceiling? Either make sure the space above the shower is insulated or confirm with local building code it's ok. In MN it's not allowed if that water pipe goes into the attic (too cold it will burst).
    Last edited by rapida; 04-07-2013 at 01:55 PM.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by mediaman View Post
    Many thanks for all the comments. What a pleasure getting some unbiased points of view! This has really helped, so thanks your so much.

    Clarification to the question posed:

    Re 1'-8" door into the bathroom, , oops. that was not drawn to scale ; was intended to be 24" - still small but doable- that's what we have now.

    Re the grey box in the shower - yes that a bench

    Re Plan A corner tub not making sense in an alcove, agree- that was my concern, makes more sense to put the shower there. Toilet doesn't work in that large area as it leaves me no spot to place the tub or shower.

    Re Plan A shower door too close to toilet - agree

    Re Plan A/C dark grey box behind - that's an existing bulkhead - can be removed ( I assume there is nothing behind it)

    Re the floor joist direction, based on that fact the I see a floor register parallel to the vanity, I assume the joists run parallel to the short walls.

    Re number of drawings, I only showed the most recent three - must have gone through a dozen already , so I am almost at 20 !!

    Re it being hard to gauge eithout knowing what is around the outside of the room, fair comments. Its an ensuite as part of the bed room. I am constrained by outside walla, hallways and steps. Tried to show this in the revision below.

    Based on the comments and some re-thinking, we are now on Plan D !!

    This one:
    - leaves the toilet as is
    - puts the shower in the alcove by the entrance (still plenty of room for a large 5' x 3' shower with bench). Door not near toilet.
    - put the tub approx where it is today, but
    • centered in the area (bulkheads removed)
    • freestanding configuration (vs todays drop-in). Looking at Neptune Ulysse
    • 6 foot tub in an 8 foot space.
    • wall to have cutouts/ledges (either between the studs or vis a fake wall in front).
    • going for the 'look' per the pic below. That pic has the side bulkhead (my plans don't), which is why I slid the vanity out a bit
    • not sure if we can pull off that arch without blowing the budget


    Any cautions I should be aware of re Plan D?
    Well I am glad for you that plan "D" does not have much dead space.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by mediaman View Post
    First post !

    Main question relates to where to put the new tub and shower....

    See pic below. We are renovating our 25 year old ensuite - its time! In the new layout we want to accomondate a large tiled shower, large tub, double vanity, a makeup table, and perhaps a tower/pantry for storage. We are gutting and extending the room as well. We would likely tile halfway up the wall.

    In Plan A, which is what we are toying with now, I think I would be okay re access to the corner tub plumbing (ie via skirts or access via the indoor walls) .... but my main concern is the aesthetics. Normally one would have only two 5' walls to deal with, but as shown I need to deal with 3 walls as I dont have many option for the main door. And there is no room for any tiling around the tub (no lip)...I can only tile on the walls, and in front (if I dont go for the acrylic skirt). I am concerned it might look like an alcove setup vs a conventional corner tub setup. Is that a valid concern???

    If that corner doesnt really make sense, I suppose I could put a corner tub in on the opposite concern per Plan B, and build a shorter shower by the main entrance. This assumes there is nothing behind the existing bulkheads that are there now. Would also need to move the toilet so more work/cost there re plumbing. Here I would have more options re drop-in, tiling etc. although I would likely need to do the skirt option for access ( I think?).

    Another option, Plan C, would be to forget the corner tub and go with an alcove type tub ( kinnda like now). Not liking that too much.

    Would really appreciate some guidance, thoughts on this...
    Can you tell me what program you used? to make the plans?

  11. #11
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cameron Fields View Post
    Can you tell me what program you used? to make the plans?
    I just kept it simple and used Powerpoint..with a 1/4" = 1 foot grid as a background (layout).
    Found it here

    Added my own shapes as needed.

  12. #12
    DIY Senior Member suceress's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cameron Fields View Post
    Can you tell me what program you used? to make the plans?
    I was wondering the same thing. When I play around with stuff I generally use Sims 3 or just draw it out in MSpaint- but the latter is not very accurate. The former is very limited and requires quite a lot of custom content. I used to make custom content for Sims 2, but Sims 3 is more complicated.

    Rapida, how much space do you have under your vanity? If you install a drawer it will be about one inch shallower than the height of the toekick. There is a website that explains how to make the toekick drawer: http://www.familyhandyman.com/DIY-Pr...orage/View-All
    You can have some that require a knob or handle or you can make it so that when you kick it, it pops out. That might get annoying if you accidentally kick it though.

    mediaman, I couldn't find any horror stories,but I didn't really look hard. It would be cool if you could figure out how to have the curved arch have hidden storage (I did say I'm obsessed with hidden storage). That is if you decide to do the arch. I'm trying to think of the best way to accomplish that.

    Was the corner tub you were considering skirted or drop-in? If its drop in, its possible to have hidden storage around the tub like so:


    You probably couldn't do that with a standalone. You could store washcloths, extra soap, cleaning supplies, etc.

    And since I'm still throwing ideas out:



    What are the dimensions of the bathroom again? I know from wall to hallway was something like 8 feet? What was the length from the wall to where you planned to have the door and then the width of the alcove and length from alcove wall to the opposite wall?

    Your bathtub is wider than one of my bathrooms-- the bathroom is 56" and the toilet is crammed in a 23" wide alcove.
    Last edited by suceress; 04-08-2013 at 01:14 PM.

  13. #13

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    Suceress, I love that toilet brush holder too! Where can I buy one?

    Now my toe kick space under vanity is 4.5". I was planning to cut it down to 3.5". But seeing how the space could be used, I might not cut it down. Thanks for the link. I really wish I can get used to the 36" vanity height. I've been brushing my teeth by the kitchen sink for a while, and haven't got used to it yet.

  14. #14

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    I used Adobe Illustrator from work to make my drawings. An easy alternative could be have your PowerPoint on a grid background (6" per grid or more accurate), and throw your shapes on top.

  15. #15

    Default Wow

    Quote Originally Posted by rapida View Post
    I used Adobe Illustrator from work to make my drawings. An easy alternative could be have your PowerPoint on a grid background (6" per grid or more accurate), and throw your shapes on top.
    Yea i had adobe master collections for business enterprise and my computer crashed i did not have the dvds because it was over the air download, and they won't re-install it because i lost the key with the computer crash.

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