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

  1. #91

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    I have a bathroom in the hallway which is now the warmest room in the house (after the master bath was torn out). The tiles on the floor still feel cold (the room underneath is heated). So a warm room itself does not make the tiles warm. Well, the tiles will be warm, to the room temperature. But tiles are good heat conductors, so when warmer feet are on them, they take away the warmth from the feet. My old master bath was an exception, because right underneath its floor there were 3 big heat supply trunks taking off the furnace, and all the supply ducts are over 90 degrees hot (I measured with an IR method) Those supply trunks were the heat source for the floor tiles.

    In your case, mediaman, my guess is that there are not too many heat supply ducts under your bathroom floor, because your furnace is 2 stories down. The floor will be heated but no higher than your thermostat's setting. I don't know whether that's comfortable enough for you. I just know that with all the material at the same temperature, carpet will feel the warmest, followed by vinyl, then wood, and tile will feel the coldest. It's determined by their heat conductivity.

    You probably will be fine with mats. And if you wear socks or slippers you won't feel cold on tiles anyway. As for resale, heated floor is something the buyers would love to have but not willing to pay extra, and it's not something that makes or kills a deal. I wanted it just because I was spoiled by the "free" one (no installation nor operating cost).

    If you have all the dimensions marked, you might be able to use your drawing with your contractor. Or you can give them your sketch and description and ask them to make a formal drawing. My contractor actually used my drawing for their permit application, no formal architectural drawings needed. But your current sketch is not sufficient. You need to provide spec for everything - you need a measurement for every single line in your drawing, and 3D specs too (how tall the cabinets are, how tall the mirrors are, how tall the tub deck is, etc). The accuracy of your requirement should be within 1", but don't expect the builder can follow that exactly. Given that the existing corners may not be square, walls may not be parallel, you'd better prepare for 2" margin. Anything that needs to be more accurate you need to have that requirement on paper. Say you want to use a stock sized shower door so the wall next to it should be build accordingly. I'd suggest to ask the shower door manufacturer about the opening requirement, and discuss with your builder.

    One thing I learned after hefty "tuition", is that on your contract all the requirement should be in your own words, or in words/terms you fully understand. Otherwise you nay not be able to use the contract to protect you. I had a window company to measure an existing window and told them to add one of the same size to my new bathroom. They wrote down the measurement of the new window in the contract and I signed it. It turned out their measurement was wrong. I had to buy another window and they would not refund me money for the wrong one, because they ordered what was on the contract. You see, if only I insisted to write down "same size as the existing window" instead of just their measurement on the contract, I would stand a good chance getting my money back.

    There is a saying, "trust, but verify". I think it's perfect for dealing with contractors. Then at least you need to know who is trustworthy and how to verify.
    Last edited by rapida; 04-23-2013 at 01:17 PM.

  2. #92
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    First attempt at a 3d view....

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    Last edited by mediaman; 04-24-2013 at 06:29 PM.

  3. #93
    DIY Senior Member suceress's Avatar
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    Hmm.. Almost looks cramped but I think that is because the tub deck looks deceptively like a wall. Will there be enough space in the bulkhead to get any sort of recessed shelving next to the pipe? Or did you say you planned to add some decorative element to that bulkhead to keep it from looking too plain? Maybe a fake window or a mirror.

    It looks cool though!

  4. #94
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    Here are some with color/texture

    Still trying to figure our how to display the tub....

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  5. #95

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    Sigh, it does look cramped, especially around the toilet. If everything is drawn to scale, it seems that there is roughly only 1 ft from the toilet bowl to the tub deck at the most narrow point. The toilet is also blocking the front on the tub, making you access the tub from the corner near the vanity, which is kind of awkward.

    mediaman, I know you are happy with most part of this plan. But shouldn't you demand more of a $35-40k bathroom? Maybe it's still better to move the toilet. It may cost $2k more. But $2k is just 5% of $40k. The cost of moving the toilet is in part due to ripping the ceiling downstairs and the repair afterwards. If as you said, it's a laundry room underneath, the damage and repair is localized and limited. If you have an open space down there it will cost more.

    Just the way I'm looking it. All in all, it's still a very nice bathroom, and I am deeply impressed with the way you rendered it in 3D. Which software did you use?

    Now I can think of two ways to improve around the toilet:
    1. choose a smaller tub so that it does not take up that much space.
    2. flip the north and south (or is it east/west?): move the toilet to next to the bulkhead (then you need a square bulkhead) and the makeup area along with it. Move the tub and vanity to the current toilet side. Then you can have a corner tub. Since you are following the floor joist, there won't be too much tear out and you won't have any soffit downstairs. Or you can just flip the toilet and tub, but not the vanity.

    Or you can go with a more drastic change. I still think it's better to have the toilet in a corner instead of in the middle of a bathroom.
    Last edited by rapida; 04-25-2013 at 11:13 AM.

  6. #96
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    STATUS - Excellent timing with the move-the-toilet comment! Contacctor came by yesterday, and even with the toilet in thw current position, there would some 'extra' work to do ( easily $2000) to accomodate the new shower drain location ( as they nned to brreak floors, celings to tied into the new location a few joists over). Options are :

    1) pay the price
    2) redesign and move the shower to a new location (I'd ahve to draw that out)
    3) redesign as pointed out above, take th opportunity to look at some move-the-toilet options ( within the same joist).

    So, I still have some homework to do re more mesauring and creating more 2d and now 3d skteches. I dont know that I can resolve all the issues, but lets see what I come up with. Sure is a pleasure doing it now vs later. the the comments in this thread have been priceless!

    3D SOFTWARE - There are many listed here : http://freshome.com/2010/08/18/10-be...ams-and-tools/ ; I ended up using SweetHome 3D, based in useability.

    SUPPORTING THE TUB - Hmmmm. more expense??? If I do end up with say a corner tub, the one we like holds up to 90 gallons (One US gallon weighs 8.34 pounds, so an imperial gallon weighs about 20 percent more, or almost exactly 10 pounds). Yikes. Thats 900 pounds full, or 675 lbs 3/4 full. Then add 75 lbs for the tub plus 350 pounds for 2 people @175 ea), so thats about 1100 lbs !!!!!!!!

    What type of reninfocement do I need? New support beams beneath?? Is this normal to do[/B]?? Corner tub would be on inside walls, but over the laundry room, so I do have option re support beams there if needed ( and it happens to be right over an existing support beam in the basement.)

    Currently we have an alcove tub, which I would imagine is half the weight half and hold half the water, so say 40 lbs for the tub 350 lbs for water and 175 for one person, so thats approx 535 lbs right now.
    Last edited by mediaman; 04-26-2013 at 12:58 PM.

  7. #97
    DIY Senior Member suceress's Avatar
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    Which direction to the joists run in your house? I'm guessing north to south?
    How much room do you have if you move the corner tub to the south wall? That angled wall for the bulkhead seems to take up a lot of space.
    I'm glad you found a 3D program on that page. :-)
    Any particular reason for a separate shower and tub? Have you considered a corner tub with a shower attachment? Or would that defeat the purpose?

    I'm trying to figure out where the toilet could be moved and not affect the size of the vanity. I almost wonder if a bi-fold door for the bathroom door might give you a little more space, but I don't know if you would want to give up the regular door for that. I would say accordion door, but I honestly don't like the look of those.

    Hmm... tough call on this.

    I honestly don't know about the structural support requirements or how to reinforce the floor. I think that is something an engineer/architect would know.

    I hope you get it figured out.

  8. #98
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suceress View Post
    Which direction to the joists run in your house? I'm guessing north to south?
    How much room do you have if you move the corner tub to the south wall? That angled wall for the bulkhead seems to take up a lot of space.
    I'm glad you found a 3D program on that page. :-)
    Any particular reason for a separate shower and tub? Have you considered a corner tub with a shower attachment? Or would that defeat the purpose?

    I'm trying to figure out where the toilet could be moved and not affect the size of the vanity. I almost wonder if a bi-fold door for the bathroom door might give you a little more space, but I don't know if you would want to give up the regular door for that. I would say accordion door, but I honestly don't like the look of those.

    Hmm... tough call on this.

    I honestly don't know about the structural support requirements or how to reinforce the floor. I think that is something an engineer/architect would know.

    I hope you get it figured out.
    I am assuming the joists run north to south (based on the how the floor register is oriented ( east to west), but I should try to somehow confirm that. Assuming the cost to move the toilet (south to north within the joist) is less that the cost the moving the shower drain, than I have the Plan I option as shown below.

    This one:
    - avoids shower drain movement; moves toilet instead
    - adopts corner tub
    - puts entrance door in a more natural position ( beginning of bathroom)
    - eliminates cramped toilet close to tub
    - reduces size of bulkhead for fireplace vent
    - maximizes storage
    - allows for large shower without moving drain
    - shower accommodates large bench
    - shown as neo angle - complements angle on corner tub - wife not thrilled with that but I think squared off would look worse
    - 6" lip on west and south lips of tub ; 2 "in lip for balance
    - tub faucets in good location
    - bather face bathroom

    Tried to think through some design elements re what to put with walls. Hardest part is the corner tub area.

    Plan I :


    Standard 2D view:

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    3D View from the south:
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    3D View from the north:
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    3D View from the west:
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    3D View from the east:
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    Last edited by mediaman; 04-27-2013 at 01:43 PM.

  9. #99
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    Here is a first attempt at a video version : https://www.dropbox.com/s/5miajxrizlkdfa1/I7.mov
    Last edited by mediaman; 04-28-2013 at 10:00 AM.

  10. #100

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    mediaman, the new plan looks better! I like the movie too!

    Here are a few of my thoughts:

    1. With the door on a wider wall, do increase its width! I am still stronly for a wide door. You don't see a multi-million dollar house with a narrow enetrance (ok, I'm not talking about Manhattan), same that you don't enter a $4k bathroom through a 24" door. I'd say the minimum is 30". You should have enough clearance to put one in your new plan. I'll never use a bi-fold as a bathroom door, though. In some cases, a French door is ok, but a French door needs to lead to a wide open space, which is not your case.

    2. After seeing it in 3d, now I understand why your wife didn't like to have the tub and shower side by side. With shower and tub on one side and the vanity on the other side, the bathroom looks like a tunnel. In your case a neo angle shower is a must, otherwise the traffic does not flow. The shower door can be either on the long side or the neo side, depending on personal preference. I'd like to have it on the long side.

    3. Is your shower 36" wide and vanity 21" wide? If so that's fine. If you want a bigger shower, just make sure there is at least 36" between your shower and the vanity. You'll need that space to move around the bathroom smoothly. Whether that 36" is measured from the glass panel or the shower curb, well, I think eithe way is fine. I'd measure from the curb. 36" is more than code requirement, I'm just thinking about comfort here.

    4. You may not need re-inforcement to support your corner tub. 1100 lbs is not that bad. A 60x32 cast iorn tub can be 450 lbs itself. Do you have any unfinished ceiling to look at how tall are the floor joists? I think the most common joists are trusses measuring like 2 X 10". Whether that's sufficient for your load depends on the joist span, the space between joists, and the type of wood your joists are made of. To be on the safe side, you need a enginner to look at that, not just any contractor. If the company you are working with has an engineer on the team, that will be great. If nothing's in the way, and they can reach the beam, maybe the contractor can add a few more joists in between the old ones to strengthen the floor. But whether it needs to be done, and how to get it done, will certainly depend on the particular situation of your house.
    Last edited by rapida; 04-29-2013 at 08:42 AM.

  11. #101
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    Thanks again for the review. Good point re narrow door. Done !

    I love the neo angle as well - wife still not thrilled as she wanted to get away from that shape. But I do think it makes sense vs squared off. Door would be on the long side for that reason alone.. Yes vanity = 21", shower = 36" so notionally I have 96-36-21 = 39" which is great.

    Re the comment "With shower and tub on one side and the vanity on the other side, the bathroom looks like a tunnel", are you of the opinion that the neo angle alone addresses that concern, or have I got other issues I should be looking at?

    I will ask contractor about the engineering/structutal aspects of the tub. They must deal with it all the time.

    Still trying to figure out best aesthetics re tiling ( full height vs half height vs nothing). May hire a design service (via contractors) for help re colours/patterns/tile selection etc.

    Assuming contractor is good with the toilet reconfiguration, I plan to work on cabinet/vanity next and get creative re the area around the bulhkead (to allow for another access point to tub on that edge), as well as the in-wall laundy baskets which back in to a closet (thinking of long and narrow basket that would fit in-between the studs).

  12. #102
    DIY Senior Member suceress's Avatar
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    Hmm.. Interesting. I thought you couldn't put the door in that spot because of the proximity to the stairs.
    I know your wife didn't like the idea of having the shower right next to the tub, but I wonder if you could put it there and if the glass around the shower would help make it look more open. You would lose access to potential storage on the side of the tub though. But, you could still put the door on the wall you originally planned and then put the little shelf thing between shower and tub in the alcove.

    Have you considered having the towel rack/towel bar attached to the bulkhead so it would be closer to the tub?

    Where will extra toilet paper rolls be stored?

    Do you think your wife would like a full length mirror on the wall next to her vanity (I think its the east wall)? It could have hinges and have hidden storage behind or something. A mirror in that corner would reflect light and give the illusion of having a larger space.

  13. #103
    DIY Member mediaman's Avatar
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    Re the door placement, proximity to stairs is the reason the door is inset the way it is, ie door can go there as shown, but I cant bring it out any more than that, to have a full reactangular room, as I hit stair issue.

    Point taken re tub/shower combo -- but thats a tough sell, especially after all the planning I put her through - reno faitgue before we start. I do see the combo alot, but its typically with longer tubs vs corner tubs. Maintenance cccess to the corner tub may also become an issue.

    Towel rack/towel bar would likely go on that wall (and may be heated).. would use the bulkhead storage for many things (smmaler items in the shallow half and general storage in the deeper half ( eg towels toilet rolls, etc).

    Full mirror (esp hinged with storage) is a great idea that I'd like to incorporate if I could. Some options are:
    • on an earlier plan, we had it as soon as you walk in where I have the make-up table now). So that spot is taken uniless I find a new sopt ofr the make-up table,
      or..
    • lots of room on the east wall (where I have laundry pullout), but I'd like to avoid mirrors on the short wall and I think that would only compound the 'tunnel" effect.
      or..
    • a great spot, I think, would be where I have the large open storage unit between tub and the shower. It could be full length, hinged for hidden storage and its on the perfect wall to widen the room. Hmmmm... might get steamed up after shower but thsts true wherever it would be....Hmmmm. gonna play with that one!


    I guess it would be something like this ( ie recessed). Perhaps I would get two, side by each, in dark maple....
    UPDATE - I think not - cost is prohibitive : http://www.homeandstone.com/detail.c...oduct_ID=27682

    I guess it doesn't have to recessed come to think of it. My luck I will likely find some obstacle in the wall anyway.... like the plumbing vent to the roof for the existing toilet.

    Perhaps I cant get a local guy to make one that is more reasonable.

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    http://www.kitchenlav.com/Original%2...th-Cabinet.jpg


    ...or the one you posted earlier:

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    Last edited by mediaman; 04-30-2013 at 03:21 PM.

  14. #104
    DIY Senior Member suceress's Avatar
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    You can probably find a decent mirror at some discount store and have it mounted as a door and get your contractor to build the cabinet for it. I know Walmart here has some rather narrow mirrors that are tall. I'm not sure what dimensions you are looking for. I also don't know if you live near any scrap yards or places where people get rid of stuff when they are renovating and the yards gather up stuff and sell it. I would do that if I had any idea where one was in my area. Have you also looked at surplus stores/warehouses? Sometimes you can find better deals I think.

    I don't get how they can charge *that* much for the mirror thing. Sheesh.

    If you have any long mirrors right now, perhaps you can prop them against walls in the current bathroom and see how it looks (as well as maybe putting up boxes or setting something up to mark off the dimensions but have an idea of how closed in it will feel-- assuming you can find something to use as a mock up).

    I hadn't noticed that the door was recessed a bit.

    My brother just came in and started yabbering at me so I lost my train of thought.

  15. #105

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    Quote Originally Posted by mediaman View Post
    Re the comment "With shower and tub on one side and the vanity on the other side, the bathroom looks like a tunnel", are you of the opinion that the neo angle alone addresses that concern, or have I got other issues I should be looking at?
    I think the neo angle addresses that concern to some degree. And I agree with suceress that a full length mirror will be a nice addition to the master bath. The most convenient location for it will be near the dressing area. But there is no wall space for it except for behind the bathroom door, which is not convenient anyways (I don't think it will compound the 'tunnel" effect, though). The only concern with putting the mirror between the shower and tub is that you have to walk from the dressing area past the shower/vanity to get to use the mirror. It's still better than without it. Where to put the mirror then depends on whether you prefer to shut the door or to walk further into the bathroom to use it.
    Last edited by rapida; 05-01-2013 at 07:47 PM.

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