So-called ‘wet rooms’ have grown hugely in popularity over the last few years – not least because they’re easy to clean, accessible to so many for whom traditional bathrooms don’t work, and are usually thought of value-adding to a home. These space economical walk-in showers give the appearance of more room than baths provide and for the most part form an easy conversion from either existing bathroom or otherwise used room.
In tackling your new wet room renovation project, there’s lots to consider that you may not have for a more standard bathroom redecoration. There’s more to it than just removing your bath and tiling... and these are the questions you need to ask yourself before you start ripping anything out.
Do you need a wet room, or just a bigger shower?
While wet rooms are an attractive prospect for many, they don’t work for everyone. If a bathroom has plenty of room for a big bath but there’s one elsewhere in the house or it just isn’t used often, then removing it to replace it with a larger shower may be sufficient. Explore your options before you look into a full wet room renovation.
Do you wish to include a shower screen?
While some wet rooms are completely open plan, many do include shower screens. These split the room nicely but also limit clean up. Shower screens can be as bold or unique as you like and can be of almost any shape, so you may wish to use your new room as a way to innovate and make a design statement.
How can the existing bathroom layout be reconfigured into a wet room?
Where a wet room is dedicated to a shower, other elements of the room fade in to the background. The sink and WC can be built in front of a purpose-built wall to accommodate waste pipes, and the rest of the room can be focused on the shower. Corner shelves work for smart bathroom storage and keep the room neat and tidy no matter the size of it.
Are you discounting an attic conversion because of awkward shapes?
Wet rooms can be installed into existing bathrooms easily but things may be a bit trickier for the conversion of rooms that aren’t already used for bathing purposes. Attics are often unused or under-utilised space and so make an attractive prospect for a wet room conversion. However, few homeowners ever actually complete these conversions because of sloping ceilings and awkward head heights – but these can be worked with! Mounting a shower as high as possible and making a feature of any beams creates more space and with some creative tiling can make for a fantastic attic wet room.
Where do you expect to create storage?
A fully functional wet room must be as of much use as a more traditional bathroom, and so, should provide as much storage as would be required in one. Recessed shelves can be built within tiled walls to hold toiletries and accessories, or racks hung for additional items. Shelving built under the shower allows for easy access to products as and when you need them, and leaving items out on shower shelves or elsewhere simply tends to result in mould and grime.
Are you including space to dry?
A wet room is fairly self-explanatory in its use but not everyone who uses it may wish to leave the room still wet in order to dry off elsewhere. Incorporating some room to dry provides a space for those who wish to dress or at least just shed excess moisture before stepping out. Curved panels away from the shower head flow make a popular choice for smaller rooms of this type and prevent the rest of the floor from becoming unnecessarily slippery.
Have you planned to decorate your wet room white by default?
When most of us think of any bathroom or shower room, a mental image is conjured of bright white tiles. Yet a wet room renovation can present a whole host of design opportunities that need not be limited by tradition – after all, this isn’t a traditional room! Get creative with tiling, bold with colour accents or spa-style with marble. A wet room need not be plain white any more than it needs to be a shower space you run in and out of: why not add in a built-in bench for those moments when you need to just sit and relax in the steam? Don’t limit yourself with interior design if you don’t need to.
Can you enhance a narrow room with a wall-to wall shower?
Long narrow rooms are often discounted as conversion options for wet rooms because they’d need the toilet, basin and shower all right next to each other without much room to flow past them all. A bath wouldn’t fit in such a space but if the full shower enclosure runs from wall to wall, it feels considerably larger than a standard cubicle and creates a great opportunity for a full wet room.
Could you install more eco-friendly options in your new wet room renovation?
Wet rooms do, by their nature, use less water than bathrooms, making them a more environmentally friendly option. However, there are other products available that can be installed in to wet rooms to help further their sustainability credentials. Flow-restricting showers are designed to use less water whilst not decreasing the function or pleasure of the showering experience and in newer properties, drainage systems can be input to utilise grey (recycled) water or to drain into the outdoor surroundings. For this kind of sustainable solution, we can advise on the availability and appropriate options.
Embarking on a wet room renovation is exciting and can truly transform your showering experience. The possibilities are much more varied than with a regular bathroom and the value added to your home can be vast. Homeowners can work with or without a designer to work on a wet room project – and either way, the results can be staggering.
If you are thinking about a wet room conversion for your home, get in touch with Refresh Renovations today, our renovation specialists can bring your bathroom dream to life. Find out more with a free no obligation discussion.