Is it bad to have a toilet share a wall with the bedroom

rockybirdMarch 6, 2014

I have been working with an architect on designing a new ma. ba. It is a mcm home, so will be somewhat modern. The criticisms I have heard of the plan include:

- toilet is too far away
- toilet shares same wall as bed

I can sound proof that part of the wall, as I am going to do this with another bath that borders the dining room/dining room.

I also thought about extending the sink counter. I would love a dramatically long counter and I know I would use it.

Does anybody have any thoughts? Thank you!

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Babka NorCal 9b

We had a bidet and toilet on a bedroom wall when we moved here in 1976. Moved the toilet to another wall for layout purposes only to make the shower larger. Sound never was a problem either way even w/o wall insulation. If someone is being "noisy" in the bathroom, you would hear it from from around the door space. The sounds come from the room, not the pipes in the walls. Towels and rugs in the room will help to mute those sounds. Too much "music" would require the expertise of a gastroenteroligist.


    Bookmark   March 7, 2014 at 12:55AM
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I think it is less of an issue than your layout.

Yes, toilet is really far away (for middle of the night sickness, etc)... But, more importantly in my mind... HOW are you going to VENT your space? Are you in a jurisdiction that doesn't require bathroom venting? It appears you'll need a vent large enough to move all the air in all of your bedroom/bath and closet! (or several vents) And, that isn't very efficient from a heating/cooling standpoint.

Consider installing some doors (or at least one door) between "bath" and "bedroom" to skirt the bathroom fan issue (or talk to your local inspectors to see what your local requirements are for vents.)

    Bookmark   March 7, 2014 at 1:49AM
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I have never had a toilet against a bedroom wall, but I do have a plumbing stack that runs down my laundry room. We have a newish Toto toilet on the second floor and if someone flushes solid waste, you can definitely hear the progress through the pipes. However, I believe there are sound resistant drywall and insulation materials that you could use to help dampen sounds, so it would probably be ok.

Unfortunately, I tend to agree with kirkhall that the toilet is really far away from the entrance and weirdly separated from the rest of the bathroom. Every time you use the toilet, you have to walk through the closet space / hallway area. What if your rotated your big closet room facing "up" in the drawing? Then put the toilet closet between the big closet room and the tub.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2014 at 10:44AM
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Thank you very much for your comments. Is this any better? I just dont like the 4 ft. wide space in the closet behind the toilet as it seems potentially unusable. I think this could be more easily vented?

    Bookmark   March 7, 2014 at 11:42AM
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I've had a toilet on the wall behind the bed and it did not bother me, but I think if you had a choice, I'd move it. If your worried about wasted space next to the toilet, turn the toilet room 90 degrees.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2014 at 10:25PM
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You could also locate your tub and shower at the end of the bathroom and install a window over the tub.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2014 at 10:26PM
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I cannot comment on any aspect of your layout except to say that we had a wall between a bedroom and toilet in our last house and you could hear everything. As a matter of fact you could hear happenings from the other room, too; bathroom was positioned between the two bedrooms but accessed from the hallway.

Not sure why this would be different from others' experiences, but there ya have it.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2014 at 11:34PM
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I really like Karen's first option. That was a good alteration to solve the narrow space problem.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2014 at 12:22AM
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Thank you karenseb. Those are great. I do really like no. 1. I think I like it better than the one below, but what do you think of it? Is it too crowded? The space is 19.5 ftx 16 ft. approximately, to the beginning of the entryway. The entryway is 4.5 ft wide.

Thanks greenhaven. I dont like hearing that, but that is what I was afraid of. The architect said we could sound barrier the rooms, but I'm not sure how effective that is.

I moved the entry over and moved the walk in closet closer to the bedroom. There is a 4 ft. wide path to the shower, with a built in linen closet on the way.

Is 4x 4.5 ft too small for a toilet closet? Thanks!

    Bookmark   March 10, 2014 at 2:58AM
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I like Karen's first plan.

As for having a toilet on a bedroom wall - my bedroom wall shares with the bathroom plumbing wall. I absolutely hate it.

We have an old farm house, and all 3 bedrooms on the 2nd level share a bathroom - since I work from home, I let the DH and the girls get up and get ready first so they can get off to work/school.

So while the family seems to think I get an extra 30 minutes sleep, I'm instead treated to the noises of first DH using the toilet (aka thunderbowl*), then the girls banging curling irons and other objects around on bathroom shelves. *There are some things even married people should not have to know about their spouse!

When we renovate this bathroom, we plan to both move the plumbing to another wall and also change the common walls into 2x6 and load them with sound deadening insulation.

I'd definitely move the toilet!
Always ;-)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2014 at 9:23AM
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If you want to move all plumbing from the bedroom wall, you could try this. A built in dresser on the wall behind the bed would be nice for small items or doors with shoe shelves. A pocket door on the toilet room would be good. You could do a walk in linen closet as you walk in.
Plus you get a really long counter with two sinks.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2014 at 5:47PM
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I prefer Karen's because I am being practical again and thinking about location of toilet relative to bedroom access, and venting issues...

4.5 feet is too short, generally speaking, for a toilet room. By code, in almost all US locations, there must be a minimum of 2 feet infront of the forward-most part of the toilet. Most toilets are around 30" long (not including how far they are set from the back wall), so 4.5 feet would be an absolute minimum. But, that doesn't include the location of the toilet to the back wall, as I mentioned, and code is not comfort.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2014 at 9:51PM
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Karensb, you are very talented! I like all three of your plans. I want to really study them.

I like the first one because the toilet is off the walls and maybe more private.

I like the second one because there is an island in the master closet (I would LOVE an island, but I just may not have the room to do it).

I like the third one because the plumbing is off the bedroom and living room walls. i also like the built in dresser. I do not want any clothes in the master bedroom - no clutter, just the necessities.

Thank you so much! I am going to really look at them tonight.

Thank you kirkhall. I was hoping I could get away with a smaller toilet compartment, but it does not sound like it is a good idea.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2014 at 11:49PM
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Definitely move the toilet somewhere else, if someone has to make a mad dash for the toilet when sick could be a bad accident. I would make sure you have sound deadening material between the bathroom, and the bedroom.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2014 at 8:48PM
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I agree with those who recommend moving it. Our Master bath shares a wall with our guest room/office and things are audible to say the least! I am looking forward to the day that this is better!

I like the 3rd plan from Karenseb the best tho I still wonder about having your clothes so far away from your exit door. I also wonder about moisture and humidity issues with this arrangement. Some days you make multiple trips because of not liking a scarf or forgetting a jacket, etc. and having this extra distance to walk to do those things adds lots of time to your morning. Have you considered having your closet be in the area immediately behind your bedroom wall and putting all of the bathroom into the alcove space keeping the toilet easily accessible?

Using Karen's 3rd plan, I would recommend flipping the location of the toilet so it is back to back with your sinks and thus your plumbing costs aren't too outrageous. I also believe that orienting it that way will be easier use ergonomically. (Try walking into a your current bathroom and closing the door, turning around to uh situate yourself and more to see how easy it is to do things versus feeling like you are going against the flow. ;)) It also will mean the toilet won't be so visible when you turn the corner into your closet but is still close enough for "worship time". Doing the walk thru of feeling what is comfortable versus awkward I think will be helpful to you as you sort thru your possibilities. YMMV

    Bookmark   March 12, 2014 at 3:40PM
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