5' x 10' bathroom, Layout help welcome!

ltdan84March 4, 2014

Well my wife is on me to do something with the bathroom, but being that it is very small it seems my options are pretty limited as far as layout goes.

This is my first idea, and the simplest as it keeps everything in the same location it is in now. The main differences between it and the existing are that right now there is a door between the vanity and toilet/shower area, and the vanity area is open to the bedroom.

The only other layout that I have been able to come up with is this, but not sure if it is better or worse than now. I do know that it would be a lot more work.

Unfortunately, the 59" x 118" rectangular space is set in stone, the other bath is on the other side of the wall on the right, the top wall is exterior, on the other side of the left wall is the small master bedroom.

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Your first layout is our layout except we did a 33" base shower (ish) and 33 ish for toilet. I didn't want the minimum of 30.

Plus, we put a pocket door in where you have the wall between vanity/toilet.
We did this so that one of us can be using the toilet in privacy while the other needs to use the sink.

It works well.
The one thing I'd do differently is not put in quite so deep a vanity. We put in full 24" deep vanity (kitchen base cabs instead of bathroom). We also have double sinks, which I like and they work in that space. But, what it means is, if someone is standing at sink 1, they WILL be in the walkspace for the other person to get to the toilet/shower. We just move our bums. But, if you are sensitive to that, you'll want a slightly less deep vanity to allow a bit more walking room.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2014 at 11:51PM
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Where is this bathroom? Is it the MB?

My choice between the two plans, is the first one. The second plan only gives you 29" for the shower. That is really tight to wash your hair in a shower that has a solid wall. Do you need a wall between the vanity and the toilet? This takes up valuable space in a very small room.
You could put cabinets above the toilet for a little more storage.

I agree about the person at the sink being hit by the door, and I also recommend a pocket door. Sometimes you've already been hit by the handle before you even have a chance to "move your bum".

This post was edited by canuckplayer on Wed, Mar 5, 14 at 1:06

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 1:04AM
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If I had a long, narrow bathroom like that, I would put in a massive shower with a inside it.

Contemporary Bathroom by San Francisco Architects & Designers John Lum Architecture, Inc. AIA

You'd have to sacrifice counter space, which may not be worth it. But it's an idea for something different.

Here is a link that might be useful: Putting your tub in the shower.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 1:24AM
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Thanks for the responses! Yes this is the master bath.
I would love to do the siamese tub/shower, but will just have to see how much my wife would love a 28" vanity lol.
I didn't think there was enough length to do it, but I did a little compacting with the floor pan and it just might fit.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 7:05AM
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Your 2nd plan doesn't meet code for either toilet space or shower space. I'd put an out-swinging door on the 1st plan. Can you remove the wall between the toilet and vanity? It would open up the space and give more elbow room.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 8:25AM
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in the first drawing, what if you were to switch the toilet and the vanity, putting the back of the toilet against the bedroom wall next to the door, so when sitting, you'd be facing the vanity and shower? Then there is room to stand at the vanity without getting hit by the door, and if you're sitting on the pot and someone opens the door, you can just stop it with your foot.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 9:02AM
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I also recommend you stick with the first floor plan.

Moving a toilet can be difficult with regards to relocating both the waste pipe and the vent. It can be made easier if the orientation of your floor joists is favorable. But "easy" is relative. It can still be a bit of a pain. Or a bit of money if you hire it out.

I try to avoid putting toilets against bedroom walls. Depends on how well you detail the pipes, but sometimes you can get flush noises and water fill noises that transmit through the wall into the sleeping space. Not good in the middle of the night or in the wee hours of the morning.

In the first plan I'd keep the 36" wide shower.

I recommend you rethink the width of the toilet space. As has been mentioned, the code minimum width for a toilet space is 30", the toilet centerline has to be 15" minimum from any adjacent wall/partition/vanity, etc. Personally, my shoulders are about 24" wide. If I sat in a 30" wide space I'd have roughly 3" from my shoulders to the adjacent walls. If you can bump that up by a few inches it'd make a big difference in the practical use of the space.

That would result in reducing the vanity by an equivalent number of inches.

Do a mockup and see if a 30" space will be to constricting when on the toilet. Might be a factor. Might not be a factor.

With the first floor plan you can have the bathroom entry door in either of the locations you have on your two plans; the south wall or the west wall.

If you still want toilet/shower privacy, you could put a pocket door in the partition wall between the vanity and the toilet. The pocket door can be open 90% of the time and closed when needed.

I think I'm simply rehashing what everyone else already wrote.

I don't see a valid reason to move your fixtures around. Take the money saved and use it elsewhere. A kegerator for inside the shower for example.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 9:57AM
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I have a bathroom that is about the same length and only slightly wider. There is definitely NOT enough room for a tub and shower (and we have the toilet on the wall opposite the vanity) - the bathroom in the picture Anna posted is at the very least 12-1/2' long.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 12:13PM
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Our current MBR is close to your first plan, just a bit longer. We have a 5' x 14' master bath with a pocket door between the toilet/shower room and the double vanity, and our ceiling is only 7' 6". We plan to redo the room (it's 1970s era) and remove the wall and pocket door between the "wet" room and vanity because it feels totally cramped. Our entry door is also pocket but is placed more like your second plan, so it limits how we can use the long wall. Have thought about something similar to Plan Two but have almost totally nixed the idea due to the reduction in size of the shower by almost 9 inches from its max potential. Our current shower is 48x30 and it feels cramped to me, which is also attributed to its dropped ceiling - I call it "the coffin." We have no windows in there, and that also makes it feel crowded.

We want to do a "tub in shower" idea like the picture someone posted, so we can squeeze a separate tub and shower into the space, but will be compromising by losing the "toilet room" and taking our vanity from 8' to closer to 5'. Our closet is also accessed through the bathroom (door is placed like in Plan One, so we are actually dealing with two doors in our bath - three if you count the existing wet room door), and we have waffled for two years about the necessity of a separate "toilet room" to preserve access for the other person to use the vanity and the closet if someone is in the toilet. Frankly, we have decided that if one is using the toilet, the likelihood of the other trying to use the room at all is very low. We have two other bathrooms in the house and if one of us is using the shower and getting ready, the other would go on to one of the other baths to have privacy to use the toilet, and not depend on a pocket door! That's the reason we think we will nix a pony wall for "privacy" around the toilet, too. Our previous 1950s house had a toilet just next to the vanity and we never used the toilet at the same time as the other person was using the bath (again, we had a half bath as well so could use it if needed) so it's just eating up floor space and visually closing off a tiny room.

We are going to have to move our toilet about 3 feet directly adjacent (joists are running in our favor so that is a small consolation) and possibly rerun some H&A ductwork in our dropped shower ceiling (yes, dropped lower than 7'6" - our house was constructed for very short people, I think!). Would love to see what you come up with as we are still in the savings mode to do this project.

One other consideration is placing plumbing on the exterior wall if you are in a cold climate. 2/3 of our bath is piped through the exterior wall and I wish it wasn't because we have to be really careful during cold snaps to remember to drip the faucets. You can't "drip" a toilet, though, so I worry!

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 12:46PM
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We too live in a cold zone (Canada). The spray foam insulation is becoming more popular here, because it is an insulator, a vapor barrier, the R value is so much higher than batt insulation and pipes are completely protected. No air or moisture passes through this stuff.
Granted, at this time, the spray is more expensive than the batt (about 1 to 1 1/2 times more), but how expensive is it if a frozen water pipe bursts?

This post was edited by canuckplayer on Thu, Mar 6, 14 at 0:01

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 11:58PM
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Thanks for the tip, canuckplayer. When we have our bath stripped down we will add some additional insulation. We are in a fairly warm area (compared to Canada!) in Zone 7, but we've had lots of cold days this winter, with lows in the single digits Fahrenheit. I went out in an ice storm just before Christmas to show my brother how to use a hair dryer on his frozen pipes and never want to do that again!

Plumbers who have worked on our rental properties with spray foam insulation curse it. But I guess the reality is 99% of the time you hope there isn't a plumber that will need to get at the pipes!

    Bookmark   March 6, 2014 at 11:33AM
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I've been reading with interest, as I have a similar tiny MB. Mine is 122x66" and has the same basic layout as your first diagram. My door is across from the vanity, however. I have a single vanity (38.5"), with no wall between it and the toilet, then a tub/shower combo at the very end.

I've gone round and round trying to figure out a more efficient use of the space, and just don't see one. This project is next on my list (working on kitchen, now) and it just seems like such a shame to gut it and get stuck with the exact same layout.

The other side of my wall that's West on your diagram is our tiny walk-in closet. I've actually considered eliminating that closet and replacing it with a wall of built-ins in the Master to gain more bath space. East wall is exterior, so no room there. North wall is guest bath. South wall is the fireplace in our bedroom.

Sounds like we are both stuck with this layout, but I will be following along. I have three full baths to redo in this house. Sadly, this is the largest.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2014 at 2:36PM
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IMHO, if at all possible, always use a pocket door in a tight space.

@Mia: The foam is sprayed after all the plumbing and wiring is done, so hopefully the only reason the plumber would ever need to touch the pipes again is if there was another reno. Unless they forget to glue one of the connections, like they did in a previous new build home. I had a waterfall down the FR wall from the upstairs shower.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2014 at 11:13PM
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