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How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

Posted by sivyaleah (My Page) on
Wed, Sep 5, 12 at 11:44

Hello again!

So, between yesterday and today, 5 more tiles fell off the wall of my 1915 bathroom. Ok, well maybe, the tiles are from the 30's or 40's to be fair lol. I'll add that to the growing pile plus all the missing mosaic floor tiles too.

All I know is that after living here for 2 years and watching the bathroom crumble before my eyes I'm getting more and more disgusted with it daily. How I'm going to finance it is one problem but the other issue is how we're going to live through it.

We do have a powder room on the 1st floor so at least there is another toilet in the house, but, no other place to shower.

How on earth are we going to be able to contend with this? The room most likely needs to be completely gutted unless I can find someone seriously creative to find a way to keep as much as possible of the existing as far as the walls are concerned so that it is more of a remodel - and that would mean keeping the shower (separate from the tub). But as I've written, the shower stall is rather constrictive and while we could live with it, if I'm spending all that money why on earth would I not make it better?

So, I'm just curious how other people dealt with having their bathrooms out of service, most especially if it was the main bathroom. I suppose we could go live in a hotel temporarily but that adds quite a bit of cost although we could just take the room as needed to shower I guess?

Ugh. Seems so problematic! Really wish I had just done this before we moved in when the kitchen was being done too. Really would have been smarter, but the bathroom *seemed* like it was usable at that point. Things went from passable to worse since. Blah.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

Do you have a family member, friend, or neighbor that would let you shower at their place?


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

Join a gym. That would only be the cost of 1 night of a hotel for a whole month at an expensive gym; 3 months at a less expensive one.


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

No, nobody nearby that we can barge in on unfortunately. All of my family lives way too far, and we don't really know our neighbors well enough to impose like that.

I have to say joining a gym is a very creative idea Kirk. I certainly would never have thought about it.


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

When I re-did my bathroom earlier this year, My contractor tried to do it in phases, but it didn't really work out that well. It was my only bathroom. Luckily, he was able to leave the toilet until nearly the end, and papered over the marble floor before it was finished for me to be able to use the toilet (but without putting pressure on it...). Let's just say I took few showers during that 3.5 weeks (mostly on weekends at my brother's house or some nights at my neighbors' house), but I still had the kitchen sink to do my half-as$ed shower in the morning. At least you'll be able to wash your face and hair and brush your teeth. I also invested in baby wipes as a substitute for showering every day. I know it's too much information, but it's rare that you have to deal with what I had to deal with (only one bathroom at all). It was so worth it when it was all over, I would do it all again. Good luck.


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

Not TMI at all. It helps.

We could easily shower every other day. I usually do now that I'm older - my hair doesn't get as grungy for whatever reason as it did when I was younger. I could manage cleaning myself in the Powder Room for those other ummm, areas lol.

But I couldn't go more than that. I guess, I could wash my hair in the kitchen sink though. Maybe we could squeeze 3 days out of it with wipes haha. But not much more - I work full time, I don't think anyone would care to be near me after that :O

Of course, if it's scheduled for a vacation week - that may help too. I'd prefer to be around anyway.

Well, more to consider I suppose.


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

We also have a half bath, which is fantastic during remodel! We worked with the contractor to have the shower working as much as possible. Since we didn't have to have the rest of the room functioning, it was not too bad. They spent the first few days doing most of the demo and prepping. They got everything set so they could do the plumbing one day and the whole tub/surround demo and install the next (or maybe the other way, can't remember). We actually ended up without a shower for about 4 days due to my own foolishness with Kohler stuff (detailed in another thread) so we went to my dad's house those mornings since his wife is retired and home.

Depending on what you end up doing, they may or may not be able to get the shower functioning easily. If we had wanted tiled walls it would have been a different story. But the gym is a good idea, and there are also Comfort Bath packs sold that are intended for people that can't shower or bath. The packs contain I think 8 wipes, one for each major body area (listed on the pack) and they are heated briefly ithe MW. There is also waterless shampoo available that you could use between real showers.


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

When I bought my house, both bathrooms had to be gutted to the studs because of mold. Fortunately I had an unaffected powder room, so there was a toilet and sink. For a shower, I bought an inexpensive pool shower, put it on the deck, and ran a garden hose from the powder room sink out to the pool shower. This let me have a hot shower, instead of a cold one had I used the yard faucet. I did this for about a month - thank goodness it was June and quite warm!

I must say that while showering outside sounds wonderful, the novelty wore off pretty quickly. Especially at night when the coyotes started howling! Something about being naked outdoors at night when that sound started up made me feel extremely vulnerable...

The first day that my first bathroom was finished, I took *two* showers, just because I could!!


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

That is an excellent idea, I wish we had a "backyard" lol. We barely do. Our house is a corner lot, and most of our yard is side and front space. Our "back" is ridiculously small and not fenced in either and the lot line so close to the neighbor on the other side not facing the street I can nearly touch her house haha! Somehow, I don't think they will appreciate seeing us out there bathing ourselves rofl. But again, - awesome if it was a possibility!


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

When we gutted our 1 full bath last summer we used unfinished section of basement with a center floor drain for showering. We made a circle out of heavy wire, hung it from floor joists, hung 2 shower curtains on circle. Strung a garden hose with a shower head attached across joist area and down to faucet spout at laundry sinks. We'd attach hose to faucet just before showering. Showered this way for 2 months. Drying the "shower" was quick. I'd use a couple of old towels on the painted concrete floor. Fine for summer, but would be chilly in the winter.


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

do you know anyone with a motorhome or vacation trailer with shower that you could park in your driveway? They aren't the greatest, but they will do in a pinch.


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

As I said, have a very small house. I don't even have a family room. My driveway wouldn't accommodate that lol. I can just about put my Altima on it. Plus, I don't even think they allow you to park those where I live as permanent vehicles from what I know. Something about size restrictions on streets. I don't think I've ever seen one in all the years I've lived here (of course, it also could be that people in my area just do not use them).

But it is another creative idea that someone else might be able to use one day! Thanks!


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

Lizanne - I just noticed your suggestion.

We might, be able to do this.

Our basement, has a floor drain, not in the best position for showering, but, there is one. We might be able to rig something temporary down there. We do have a laundry sink down there, so running a hose should be easy to do. Even if the curtained off area isn't quite where the drain is, we do know the water will lead down it rather quickly.

The basement isn't heated, however, so that's an issue, although we've never found it to be too uncomfortable at any time of the year. I'd talk to whomever would be doing the renovation about this first, to make sure it was possible of course. I think we could deal with this if we planned it for a time of year when it wasn't deep winter.

Thanks for this one!


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

I've never personally experienced this, but I would definitely join a gym (if I didn't already have one). I would also use the kitchen or powder room sink to wash my hair and probably "bathe" using a wash cloth and water from the sink as possible. Depending on the privacy of your yard and your climate, you could get a camping solar shower and shower in your yard.


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RE: How Do You Manage When Bathroom is Out of Commission?

Fix up the basement shower system recommended above. All the old houses around my area have make shift showers or cheap stall showers in the basements. It was quit common I think to outfit the basement with a shower. None of my basements I've had have been heated. The 1906 house I grew up in even had a shower in the basement, though it wasn't that far from the huge oil burning furnace. I think this will work perfect for you. My current house has a shower in our unfinished old old basement and my DH loves it, the best water pressure in the house.


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