Bathroom Pitfalls

Creating a new bathroom from scratch can be pretty daunting and overwhelming – especially as there is such a wide range of products available. If you’re building an extension or a new home, you’ll have a blank canvas from which to work – so you really have got so much potential to get it spot on, or it could go the other way if you don’t do your homework right.  Gerry Ryan, the showroom manager at SONAS Bathrooms, talks about the biggest bathroom pitfalls that he’s come across over his many years of giving expert advice.

  • A lack of communication. This is the biggest pitfall. Not talking to your architect about what you want and just letting him or her proceed with designing the bathroom without taking your needs into consideration. You need to sit down with them properly at the initial design stage and communicate to them exactly what you want and need in your home. Who’s going to be using the bathroom? What’s the age profile of the family members? All this will help decide the best approach to take. Are you a busy family that plays a lot of sport, for example? Are there teenagers coming and going throughout the day who need showers after football practice etc? Are you the type who likes to relax in a bubble bath in the evening? Talk to your architect. Tell them what you want and tell them about your lifestyle.


  • Talk to your plumber/installer. You may be surprised at just how soon you need to decide things like whether you’re having a wall mounted toilet or a floor standing unit. Whatever you choose will dictate the type of vanity unit, basin, toilet etc that you can have. Gerry said: “I’ve had people come into the showroom to pick items just as their bathrooms are ready to be fitted and they might fall in love with a particular type of vanity or like the wall mounted toilet range. But then they discover that their plumber has already laid the pipes for conventional toilets and it’s simply too late to move things around. It can be very disappointing for people. Talking to your plumber early on is essential.”


  • Trying to fit too much in. Know the space you’re working with. It might be hard to visualise it, especially if it’s not built yet. So get your measuring tape out and check the dimensions of the space you’re working with. Talk to our experts and your plumber/installer about what would work well. You might have your heart set on a big walk in shower and a luxurious freestanding bath and double vanity unit. But you might not be able to squeeze those in. Having products that don’t fit into your bathroom will make it impractical, cramped and not aesthetically pleasing.


  • Not getting products to suit what’s available to you. A common mistake people make when getting a new shower is not ensuring they have enough water pressure. A powerful shower will have a minimum operating pressure.  Gerry explains: “Any new build should have a pressurised system but you need to be sure that you have the minimum requirements for the products you choose.”


  • Another issue is having a really powerful shower and not having the hot water cylinder large enough. Gerry said: “People really want a great shower with plenty of pressure but they might not have the hot water capacity if their cylinder isn’t suitable.” A quick recovery cylinder will heat up water again within 20 minutes, whereas a traditional cylinder takes around 50 minutes. You also need to consider how many people will be showering at the same time. If you come from a busy household where more than one person will be showering at the same time in the morning, a three bar pump will means more than one shower can operate at once.

So the bottom line is: planning, planning and more planning. Communication is key – from the moment you sit down with your architect to speaking to your plumber and your SONAS Bathrooms retailer – BJ Mullen.  Our Bathroom experts will be on hand to advise at every step of your project.  Call in to our extensive showroom for inspiration and great advice.

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