Which is best – a shower or bath? A question that is asked very often.
Bathroom makeovers will inevitably require you to make some big decisions. Will there be room in the design for bathroom storage? How are you going to decorate the walls? And the big question many people struggle with: should I install a bath or shower enclosure?
Most householders will not have the luxury of having enough room to include both so a decision has to be made.
But what factors need to be taken into consideration before you reach your decision? There are quite a few things to keep in mind. So we will help guide you through the decision making process.
If Your Bathroom Is Big Enough Install Both
Having to choose between the two options is not ideal. So if you have enough room install both a shower and a bath. But only do this if the room can accommodate both the units comfortably.
There are some products that can be used to help you try and accommodate both shower and bath.
Small Shower Cubicles
There are some very small shower cubicles available.
They are available as small as 700mm square. But these are very restrictive to use. They can feel claustrophobic especially if you are tall. We would recommend finding one on display and standing inside to see for yourself. If you drop anything while showering you will have to open the door. There is no way you can bend over inside a cubicle this small.
There are two options that might be an alternative to a straight bath.
A corner bath will often free up some wall space as they are shorter than a standard bath. But these baths have less lying down room in them. The bathing area is wider but shorter. Read our article on baths before choosing this option.
You might also consider a sitting bath. These are shorter than a standard bath but much deeper. There is a seat built into the bath so instead of lying down you sit in the water.
The rim is higher than a standard bath which needs to be taken into consideration if there are less-able people going to use it. A walk-in bath with a door is probably a better option in this circumstance.
Will Removing My Bath Affect My House Price?
Yes. But it does not necessarily mean that it will be a negative affect. The type of property will determine how much of an affect adding or removing a bath will have.
Any property that is regarded as a family home would be adversely affected by ripping out a bath because parents need a bath for children.
The effect on a one bedroom flat will be more neutral. Or it could even increase the value, depending on how luxurious the shower is and how good a job is made of the installation. This beautiful example from Merlyn Showering would certainly add value. And it would provide a large showering area in place of a bath.
The result will vary accordingly for any property that falls in-between these types of home .
But the decision might be irrelevant if you are planning on staying put for a relatively long time.
How Long Do You Think You Will Be Staying At The Property?
If you are thinking of staying at the property for the foreseeable future then your decision could will be less of an issue than you first imagined..
All bathrooms require attention over time so by the time you decide to sell your house it might be time for another update in any case. At which time you can reverse your decision.
When removing a bath check whether it is possible to leave pipework in place, but hidden, to enable a bath to be re-installed relatively easily (under floor boards, or in an airing cupboard for example).
Make sure you keep spare tiles or shower wall panels to enable re-decoration to be undertaken quickly, easily and cheaply. If this is not possible and you need to completely redecorate after you put the bath back in place consider using the panelling solution rather than tiles as this can be fitted over the existing wall covering without the need to hack off tiles.
How Much Do You Value Your Showering Experience?
If you insist on body jets, drench heads and pulse jets etc then a cubicle solution might be best for you.
But even though you love an invigorating shower, do you sometimes have a relaxing bath? It is always possible to have a shower in a bath but you can’t have a bath in a shower.
It is possible to fit a power shower over the bath. This will give you the option of pulsing shower spray, body jets etc. But you will need a decent sized bath shower screen or you could end up with a lot of water escaping.
Shower curtains struggle with power showers. The force of the water can push the curtain up and over the bath rim. But stiffer and longer curtains will be less prone to this.
Another you issue that you will need to take into consideration is whether your heating system is suitable for a full-blown power-shower set-up.
Many ultra powerful shower systems require stored hot water. Combination boilers will not work with this system, you will need a hot water tank. This might need to be a large one in many instances because very powerful shower systems can get through a lot of water in a short space of time (the amount of water3they use might also need to be considered – especially if you are on a water meter).
Which Is Best For Your Skin – A Bath Or Shower?
Most people agree that a shower is a cleaner option because dirt and sweat are washed off with the flowing water. Many skin experts also recommend a shower rather than a bath. But excessive bathing or showering can have a detrimental effect on skin by washing away natural oils and helpful bacteria.
A quick shower will also educe the time that your skin is exposed to water but is perfectly sufficient to keep you clean.
Having a quick shower is also going to use a lot less water than a bath. This is especially important if you are on a water meter.
A high-output power shower you can get through a lot of water very quickly. Keep this in mind as not only will you use up all your hot water you will then have to re-heat another tank full. This could prove to be expensive as well as a bit wasteful.
One Last Thing..
I know from personal experience that even if you have a gorgeous bathroom at your property there is no guarantee that it will be suitable for whoever buys your home when you come to sell it.
There are many buyers who are reluctant to use the bathroom in a house that they have just bought. They will have their eye on ripping out the existing bathroom at the earliest possible opportunity.
On one occasion I have actually been the person to visit the estate agent to pick up the keys for a property on completion of the sale. I had to rip out the existing suite and install a brand new one before the customer would move in! And the suite that we ripped out was less than six months old. How do I know? I had fitted it for the previous owners to make the house more “sell-able”!