Designing a Wet Room or Walk In Shower
Wet rooms continue to prove hugely succesful with consumer interest in domestic wetrooms growing at an outstanding pace.
Just as an inside toilet was on everyone's wish list 50 years ago, the new 'must have' and latest trend in bathroom design is the wet room. Some industry experts even expect wet rooms to far outsell shower enclosures in years to come.
Wet rooms look super stylish and streamlined, and can add real value to your home. They are architectural, conceptual, integrated, and give the illusion of space and open plan living.
Wet rooms are perfect for both large and small spaces windowless box rooms, downstairs loos or part of a large bedroom, all you need is an open plan room with a shower, basin and loo and you can really add the wow factor to your home.
Advantages of Wet Rooms
- It's a great way to make the most of the space in a small bathroom.
- With no step up to get into the shower, it's good for the elderly, those who are less mobile and children, too.
A wet room is essentially a fully tanked, watertight bathroom without a bath or a shower cubicle. Instead, a shower head flows freely into the room which has a gentle gradient to drain away the water. This creates a complete open showering experience however you may wish to install a contemporary glass screen for a feeling of privacy or to prevent water splashing everywhere.
For years wetrooms were limited to ground floors and had to be sited on a concrete, or at least screeded, base. Innovations in wetroom products now make it possible to transform your upstairs bathroom into a fully sealed wetroom (or shower room).
Floors and walls can be tiled in modern contemporary stone or ceramics. Choosing the same wall and floor tiles in small spaces makes for the sleekest of looks while in larger bathrooms you can define areas with contrasting or small mosaic tiles.
Under floor heating can add pure luxury and accompanied with good ventilation is a must to allow the room to dry out adequately.
A spacious downstairs toilet or small second bathroom is great to have, but think about whether the space could work harder. Turning them into a wet room maximises their usefulness. A wet room is fully waterproofed, so you don’t need a shower tray, meaning you can squeeze everything into a smaller space.
Wet Room Design Considerations
The materials used offer maximum flexibility making a wet room the shower room of choice for most situations. It can be any size, shape or position - corner, centre of wall, across a corner, centre of room—dependent on what else will be in the room e.g. bath, WC, furniture, and drainage.
When deciding where to place the wet room, and its size and shape, the following: need to be considered.
- What are the overall design aims? Fresh clean looks, modern and contemporary or a more traditional feel?
- Is the wetroom to be the single most important feature of the room requiring eye-catching design or is it a purely functional shower area?
- Who will use the wetroom? Multiple users or by one individual? Is mobility an issue requiring wheel chair access? Are there any young children for whom safety is important?
- Are there any space constraints; what else needs to be in the room? How will the area be accessed? Where is the room entrance and windows?
- What is the construction of the floor upon which the wetroom base will sit? Wooden floorboards or solid floor e.g. concrete?
- What type of shower screen is intended? Full enclosure or a minimalistic look? Single or double entry point?
- Where is the nearest or most obvious drainage point? Can the waste water be easily fed into an existing drainage system?
Sometimes the shape and size of the room itself dictates the answers to many of these issues but because wet rooms are bespoke in the sense that they can be made to fit any circumstance, their introduction to a bathroom offers enormous scope for individual design statements. Thoughtfully designed, they open up scope for bathrooms that truly reflect individual tastes and styles.
And by using the very best quality products, and incorporating waterproofing at every stage of its build, a long lasting leak proof walk in shower can be achieved by any reasonably competent DIY enthusiast.
Wetrooms online give comprehensive advice and full instructions with every wetroom base supplied and are available for instant advice and guidance at every step of the way.
The Wet Room FAQ page answers the most common questions on wet rooms: Wet Room FAQ's
For wet room and walk in shower design ideas see our wet room ideas gallery.