As you know, once we have extended our kitchen, our next big project will be turning our loft space into a bedroom, with an en-suite. Of course, it will be a while before we get a chance to start this project, but I am doing some of the research now, including finding out about loft bathrooms.
Given the fact that some of you are likely planning a loft extension, I thought it might be helpful if I shared what I have found out, to date.
Think about the weight of a bath
If you want to install a bath in your loft space, the floor may need to be reinforced to allow you to do so. Even empty, a bath weighs quite a bit. Once full with water and you, it weighs enough to bring the ceiling down. Therefore, normally if you want to include a bath in your loft bathroom, you will need to reinforce the floor under the area it will sit.
Building a waterproof shower cubicle
Showers are not so bad. Usually there are fewer hurdles for you to overcome than there is with putting a bath in the loft.
Provided you buy a shower tray that is made from lightweight materials you usually, do not have to reinforce your floor. Although, you should seek the advice of an experienced builder to double-check that this is the case. Each property is different, so not checking before installing the shower could potentially be a serious mistake.
Ventilation is an important consideration in any bathroom, but it is even more important in a loft. The moist air needs to be able to escape quickly. If it does not, you can easily end up with mould issues that could develop into rot problems. Replacing ceiling joists is an expensive and disruptive procedure, so it is something that you want to avoid at all costs.
The pipe work
You also need to work out where all of the pipe work is going to go before proceeding. Any plumbing that you install will have to comply with building regulations. As a result, you are not free to run the pipes where ever you want. You can find out more about getting the plumbing in a loft bathroom on this page. Typically, it is far easier to comply with all of the necessary regulations if you install your loft bathroom, above an existing cloakroom or bathroom.
Another important consideration is water pressure. The reason you get such a good shower in your home, is that the watertank that feeds your showers and taps is normally in the loft space, a fact that means that you naturally get good water pressure.
If you install a shower or bath in the loft, you lose this advantage because the water tank is on the same level. The only way around this issue is to include a pump in your design. Unfortunately, this adds cost, and the pump will take up some of the space that you have available.
There are other factors to consider before deciding whether to install a loft bathroom in your home. However, the ones I have told you about above are the main issues that you could encounter. If you can solve those potential problems, the rest will be easy to sort out.