Taking a bath, for many, is the only time they get a little peace; quiet time to relax and rejuvenate, away from the kids, which is why choosing the right bath matters so much. We may not spend much time in a bath, but when we do, we want it to count.
But not everyone is fortunate enough to have a bath in their home. Some may have a combined bath/shower, others, no bath. However, it pays to keep in mind that not having a bath will make your home harder to sell and will reduce its value, and most real estate experts agree. Therefore, if you have room for a bath, add one!
At Ross’s Discount Home Centre, we know the considerations you must make when choosing. We also know the factors you need to consider when choosing a bath for a renovation; because, as you may or may not know, dealing with a renovation, as opposed to a new house, can be vastly different. Moreover, our 40+ years of experience have equipped us with all the need-to-knows about installing new baths. So, today, we look at how to not only choose a bath but also install it!
Table of Contents
How to Choose a Bath
Choosing a bath is not as simple as you may think, especially if you’re dealing with a renovation. There are many factors to consider, namely the type of bath, the size, and, most importantly, the installation location.
Types of Baths
Baths come in various types, the most common being insert baths, corner baths, freestanding baths, and back-to-wall baths. The installation location, positioning and space may stipulate what type of bath you should or have to choose, so be sure to refer to that section of this article before making a decision based solely on the type of bath.
Insert baths are your standard, traditional bath, which is dropped into the bath hob – the tiled area that contains the insert. Insert baths have pros and cons; they are incredibly cheap and space savers, but they are the least contemporary in design.
Insert baths of today are made from acrylic and reinforced with fibreglass to provide strength and stability. They are available in a range of sizes. Ross’s Discount Home Centre features two affordable insert bath’s in our collection; the Renovator Insert Bath, which is just $199 and the Pavillion Insert Bath, which starts at a low $240.
Freestanding baths have become the standard in bath design; they require no hob or additional support and can be positioned anywhere in a bathroom. They are by far the most contemporary design but are much more pricey than insert baths. You can expect to pay onwards of $900 for a freestanding bath, with the average being around $1200.
Freestanding baths are also made from acrylic and reinforced with fibreglass. They are available in various sizes and shapes, oval and square being the most common. Ross’s Discount Home Centre has a variety of freestanding baths in stock. Our range includes the affordable Charlie Freestanding Bath, which is a steal at just $795, the Galaxy Oval and Galaxy Square freestanding baths, which start at $1100.00 and the Lativa freestanding bath, also $1100.00. We also have Bermuda Freestanding Baths, which are $1,350.00 and are available in white and black and white.
Back-to-wall baths are somewhat of a cross between insert baths and freestanding baths; they require wall installation but do not require a hob. They offer many benefits over freestanding baths – they’re also contemporary in design and a modern option for smaller-sized bathrooms. Expect to pay a similar price for back-to-wall baths as freestanding baths. In terms of shapes, they can be oval, round, or square, but one length must have a straight edge for installation.
You will find a variety of modern back-to-wall baths at Ross’s Discount Home Centre. Popular choices include the Morocco Back To The Wall Freestanding Bath from just $1,150.00 and the elegant Rio Back To The Wall Freestanding Bath at just $1,250.00. Both baths are available in all-white and black with a white interior.
Corner baths are another option for smaller-sized bathrooms. They are designed for corner installations and are a modern alternative to insert baths.
Corner baths are also made from acrylic and reinforced with fibreglass. Due to this construction, they are priced similarly to freestanding baths and back-to-wall baths. Ross’s Discount Home Centre offers the modern Cube Corner Freestanding Bath for those seeking a corner bath, which starts at a reasonable $1200.
Baths come in various sizes, but choosing the right size is just as important as selecting the type of bath. Bigger isn’t always better. Selecting the right size bath for your bathroom comes down to the space size.
If you are building a new home, you will have a little more flexibility in size than if you were to renovate or replace like for like. New builds and complete bathroom renovations have the luxury of playing with the positioning of things to get a suitable bath size to meet your needs and space. Renovations that replace one bath for one of the same size need to stick to the original size.
The most common bath sizes are 1300mm, 1500mm, and 1700mm long but insert baths vary. For example, our Renovator Insert Bath is available in two lengths; 1520mm and 1670mm, while our Pavillion Insert Bath is available at 1525mm and 1700mm. Therefore, please don’t assume you will get the bath you want in the size you need; they all differ in size, which will play a role in the selection process.
As mentioned above, the location of the installation can often determine the type of bath you will need to choose. For example, if you are renovating and merely swapping out an old insert bath, your options are restricted to a new insert and possibly a back-to-wall or corner bath. If you only have a corner location, you can choose an insert or corner bath, and if you only have wall space for a bath, then a back-to-wall bath will be the wiser choice.
Freestanding baths are the preferred option for many, but they require a lot of space and trying to make one fit into a small space will likely reduce the functionality and appeal of your bathroom. Only if you have a large bathroom – or a bathroom of a reasonable size – or are doing a complete bathroom renovation and have space should you choose a freestanding bath.
How to Install a Bath
Installing a bath isn’t a complicated process, but it does require various tradespeople, namely a chippy or carpenter and a plumber, to connect it to the plumbing.
The installation process will vary depending on the type of bath you choose. An insert bath requires hob support, and therefore, installation is more involved, while freestanding, back-to-wall and corner baths have a built-in support frame and are, therefore, much easier to install.
Let’s look at the process required to install each bath type.
How to Install an Insert Bath
Installing an insert bath involves the creation of a bath frame, which will become the bath hob. If you are renovating and replacing one bath insert for another, you should be able to use the existing hob and jump to Step 15.
- Start by measuring the height of the bath. Add a 50-80mm margin to allow for any inconsistencies in the level of the floor.
- Take a spirit level and draw a line horizontally along the wall at the height of the bath plus the margin. This line marks where new nogs will be installed.
- Measure the distance between the existing studs determines the length of the new noggings.
- Cut the new noggings to size and them between the studs along the marked horizontal line.
- Now, measure the bath length and allow a 70mm margin on each end. (Providing you are using a 90mm timer, 15mm will protrude past the bath, and 20mm will sit under the lip of the insert.)
- Cut two lengths of timber at the length of the bath plus the 140mm margin.
- Mark on these lengths where the studs will go; divide the length by four, so you have one at each end and two in the centre that is equal distances apart.
- Next, cut the studs for each end and the lengths of timber. You will need eight studs at the height of your marked horizontal line.
- Start creating the frame; join the two lengths of timber with four of the studs.
- Repeat Steps 5 to 9 so you have two length frames the same.
- Position the two length frames into position; fix one to the wall at the marked horizontal line and the other out from the wall at the width of the bath and fix it into place.
- Next, move on to the end frames. Measure the distance between the two length frames to determine the frame length. Cut two pieces of timber at this length and fix them together with three evenly spaced studs.
- Repeat Step 12 for the other end of the frame.
- Fix the two end frames into position to finish the bath frame.
- Place the insert into the bath frame and check that everything is plumb and that the bath fits well.
- It’s now ready for a plumber to hook up.
How to install a Freestanding/Back to the Wall/Corner Bath
Installing a freestanding, back-to-wall, or corner bath is a fairly straightforward process that anyone can do.
- First, check the subfloor thoroughly to ensure it is level and has a waterproof layer. Make sure that the floor will support the bath’s weight and add additional support if needed.
- Position the bath into position and adjust the bath legs so they are flush with the base of the bath. Use a spirit level to ensure the bath sits flat.
- For back-to-wall or corner baths, run silicon along with the top edge/s that meets with the wall.
- Call in a plumber to fit the waste into the plumbing supply
- Apply a layer of silicone around the base of the bath and allow 24 hours for it to set.
A bath can make a big difference in a bathroom. It can also increase the sale price and make it more attractive to potential buyers. Therefore, when choosing a bath, it pays to take the time to choose the right bath for your bathroom.
Choosing a bath comes down to three things; the type of bath, the size of the bath and the installation location. There are various types of baths to consider, including budget insert baths, along with modern freestanding, back to the wall and corner baths. They each come in various sizes, but 1300mm, 1500mm, and 1700mm in length are the most common. However, the installation location may determine the deciding factor on which type and size bath is best for your bathroom.
Once you have your bath, it’s a matter of installing it. In this respect, insert baths are the most involved as they require the construction of a bath frame to support the bath, whereas freestanding, back to the wall, and corner baths have built-in frames and only need to be positioned, levelled and fixed into place.
Regardless of the type or size of the bath, or the location of your installation, you’re sure to find the perfect bath to suit your needs here at Ross’s Discount Home Centre. Visit our extensive range online and avail of our free Perth Metro delivery or come into our Guildford showroom to see our range in person.