How to choose the right bath

Every house should have a bath.  Even if you don't use it, it is important for resale purposes.  If you love to take a bath and if you have space, you should include one in your ensuite and main bathroom.  Choosing a bath used to be a fairly straight forward proposition, but there are so many different types to select from that it can be a minefield.  I am going to show you how to choose the right bath here.

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Back to wall freestanding bath

Do you love the idea of a freestanding bath, but don't like the idea of trying to clean behind it?  I hear this comment all the time.  Unless you can place the bath a fair distance from the bathroom wall, then you will have an awkward spot to get to.  If this sounds like a situation you wouldn't like, then you should consider a semi-freestanding bath.  Just attached along the back wall, you get the illusion of it being a stand alone bath, but without the dust collecting crevices!

How to choose the right bath
Back to wall bath – The Blue Space

You don't need to miss out on style either, the gorgeous fluted back to wall bath above is the perfect example of this look.  This style suits a classic coastal, light and airy decorating scheme.

How to choose the right bath
Studio McGee

Here is another great example of a back to wall bath that looks freestanding.  The styling here is perfect too with the side table and the brass bath tray which you really do need it you don't have a ledge next to the bath.  This is often forgotten with a freestanding bath.  The open shelving behind the bath is perfect too.  I must say, I love everything about this space.

How to choose the right bath
Drop of Honey

Wall taps are easy to install with a back to wall freestanding bath as you don't need a long bath spout.  I like the design element here where the shower ledge runs through to above the bath too.  A great place for propping up a mirror or artwork.  My favourite type of bathroom is one that feels like a room, rather than just a clinical space, so any opportunity to bring in accessories is very desirable.

Freestanding bath

If your tastes are a little more classic, then the bath below may be more of your style.  Perfect for a traditional Hamptons style home or a more classic formal look, this bath is decorative without being over the top.

How to choose the right bath
Decina Freestanding bath from The Blue Space
How to choose the right bath
Loughlin Furniture

A freestanding bath in stone is a beautiful piece for your bathroom.  This truly does make a statement, but you must ensure that your floor is strong enough to support it.

Short on space

If you love the idea of a bath, but are not sure that one will fit in your space, then you should consider an upright freestanding bath.  With the high back you can sit up in these, which at just 1300 in length, you will need to.  Avoid buying a very short bath without a high back though as you will get too cold!

How to choose the right bath
Small freestanding bath from The Blue Space

There is no doubt that the more traditional island bath that is inset into stone or tiles is really practical.  You don't get such a wow factor with them, but they really are great if you have children.  You can keep the look simple or use the same stone around the bath as on your vanity unit.  With nice tapware and accessories, this is still a lovely streamlined look for your bathroom.

How to choose the right bath
Caroma Urbane Island Bath

My quick list of points to remember

Whichever style you opt for, I have this following checklist for you to consider:

  • In addition to checking the length of your chosen bath and ensuring that it will fit into your space, you also need to check that is comfortable for your height.  Too long and you will find it uncomfortable and will be prone to slide down into it.  Too short and your knees will be constantly cold.  Don't be afraid to ask to sit in the bath in the showroom as this can give you a good idea of whether or not it will be comfortable.
  • Check the weight of your chosen bath.  Natural stone ones are extremely heavy and can cause structural problems and there may even be access issues into your bathroom.  Cast iron and copper baths are also very heavy.  Acrylic baths are the most light weight.
  • Consider whether you prefer a matt, satin or a high shine finish to your bath.  You need to tie this in with other features in the room; basins, tiles and vanities.
  • If you opt for a freestanding bath, then ensure you either have a ledge or niche in the wall next to the bath, or at the very least, room for a small stool or side table to leave soap etc.
  • Some baths will retain their heat for longer than others.  An enamel steel bath, although initially cold to the touch, will retain heat for longer than an acrylic bath.  Stone composite baths can take a long time to heat up.
  • Don't forget to measure carefully for tap placement.  If you use wall taps, the spout needs to be long enough to reach into and over the bath.  If you are planning to install a floor tap, then ensure that it is the right height in relation to the bath.  Some freestanding baths can be quite high, particularly at one end.

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How to choose the right bath

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