Access to the bathroom is something that is a necessity for anyone and everyone that lives in a home. For individuals with disabilities, or for elderly individuals, it might be necessary to consider renovating a bathroom to ensure that it is easily accessible. If a bathroom renovation is needed for the purpose of accessibility, there are a number of ways to accommodate the needs of an individual.

Entrance Modification

The majority of bathroom entrance doorways are a standard 24” wide. In order to make a doorway accessible for those who might require the use of a wheelchair, the doorway needs to be at least 36” wide. The doorway is also made more accessible by using lever style handles as opposed to knobs, as lever style handles are easier to grab and turn.

Removing Barriers

In order to prevent damage that can be done by escaping water, showers have a 4” step in the entrance. This step can make it difficult, if not impossible, for wheelchairs to be able to gain entry. In addition, the presence of this step might contribute to individuals who have issues with mobility losing their balance and falling. To make a bathroom universally accessible, you can either remove the barrier completely (this option may require transforming your bathroom into what is known as a “wet room” to prevent any damage that might be caused due to water escaping), or an individual can install a ramp that allows individuals to easily use the shower without having to step over anything, as well as allowing wheelchairs to get up and over the 4” step.

Grab Bars

If an individual has difficulty in being able to maneuver; the addition of grab bars to the walls is an option to consider. Grab bars are bars that are nailed to studs within the walls, and are designed to be able to support the weight of a person.

Consult ADA Guidelines

For further ideas on how to make a bathroom more universally accessible, consulting the ADA guidelines can help.

Whether you are considering a bathroom renovation or remodel for the purpose of universal accessibility, or if you are considering it for any other reason, contact Ross Brothers. In Broward County contact them at 954-361-3090 or in Palm Beach County at 561-320-8390.

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