Stylish Safety in the Bathroom
When it comes to safety in the bathroom, it doesn’t need to look boring. Harsh, unattractive grab bars in bathrooms are a thing of the past, thanks to an assortment of sleek, smooth looks available to remodelers.
By Jennifer Morrell
Today’s bathrooms are more stylish than ever, but they also call for safety compliance. With many of the products available to the Pro who is remodeling or finishing out a bathroom, this room can be as opulent and attractive as any other. Grab bars are a significant part of safety compliance, and they’ve come a long way in the “looks” department.
Put quite simply, bathroom goers can rely on grab bars for leverage and support in the bathroom, should they need assistance. “Grab bars are an important way to prevent bathroom falls for all ages, lifestyles and situations,” says Sherry Soden, senior director of marketing, Liberty Hardware. “There are a variety of options in style, design and finish for both commercial and residential use.”
Soden says both function and design are important features to consider when making a purchase. The L-shaped grab bars are generally best when the user needs to keep his balance while changing hand positions, making this grab bar the right addition when looking to add functionality and easy movability.
The newest trend, Soden adds, is combining safety and style. When assessing safety in the bathroom, a grab bar in a chrome finish with concealed screws will provide safety and blend in with other bathroom décor. “Consumers love these, because they provide safety for their family without sacrificing design,” she says.
Playing by the rules
The 2010 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was adopted by the U.S. Department of Justice in 2012. The way that specified products are mounted is of great importance to ADA compliance. Regarding grab bars, the act states that “all accessible bathing facilities require grab bars installed to meet ADAAG specifications. Diameter of grab bars should be 1¼ to 1½ inches, with 1½-inch clearance from the wall. Grab bars should not rotate in their fittings. The required mounting height is universally 33 to 36 inches from the centerline of the grab bar to the finish floor. Structural strength of grab bars and their mounting devices should withstand more than 250 pounds of force.”
It matters, not just in the restroom at a person’s favorite local restaurant or hotel where he vacations, but also at home. And as our population ages, it will matter more.
“Since the majority of baby boomers want to stay in their homes as they age, safety grab bars have become a hot commodity,” says Howard Levy, COO of Lota, USA. “Aside from giving aging family members more confidence in slippery areas, grab bars are also a major opportunity to add style and flare to your interiors.”
Levy points to Glacier Bay’s 36-inch concealed screw grab bar, which is capable of supporting up to 500 pounds when properly installed with the included hardware.
Grab bar options
When it comes to safety in the bathroom, Pro Construction Guide gathered a few examples of grab bars to give the Pro more insight into what’s available when outfitting a bathroom to be safely used.
Glacier Bay 36-inch x 1¼-inch Concealed Screw Grab Bar
Glacier Bay’s stainless steel grab bars feature a sturdy, all-metal construction for long-lasting performance and convenience. The elegant look of the concealed-screw mounting hardware fits any household application. Each bar is capable of supporting up to 500 pounds, when properly installed with the included hardware. This bar is backed by the Glacier Bay Limited Lifetime Warranty and is WingIts-compatible (sold separately).
Delta Contemporary Decorative ADA 18-inch x 1¼-inch Concealed Screw Grab Bar in Chrome
The Delta 18-inch Contemporary Decorative ADA Grab Bar in Chrome features a smooth surface for a simple, clean look. When installed properly, it will support up to 500 pounds. The secure mount requires two to three screws, while the five-screw flange provides installation flexibility to accommodate individual grab bar mounting needs. Delta grab bars are manufactured and tested to exceed many current industry standards. The posts are of durable die-cast zinc, and the stainless steel bar has rust-resistant strength. Wood screws and instruction sheets for installation into studs are included.
KOHLER Traditional 42-inch Concealed Screw Grab Bar in Polished Stainless
This classic grab bar offers a decorative solution compliant with ADA and ANSI standards. It also offers safety and support when one is entering, exiting, or positioning himself while taking a bath or shower. The grab bar has a modern design to match a traditional or contemporary bathroom. It’s available in an array of finishes and colors to suit any decor beautifully. The bar offers a practical accent, lending high functionality to any bath or shower. It measures 4413⁄16 inches x 2 3⁄4 inches x 213⁄16 inches. Available with traditional or transitional styling, KOHLER grab bars are constructed of premium metal for durability and reliability. A template is included for easy installation.
Franklin Brass 16-inch x 32-inch x 11⁄2-inch Concealed Screw 90-degree Left Angle Grab Bar in Stainless
The Franklin Brass 32- x 16-inch Angled Concealed Screw Grab Bar in Satin Stainless has an angled design that works great when a grab bar is needed along two walls in a shower or tub, or next to the toilet for additional leverage points to get on and off the commode. It will support up to 500 pounds when installed properly. The five-screw flange offers flexibility during installation, accommodating individual grab bar mounting needs. Only two or three screws are required for a secure mount. The bars are crafted from the finest quality stainless steel for rust-resistant durability and strength. Installation into studs with included instruction sheets and wood screws is easy.