Standard Bathroom Rules and Guidelines with Measurements





Dear readers we present you the Standard Bathroom Rules and Guidelines with Measurements which will answer the typical needs of the users. Developed a strategy against difficulties that people meet every day using the bathrooms is showing the best recommended designs. Best dimensions for installing the bathroom elements, best location of them, getting the best functionality of every detail in the bathroom counts in order to have the best designed and maximum functional bath.

Recommendation: The clear opening of a doorway should be at least 32″. This would require a minimum 34″ or 2′-10″ door. For universal design, the minimum clear width is 34″. If the existing structure precludes changing the opening then a minimum 24″ or 2′-0″ door is allowable.

The door opening width is measured from jamb to jamb. The clear opening width is measured from the inside of the open door to the door stop on the other wise of the opening. It is almost always about 2″ narrower than the clear opening. The doorknob is disregarded when calculating a clear opening.



 

 

Recommendation: The size for a separate toilet compartment should be at least 36″ by 66″ with a swing-out or pocket door.

Building Code Requirement: The minimum size for a separate toilet compartment is 30″ by 60″. (IPC 405.3.1)

  1. The Guideline implies that a toilet compartment must have a door. Actually more toilet compartments are built without doors than with.
  2. An inswing door can be used if the width of the door is added to the depth of the compartment. For example, if the compartment has a 24″ door, add 24″ to the 66″ length of the compartment. The new 90″ depth accommodates the inswing of the door.
  3. This guideline also applies to a bidet compartment.
  4. If both a bidet and toilet or toilet and wall urinal are built into one compartment, the arrangement of fixtures within the compartment must conform to Guideline 20. This usually results in a minimum compartment width of between 62″ and 65″, depending on the width of the fixtures selected.
  5. If the compartment needs to be wheelchair accessible, the minimum width is 60″.

 

 

  1. The shower controls should be accessible from both inside and outside the shower spray and be located between 38″-48″ above the floor depending on user’s height.
  2. The tub controls should be accessible from both inside and outside the tub and be located between the rim of the bathtub and 33″ above the floor.

 

Recommendation: Plan a seat within the shower that is 17″-19″ above the shower floor and 15″ deep.

Building Code Requirement: Shower seat must not infringe on the minimum interior size of the shower (900 square inches). (IRC P 2708.1)
Comments:

  1. A seat in a shower is not required, but it is a good idea, and should be considered when remodeling a bath shower. However, it must not infringe on the minimum interior size of the shower. The shower at the shower head must be large enough for a disk 30″ in diameter to fit inside the shower walls. The shower seat must be located outside of this 30″ area.
  2. One way to reduce the footprint of a shower seat when remodeling a bath shower, and fit one in a smaller shower is to use a fold up seat. The seat must, however, still be outside the 30″ minimum circle when folded down, according to most local building codes. Some localities, however, are a little more flexible.

 

 

 

Recommendation: The height of a lavatory or vanity top varies between 32″-43″ to fit the user.



  1. This Guideline recognizes that the standard 32″ or 36″ vanity height is not appropriate for most people.
  2. The former practice of installing 32″ vanities as a compromise between the best height for children and the best height for adults has fallen by the wayside as builders recognized that after children are grown, adults are stuck with a too-low vanity height for many, many years.
  3. The current better practice in remodeling a bathroom is to install a factory-standard 36″ vanity, which is better, but still too low or too high for most people. If young children are using the vanity, rather than lowering the vanity, buy a stool.
  4. However, he best practice in current bathroom remodels is to determine lavatory height based on the height of the user, and adapt the height of the lavatory to the user rather than requiring the user to adapt to the vanity height. For more information on ergonomic

Guideline 6: Double Lavatory Placement

Lincoln Nebraska Bath Remodel, Bath Design Guideline 6: Double Lavatory Placement.Click to Enlarge —

Recommendation: The distance between the centerlines of two lavatories should be at least 36″.

Building Code Requirement:

  1. The minimum distance between the centerlines of two lavatories should be at least 30″. (IPC 405.3.1).
  2. The minimum distance between the edges of two free standing or wall-hung lavatories is 4″. (IRC R 307.1)
  1. In addition to this requirement, double lavatories must meet all the setback requirements of single lavatories.
  2. In small bathroom remodeling, careful attention needs to be paid to the size of lavatory sinks to ensure that minimum offset distances are met. When in doubt, go smaller. Almost all fixture manufactuters make lavatory sinks designed to fit very small spaces.

 

Recommendation: The distance from the centerline of the lavatory to the sidewall/tall obstacle should be at least 20”.

Building Code Requirement:
  1. The minimum distance from the centerline of the lavatory to a wall is 15″. (IPC 405.3.1)
  2. The minimum distance between a wall and the edge of a free standing or wall-hung lavatory is 4″. (IRC R 307.2)

 

  1. A pedestal or wall mounted lavatory must meet both of the Building Code Requirements. The center of the lavatory must be at least 15″ away from any side wall or tall obstacle, such as a tall cabinet, and the edge of the lavatory must be 4″ from the wall or tall obstacle. There are practical reasons for the 4″ requirement. Any closer and it would be very difficult to clean the lavatory.
  2. In a small bath remodel, careful attention needs to be paid to the size of lavatory sinks to ensure that minimum offset distances are met. When in doubt, go smaller. Almost all fixture manufactuters make lavatory sinks designed to fit very small spaces.

 

 

Recommendation: Plan a clear floor space of at least 30” from the front edge of all fixtures (i.e., lavatory, toilet, bidet, tub and shower) to any opposite bath fixture, wall or obstacle.

Building Code Requirement:

  1. A minimum space of at least 21″ must be planned in front of lavatory, toilet, bidet and tub. (IRC R 307.1)
  2. A minimum space of at least 24″ must be planned in front of a shower entry. (IRC P 2705.1.5)
  1. Where possible use the recommended 30” minimum clear space when remodeling a bathroom. For many people, especially those with limited movement, the 24” or 21” code minimum is too small.
  2. When remodeling bathrooms just 5′ wide, which is most baths built from 1945 through 965, the smaller 24” and 21” clear space minimum standard may be unavoidable.
  3. One way to increase clear space in a bathroom remodel is to reduce the space occupied by fixtures by reducing the size of the fixture. For example, the standard 21” vanity depth can be reduced to as little as 15” with proper planning.
  4. It is often possible to create more clear space when remodeling a small bathroom by reversing the swing of the bathroom door so it swings out, not in.
  5. The clear floor space around a pedestal or clawfoot bathtub should follow the general rule for bathtubs with the following addition: the clear space between any edge of the tub and any adjacent wall or rixture should be a minimum of 4″ to allow for cleaning behnd the tub — 6″ is better. The entry side of the tub should have a minumum of 21″ of clear floor space, 30″ is better.

 

Recommendation: Same as Building Code Requirement.

Building Code Requirement: Bathrooms shall have a minimum floor to ceiling height of 80″ over the fixture and at the front clearance area for fixtures. A shower or tub equipped with a shower head shall have a minimum floor to ceiling height of 80″ above a minimum area 30″ X 30″ at the shower head. (IRC R305.1.4)

  1. The general code requirement is that ceilings be at least 90″ (7′-6″) high, but an exception is made for bathrooms which are required to be only 80″ (6′-8″) high. In any place where a person cannot walk, the ceiling may slope or be dropped down to as low as 60″ (5′-0″), and most code officials will allow and even lower drop, especially in bathroom remodels, if it is safe and reasonable under the circumstances.
  2. The requirement that a shower be at least 30″ x 30″ x 80″ at the shower head is merely practical. Much smaller and the average person would not fit. It is difficult to find a pre-made shower cabinet this small. The usual minimum size is 32″ x 32″.
  3. The minimum height of 80″ (6′-8″) “over the fixture” includes the required minimum clear floor space in front of the fixture, which must also have a minimum height of 80″ (6′-8″).
  4. In remodeling bathrooms, this Guideline will have the most impact on bathroom remodels in basements, attics or garrets were ducting or the slope of the roof may reduce the ceiling height over some part of the remodeled bath.

 

Recommendation: No entry or fixture door should interfere with another door or drawer and/or the safe use of the fixtures or cabinets.
Building Code Requirement: No International Residential Code requirements.

  1. The entry door should not interfere with a shower door or any cabinet door or drawer.
  2. The entry door should not not interfere with a person using any bathroom fixture or appliance. We commonly find entry and shower doors arranged so they will strike anyone standing in front of the vanity or sink or sitting on the toilet.
  3. In remodeling bathrooms, especially small baths where space is at a premium, the entry door should, if at all possible, swing out, not in. This now only eliminates door interference within the bathroom, but for small baths, adds useful space inside the bathroom that was formerly taken up by the door swing.

 

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