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Old 12-12-2009, 04:52 PM   #21
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Definitely programmable radiant heat, especially under tub/shower.
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Old 12-12-2009, 07:38 PM   #22
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Okay, a towel warmer. But--if you just buy a run-of-the-mill electric towel warmer you are a shirker! Build something you'll be proud of and show off your green credentials!

Every time you'll need warm towels it will be after a warm shower or bath, right? So, run a zig-zag of copper hot water pipe leading to the bath/shower outside the wall as a place to warm your towels. It will only add about 8 feet of pipe, so the hot water will only take a few extra seconds to reach the tub. And, you'll never have to remember to turn it on or off--the towels will be toasty every time. Even if you take a long soak in the tub, those copper pipes will be keeping those towels warm when you get out.

And, if your water is heated with natural gas, this is cheaper than using electricity to heat the towels. If you heat the water with electricity, you won't save anything. But, either way you'll have a conversation piece, the only one on your block. "Look what my husband did for us . . ." You'll be Mr Popular.

How I'd do it: I'd use "hard copper" 1/2" pipe and make what looks like a ladder. I'd probably block off the flow inside the uprights on alternate sides (solder?), so the water really makes a zig-zag. Copper is not very strong, so I'd build a nice-looking teak/redwood frame to protect it on the sides and which had few wood cross-bar rails across the front to protect the copper from inadvertent bumps. The towels hang inside the rails right up against the copper.

If you want to get exotic, some people run a couple zig-zags of the hot water pipe in the wall directly behind the bathroom mirror. It stops the mirror from fogging up in that little spot--kinda neat.
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Old 12-12-2009, 07:55 PM   #23
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DH and I have been working our rear ends off at the rental house. Our latest project is the master bath. We tore out the old tub and tile and tomorrow we are preparing to install new tile backboard. It had regular drywall behind the tile and it's in lousy shape. We bought a new tub today at Home Depot and hefted it upstairs. DH and I earned a few cold beers after today

I've been busy studying up on how to do ceramic tile in a bath/shower area. It's a bit more complicated that I thought. But hey, after tearing out and redoing all the tile in the kitchen/dining room floor area, I'm hoping we can figure it out! I can't offer any suggestions to you Fed since I'm a novice, but I'll be watching your thread for tips DH and I can use.
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Old 12-12-2009, 10:23 PM   #24
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well, thanks for all the ideas! im still up in the air about the radiant floor heat...they do have electric mats that arent too expensive...we decided not to do that in our downstairs bath because it rarely gets used...but it may be nice upstairs....

cant do a walkin shower...need a tub for the little ones! thats part of the reason she didnt want shower doors...hard to lean over and bath a 2 yr old with the track there and only 1/2 of the tub open

if anyone has a link to a good mp3/ipod/sd based bathroom-ish radio system, let me know!

i really like the idea of the tubular skylight....i'm going to think hard about that one!
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Old 12-13-2009, 02:47 AM   #25
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Those tubular skylights are very popular here and give lovely, diffused light into what can be really dark spaces. I'd definitely go for one of those.

I'd steer clear of any sort of marble if you can -- it cannot handle acidic cleaners, which eat it up, and it's a pretty high-maintenance stone. If you like the look, see if you can find a nice ceramic that mimics marble.

And I think one of those rain showerheads would be just lovely. But they probably use a ton of water.
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Old 12-13-2009, 08:21 AM   #26
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Okay, a towel warmer. But--if you just buy a run-of-the-mill electric towel warmer you are a shirker! Build something you'll be proud of and show off your green credentials!
An old wire coat hanger hanging above the woodstove, perhaps?
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Old 12-13-2009, 09:22 AM   #27
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A lot of neat ideas were brought up on this thread.

But as a mother myself, when I read that your wife will be bathing little children in there, I think about the practicality of that bathroom as your little children become bigger and bigger children, and teens.

What comes to mind is lots of storage. If the linen closet is some ways away, then I would put in shelving or cabinetry for towel storage. Also, lots of towel racks might come in handy.

Kids need to be able to see in the mirror to brush their teeth. So, either the mirror needs to come down fairly low (requiring more cleanup from splashing, ugh) or the kids will need a stepstool. Storage for the stepstool, rubber duckies, and so on could be under the sink if you choose a cabinet sink but if you plan to have a pedestal sink you may need more storage somewhere. You may need to plan on room for a hamper, too.

Additionally, with growing kids who will eventually morph into teens using the bathroom I would suggest choosing some very easy-to-clean surfaces that don't show dirt.
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Old 12-13-2009, 09:47 AM   #28
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A lot of neat ideas were brought up on this thread.

But as a mother myself, when I read that your wife will be bathing little children in there, I think about the practicality of that bathroom as your little children become bigger and bigger children, and teens.

What comes to mind is lots of storage. If the linen closet is some ways away, then I would put in shelving or cabinetry for towel storage. Also, lots of towel racks might come in handy.

Kids need to be able to see in the mirror to brush their teeth. So, either the mirror needs to come down fairly low (requiring more cleanup from splashing, ugh) or the kids will need a stepstool. Storage for the stepstool, rubber duckies, and so on could be under the sink if you choose a cabinet sink but if you plan to have a pedestal sink you may need more storage somewhere. You may need to plan on room for a hamper, too.

Additionally, with growing kids who will eventually morph into teens using the bathroom I would suggest choosing some very easy-to-clean surfaces that don't show dirt.
Good ideas! We already are short on towel bars...so that will be taken care of. Our linen closet is right outside the bathroom, but I plan on making an access door on the inside of the bathroom as well for easier access...unfortunately there isnt a whole lot of room for extra storage, so we will def. have a cabinet vanity....47" long....perhaps longer if I find a cool one with better storage

I always get custom mirrors done when i do a bathroom...and find i like them best when they come all the way down to the vanity ttop, and almost as high as the ceiling....it really opens a room up....

thanks!
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Old 12-13-2009, 11:08 AM   #29
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any input on cast iron vs. acryllic tubs? i dont bath much, nor does the wife. kids do of course. im looking at a 66" long tub, which makes cast iron mighty expensive

just looking for input...always have had cast iron....only experience with acryllic is in my rentals and hotel stays
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Old 12-13-2009, 11:10 AM   #30
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i dont bath much, nor does the wife.
This might fall in the TMI category...
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Old 12-13-2009, 11:16 AM   #31
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.........................i really like the idea of the tubular skylight....i'm going to think hard about that one!
If you do the skylight, go for the largest one you can fit. The difference between my 10" and 14" skylights is night and day - literally.

Pi R squared and all that.
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Old 12-13-2009, 11:43 AM   #32
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any input on cast iron vs. acryllic tubs? i dont bath much, nor does the wife. kids do of course. im looking at a 66" long tub, which makes cast iron mighty expensive
Do you have a Habitat for Humanity "ReStore" near you, or some other places that recycle building materials? They sometimes have very nice used fixtures. Iron tubs are a little less common than sinks and toilets (since folks often break them up with a sledge hammer to make them easier to remove), but they do show up occasionally.

I know some folks re-paint them with epoxy or acrylic paints, but I doubt the paint would hold up to tough use as the original finish does.
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Old 12-13-2009, 08:30 PM   #33
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This does not fall under the category of cool but....
We redid our house 7 years ago. One of the things we did was install super flushing handicapped/taller toilets with elongated bowls. Most people who come over comment on them and I really notice the difference when I "go" at someone else's house. They are so much easier to get up and down from, something anyone with bad knees would appreciate.
The coolest thing we did was install a real vanity for the ladies and also have a small ceiling fan in the room for those "hot" days.
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Old 12-13-2009, 09:26 PM   #34
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My vote would be for a ceiling fan. We had one in our Lakeland, FL home and I loved it. I want the bathroom to be warm in the winter but I want to stay cool in the summer. I thought it was a little odd when we moved in but I came to love it and it's something I would put into a home with a large enough bathroom.
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Old 12-13-2009, 09:32 PM   #35
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One of the things we did was install super flushing handicapped/taller toilets with elongated bowls.
We did that, too. We're still young and spry, but the higher toilets are nice. Ours are Kohler brand (I've forgotten the model) and they flush very well.

One downside--the kids might have a tough time getting up on a taller "John."
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Old 12-13-2009, 10:04 PM   #36
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Do you have a Habitat for Humanity "ReStore" near you, or some other places that recycle building materials?
My brother just turned me on the the fact a "ReStore" store is located right near me. Gettin' over there pronto to check it out. He and his signficant other picked up some mind blowing bargins there. Plus, hey, it helps a good cause. What's not to like about that? I love the idea of reclycling things. Way too much good stuff thrown away here in the US of A.
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Old 12-13-2009, 10:13 PM   #37
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You have a unique opportunity to make points with your DW.

Consider a Toto Carlyle commode, with flat, easy-to-clean sides. It is also REALLY hard to plug up. It is also low water.


Toto Carlyle, 1.6 GPF elongated with adjustable rough-in from 10"-14", fully skirted with concealed trapway.
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Old 12-14-2009, 09:44 AM   #38
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You have a unique opportunity to make points with your DW.

Consider a Toto Carlyle commode, with flat, easy-to-clean sides. It is also REALLY hard to plug up. It is also low water.


Toto Carlyle, 1.6 GPF elongated with adjustable rough-in from 10"-14", fully skirted with concealed trapway.
wow! 600 bucks for a toilet? i thought i would 'splurge' and spend 250! we've been using $69 home depot special for 5 years with no problems lol
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Old 12-14-2009, 11:52 AM   #39
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toto toilets - enuf said
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Old 12-14-2009, 04:01 PM   #40
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toto toilets - enuf said
Yup.
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