In the news:
Throw a curve into bathroom-remodeling job
Ed the Plumber: Curved-apron bathtub offers a design solution for small bathroom.
Scripps Howard News Service
Q: We're doing a good-sized remodeling job in our bathroom. It won't be a complete gut job, but we are changing all the fixtures, including the bathtub. But we have space restrictions. What's a good choice for a new bathtub that will still fit in our 5-foot tub/shower area?
— Penny, New Jersey
A: Since your wall-to-wall space is 5 feet, you won't be able to get a longer tub, but chances are you can fit a tub that's a little wider. However, you don't want to install a tub that sticks out of the wall at the corners, you want it to fit perfectly into your existing tub/shower alcove.
The solution may be to install a curved-apron bath or expanse bath. A curved-apron bath is about 4 inches wider in the center of the tub than a standard bath, but then gently curves back to each corner on the exposed wall to fit the space of a standard 5-foot tub. This space-saving design is ideal for getting that big-tub look for smaller bathrooms.
Not only does the extra 4 inches in the center of the bath give you a little more soaking area, the wider tub base is great for showering as well. With the addition of a curved shower-curtain rod that mirrors the tub wall, you'll feel like you're in a much larger shower area.
Bottom line: A curved-apron bathtub should get you around your existing tub/shower-space issue.
Master plumber Ed Del Grande is the author of "Ed Del Grande's House Call," the host of TV and Internet shows, and a LEED green associate. Visit eddelgrande.com or write email@example.com. Always consult local contractors and codes.