Showers & Bathrooms


Bathroom Remodeling - Plumbing Considerations

It’s advisable to discuss your plans for your bathroom remodeling with a qualified plumber, to check that your ideas are feasible.  For instance, your hot and cold water systems and drains may need to be altered or updated.  Or you may need to upgrade your water tank or boiler.  If you’re thinking of changing the location of your bath or toilet, you need to take into account the practicalities, such as where the soil vent pipe will go. 

Major bathroom remodeling tasks are best left to the professionals, especially changing the layout of a bathroom.  However, an experienced DIY enthusiast should be able to replace a bathroom suite competently.  Replacing the bath and sink can be done without causing too much upheaval, although being without the toilet while it’s being replaced can be more inconvenient!  You’ll need to ensure the new toilet trap is the same as the old one, and the cistern should also be the same, unless you make the necessary changes to the cold water supply.

If you want to install an additional unit as well as replacing the existing suite, such as a shower stall or bidet, you will need to connect it to the water supply and drainage outlet pipes.  This requires a certain amount of skill, and might be best left to a professional plumber.  The drain runs should be kept to a minimum and be supported with brackets.  You will also need to fit a trap to the shower and connect the drainage pipe to the outlet pipes.

Bear in mind that if you’ve got an old plumbing system the pipes are likely to be in imperial measurements.  It helps if you check this before you purchase all your materials and start work, as it can be frustrating and time-consuming to discover this once you’ve started!  If you have got old pipes, you can use reducers and connectors to adapt them for your needs.

Before replacing an old toilet, make sure you have the correct fittings and suitable sanitary ware before you turn off the water supply.  Then flush the toilet to empty the cistern.  If you’ve got a cistern that’s separate from the toilet bowl, you will need to disconnect the water supply pipe and overflow pipe before removing it from the wall and replacing it with the new cistern.  You can remove the toilet once the cistern is disconnected by unscrewing it from the floor and lifting it away from the drain connector.  Fitting a new toilet bowl is the reverse of this process.  You may need a special drain connector if the old one doesn’t match your new bowl.  Remember to make sure all fittings are tight.  Putting in a new close-coupled system follows the same principles, except that the toilet is connected to the cistern.