A Pleasure to Use
How important is overall user experience? For example if you go to a restaurant and the menu is confusing, the lighting poor and the table rocks; do you think this would be a good place to recommend to a friend? Would you ever go back there again; probably not? What about someplace that you go in and out of on a regular basis, don’t you think you should make the practice of using the facility as pleasant and worry free as possible? How would you rate your bathrooms overall performance?
Making an Entrance
One of the complaints that we often hear about is the size and poor layout of half-baths. At one point or another, most of us have been in a washroom where the door opens inward so you have to side step the toilet as you try to close the door behind you. And while the reasoning behind this inconvenience is clear. One: To utilize the space and Two: so that you don’t accidentally knock someone’s socks off with an outward swinging door, this layout is insanely frustrating.
Creative Entry Solutions
Two solutions to this dilemma would be to install a sliding pocket door or if this is inconceivable due to wall studs or a weight bearing wall then a novel alternative might be to build saloon style doors. With both sides of the door on hinges, the panels would be half the size of a normal door offering the users more room to enter the bath without having to worry about the swing of the structure getting in the way. And while the panels would still swing inwards, the closet sized doors would overlap in the middle when closed to ensure ongoing privacy.
Matching the User to the Design
In smaller bathrooms, the basin is sometimes tucked away neatly just behind the door. Although this layout is intended to make good use of the space in the room, if the door is opened rather hard or carelessly by children, then it will crash into the sink. If your bath is intended for use by young children, who would probably run energetically into the room, frequently slamming the door into the basin, it would not be appropriate for the user group it was intended for.
Evaluating Different Needs
Men and women use the toilet differently. Women normally sit (or hover) while a man routinely stands unless he has to perform full duties. This can sometimes be frustrating for both parties involved as the seat gets splashed on or left up unintentionally and the woman unexpectedly falls in in the middle of the night. This can be a wake-up call that things need to change. One solution would be to buy a toilet with a hydraulic seat that returns to its resting position when not in use. This idea will reduce stress and hopefully curb the need to go see a marriage counselor!
Increase the Bowl Height to 20 Inches
Alternatively since the male in the home likes to stand while peeing installing a higher than normal wall mount toilet may help to alleviate some of the unnecessary splashing while at the same time accommodating a comfortable height for female users.
Making Sense of it all
Another tip to enhance the user experience would be to purchase a toilet with a sensor flush. How many times have you thought you were in the game “twister” as you torqued your body trying to find the flush mechanism behind you? And unless you are a scientist exploring dietary remains, who wants to get up and see what’s in the bowl anyway.
Functional and Accessible
While you may not be able to do anything about the fact that the sink is so close to the bath that you bump your elbows and knees on it when you turn ’round but by fixing that wobbly toilet seat or clearly indicating which taps are hot and which one is cold can only make your bathroom safer and easier to use despite the smallness of the space. These are just a few suggestions on making the room more functional and accessible, now come the exciting task of deciding how you want to move forward with your ideas.