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Nine Common ADA-Compliant Bathroom Renovation Mistakes People Make

At some point in your life, or if you have elderly parents who want to age in place, you will need to consider bathroom renovation ideas to make bathrooms ADA-compliant. ADA-compliance in the home simply means the bathrooms are easily accessible and include various features like a handicap shower with a seat to address mobility issues, medical conditions, and so on.

Bathroom Equipped For Disabled People

As you think about bathroom renovations needed to convert bathrooms and make them safer and easier to use, let’s take a look at nine common mistakes people make during their renovations:

  1. Choosing the wrong door handle. You need a door handle that you can easily open. Rather than choose a doorknob, you want one with a handle on it since it is easier to open and close the door with arthritic hands.
  2. The door swings into the bathroom. For small bathrooms, this can be an issue if you rely on a walker or wheelchair to get around. You won’t be able to easily close the door for privacy, as it will cut into the radius you need to turn and move. For huge bathrooms, the way the door swings may not be an issue. Yet, for small bathroom remodels, have the door swing out to give you the space you need.
  3. Not elevating the toilet. It is a good idea to elevate the height of the toilet so that sitting down and getting up is easier. One great solution is to have your plumber convert a floor-mounted toilet to a wall-mounted toilet.
  4. Not installing toilet grab bars in the right locations. Toilet grab bars should be within easy reach after sitting down on the toilet. Make sure to keep the space around the grab bars free and clear for easy grabbing.
  5. Installing the toilet paper dispenser too low or too close to the grab bars. Make sure the toilet paper dispenser is within reach of the toilet but not in an awkward location that is difficult to reach.

handicapped disabled access bathroom

  1. Not removing cabinetry to make access to sinks easier. If you use a wheelchair, you want to make sure that cabinets you typically use under the sink are removed and the sink is wall-mounted. This makes it easy to reach the sink without worrying about cabinetry getting in the way.
  2. Not mounting the sink at the right height. If you need to sit down or are in a wheelchair, make sure your plumber lowers the sink down to your height where you can easily use it.
  3. Installing the mirrors too high. Make sure mirrors are installed at a height where you can see yourself. One common mistake your contractor will make is installing it at their height and forgetting that you are in a wheelchair or seated while using the sink.
  4. Not upgrading the bathtub or shower. As we get older, getting into and out of the tub or shower becomes more challenging. To make it easy to access the shower, no matter what type of handicap we have, you should upgrade to ADA-compliant shower systems with a seat, grab bars, and a removable showerhead.


Renovating a bathroom in the home to make it ADA-compliant does require carefully considering each area of the bathroom and how to make it easier to access and use. By evaluating your needs or the needs of your parents before you begin renovations, you are sure to avoid these common mistakes.

To find the right shower kits with seats for bathrooms in the home, please feel free to browse our online store or call American Bath Enterprises, Inc. at (888) 228-4925 for further assistance.