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Bath & Faucets

My Top 10 Tips for Bathroom Safety

The morning news had an interesting segment from The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  (CDC)  about bathroom safety.  See the full report at Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR).


According to the new CDC study, an estimated 234,000 people ages 15 and older were treated in U.S. emergency departments (ED) in 2008 for injuries that occurred in bathrooms.  Four (4) out of 5 of these injuries were caused by falls—which can have especially serious consequences for older adults.


My Home Depot is located near several hospitals and rehabilitation centers.  Often family members come into the store to purchase safety products to install before their loved one returns home.  This is my quick checklist of bathroom safety ideas for persons of all ages and abilities.  Unless otherwise noted, the products are available at your local Home Depot store.


1.  Use a non-slip surface on the bathroom floor

 bath mat.jpg


If you place rugs in the bathroom area, be sure they have a non-skid bottom.   Look for bath mats with extra-strong suction cups for a secure hold to the tub, are mildew resistant, and can be machine washed.  Install tiles that do not have a  glossy finish – they will be slippery when wet. 



2.  Create a non-slip surface in the bath area


non slip tub shapes.jpg


Apply non-slip strips or designs on the floor of the tub or shower to provide extra traction when slippery and wet.



3.  Use grab bars inside and outside the bath area (showers, tubs, and toilet)


grab bar.jpg


Make sure the grab bar can support the proper weight of all individuals using the bathroom.  Ensure installation meets the minimum recommended plywood or studding for safe mounting support.  Some grab bars will match popular styles and existing hardware in your bathroom so this safety feature does double duty as a fashion statement too!



4.  Convert the old tub to a new shower




This old tub is transformed into a shower with a built-in seat, well placed grab bars, and easy to clean grout free walls.  Call 1-800-HOME-DEPOT to see if this service is offered in your area.



5.  Install a walk-in tub


safeway door.jpg      walk-in.jpg


There are several options, including the Safeway Tub Door™ (an installed product that adds a water-tight sealable door to your tub) and walk-in baths (a low-entry walk-in door system with built in chair-height seat).  Call 1-800-HOME-DEPOT to see if the Safeway Tub Door service is offered in your area.  Walk-in baths are available through Special Order at your local store as well as online at



6.  Secure everything to the wall


Double check that everything is securely mounted to the wall:vanity, medicine cabinet, shelves, towel bars, and toilet paper holders. Tighten up or re-install as needed – no jiggling allowed!



7.  Provide proper toilet seat height 


 toilet.jpg         elevated.jpg


A higher seat height make sitting down and standing up easier for people of all ages.  An adjustable elevated toilet seat raises the seat level up to 5-1/2 inches and offers 2 padded arms for a secure hand support for the user.



8.  Install GFCI switches in all bath outlets




A ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) will help protect against electrical shock caused by ground faults.  The Installing a GFCI Receptacle Project Guide shows step-by-step instructions, gives tools and materials lists, and important safety tips. 



9.   Add a motion sensitive night light for visibility


motion night light.jpg         bug light.jpg

This LED night light features motion-sensing technology - it turns on whenever motion is detected.   If motion is not detected within 90 seconds it will automatically turn off.  Also consider sensor activated flash lights.



10.   Set your hot water heater to 120oF to avoid burns


water heater.jpg


Water heated at 140oF may present a safety hazard of scalding.  The lower thermostat setting will also save on your energy costs.



Do you have any bathroom safety tips that you have found helpful?  I’d love to hear from you and thanks in advance for sharing.





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Posted 2011-06-10T19:03:33+0000  by Eileen_HD_ATL Eileen_HD_ATL