How to plan a bathroom remodel

There are two reasons that people choose to remodel a bathroom. The first reason is to make the bathroom look better. This is referred to as a surface remodel as you are just replacing things to make it prettier. The second reason is to make the bathroom function better or to repair damaged pipes and fixtures. The biggest cost in remodeling bathrooms is the plumbing and the plumbing fixtures and the second big cost is ceramic or marble tile.

The number one thing to consider, even if you are only doing a surface remodel, is to hire a professional plumber come to out and inspect the area you want to redo. A professional plumber will examine the opened-up floors and walls and check the existing pipe to see if any needs to be replaced. Sometimes shortly after you finish a nice surface remodel, one of the pipes underneath gives way and starts leaking and you discover that during the remodeling process you should have gone deeper to assess the condition of the plumbing before finishing the project.

The second thing to consider is how the room is laid out. Often people will do a remodel and put things back in the exact same places they were installed. St Paul Pipeworks recommends having a plumber come in early in the process to give you the basics of how much space it takes for each of the fixtures to comfortably use them and make sure the dimensions are up to code. The thing that’s most difficult to change the position of is the toilet. The pipe that goes to the toilet is a bigger pipe and it has limitations on length from the stack wood. Also, you have to verify whether you can make holes in the structural wood.

When fully remodeling a bathroom, you generally need every trade professional that you would need for any other room in your house. The first person to start working is the general contractor or carpentry contractor who will do the main demolition. The plumber comes in next and does the rough-in work, including the pipework. As part of the rough-in, the plumber sets the bathtub or walk-in shower base. Often the heating professional and electrician come in next. Once all that work is completed, the carpenter puts back the insulation and pulls everything back together.

Toward the end of your project, the ceramic professional, painter, and other finish professionals will come to complete the tile and wall work. Usually, the plumber is the last subcontractor to come back to set all the final fixtures. Most people think that these jobs can go fairly quickly. Unfortunately, because you have so many contractors involved, scheduling and other delays can stretch the job out. It is not unusual for a bathroom remodel project to go three to four weeks. Because you need so many trades and it’s usually a smaller room, it can be the most expensive room to remodel in your house.

The permitting and inspection requirements can lengthen the process as well. Each of the licensed trades has a rough-in inspection and that means the inspector needs to come when the walls are still open so they can see that the work has been completed to code. Then after all the walls are closed up there is a finish inspection with each of the trades. The hard part can be the availability of your city inspectors and scheduling times for them to come out. Unfortunately, this can drag out the process if you need to leave your walls open to let these inspectors do their job.

If you are thinking about remodeling a bathroom in your home or are just looking for a quality plumber in the St. Paul and Minneapolis metro area, give St Paul Pipeworks a call today

Yours Truly,
Matthew Dettwiler
Social Media Manager

What to expect when you’re expecting (A Bathroom Remodel)