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HPM May 2017

48 BATHROOMS & SHOWERS Shower cubicles vital for timber frame homes There’s an increasing chance that as an installer you’ll be required to fit bathrooms in domestic or commercial timber frame buildings. Saniflo UK’s Ann Boardman highlights what to look for The number of timber frame buildings in the UK is growing as we realise the benefits of building with when considering a shower for a timber frame building timber. Timber frame buildings can be quick and relatively inexpensive to build, which makes them cost-effective. They are also highly versatile, as they can be clad in almost any building material. Timber frame buildings are ‘greener’ than other building types and produce far lower carbon dioxide emissions than a traditional brick build, for example. And if the wood is ethically sourced, with all trees replanted, the environmental credentials are even more impressive. So, it’s no wonder that today, the vast majority of new-build homes in the UK are built with a timber frame, as we catch up with the 70% of the world's population who already lives in timber frame homes. Flexible and affordable The growth of the ‘glamping’ industry is also largely thanks to flexible and affordable timber frame accommodation. So, the chances are, that as an installer you may already be involved in fitting showers in timber frame buildings, or you may be called to do so. However, some industry professionals are yet to fully appreciate that timber frame buildings require special considerations, especially when it comes to the bathrooms, and in particular the showers. Timber changes naturally over time and it can shift and warp causing movement to the building. The bathrooms will be affected. Traditional shower enclosures with their tiles, grout and silicone gel could be more prone to leaking in timber frame buildings, as if and when the buildings warps, the tiles of the shower enclosure would be more likely to crack, meaning the enclosure is no longer watertight and prone to leaking. If any water finds its way into a building’s timber frame and causes rot, this rot can jeopardise the building’s structural integrity. A growing number of independent house builders and ‘glamping’ accommodation providers are realising the benefits of shower cubicles and installing them from the outset, as they don't require any tiles, grouting, or silicone, which means no unhealthy build up of mould, and no broken or loose tiles to repair, and swift, cost-effective and hassle-free installation and maintenance. For timber frame buildings, shower cubicles might actually be essential. As no tiles or grouting are necessary, there's no danger of cracks forming when the house warps over time. This means no leaks, so no risk of rotting, so, no danger to a timber frame building’s structural integrity. No mess, no need to worry For existing timber frame buildings with traditional shower enclosures, aside from repairing the shower enclosure periodically, the other option is to replace the shower enclosure – or even the bath – with a shower cubicle, sometimes in less than day. There's no mess, and no need to worry about your bathroom being off-limits for weeks. You could have a clean, stylish, future-proof bathroom in no time at all. Installers, landlords and housing associations with multiple timber frame homes can even choose a cost-effective contract shower cubicle to future-proof your entire portfolio. Shower cubicles and timber frame homes were made for each other. No matter what your relationship is with timber frame houses – whether you build them, fit bathrooms in them, manage them or live in one – in the long-term shower cubicles will save you many headaches and a lot of money and will continue to look pristine. A traditional shower enclosure in a timber frame building could be an accident waiting to happen www.hpmmag.com May 2017 enquiry number 128


HPM May 2017
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