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How to Keep Warm in the Winter: Bathroom Floors

How to keep warm in the winter: Bathroom Floors

Image via Flickr by ChalonHandmade

When winter sets in, your bathroom floor can transform from pleasantly cool to icy cold. However, you needn’t settle for chilly toes over the holiday season. Start with these handy home tips for a warmer, more comfortable bathroom floor.

Warm Bathrooms on a Budget with Rugs

So you don’t have a lot of money to spend, but you’re not sure how to keep your feet warm on such a tight budget? Rugs are the easiest solution. Simply lay down rugs in the high traffic areas, like the space by the sink where you clean your teeth and just outside the shower where you dry off. The rugs will feel much warmer under your feet than tile or other traditional bathroom flooring. Choose rugs in warm colors like reds and oranges to warm up your bathroom’s appearance, too.

Sliding rugs can be a hazard, but this problem is easily solved with a rug pad or rug tape to hold the rug in place. Bathrooms are damp places too, so make sure to wash your rugs regularly to prevent mold and mildew setting in.

Add Underfloor Heating

For the ultimate winter warmer, look to underfloor heating. This indulgent option is a real space saver because everything is hidden away underneath your heated floor. It’s also very effective because heat rises, warming the whole room as well as the surface underfoot. It’s much nicer stepping onto a heated tile than an icy one on a chilly morning, too!

Large underfloor heating systems, installed by professionals, have been around for some time, but new mat-based heating systems are gaining popularity. These mats, which have toaster-like coils woven through them, are much less expensive and not too difficult to install for the average DIYer. However, a professional is still required to wire the thermostat to the system and run a line from the mats to the breaker box. It’s also important to note that upfront costs aren’t the only important consideration. Running an underfloor heating system is quite expensive, so it may not suit budget-conscious homeowners.

Change Your Flooring

The vast majority of American bathrooms have porcelain or ceramic tile floors. These floors are durable and stylish, but they’re also colder than virtually any other material. Modern consumers have a lot more choices, so why not investigate other options? Cork doesn’t just feel warm underfoot; it also absorbs humidity and repels mold and mildew, and it’s really easy to keep clean. Many homeowners worry about wood in a bathroom, but engineered wood, made of wood veneer supported by plywood, is quite humidity resistant. It also feels toasty warm underfoot.

Just resist the temptation to choose carpet. While this flooring is really warm, adding it to damp bathrooms is a recipe for a mold problem.

Fix Window Drafts

Studies show air leakage can account for as much as a quarter of a home’s winter heat loss. Are your windows making your bathroom floors colder? Put your hand near the glass and window frames to detect drafts, paying extra attention to the edges and places where the window sections intersect. Seal any gaps with caulk or weather stripping to make your whole bathroom, including its floor, much warmer.

Whether you’re ready for a complete overhaul or just want an easy hack to overcome the winter chill, there are plenty of ways to warm up your bathroom floor this winter.

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