Free Encyclopedia of Building & Environmental Inspection, Testing, Diagnosis, Repair
Ask a Question or Search InspectAPedia
InspectAPedia ® Home
ACOUSTICAL SEALANT CHOICES
AGE of a BUILDING - how to determine
AIR POLLUTANTS, COMMON INDOOR
AIR LEAK SEALING PROCEDURE
AIR TEST FOR MOLD: ACCURACY
AIR TEST SAMPLING CASSETTE STUDY
ALLERGEN TESTS for buildings
ALLERGENS in BUILDINGS, RECOGNIZING
ALLERGY & MOLD IAQ PRODUCTS
ALLERGY TESTS for PEOPLE
ALLERGY TEST ACCURACY
ANIMAL ALLERGENS / PET DANDER
ANTI SCALD VALVES
APPLIANCE EFFICIENCY RATINGS
ARCHITECTURE & BUILDING COMPONENT ID
ASBESTOS IDENTIFICATION IN buildings
ATTIC LEAKS, CONDENSATION & MOLD
BASEMENT CEILING VAPOR BARRIER
BASEMENT HEAT LOSS
BATH & KITCHEN DESIGN GUIDE
BEST CONSTRUCTION PRACTICES GUIDE
Best Interior Finish Practices
BLOWER DOORS & AIR INFILTRATION
BOOKSTORE - INTERIORS
BRICK LINED WALLS
BRICK VENEER WALL AIR LEAKS
BRICK VENEER WALL Loose, Bulged
BRICK WALL DRAINAGE WEEP HOLES
BUCKLED FOUNDATIONS due to INSULATION?
BUILDING DAMAGE ASSESSMENT & REPAIR
BUILDING SAFETY HAZARDS GUIDE
BUILDING NOISE DIAGNOSIS & CURE
CABINETS & COUNTERTOPS
CARPETING & INDOOR AIR QUALITY
CARPETING, SELECTION & INSTALLATION
CASEWORK, CABINETS, SHELVING INSTALLATION
CATHEDRAL CEILING INSULATION
CATHEDRAL CEILING VENTILATION
CEILING FINISHES INTERIOR
CEILINGS, DROP or SUSPENDED PANEL
CEILINGS, PLASTER TYPES
CERAMIC TILE FLOOR, WALL
CERAMIC TILE, ASBESTOS in?
CHIMNEY INSPECTION DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR
CHINESE DRYWALL HAZARDS
CLOGGED DRAIN DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR
COMBUSTION AIR for TIGHT buildings
CONDENSATION or SWEATING PIPES, TANKS
COOLING LOAD Reduction by ROOF VENTS
DEW POINT CALCULATION for WALLS
DRYWALL HAZARDS, CHINESE
DRYWALL INSTALLATION Best Practices
DRYWALL MOLD RESISTANT
EARTHQUAKE DAMAGED FOUNDATIONS
EFFLORESCENCE, Salts & White / Brown Deposits
ELDERLY & VETERANS HOME SAFETY
ELECTRICAL INSPECTION, DIAGNOSIS, REPAIR
ENGINEERED WOOD Flooring
ENGINEERED WOOD Products
EXTERIOR WALL SIDING TRIM & FINISHES
FLAT ROOF MOISTURE & CONDENSATION
FLOOD DAMAGE ASSESSMENT, SAFETY & CLEANUP
FLOOR TYPES & DEFECTS
FOOTING & FOUNDATION DRAINS
FOUNDATION CRACKS & DAMAGE GUIDE
FRAMING DETAILS for BETTER INSULATION
FREEZE-PROOF A BUILDING
FROST HEAVES, FOUNDATION, SLAB
FUNGICIDAL SPRAY & SEALANT USE GUIDE
GAS EXPOSURE LIMITS & STANDARDS
HEAT LOSS in BUILDINGS
HEATING COST SAVINGS METHODS
HOT ROOF DESIGNS: Un-Vented Roof Solutions
HOT WATER HEATERS
HOUSEWRAP AIR & VAPOR BARRIERS
HOUSE DOCTOR, how-to be
HUMIDITY LEVEL TARGET
ICE DAM PREVENTION
INDOOR AIR QUALITY & HOUSE TIGHTNESS
INDOOR AIR QUALITY IMPROVEMENT GUIDE
INSULATION INSPECTION & IMPROVEMENT
KIT HOMES, Aladdin, Sears, Wards, Others
KITCHEN & BATH DESIGN GUIDE
LIGHTING, EXTERIOR GUIDE
LIGHTING, INTERIOR GUIDE
LIGHTNING PROTECTION SYSTEMS
LOW VOLTAGE BUILDING WIRING
LOW VOLTAGE TRANSFORMER TEST
LOG HOME GUIDE
METAL LATH, PLASTER & STUCCO
MIXING / ANTI-SCALD VALVES
MOBILE HOME INSPECTIONS
MOISTURE CONTROL in BUILDINGS
MOLD INFORMATION CENTER
NOISE / SOUND DIAGNOSIS & CURE
NOISE CONTROL for FLOORS
NOISE CONTROL for PLUMBING
NOISE, PLUMBING DRAIN DIAGNOSIS
NOISE, PLUMBING DRAIN REPAIR
NOISE, WATER HEATER
NOISES, WATER PUMP
ODORS GASES SMELLS, DIAGNOSIS & CURE
ODORS IN WATER
ODORS, SEPTIC or SEWER
ODORS, SULPHUR SMELL SOURCES
ODORS, URINE REMOVAL
OIL FIRED WATER HEATERS
OUTHOUSES & LATRINES
PAINT FALURE, DIAGNOSIS, CURE, PREVENTION
PIPING IN buildings, Clogs Leaks Types
PLASTER & BEAVERBOARD & DRYWALL
PLASTER BULGES & PILLOWS
PLASTER LATH, METAL
PLASTER TYPE IDENTIFICATION
PLASTER VENEER Best Practices
PLUMBING FIXTURES, KITCHEN, BATH
Plumbing Materials & Fixtures, Age, Types
PLASTIC HEATER VENT
PLASTIC PIPING ABS CPVC PB PEX PVC
PUMPS, WATER REPAIR
RELIEF VALVE LEAKS
RELIEF VALVES - TP Valves on Boilers
RELIEF VALVES - STEAM TP VALVES
RELIEF VALVES - Water Heaters
RELIEF VALVES - Water Tanks
ROOF VENTILATION SPECIFICATIONS
SAFETY HAZARDS & INSPECTIONS
SAFETY: Elderly & Veterans Home Safety
SEARS KIT HOUSES
SEPTIC SYSTEM INSPECT DIAGNOSE REPAIR
SEPTIC METHANE GAS
SEPTIC SYSTEM ODORS
SEPTIC & CESSPOOL SAFETY
SEWAGE BACKUP, WHAT TO DO
SEWAGE BACKUP PREVENTION
SEWAGE CONTAMINATION in buildings
SEWAGE EJECTOR / GRINDER PUMPS
SEWER GAS ODORS
SEWER LINE REPLACEMENT
SULPHUR & SEWER GAS SMELL SOURCES
SLAB CRACK EVALUATION
SOUND CONTROL in buildings
STAIN DIAGNOSIS on BUILDING EXTERIORS
STAIN DIAGNOSIS on BUILDING INTERIORS
STAINS & FINISHES, INTERIOR
STAIRS, RAILINGS, LANDINGS, RAMPS
STUCCO WALL METHODS & INSTALLATION
SUMP PUMPS GUIDE
SWEATING (CONDENSATION) on PIPES, TANKS
THERMAL MASS in buildings
THERMAL TRACKING Indicates Heat Loss
TOILETS, INSPECT, INSTALL, REPAIR
TOILET FLUSHOMETER VALVES
TOILET INSTALLATION PROCEDURE
TOILET OVERFLOW EMERGENCY
TOILET PLUGS, SEWER BACKUP
TOILET REPAIR GUIDE
TOILET TISSUE CHOICES
TOILET TISSUE TEST
Toilet Types, Flush Methods
TOILETS, DON'T FLUSH LIST
TRAPS on PLUMBING FIXTURES
TRIM, EXTERIOR CHOICES, INSTALLATION
TRIM, INTERIOR INSTALLATION
VAPOR BARRIERS & CONDENSATION in BUILDINGS
VENTILATION in BUILDINGS
VINYL CHLORIDE HEALTH INFO
VINYL Siding or PLASTIC Window ODORS
Volatile Organic Compounds VOCs
WALL SIDING TRIM & FINISHES
WALL FINISHES INTERIOR
WALL CONSTRUCTION BARRIER vs CAVITY
WATER BARRIERS, EXTERIOR BUILDING
WATER ENTRY in buildings
WATER ODORS, CAUSE CURE
WATER PRESSURE & FLOW MEASUREMENT
WATER PRESSURE GAUGE ACCURACY
WATER PRESSURE LOSS DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR
WATER PRESSURE PROBLEM DIAGNOSIS TABLE
WATER PRESSURE REPAIRS & COSTS
WATER PUMPS, TANKS, TESTS, WELLS, REPAIRS
WATER PUMP TYPES & LIFE EXPECTANCY
WATER PUMP REPAIR GUIDE
WATER QUALITY TESTS, CONTAMINANTS, TREATMENT
WATER QUANTITY IMPROVEMENT
WATER QUANTITY USAGE GUIDE
WATER SOFTENERS & CONDITIONERS
WATER SUPPLY & DRAIN PIPING
WATER TANK TYPES: WATER, OIL, EXPANSION, ALL
WATER TANK AIR, HOW TO ADD
WATER TANK REPAIRS
WATER TESTS, CONTAMINANTS, TREATMENT
WATER TREATMENT EQUIPMENT CHOICES
WELLS CISTERNS & SPRINGS
WINTERIZE A BUILDING
WOOD, COAL STOVES & FIREPLACES
WOOD STOVE SAFETY
Accessible bathroom design: This article describes recommended design details and clearance or space specifications for wheelchair accessible bathrooms.
Green links show where you are. © Copyright 2013 InspectAPedia.com, All Rights Reserved. Author Daniel Friedman.
This article series discusses current best design practices for kitchens and bathrooms, including layout, clearances, work space, and accessible kitchen and bathroom layout, clearances, turning space, grab bars, controls, etc. We include advice on choosing and installing kitchen countertops, cabinets, and kitchen or bathroom flooring, sinks, and other plumbing fixtures and fixture controls such as faucets.
A list of kitchen and bath product manufactures and sources is included. This article includes excerpts or adaptations from Best Practices Guide to Residential Construction, by Steven Bliss, courtesy of Wiley & Sons. If your access requirements include wheelchair ramps to building entrances, also see Ramps, access.
Our photo (left) illustrates how additional wheelchair turn space might be gained by suspending the lav sink.
To make a bathroom fully functional for wheelchair users and other seated occupants requires commonsense changes, such as using universal controls and placing them within reach, as well as some significant changes, such as lowering sinks and providing knee space below.
In some cases, the room will need to be enlarged to accommodate a roll-in shower or to allow room for wheelchair users to reverse direction. The minimum guidelines below, based on ANSI Standard A117.1, are a good starting point in design, but they should be tailored to the size, reach, and specific capabilities of the occupants.
Clear space at doorways and passageways should be at least 32 inches wide and no more than 24 inches long in the direction of travel. Walkways between vertical objects (walls, cabinets, fixtures) greater than 24 inches long in the direction of travel should be at least 36 inches wide.
Pocket doors or doors that swing outward are preferred, since they do not encroach on bathroom space and will not get blocked in an emergency. Eliminate any thresholds at doorways.
Clear floor spaces in front of fixtures may overlap and may include up to 12 inches deep of knee space below the sink.
These should be installed in the bathtub or shower and toilet areas for full accessibility.
Locate storage for toiletries, linens, and bathroom supplies within 15 to 48 inches from the floor.
Locate towel racks, soap dishes, and other personal hygiene items within the same height range.
Controls, dispensers, and outlets should be located from 15 to 48 inches high, and all devices should be operable with a closed fist.
Offset controls in showers and tubs toward the room side, as shown in Figure 6-27 (above).
This makes fixture controls, dispensers, etc. easier to reach for all users.
-- Adapted with permission from Best Practices Guide to Residential Construction.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about about accessible kitchens & bathrooms & about ADA compliance
Question: Can wheelchair turning space include space under the toilet bowl or below the lav/sink?
I am a home owner with a bathroom accessibility design issue. The diagram (Best Practices Figure 6-26) clearly shows a small part of the wheel chair turning circle can be under the toilet bowl.
Yours is the only publication I can find that allows this. It makes sense to me, but is it really approved? Clearly it will depend on the toilet design. Mine has a 6 inch deep by 9 inch high recess under the bowl front which would accomodate part of the foot rest of a turning wheelchair.
It is a big deal in my 86 inch wide space, into which the 28.5 inch long toilet (American Standard Cadet 3, 2 piece Compact) will protrude. I need 2.5 inches under that toilet front! Can you confirm I have it? Thanks so much! - C.T., Canada.
Reply: Perhaps Yes; Complying with the intent and spirit of the ADA is subject to legal and other interpretations
It may very well be that there is no definitive answer as these recommendations are based on the ADA Standards, which are laws, which are subject to legal interpretation.
The specific ADA language for "clear space in toilet rooms" is reprinted below the larger version of the illustration about which you inquire (click on any of our illustrations to see an enlarged version with more detail).
Perhaps the key ADA phrase is "unobstructed turning space." If the bottom of the toilet does not obstruct the bottom of the wheelchair, and/or or the space below a lavatory (sink) permits the user's toes and knees to pass below, in our opinion, the writer has satisfied the spirit of the law in this case.
More to the point, the ADA is a binding law on public buildings and certain commercial buildings, but not in private homes, where it serves simply as a set of recommendations.
Some accessible bathroom design experts have their own preferences, interpretations, and design ideas that may and may not strictly comply with ADA - or may exceed it as ADA is a set of minimum standards. If the writer can maneuver successfully in the space described, then whether or not it complies with the finer points of ADA is moot.
Questions & answers or comments about accessible kitchens & bathrooms and Questions & Answers about ADA compliance for kitchens and baths.
Ask a Question or Enter Search Terms in the InspectApedia search box just below.
Technical Reviewers & References
Related Topics, found near the top of this page suggest articles closely related to this one.