Is your bathroom your least favourite room at this time of year? Lined with cold-to-the-touch tiles and often located at the back of the home away from the home’s main heating sources, your bathroom is likely to be a chilly place at the moment. This is especially cruel considering it’s a room designed to be naked in.

Bathrooms were traditionally purely functional spaces, considered unworthy of their own heating systems. Nowadays more and more time is being spent in the bathroom and we are no longer content to shiver while we dry off or shave or brush teeth. While more money is being spent on making wet areas more attractive places, it’s also being spent on making them more comfortable and for many home owners this means warmer.

The most common way to warm a bathroom is with radiant heaters. Ceiling-mounted heaters are easy to install in existing homes and are highly effective. Heat is produced instantly, which is ideal for a bathroom where use is sporadic, and most units combine an extractor fan as well as regular task lighting. They are also beyond the reach of children.

Panel heaters are also good for bathrooms. They can be ceiling or wall-mounted and can even be networked to other panel heaters in your home for a cheap form of central heating. Panel heaters can produce ambient heat to warm a space or radiant heat that you can actually feel.

Another effective way to heat your bathroom is from below the floor. How wonderful to be able to step out of your ugg boots and onto warm tiles! Heating elements can be installed under the surface of a concrete floor slab. This will create uniform warmth that will emanate through the floor finish and upwards throughout the room. Because this cannot be installed in an existing slab it is difficult to supply this to an existing home unless you are replacing the floors. An alternative might be to install purpose made heating elements below floor tiles. This latter type of heating, however, is designed to take the chill off floor tiles and does not actually warm the room effectively. It should therefore be combined with another form of heating.

Towel warmers are another way to make your bathroom more comfortable. There is a range of wall-mounted and free-standing models available to make your post-bath rubdown a more pleasant experience. I have also seen hot water pipes exposed and bent into a towel-rail shape so that they can not only radiate heat into the bathroom but also double as a towel warmer. As the temperature of the latter cannot be controlled, care must be taken to make sure children are not able to reach the pipes.

Lastly, to ensure your bathroom is as cosy as possible, eliminate all draughts, but remember to ventilate well after use to stop the growth of mould.

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