In many houses, a small space such as a hall closet can readily be converted into a half-bath, or powder room. When bathroom rush hour hits our family, the question of whether a hall closet is more useful than a powder room doesn’t even surface. There’s nothing like nature’s call to focus your priorities. The hall closet always loses out to the water closet.
How small can a half-bath be?
The minimum size of a powder room depends on where, geographically speaking, it will be. There is no nationwide code that governs the dimensions of residential rooms, but most jurisdictions follow the guidelines set forth by the International Residential Code. The IRC’s minimum requirements for clearances and ventilation suggest certain basic configurations:
- The minimum distance from the toilet centerline to a sidewall is 15 in.
- The minimum clearance in front of the toilet bowl is 21 in.
- The minimum headroom is 7 ft.
- Windows must be at least 3 sq. ft., at least 1-1/2 sq. ft. of which must be openable.
- A fan that provides at least 50 cfm of ventilation can substitute for a window.
Door placement is a critical factor
In spaces this small, the door width, placement, and swing are pivotal. The IRC is silent on powder-room door size, and the door can swing either in or out. An out-swing door prevents the occupant from wedging the door shut in the event of a fall, and it allows more fixture-layout options.
However, an out-swing door can endanger those outside the bathroom, so consider the location of the bath in light of the foot traffic that moves in the area. If a pocket door is feasible, that may be the best option. Pocket doors take no floor space to open.
Read more: http://www.finehomebuilding.com/design/departments/drawing-board/small-powder-rooms.aspx#ixzz3yZKoqLFC