Bathroom budget can choose faucet style

By Ed Del Grande, Tribune News Service
Published 7:36 p.m. ET Oct. 8, 2020

  Dear Ed: I’m running the numbers for my new bathroom and noticed I can choose between a two-handle “widespread” faucet or a “centerset” faucet. Is there big differences between these types of faucets to help me with my choice?

Ted, New York state

Dear Ted: Centerset faucets are deck mounted with 4 inches between handles. Widespread faucets are made up with separate components and space between handles can be about 8 to 16 inches apart. But, the big difference can be the extra costs between installing a widespread bathroom faucet over a centerset faucet. These costs may determine what style you choose.

Some extra costs to be aware of are: Widespread faucets can be more expensive just to purchase the faucet itself. Also, because widespread faucets are sold in separate pieces, labor costs may be higher to install. Finally, special order bathroom sinks or counter tops may be needed. Bottom line: A widespread bathroom faucet can give you design impact, while a centerset faucet can give you savings!

Dear Ed: I am scheduled for a medical procedure in a few months and a taller toilet could help while I recover. Since I need a new toilet anyway, would the higher toilet fit my plumbing, and would this be an issue for other family members?

— Steve, Florida

Dear Steve: Residential comfort height toilets have become popular.

First, I want to point out that the height of most comfort height toilets is about the same as a standard dining room chair. So it’s not a drastic change from a standard toilet, just a couple inches or so higher to make it a little easier for many people to get on and off the toilet.

Because of the small design differences, multi-user applications may not be an issue, but discuss the pros and cons with all involved before you install a comfort height toilet.

Speaking of installation, comfort height toilets should fit the same connections as standard toilets and are available in round and elongated bowls.

Finally, high-efficiency comfort height models are available to help give you a leg up on saving water as well.

Master Contractor/Plumber Ed Del Grande is known internationally as the author of the book “Ed Del Grande’s House Call,” the host of TV and Internet shows, and a LEED green associate. Visit eddelgrande.com or write [email protected]

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