Money-Saving Bathroom Renovation Ideas

Posted on: 14th August 2013

A fancy new toilet might be too hard to resist especially when you want to spruce everything up in the bathroom. But honestly, for the rest of us, redoing the bathroom is often a necessity that can easily go over budget. Then again, remodelling your bathroom on the cheap isn't as daunting a task as it sounds.


Before you think there is really no way around the fact that bathrooms must be refurbished every so often and that it is always on the costly side, try these ideas to see where you can find some savings.


  1. Fix it before you rip it. Before tearing everything down, think about what might be salvageable. If the toilet works fine, then keep it. If you can repair the flooring instead of replacing it then do that instead. Unless you are planning to spend a wad of cash to get your dream bathroom, be open to only doing the necessities. The same is true about refinishing instead of replacing. Porcelain tubs and sinks can be refinished to nearly new by professionals. While you will have to spend a few dollars to get the job done right, it will be far cheaper than replacing them.
  2. Do away with second hand materials. You know that saying, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure? Make it your remodel mantra. Everyday people remodel and rebuild, they order new flooring, tiles, fixtures, and paint only to change their mind a day later or to return the excess to the store. By doing a little bit of searching, you can buy these things for significantly less than you would expect. The savings are well worth the effort.
  3. Let the creative juices flowing. This might be one of the best money saving renovation tips of all, be creative. Maybe you do not need to do a complete renovation. Even if you hate your bath with all of your heart, you might be able to make it ten times better with just a coat of paint or some new lighting. If it is terribly dated, maybe you play it up by having a cool retro bath instead of a modern one. That old adage, working with what you have can save your loads of cash.
  4. Go green with upgrades. When updating your bathroom, don’t forget to redesign with the environment in mind. Low-flow toilets, sinks, and shower heads will not only help you conserve water, but they’ll also save you money. Plus, water-saving shower heads and faucets often cost the same, if not less, than traditional ones. So you won’t have to spend money to save money here.
  5. Update fixtures. If you don’t have a lot of money to spend, look into the little details. You can update light fixtures, sink faucets, towel racks, and drawer pulls for a relatively small investment. These items may seem insignificant, but updating them can make a big difference in your bathroom’s look. Keep in mind that you don’t always have to buy towel racks at a home improvement store or IKEA. Repurpose household items to keep your bathroom functional without the price tag.


But there are really some things that have got to go. And the sooner, the better; otherwise, it’s like throwing money down the drain. Determine how much you can afford to spend on your remodel to determine the extent of the changes you can make. Here are the essential things you have to consider for your bathroom renovations.

Bathroom Renovation Ideas

  1. Toilets

Water leaking from your toilet tank will not only cost you money when it comes to your utility bill, but it can also cause water damage to your bathroom floor and premature wear of your toilet’s internal workings. To find out whether your toilet tank is leaking, add some red food colouring to the water in the tank. Come back in about an hour and see if the water in the bowl is pink. If it is, you have a leak.

If you find that your toilet is leaking from the tank to the bowl, the flapper needs to be replaced. To change your toilet’s flapper, first shut off the water supply to your toilet. To do this, simply turn the water valve located directly behind the toilet. Remove the tank lid and flush the toilet in order to empty the tank. Use a towel or sponge to mop out any excess water left in the tank. Remove the flush chain from the lever, and then slide the old flapper up off the overflow tube. Slide the new flapper in place over the overflow tube, reconnect the chain, and turn the water supply back on.


  1. Faucets

The main cause of leaky faucets is worn out washers. The washers inside of the faucet handles are rubber and tend to wear out quickly. Replace them by turning off the main water supply, unscrewing the leaky handle that controls the flow of water to the spout, removing the old washer, and dropping in the new one.


  1. Water Heater

There is nothing more frustrating than turning on the hot water in your shower and instead receiving cold water. Water heaters, like other appliances, need maintenance to increase longevity and reduce the possibility of damage.

Water has sediment suspended in it, and as the water sits in your water heater, these particles will often settle to the bottom of the tank, causing damage to the floor of your water heater. At least once per year, drain the water from your water heater and clean the inside surface of its floor.

To drain your water heater, first turn off the water supply and power to the water heater. For electric water heaters, turning off the power means that you simply flip the circuit breaker, to the “off” position. For gas water heaters, turn the thermostat setting to the pilot position.

Next, connect a water hose to the drain fitting at the bottom of the tank and put the other end in a place, such as your driveway, where the draining hot water won’t cause any damage. A typical garden hose is a direct fit to the drain fitting. Turn on all the hot water faucets in your home and then open the drain valve on the water heater. Turn the water supply back on with the drain valve still open to remove any built up sediment in the bottom of the tank. Then close the drain valve, refill the tank, and turn the power back on.


Don’t forget to give back too. Any items you take out of your bathroom can be donated to your local Goodwill or to a Habitat for Humanity ReStore.

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