Bathrooms are never complete without a towel rack or bar. This functional fixture, which is basically the thing in which you hang towels on, is sometimes called a towel rail too.
There are small towel bars for washcloths and hand towels, and there are longer and bigger ones that are meant for hanging bath towels. This article will teach you how to install towel bars, but before anything else, let us first talk about the different types they come in.
Types of Towel Fixtures
Generally speaking, there are six types of bathroom fixtures designed for towels; these vary in sizes and shapes. These fixtures are the towel bars, towel rings, towel hooks, towel valets, towel shelves, and towel racks.
Towel bars are basically a bar that is fixed on a wall on both ends. You can choose between a standard single bar or a dual towel, which has slots for hanging two towels. These come in different sizes with lengths varying from 18 inches for hand towels to 32 inches for bath towels.
Towel rings are usually round-shaped fixtures (hence, the name) that hold your towels in place.
Towel hooks allow you to hang your towels on some kind of rounded tip. Some of them have a single hook attachment while others have multiple hooks that allow you to hang clothing items as well.
Towel shelves and towel racks are typically used to hold folded towels.
A towel valet is technically a piece of stand-alone furniture and not a bathroom fixture.
Nevertheless, with all the towel holders mentioned, the towel bars remain the most popular choice because they are functional, easy to use, and economical too.
How to Install Towel Bars
There are many ways to install a towel bar, and these depend on the materials the towel bars are made of and the material of the wall or door you will be attaching it on. We included here two guides that will teach you how to mount a towel bar on drywall and a tile wall.
Installing Towel Bars on Drywall
Installing a towel bar on drywall needs utmost care because not doing so properly can totally ruin your bathroom wall, making the towel bar more of a hindrance rather than a help. Here are the simple steps on properly mounting a towel bar on drywall.
Step 1: Choose the location.
Carefully consider where you want to install the towel bar. The mounting location must be within reach from the bathtub or shower.
Moreover, avoid hanging it above the sink as the towel will just tend to dangle into it. Make sure you hang the towel bar where it won’t bump into the door or in any place where it could be an obstacle.
Step 2: Find wall studs.
Installing the towel bar on drywall using just standard screws is a no-no. It is not a good idea and will eventually result in it falling apart after enough pressure pulls the screws off the drywall.
The best way to prevent this from happening is to attach the screws between the wall studs. You can locate wall studs using a stud finder, which is available at most hardware stores. This will help you determine the best place to attach the towel bar.
Step 3: Attach the towel bar.
Once you have successfully located a wall stud, use a pencil to mark the spot. Use a level to determine the right position, and mark the other end of the level once the positioning is perfect.
The screw holes that you are going to make must meet the marks on the wall, making sure the screw positioned right between the wall studs. Sink in the screws using a drill or screwdriver to attach the towel bar securely into the drywall.
Installing Towel Bars on a Ceramic Tile Wall
Most bathroom walls are made of ceramic tiles, which are a bit trickier to work with when it comes to mounting towel bars. Nevertheless, it can be done with a few steps.
Step 1: Determine where you want to place your towel bar.
Follow the first step on the previous section to help you determine the best place to mount your towel bar. Then, measure the towel bar and mark the place where you want to attach it.
It is advisable to use masking tape, which can serve as a mark and at the same time can help keep the drill from slipping on the tile glaze.
Step 2: Choose the drill bit.
This is a crucial step and must be done with care. Consider the toughness of the tile wall you will be drilling through. Most of the time, a carbide drill bit is suitable for the job, but you may also use glass and ceramic drill bits. A diamond drill bit is the best choice when it comes to very hard ceramic tiles.
Make sure to use the correct drill bit size to match the size of the anchor plugs that you’ll be using. A smaller drill bit is better than using a drill bit that has a bigger size than your anchor.
Step 3: Get drilling!
Drill on the mark, but make sure to do it slowly, as drilling too quickly can remove too much tile from the site. Spraying water on the drill hole as you drill can help prevent the tile from shattering.
Step 4: Place the anchors.
Push the plastic anchors into the drilled holes. The plastic screw anchors will hold the screw firmly inside the tile and keep the towel bar in place once installed.
Step 5: Attach the towel bar.
Line up the towel bar and screw it directly to the provided shields, keeping it balanced on both sides. Do not tighten the screws completely until you are sure that the towel bar is balanced. If the towel bar has brackets, screw them into the wall, making sure to tighten them securely.
Installing a towel bar is not as complicated as you think it is. You do not need to hire a handyman in order to get the work done. All you need is to have the right tools and to follow the steps mentioned above to a T.
With this simple guide on how to install towel bars, you can easily mount that new fixture and give your bathroom its much-needed facelift.