Traditional tiled floors are especially prone becoming slippery in the bathroom. This is because water collects on the surface and prevents your feet from finding any grip – resulting in a classic aquaplaning effect. For this reason alone, it is worthwhile renovating older bathrooms. When remodelling a bathroom, the existing shower with a raised base and deep shower tray can usually be easily replaced with a modern, ground-level shower. An accessible washbasin, an easily accessible toilet and generous movement areas will make the bathroom more comfortable and safer for older people and people with restricted mobility.
These days there are a wide range of non-slip surfaces that you can install to increase safety in the bathroom. When buying, you should bear in mind that the floor in the bathroom should not only be non-slip, but must also satisfy certain other requirements. It goes without saying that the flooring should also be waterproof, meet high hygiene standards and be easy to clean. To achieve this, it must not only be functional – its appearance should also fit into the visual and architectural concept of the bathroom and create a harmonious overall impression.
Below you will find a summary of suitable non-slip flooring choices for the bathroom.
Tiles are still a classic choice in the bathroom – and for good reason. Floor tiles are waterproof, robust and long-lasting. When choosing tiles for the bathroom, it is important to check the slip resistance of the surface. When it comes to slip resistance, small tiles often have an advantage over larger ones. Due to the small size of most floor tiles, the resulting bathroom floor contains more grouted areas – joints are highly slip resistant due to the rough grouting material. A bathroom floor with small mosaic tiles is therefore considered very slip resistant.
The disadvantage: The more joints the floor has, the more susceptible it is to dirt, limescale and mould because moisture collects in the joints allowing mould spores to penetrate more quickly. Cleaning is also more time-consuming with small tiles and a large number of joints. Large tiles are usually more hygienic because they require fewer joints – or can even be laid without any joints at all. When choosing tiles, you should make sure that you can feel the surface before making your decision, if possible. Wet the tiles with a small sponge to check their slip resistance when wet.
These days, the dream of a wooden floor in the bathroom can become reality. Thanks to special manufacturing and sealing processes, some wooden flooring products are also suitable for humid rooms. It is important to choose a wooden floor that has been explicitly manufactured for use in the bathroom – and have it professionally installed. For example, there are special parquet floors or wooden tiles for the bathroom that are made of particularly hard woods. Oak, maple, teak or Douglas fir, for example, do not tend to swell when they come into contact with water. Before placing an order, make sure that the wooden floor has been treated with a special non-slip lacquer.
Stone flooring in the bathroom looks stylish – but is not always non-slip. Large, smooth marble stone tiles are especially likely to become slippery when wet. A good non-slip alternative is roughened stone flooring or pebble flooring. Disadvantage: Due to the relief and the many joints, this type of flooring is relatively demanding to clean.
Bathroom floors made of linoleum, PVC and vinyl are becoming increasingly popular. There is a wide choice of designs and the flooring is – if installed correctly – waterproof and easy to maintain. When dry, a floor made of linoleum, PVC or vinyl is slip resistant. However, this can change in wet conditions. Special vinyl flooring and PVC flooring with non-slip coatings are commercially available. Therefore, be sure to pay attention to the slip resistance class when choosing a flooring product.
Rubber is a natural product that is highly suitable as flooring in the bathroom. The material is impact sound-absorbing and waterproof, and inherently offers a certain degree of slip resistance.
Exposed screed or concrete flooring comes into its own in ultra-modern or minimalist bathrooms. The floor is sanded down by a specialist and made waterproof with a special lacquer. Fair-faced floor screed and concrete can also become slip resistant if treated appropriately.
Villeroy & Boch offers excellent non-slip flooring solutions with an elegant look. Many of these high-quality porcelain stoneware tiles also meet the demanding slip resistance requirements for accessible bathrooms. The VilboStone or VilboStonePlus surface sealing also makes them very easy to clean and durable. The porcelain stoneware tiles are available in many attractive designs – such as a discreet real wood look, a fine slate look and a minimalist concrete look.
You should always have non-slip floors installed by a specialist company to ensure optimum slip resistance and hygiene. Careful grouting or sealing is important to protect the floor from the ingress of moisture. If the joints and gaps are not grouted correctly, they will act as a gateway for moisture and mould. In the worst case, moisture could accumulate under the flooring and lead to swelling – replacing the floor is then unavoidable. Wood, laminate or vinyl should always be glued down over its entire surface to eliminate any cavities between the screed and the flooring as far as possible.
To maintain the non-slip properties of your bathroom floor in the long term, regular maintenance is important. The floor should be regularly cleaned with a damp mop, as dirt can also affect the degree of slip resistance. The best thing to do is to ask the flooring manufacturer or your specialist installer about the correct care and maintenance. However, some basic rules apply to non-slip bathroom floors: