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Toilet Grab Bar Placement Guide (Residential)

Which toilet grab bars do I need and where should I place them? (Quantity, Shape, Length, Wall Location, and Placement Height).


This is a guide for residential toilet grab bar placement (such as in a private home / residence), where grab bar placement is completely up to the discretion of the user.

For commercial toilet grab bar placement (such as in a public facility) that must abide by Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) placement guidelines, please read our ADA Toilet Grab Bar Placement Guide.


The three most common toilet layouts are as followed:

  1. Toilet with one side wall (in corner layout).
  2. Toilet with two side walls (between walls layout).
  3. Toilet with no side walls (freestanding layout).

Continue reading to find your grab bar placement recommendations based on your specific toilet layout from above:


 

#1 Toilet With One Side Wall (In Corner Layout):

Which bar shape, length, and quantity do I need?

 

Grab Bar Position #1 (Side Wall)

  • We recommend one (1) straight grab bar placed horizontally on the wall side of the toilet.
  • The most common length would be between 18″, 24″ 30″ or 36″.
  • This grab bar is used to help position oneself while on the toilet and also push oneself upward from a seated to a standing position.
  • Horizontal placement (measured from the back wall to the grab bar) is up to the discretion of the user, and often comes down to where the hand reaches comfortably when sitting and standing from the toilet.
  • This grab bar is commonly placed anywhere from 33″ to 36″ above the floor, however, we strongly recommend taking into consideration the height and physical capabilities of the person who will be using the grab bars.

 

Grab Bar Position #2 (Side Wall)

  • We recommend one (1) straight grab bar placed vertically (above the horizontal grab bar from position #1) on the wall side of the toilet.
  • The most common length would be 12″, 18″, or 24″.
  • This grab bar is used to help pull oneself up from a seated position.
  • Vertical placement is up to the discretion of the user, and often comes down to where the hand reaches comfortably when lifting oneself off of the toilet.

 

Grab Bar Position #3 (Free Standing / Side With No Wall)

  • We recommend one (1) grab bar to be placed next to the toilet on the free standing / non wall side of the toilet.
  • The most common free standing grab bars are Wall-to-Floor, Wall-to-Floor with Outrigger, or Side Bar with Outrigger. You can view other free standing grab bar options on our toilet grab bars page.
  • Both height and placement are up to the discretion of the user, and often comes down to height of the user and where the hand reaches comfortably when sitting or standing from the toilet.

 

Other Notes:

  • We highly recommend that you test the grab bar positions with the person who will be using it as a simulation. You’ll quickly be able to tell what works, what doesn’t work, and where exactly you should place the toilet grab bar as per the individuals preference.
  • You also have the option to install the straight grab bar at any angle you would like or feels most comfortable. Sometimes positioning the grab bars at an angle vs. horizontal provides comfort to hands with arthritis.

Alternatively you can install the following grab bar shapes on the wall side in substitution for grab bar position #1 and position #2:

  • Install one (1) 90 degree angle grab bar on the wall side, which combines the horizontal and vertical grab bars.
  • Install one (1) 120 degree angle grab bar on the wall side, which similarly combines a horizontal and vertical grab bar at a special angle.
  • Install one (1) straight grab bar on the wall side, at a diagonal angle. This is the most cost effective method, however, it comes with limitations on hand versatility.

 

#2 Toilet with Two Side Walls (Between Walls Layout):

Which bar shape, length, and quantity do I need?

 

Grab Bar Position #1 (Side Wall)

  • We recommend one (1) grab bar to be placed horizontally next to the toilet on EACH wall.
  • The most common length would be between 18″, 24″ 30″ or 36″.
  • This grab bar is used to help position oneself while on the toilet and also push oneself upward from a seated to a standing position.
  • Horizontal placement of the grab bar is up to the discretion of the user, and often comes down to height of the user and where the hand reaches comfortably when sitting and standing from the toilet.

 

Grab Bar Position #2 (Side Wall)

  • We recommend one (1) grab bar placed vertically, above the horizontally placed grab bar from position #1, on EACH wall.
  • The most common length would be 12″, 18″, or 24″.
  • This grab bar is used to help pull oneself up from a seated position.

 

Other Notes:

  • Remember, the grab bar position #1 and position #2 is recommended for BOTH side walls, which totals four (4) straight grab bars.

Alternatively you can:

  • Install one (1) 90 degree angle grab bar on each side, which combines the horizontal and vertical grab bars.
  • Install one (1) 120 degree angle grab bar on each side, which similarly combines a horizontal and vertical grab bar at a special angle.
  • Install one (1) straight grab bar on each side, at a diagonal angle. This is the most cost effective method, however, it comes with limitations on hand versatility.

 

#3 Toilet with No Side Walls (Free Standing Layout):

Which bar shape, length, and quantity do I need?

 

Grab Bar Position #1 (Free Standing / Side With No Wall)

  • We recommend one (1) grab bar to be placed next to the toilet on EACH side of the freestanding toilet.
  • The most common free standing grab bars are Wall-to-Floor, Wall-to-Floor with Outrigger, or Side Bar with Outrigger. You can view other free standing grab bar options on our toilet grab bars page.
  • Both height and placement are up to the discretion of the user, and often comes down to height of the user and where the hand reaches comfortably when sitting or standing from the toilet.

 

Other Notes:

  • You can combine the horizontal and vertical grab bars into one grab bar by purchasing a 90 degree angle L-shape grab bar.
  • Alternatively, you can use 1 straight grab bar at a diagonal angle to assist with both vertical and horizontal movements.

 


When considering toilet grab bar placement, if possible, we recommend a few simulations with the person who will be using the grab bars. Have the person approach the toilet, sit on the toilet, and lift themselves off of the toilet. You will want to test to see what angle to position the grab bars at, and where to vertically and horizontally place the bars. This full toilet simulation will help you notice exactly where grab bars should be placed to provide the most assistance to the individual. Toilet grab bar placement ultimately comes down to the user’s preference for hand grip location and the proximity to and length of the mounting walls (or lack of mounting walls).

For additional toilet grab bar shapes, we recommend exploring our complete line of toilet grab bars.

You may also want to explore our bathtub grab bars to see if any are applicable to your toilet layout.

GRAB BAR APPLICATIONS

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Toilet Grab Bars

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