Where to Start
The smaller details can make all the difference. For example, your choice of taps can transform a sink or bath and tie each element of your bathroom together.
There are many options to choose between; from ultramodern mixers, floor standing to wall mounted taps. This guide will take you on a journey through each product option to help you find the perfect taps for your bathroom
Before you begin searching, it can be good to ask yourself the following practical questions:
What type of taps do I need?
Before you choose your taps, it’s recommended you look at your basin or bath first as if they come with predrilled tap holes your choice of type will be restricted.
For instance, if you’ve chosen a bathroom sink/bath with two predrilled holes then you’ll be looking for pillar taps, whereas if it has one predrilled hole then a mixer tap will be ideal. Some sinks and baths don’t have any predrilled holes so for these you can either ask your plumber to drill some holes for you or choose floor standing or wall mounted taps instead.
We’ll be explaining what the different taps are and their pros and cons later on in this guide.
What’s the water pressure like in my home?
Most taps are suited to water pressure between 0.8 and 1.5 bars (which is standard in the UK) although it’s important to check your water pressure prior to purchasing as if you have low or high pressure then you may be restricted in the options available to you.
Do I have low water pressure?
Older boilers can often use a gravity fed system whereby water is fed to taps purely using the force of gravity. As a result, pressure will vary across a home with higher floors achieving lower pressure due to the reduced distance between the water tank and tap. Certain taps, such as floor standing, aren’t suited to this environment as they require high pressure to force the water up the pipe – given they are often used with freestanding baths you could be waiting some time for it to fill up!
Low water pressure is considered to be 0.3 bar and below and there is a recommended water pressure for each tap on bathrooms.com included in the product description.
High water pressure
If you have a combi-boiler in your home, then you’ll have the luxury of instant hot water as soon as you turn on your tap
These modern boilers mean that most bathroom taps are suited to this kind of system but make sure you double check the required water pressure before you make any purchase.
High water pressure is considered to be 2.5 bar and above.
There are plenty of options to explore but we’ve outlined the pros and cons of each type to help you navigate your way around this category.
1. Pillar taps
Pillar taps such as the Stirling Modern Hot & Cold Basin Taps have a separate hot and cold tap. They are ideal for homes with low water pressure and are still popular in traditional bathrooms.
The good thing about this type of tap is that you can control how much cold and how much hot water you use individually. They come with either a lever handle or a cross head.
Cost: £30 - £60
2. Mixer taps
Mixer or monobloc taps have a single spout, with the flow of water controlled either by two handles on either side of the spout, or more commonly a single lever at the top of the tap, to be turned left or right to select the temp needed. They’re a versatile option available in many styles to suit your bathroom; from traditional to contemporary. Mixer taps are only suitable for basins with one tap hole only.
The way in which the hot and cold water mixes between a single or dual flow tap varies only slightly but the end result of the temperature of your water is the same. The main difference with a dual flow tap means that the hot spout itself doesn’t feel hot to touch and will work even if the water pressure of your hot and cold taps aren’t equal.
Some bath mixer taps allow you to switch the water from the spout to a shower attachment, allowing you to specify your water temperature before you step in to the shower. There are also thermostatic mixer taps which ensure the temperature is consistent, even if someone else turns on a tap elsewhere in your home.
Cost: £20 - £100
3. Waterfall taps
Waterfall taps are super stylish and make a real feature of your sink or bath. These taps are a type of mixer tap but instead of the water coming out of a standard spout, the spout has a waterfall feature. They work best with water pressure at about 1 bar.
Cost: £40 - £80
4. Freestanding bath taps
Freestanding (or floor standing) bath taps are what you’ll need for a freestanding bathtub. They stand on their own and look super stylish although you will need water pressure in excess of 1.5 bar to make them a practical choice.
If you don’t have much room around your bathtub, then you might need to consider fitting it against one wall and having deck mounted taps instead.
Cost: £150 - £240
5. Wall mounted taps
Rather than freestanding or affixed to a sink or bath, wall mounted taps are a great alternative to a tall mixer tap. They can be more expensive to fit than other types of tap due to the required wall drilling. They are suitable for basins or baths but you’ll need minimum water pressure of 0.5 bars for this type of tap to work well.
Cost: £70 - £200
Good to know
Most of bathrooms.com taps are made from solid brass and their finish is usually highly polished chrome. Brass is typically a durable, strong and long lasting material. The chrome finish gives our taps a lovely shine and also makes them easy to clean with a soft non-abrasive cloth and warm soapy water.
The majority of modern taps come with ceramic disc technology to prevent dripping. This means that they only require a ¼ turn to stop the water flow right away. A dripping tap can waste up to 15 litres of water a day so ceramic disc technology is not only good for the environment but for your wallet too.
The ceramic disc shouldn’t need maintaining but if you live in a hard water area you might be more prone to lime scale build up.
There are taps to suit every budget, from £20 purse friendly mixer taps up to designer freestanding styles at £240.
If you opt for wall mounted taps, you or your plumber will need to purchase flexible hoses which cost around £3 each from a plumbing merchant.
It’s worth checking out our buying guide to baths and for basins as this will dictate your choice of taps.
Styling & Installation:
Complementing your style
1. Baths and taps for contemporary and modern bathrooms
If you want cutting edge design that is suitable for a contemporary bathroom, then you’ve come to the right place. Whether that is the square, clean lines of the Neumann taps range or the curved yet sharp edges of the Vaux mixer taps range.
2. Baths and taps for country and seaside bathrooms
This style of bathroom is all about rustic charm so you need to opt for some classic taps like the Edwardian Hot & Cold Bath Taps, the Edwardian Bath Shower Mixer or the Edwardian Floor standing Bath Shower Mixer.
Our Edwardian range is elegant and suitable for all water pressures. They’re the perfect addition to an Edwardian basin or any traditional basin.
3. Baths and taps for spa style bathrooms
If you’re trying to create a sense of bliss in your bathroom and emulate a top spa, then waterfall taps are a great choice. We’d recommend the Neumann or Cascade Bath Mixer, and the freestanding versions if you’re planning on installing a stylish freestanding bath like the Erith or the Kaykan.
4. Baths and taps for traditional bathrooms
For a traditional bathroom we recommend you choose from the Victorian or Edwardian tap ranges. They have a sweeping spout and look great on any traditional sink or bath.
Whichever tap you choose, we recommend you let a professional do it for you so the job is done to a high standard allowing you to completely relax in your shiny new bathroom.
You should now be armed with the knowledge of taps you could ever need. Now all you need to do is choose the perfect taps for your bathroom.