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ADA Regulations for Bathrooms - The Equipment You Need to Be in Compliance

Are you a homeowner, business owner or facilities manager trying to understand the Americans with Disabilities Act or ADA Regulations? Learn how to bring your bathroom into ADA compliance.

Understanding ADA Regulations

The Americans with Disabilities Act was passed in 1990 and is a law that ensures all washrooms to be usable by persons with disabilities. A person with disabilities is described as any individual with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more life activities. Employers or business owners are now required to provide reasonable accommodations in their environments for handicapped persons.

What are the regulations for:

Grab Bars on the side wall must be 42 inches long at minimum and located 12 inches maximum from the rear wall. The bar must extend 54 inches long from the rear wall. On the back/rear wall the bar should be 36 inches minimum and extend from the center-line of the water closet 12 inches minimum on one side and 24 inches minimum on the other side. In the shower the grab bar must be 36 inches by 36 inches clear inside dimensions measured at the center points of opposing sides and shall have a 36 inch wide minimum entry on the face of the shower compartment. Clearance of 36 inches wide minimum by 48 inches long minimum measured from the control wall shall be provided.
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Shower Seats whether folding or stationary must be installed on the wall adjacent to the shower controls and should extend from the wall to a place 3 inches from the shower compartment entrance. Seats must be able to accomodate a weight of at least 250 lbs when applied to any part of the seat structure, wall mounting or supporting structure. If shower compartment is a roll-in type unit, the seat must be fold-able and be installed on the front wall opposite the back wall. The seat must also be within 3 inches of the shower compartment entrance.
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Mirrors located above counter-tops in a restroom should be installed with the bottom edge reflecting surface 40 inches maximum above the floor. If a mirror is not located above a counter-top it should be installed with the bottom edge of the reflecting surface 35 inches maximum above the finished floor. Installing a full length mirror can accommodate many persons and should be installed with the top reflective surface 74 inches minimum from the floor.