The chances are someone in our lives,
whether elderly, handicapped, or just in need of a little assist, will
benefit from the installation of strategically placed grab-bars.
The most likely spot is adjacent to the toilet or the bath.
Finding them is easy...Home Depot carries a nice selection. The
problem is installation.
Note: stick to the style
shown above which is welded heavy guage stainless steel made to be
solidly bolted to the wall. They sell something labeled "light
duty residential" which resembled a towel bar and will simply not bear
the weight of a falling person.
Unless they are being installed in new construction the conditions for
sturdy mounting do not exist in the normal residence. The
mounting plate span and bar lengths will not match up to the usual 16"
or 24" pattern of 1.5" wide studs behind the sheetrock. This can
be solved by bolting the grab-bar to a piece of hardwood, locating the
studs, positioning the bar as desired, then bolting to center of the
Note: inclining the grab-bar as
shown not only accommodates the variety of people's heights, it also
allows a person to adjust their grip as they rise.
The bolts holding the bar to the wood should be at least 1/4" thick,
and the bolts or screws holding the wood to the wall should be at least
2.5" long and go right in the center of the stud. Mollie bolts,
dibbles, and other devices made to work in sheetrock without a solid
wood backing will not work here. Don't even think about it! You
will probably not be doing this work yourself,
but you should know what to look for and how to tell your carpenter or
handyman what you want done.