QS Bathroom Blog – Official QS Blog for UK Bathrooms

Tips and Information on Decorating Bathrooms

Taps – What You Need to Know

Bathroom taps are made from metal or plastic. The former material is often used in Europe, US and other parts of the world while the latter is still  used in Asia and Africa.

What You Need to Know About Taps

Everyone dreams of the perfect bathroom with correct furniture and good taps. Getting the best taps for your bathroom will depend on several factors such as:

1. Type of finish (chrome, steel, brass or gold)

2. Interior decor

3. Tone of room
The entire process entailed in purchasing bathroom fixtures is moderately challenging owing to the fast rate of modernisation. Things are constantly changing.

The taps should be nicely positioned. In addition to this, installation should be done correctly to prevent leaking from happening afterwards. Small leaks are irritating but major ones have the potential of causing untold damages to the room(s) below. For this reason, it’s advisable to let professionals handle the installation.

Bathroom installation does not involve plumbers alone but electricians as well. They play the significant role of ensuring all pipes and bathroom taps are earthed, which is crucial to eliminate chances of electrocution. Other modern features like Jacuzzis, heaters and jet showers are very complex to install.

Going green is no longer a fad; it is a requirement if you want to cut costs and bills. Opt for environment friendly taps and other furniture pieces to get more for less in the long run.
You can bring a sense of spa-style luxury right into your very own bathroom by choosing taps that forms simple alignment and offers clean & minimalist looks. Here we would be taking a close look at the taps that are mainly used in the bathrooms. Taps for basins, baths and shower valves are three main accessories that are used daily several times.

Basin Taps


Basin taps for your bathroom are available in various finishes and the popular ones are, chrome-plated, gold-plated or black. Basin mixer taps are offered in chrome-plated, gold-plated, black, white, stainless steel and pearl.

Although chrome-plated taps are the traditional option an increasing number of customers are opting to make individual styling statements by opting for gold-plated taps in particular. Gold taps can look phenomenal with today’s fashionable dark-coloured tiles. Black, white, stainless steel and pearl are also increasingly attractive to customers who want something different for their new bathroom.

Basin Taps

Separate Basin Taps or Basin Mixers?

Bathroom basins are designed with either one or two holes to accommodate taps, so you need to choose your basin and taps at the same time. Single hole basins need a basin mixer tap and twin hole basins need separate taps.

Some basins have no holes for taps because they are designed to be used with wall-mounted taps. Which you choose largely comes down to personal taste and the style you are looking for in your bathroom.

Both basin mixer taps and separate basin taps are available in a wide range of styles in UK, that include modernistic designer taps from manufacturers such as Crosswater, Abode, Hudson Reed, Beo, Bristan, Grohe, Heritage & many more.

Basin Mixer Taps

Bath Taps

Bath taps are designed to deliver a greater flow of water, so they are larger than basin taps and the two types are not interchangeable. If you are fitting out a new bathroom then you can buy matching sets of taps for your sink and your bath to provide a unified theme.

Confused between Basin and Bath Taps?

People are often confused when purchasing brassware on-line; one of the most common mistake consumer make is choosing between basin taps and bath taps.

Basin & Bath Taps

Both look identical in the pictures, the only difference being one of size, but when the tap illustrations are shown separately you cannot compare them. However the two are not interchangeable and you cannot fit a bath tap to a basin, as bath taps are bigger in size and have a larger pipe connection than basin taps.

Occasionally when we see a bath tap fitted to a basin we notice that it looks disproportionately large and gives an awkward look to the basin. Similarly, when a basin tap has been installed to a bath, we notice that due to the plinth size of the bath tub that basin taps appear to be too small and hence the flow of the water is down the side of the bath rather than directly into it.

A bath requires a large tap, and the reason is quite simple; when you fill a bath you require a greater flow rate to fill it in a reasonable time.

Finishes of Bath Taps

There are various finishes available in the market for bath taps; but the popular ones are chrome-plated, gold-plated or matt black. Chrome-plated taps are the most common choice, probably because chrome matches any décor.

Matt black taps are currently offered by few manufacturers; they are a very dramatic option and will certainly be a talking point amongst your visitors. Black taps look most effective with paler and mid-range colours.

Black Taps

Manual Shower Valves

Manual shower valves control a mixer for your shower. They are plumbed into both your hot and cold water systems and allow you to control your shower water flow and temperature with one simple lever or knob.

You can select shower valves that are designed to be built into your wall, behind your tiles or ones that are surface-mounted. Surface mounted valves are simpler to replace, but concealed valves are more discreet and just have the control knob projecting from the tiles.

Shower Valves

Difference between Thermostatic & Manual Shower Valves

Manual shower valves allow the user to adjust the temperature of the shower by controlling the flow of hot and cold water. Thermostatic shower valves allow the user to set the desired temperature and the shower valve manages the flow of hot and cold water so the temperature only varies by a few degrees either side of that set. If your mixer shower has hot water via a tank (low pressure) and mains cold water (high pressure) then you will need a high pressure thermostatic shower valve.

Thermostatic valves maintain the water temperature you have set even if someone else in the home turns on a tap or flushes a toilet. Manual shower valves do not offer this scald protection feature, so for families where the likelihood of someone turning on the water is high; it is recommended to fit a thermostatic valve. These are also worth the extra few pounds if there are elderly, very young or disabled people living in the home because of the extra safety that they provide. They also provide a more stable shower temperature for all users and are becoming more popular. Manual shower valves have another advantage in that they cost less than thermostatic ones.

Shower Valves


The vast majority of manual shower valves have a mirror-effect chrome-plated finish, but there are black, gold and white options to match your black, gold or white bath and basin taps and towel rails. Most controls consist of a lever mounted on the centre of the control valve, though some have two visible taps to control the water flow.

1 Discussion on “Taps – What You Need to Know”
  • Black bath tap looks very stylish and extraordinary, because ordinary steel surface taps are kind of boring. Black colour would be a new wind in my bathroom!

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.