Sinks, toilets, and – in residential bathrooms and hotels – showers and bathtubs all depend on plumbing for their functionality. Most design schemes elect to keep the pipes for these fixtures out of sight behind walls and enclosed in vanities. Yet if bathroom plumbing is sealed behind a wall, reaching it when repairs are needed could mean removing tile, cutting a hole in drywall, and other costly demolition to reach pipes.
A bathroom access panel makes it possible to reach bathroom plumbing whenever necessary while still keeping pipes hidden the remainder of the time. The panels are mounted on a hinge or laid into the wall, both of which can be easily opened when needed. With the right material, the access panels can blend in with the look of the bathroom.
Types of Bathroom Access Panels
Bathroom access panels can be made from a variety of materials, each offering a different appearance and benefits. Some of the materials used for plumbing access panels include:
- Metal Panels – Usually made from galvanized steel or stainless steel, these are waterproof and will not break, although they can scratch or corrode depending on the metal used. With priming, metal panels can often be painted or wallpapered, but they will never look exactly like the surrounding wall.
- Plastic – This is the most affordable option, and is lightweight and waterproof. Finishing options for plastic are limited and they can degrade over time. They are also prone to warping and other issues.
- GFRG – Of all the different types of bathroom access panels, GFRG is often seen as the best. GFRG is made with gypsum, reinforced with glass fiber. That gives it the appearance and functionality of drywall. It is lightweight and easy to install, but strong and capable of maintaining its shape.
Panels of these materials are generally available in standard sizes that fit between the wall studs where they are installed. The installation process will differ depending on the material and construction of the panel. Metal and plastic panels will often have frames that attach on the outside of the surrounding wall, while inlays and GFRG bathroom panels will have hidden frames.
GFRC Bathroom Access Panels from GC Products
Any of the listed materials can make a suitable bathroom access panel, but GFRG offers particular advantages when you need a panel that will be durable, cost effective, and look aesthetically pleasing in your bathroom.
In addition to their durability and nearly invisible appearance once finished, GFRG bathroom access panels are affordable. The material, and therefore the panel, are reasonably priced, and the cost of install is generally less expensive than panels of other materials.
GC Products makes custom bathroom access panels in shapes and sizes that meet your technical specifications. Contact us to discuss your project or find out more about our GFRG products.