Question: I’ve put tub strips on the bottom of my bathtub to keep from slipping but the tile on the bathroom floor itself gets slippery when it gets wet. Is there anything I can do to make my floor less slippery?
Answer: Today most builders and remodelers install non-slip tile on bath and shower floors to prevent exactly the problem you describe. If you are not planning on changing your floor tile, there are numerous topical applications designed to invisibly increase traction and make your tile, marble, stone, and even wood floors non-slip when wet. The coating does not change the flooring’s color or texture. You can find non slip coatings for your bathroom floor in tile stores or online. Look for the names InvisaTread, SureStep, Grip, It, or Tile Grip, just to name a few. All are easy to install – clean the floor, spread the coating over the floor so that the floor remains evenly wet, let it sit for 20-30 minutes then rinse. Similar to any sealant, the coating will need to be reapplied every couple of years depending on how frequently you wash your floor.
Question: We have two steps leading to our front entrance. My husband is now in a wheelchair and it’s impossible for me to maneuver his chair on these steps. Do you have any suggestions?
Answer: There are many lightweight aluminum ramps on the market that will take care of this problem. First, figure out how long a ramp you need by measuring the total height of the steps. For every inch of height, you will need 1 foot of ramp. So for example, let’s say that each step leading to your front door is 4” high. You will need a ramp that measures 8’ long. You can easily find sources for ramps by going online. You’ll find solid ramps, ramps that fold up (suitcase ramps,) and ramps with and without handrails. The differences have to do with the weight of the ramp, its length, whether or not you need handrails, and how portable you'd like it to be. Just make sure you don’t skimp on the length of the ramp – if you are in between two sizes go UP. You don’t want to feel as if you are losing control of the wheelchair because the ramp is set too steeply. You might also want to consider creating a landscaped, bermed walkway . Your walkway can be sloped from the front door, will provide the same ease of access as a ramp but be much more attractive.