If your dream is a bathroom complete with TV and entertainment system, perhaps it’s time to dust off those tools and turn that dream into reality?
If you're a DIY fan and (very importantly) you are qualified and experienced when it comes to electrical installation, we've got a treat of a project for you today. What's more, we bet that we can name 2 activities you love doing after a long day at work or on the weekend.
- Relaxing in front of the telly
- Taking a long, hot bath
Did we get it right? Well, why does it have to be one or the other? Especially when you can combine the 2 with a waterproof bathroom TV!
We've put together this expert guide to bathroom TVs and entertainment system installation to help you fix up your ideal relaxation station at home. Just follow the steps below, and you'll soon be enjoying the ultimate luxury experience in the comfort of your own home.
Before you begin
We love DIY! After all, that's why we've put this guide together. And, we'd encourage anybody to get familiar with as many practical household skills as possible—DIY is so rewarding.
However, on a realistic note, we know that not everyone can perform this kind of task, and when it comes to dealing with anything electrical, it's a better idea to call in professionals. If you’ve recently had a bathroom renovation, your partner may be none too pleased to suddenly see a botched DIY project.
The best advice we can give is to read through this entire guide and then decide whether this project is feasible for the tools, time and skills you have. If you decide to hire a tradesperson, at least you’ll have a good understanding of the type of job they’ll need to do.
To help you weigh up your options, find how much it costs to install a bathroom TV in our latest bathroom costs guide. You might just decide that it’s worth spending the extra cash. It’s certainly something we’d strongly advise, especially if you aren’t qualified to fit electrics.
While you're at it, it's definitely worth reading our guide to electrical products and bathroom safety.
Equipment you'll need
The first step of your guide to bathroom TVs and entertainment system installation is to get your toolkit together. You'll need the following:
- Dust sheets
- Electric drill
- Handheld circular saw (for untiled walls only)
- Personal protective equipment (including goggles, safety gloves and dust mask)
- Silicone sealant and gun for application
- Tile cutter (for tiled walls only)
- Tile drill bit (if you're using a drill on tiled walls)
Anything you're unsure about, such as the difference between drill bits, you can easily find about online. Why not pose questions to experts on videos or forums? Part of the fun of DIY is learning, and you only learn by asking—never feel ashamed!
Prepping your bathroom for installation
Let's move on to preparing the bathroom. Don't skip this step or you could end up with a sink gummed up with masonry dust.
1. Choose the location
We know, it seems obvious—at one end of the bath, right? However, if you have a corner or freestanding tub, it may not be quite as straightforward.
Select the part of the wall you'd like to house your entertainment system and make sure there's enough room on the wall for the TV, the speakers and anything else you're planning to include in your set-up.
Pro tip: If you need to remove tiles to install your entertainment system, it helps to have spares around. You can cut new tiles down to size and reapply them neatly after you've finished the installation.
2. Ensure the wall is safe for installation
Considerations here include:
- Depth of the wall—Is it deep enough to safely house the back of the TV?
- Pipes—Are there any pipes that will get in the way of installation?
- Electrical wires—Are there electrical wires in the way? Any part of a wall containing electrical wires isn't appropriate to house a TV.
3. Lay down dust blankets
The same blankets you use for repainting rooms are fine. You can use anything that will cover all the areas you don't want dust falling on, although thicker blankets are useful if you're worried about falling masonry chipping the surface below.
Pro tip: Cover the plug holes and overflows in your sink and bath for good measure. Masonry dust and cement can get everywhere and will clog up drains if it gets down them.
Installing your TV
Now we're onto the fun part of your guide to bathroom TVs and entertainment systems: installing the TV! Just follow these steps:
1. Measure up
Using a tape measure, take measurements for the backbox of your TV. Note that the deepest part of the back may be smaller than the front—the hole you cut into the wall will need to let the TV sit snugly.
2. Cut the hole
Using your handheld circular saw, cut a hole in the wall that matches the dimensions of your TV. Use the file to smooth out any rough edges after you've cut the hole.
Pro tip: A good rule of thumb is to cut less rather than more. You can always cut the hole larger, but once it's too large, you may have to start filling in with plaster. Plastering is an acceptable solution, so don't panic if the hole is slightly too large! But it's best to err on the side of caution.
3. Mark and drill screw holes
Once the TV can fit, mark where the screw holes should go with a pencil and drill holes in these places.
If you're unsure which screw sizes correspond to which drill bits, ask a DIY expert. They will know; you'll learn something new and it'll save you a lot of hassle.
4. Connect antenna and wires
The power lead and any additional wires should go into the hole at this point. Because UK safety regulations prohibit electrical sockets in bathrooms unless they are a minimum of 3 metres from any “wet” areas, you won't be able to plug the TV in near the bath.
Instead, you can thread the wires through from whichever room is behind the wall you're placing the TV in rather than using an extension lead.
Pro tip: If your bathroom is upstairs, and you've got an aerial/satellite/cable connection installed in one of your upstairs bedrooms, drill through the wall and connect the TV to this aerial rather than the one that serves your downstairs living room. It will mean fewer trailing wires and allow for a more reliable connection.
5. Test the connection
Connect your TV to all necessary wires and make sure that they're all working properly before you secure the TV in position. You'll want to test:
- The power lead
- Connections to speakers
- The aerial/satellite/cable connection
- Any additional leads
It's worth making sure that all your services are working properly. If you use a satellite TV service like Sky, make sure that those channels are working in addition to the terrestrial channels. You're going to be furious if you were planning to have your favourite film channels accessible, and you're stuck staring at a blank screen.
6. Secure the TV in place
Secure the TV in place by using the silicone gun to apply a bead to the back of the TV before resting it in the hole. Once the TV feels secure, screw it into the wall.
Pro tip: Perform one final check to make sure your TV lines up with the holes you drilled before applying the silicone.
7. Cover screw heads (where appropriate)
There are various methods of covering the screw heads after screwing your TV into position. You can purchase screw head covers or place adhesive labels over them if this fits the look and style of your bathroom.
Some bathroom TVs come with screws that have bespoke screw heads for an elegant presentation once you've finished the job.
Installing speakers follows more or less the same process as installing the TV. You just have to make sure there's that extra bit of room for them, and of course, that you've purchased waterproof speakers!
One possible complication is if you're looking for a surround-sound experience. In this case, you'll need to check multiple walls to ensure they're safe to place speakers in, as well as making sure that any wiring between your TV and speakers is safe and not getting in your way.
Wireless speakers may be a good choice for this reason. These can provide you with a greater range of placement options and prevent wires from getting in the way.
And there you have it: your guide to bathroom TV and entertainment system installs. Provided that you have the right tools for the job and the right experience/qualifications, bathroom TV installation should be a relatively simple task with tremendous rewards. You can relax in the tub any time with your favourite shows, and even better—you can lock the door behind you! It's the perfect one-room retreat.
Are you ready for a truly relaxing night in with a glass of wine, your favourite show on the tube and a muscle-easing soak in the tub? Why not view the range of bathroom televisions and entertainment systems available at Victoria Plum? Simply click on the image below to begin browsing.