Ideal Towel Bar Dimensions For Your Bathroom

Bathroom towel bar

Hanging towels to dry is a better idea than stashing or piling them on top of other fabrics. This habit lets families avoid the dangers of harboring mold and mildew – organisms that can wreak havoc in individuals with allergies and similar health conditions. Although household members can hang towels on almost any elevated horizontal structure, using a towel bar is a more sensible approach. But how big of a towel rod should you install in the bathroom? Knowing the standard towel bar dimensions should give you a clear idea.

Standard Towel Bar Length


Standard towel bar dimensions

Drying yourself with a cloth after a shower or bath is challenging. The material isn’t absorbent enough that you’ll still feel drenched after wiping the fabric on your body for several minutes. Towels are perfect because they are like soft sponges that draw water and moisture off your skin and hair, ready for the final grooming touches.

Hygiene-related towels come in different sizes, accommodating individual preferences, space considerations, and budget requirements. For example, a square face cloth measures 11.8 inches or 30 centimeters on all sides. Meanwhile, a guest towel will be slightly more sizeable, spanning 19.7 inches or 50 centimeters on two opposing sides.

A hand towel is larger than a guest towel, measuring 39.4 x 19.7 inches of 100 x 50 centimeters. On the other hand, bath towels can be 53.1 inches long and 27.6 inches wide or about 135 x 70 centimeters. Of course, towel brands can also apply their proprietary sizes.

Hence, the towel bar length should accommodate the towel’s width. Most manufacturers offer towel bars in three standard lengths: 18, 24, and 30 inches (46, 61, and 76 centimeters).

The standard 18-inch towel rod is perfect for tiny bathrooms, accommodating hand, face, and guest towels easily. It can also hang bath towels folded in two.

Meanwhile, a 30-inch bar is ideal for homes with spacious bathroom sizes. The 24-inch version is the middle-ground, offering families sufficient space to hang their bath essentials.

Bar Thickness

Most individuals buy towel rods with a ¾-inch diameter or about 1.9-centimeter thickness. Some folks might prefer a half-inch version (1.3 centimeters) to save as much space as possible. Others might opt for an inch-thick (2.5-centimeter) bar to accommodate their towels.

These measurements are for cylindrical types. However, some brands might offer rectangular rods with slightly smaller dimensions. You might want to consider the bathroom’s design and aesthetic elements when picking the correct towel rod thickness.

Bar Depth

Bathroom with freestanding tub gray paint

Ideally, you will want the towel bar to form a gap from the wall. This metric reflects the fixture’s “depth or rod-to-wall distance. It is a valuable parameter because you will want the space wide enough to accommodate the towel without touching the wall’s surface. Most towel rods extend 2 to 3 inches or 5 to 7.5 centimeters from the wall surface. Of course, brands can vary in their offerings.

Bar Backplates

Most towel bars feature an Escutcheon plate or backplate, adding a touch of elegance to the fixture and ensuring better stability on the wall. These elements are often not larger than 3 inches (7.6 centimeters) on four sides or in diameter, making them sufficiently visible without becoming an eyesore.

Bar Wall Height

Installing towel rods isn’t as straightforward as fastening the opposing ends to the wall. Homeowners must also determine the ideal height from the bathroom floor surface to prevent the towel’s edge from touching the ground. Ideally, you will want the towel bar 42 inches (1.07 meters) to 48 inches (1.22 meters) off the floor.

How Long Should a Bar be for Two Towels?

Small bathroom tub shower towel bar

A pair of standard-sized bath towels should fit nicely in a 30-inch bar, provided you fold the towels in thirds. You can also use a 24-inch double-rod (two parallel bars) to accommodate two bi-folded standard bath towels.

How Many Towels Fit on an 18 Inch Bar?

An 18-inch-long towel bar can accommodate a single bi-folded bath towel or two guest/face towels folded in two. Hanging two bath towels on the 18-inch rod is possible if you fold the cloth in three. Unfortunately, this approach depends on the towel bar’s depth.

How Do You Measure the Length of a Bar for Towels?

Measuring a towel bar is as easy as extending a tape measure from one end of the rod to the opposing end. After all, length is nothing more than a tip-to-tip or end-to-end measurement. If you’re wondering what towel rod length you should buy, you can measure the distance between the mounting points on the wall. The value should give you an approximate length of the ideal towel bar.

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