Towel Rail: Review & Recommendation

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Welcome to our large towel rail test 2020, where we present all the towel rails we have tested in detail. We have put together detailed background information and also added a summary of the customer reviews on the web.

We want to make your purchase decision easier and help you to find the best towel rail for you.

You can also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer you interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page, which you should pay attention to if you want to buy towel rails.

The most important facts in brief

  • There are 4 different main categories of towel holders: Free standing, self adhesive, drillable and heated.
  • Towel rails, which can be glued, are very easy to install, but their carrying capacity is limited to just 2-3 towels.
  • The remaining models have much more carrying capacity and choice in material and design, but also tend to be more expensive to buy.

Towel holder test: Favourites of the editors

  • The best towel rail for wall mounting
  • The best self-adhesive towel hook
  • The best freestanding towel rail

The best towel rail for wall mounting

The 40 cm long towel rail from Ruicer shines with its stability and simple design. The brushed stainless steel fits well in both light and dark bathrooms and its length is a good compromise between surface and stability.

The 2 mm thick plate is drilled into the wall with 2 screws and thus ensures a high load-bearing capacity. The high customer satisfaction with the service of the manufacturer and the quality of the product makes this item one of the most popular towel holders on the market.

The best self-adhesive towel hook

The current favourite of the self-adhesive towel holders are the hooks from Aikzik. They convince with their outstanding load capacity of 8 kg according to the manufacturer’s specifications, which enables these hooks to carry even bathrobes.

The installation is very easy and the adhesive strips are very reliable according to existing customers. The hooks are made of stainless steel. Therefore they can be used almost everywhere.

The best freestanding towel rail

Modern and unobtrusive – that is the towel rack from Relaxdays. Three towel rails made of chrome-plated stainless steel optics offer plenty of space and carrying capacity for your towels. Nevertheless, at just 20 cm wide, it remains compact enough for any bathroom.

The base is made of plastic, which prevents scratches in the floor, and yet it is non-slip on the floor. The extremely simple and quick assembly is also convincing.

Advisor: Questions you should deal with before buying a towel rail

What should I pay attention to when buying a towel rail?

A towel rail should not be missing in any bathroom. It should be chosen correctly, both functionally and visually. It is important to consider how much the towel rail can carry, how it is mounted and what material it is made of.
Think about how many towels and bath towels in total should fit in your bathroom. In addition, it is useful to consider beforehand how many towel holders I would like to use at all.
It can make sense to place a suitable towel rail next to the washbasin and within easy reach of the shower. Depending on the size of the household, there are accordingly different loads.

You should also note how the towel rail is attached. With free-standing towel holders there should be enough space. Towel holders that are fixed to the wall are either glued or drilled.

The latter is not appreciated by landlords in tiled bathrooms, as holes in the tiles tend to be difficult to fix. However, these models shine with considerably more load-bearing capacity.

Finally, you should consider what material your towel rail is made of.

While models that are chrome-plated or made of stainless steel often match the rest of the bathroom fittings, models made of wood or bamboo can be a high-quality accessory.

What type of towel rail do I need?

Basically, the towel rail should be chosen according to the size of the household and the conditions in the bathroom. Depending on the load capacity, material and type of fastening, the right models will be found for you:
First of all, it is important to clarify whether the towel rail can be drilled into the wall. This is often viewed very unwillingly by both landlords and residents due to possible future changes. There is also the danger that the tile may crack when drilling.

If the towel holder is not to be drilled, you can either choose a model that can be glued on or a free-standing model.

At the same time, adhesive towel holders, or towel hooks for example, are clearly limited in their load-bearing capacity, but are much more space-saving and flexible to place.

How do I attach a towel rail?

The attachment of a towel rail varies with the selected model. Freestanding towel rails can usually be assembled in just a few steps and placed at their destination.
Adhesive towel rails are also usually relatively easy to install. This is usually done by thoroughly cleaning the surface to which the holder is to be attached and then attaching it to the surface with the adhesive strip contained in the packaging.
However, if you do not want to sacrifice either load-bearing capacity or compactness, it will result in the towel rail having to be drilled into the wall. In the end, the towel holder is usually held in place by two dowels.
This usually means that a tile must be drilled. There are a number of points to be observed in such cases, as drilling into tiles can lead to damage relatively quickly. In principle, this should not be carried out by a layman.

Where can I buy a towel rack?

Towel holders are available in DIY stores, in specialist shops and in many online shops.
According to our research, most towel holders are sold through the following online shops.

hornbach.com
otto.de
bathing.com
ebay.com
amazon.com

All towel rails that we present to you on our site have a link to at least one of these shops. If you have found a towel rail that you like, you can click directly.

How much is a towel rack?

As with most furnishings, the price range for towel rails is quite wide. Depending on the material, the size and above all the brand, the prices vary greatly.
For example, the average value of the first 60 Amazon search results is around 25€.
However, if you are interested in a freestanding towel rail, you should be prepared for higher prices due to the much larger dimensions and load capacity. There the average value is rather 50€.
A detailed overview of the price ranges depending on the selected models can be found in the following table:

Decision: What types of towel rails are there and which one is right for you?

When choosing a towel rail, one quickly feels overwhelmed by the wide range and different types.

In the following section we would like to support you in your decision. We will first give you an overview of the different types of towel rails and then go into the advantages and disadvantages of the individual models.

First of all, you should decide whether you want your towel rail to stand freely or whether you want to attach it to the wall. This results in the following types:

  • sticky towel rail
  • freestanding towel rail
  • towel rail to be drilled
  • heated towel rail

Basically, the fixed versions are more compact and somewhat cheaper, while the free-standing towel rails have the potential to add their own charm to the atmosphere.

If you want to mount your towel rail on the wall, you have to consider whether you want to buy a glueable or a drillable model. While the glueable towel rails shine with their quick and easy installation, the carrying capacity is unfortunately quite limited.

What are the characteristics of adhesive towel rails and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

Towel rails that are to be fixed to the wall can either be glued or drilled. For models that are not to be drilled, a double-sided adhesive tape or similar is usually included in the delivery.

The installation is accordingly simple and intuitive. On smooth surfaces, the usually plain and light rods can be quickly attached. However, due to the limited load-bearing capacity of adhesive strips, fewer towels can be left on this shelf.

Advantages

Easy mounting
Compact
Little weight

Disadvantages

Low load capacity
restrained design

There are still some models with suction cups on the market, but according to our research they are often unreliable in their strength.

What are the characteristics of freestanding towel rails and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

Freestanding towel rails are in a higher price segment compared to their conspecifics and are much more massive.

However, this means that manufacturers have much more leeway in their choice of materials and design, resulting in a greater choice or diversity of models.

Advantages

High load capacity: Mobile
A lot of choice in material and design

Disadvantages

Need more space
More expensive to buy

Whether stainless steel, wood or bamboo – everything is represented. In addition, the towel holders can be moved freely depending on use, which can be very practical, for example, before the shower. In addition, they have a very high load-bearing capacity due to their stable construction, which makes them suitable for larger households.

What distinguishes towel rails to be drilled and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

Do you want both a compact and sturdy towel rail that can hold several large towels? Then you can hardly get past a model that needs to be drilled into the wall.

These versions of the towel rail often do not differ optically from the adhesive ones, but they are more stable and can also be much larger. The more space the manufacturer has available, the more choice in material and design you have as a customer.

Advantages

Higher load capacity
Larger dimensions possible
More choice in design and material

Disadvantages

Drilling in tiles difficult
Holes mostly unwanted
Must often be retightened after some time

While the drillable towel holders shine in direct comparison with the adhesive towel holders with their load-bearing capacity and higher quality design, it must be noted that drilling tiles often leads to damage to them. In addition, holes are difficult to cover when moving house or making future changes to the furnishings.

What distinguishes heated towel rails and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

The top class of towel rails are clearly the heated versions.

These relatively large and stable fittings are either powered by electricity or connected to the heating network. Because of their dimensions and especially their weight, these models are always drilled into the wall.

Advantages

Ensure that towels are dry
Can be used as additional radiator
Prevent bacteria and mould
Good for your health

Disadvantages

Must be drilled
Consume energy, expensive to purchase

The towel warmers provide an additional radiator for the bathroom and bring some health benefits.

For example, mould in the bathroom and damp towels can be prevented, thus preventing the development of allergies and skin impurities.

In addition, an always warm bathroom and dry, warm towels contribute to a very pleasant atmosphere of well-being.

Purchase criteria: You can compare and rate towel rails based on these factors

Now we will show you which criteria you can use to decide between the selection of possible towel holders.

The aspects you can use to compare towel rails include

  • Mounting method
  • Load capacity
  • Material
  • Heatability

In the following paragraphs we will explain what is important for the individual criteria

Mounting method

According to our research, towel rails are all about this one characteristic: drilling or gluing?

Making this decision early on visibly limits the choice of models and thus accelerates the furnishing process.

Towel holders that are drilled provide a high load capacity and are still more compact than free-standing towel holders. However, tiles in the bathroom can break when drilled and holes or even cracks are difficult to repair.

Towel racks “without drilling” are clearly more handy and easier. These are usually supplied with a kind of double-sided adhesive tape and can be fixed to the wall in any position. However, it must be noted that the load capacity is limited accordingly.

Those who have the space available and would like to include the towel rail as a separate item of furniture can opt for a free-standing model.

These are certainly larger, need their own space, but their stability is comparable to that of drillable towel holders.

Load capacity

Single apartment or extended family? According to the requirements of the towel rail you should choose it.

The load carrying capacity is usually related to the mounting type.

Towel holders “without drilling” have a range of 3 to 8 KG in their adhesive strength. This is quite sufficient for 2-3 towels or 1-2 wet bath towels.

However, those who need more should rather look for freestanding or drillable models. These have carrying capacities of over 20 KG.

Enclosed please find a table for clarity

Material

When you introduce an additional piece of furniture into a room, you usually want it to match the rest of the furniture.

Most towel rails are made of stainless steel and are often chrome-plated. This is probably the market standard and always looks relatively high quality.

If you want to save a few euros, you can always fall back on plastic. This is not so susceptible to fingerprints and visible water residues.

However, if you want to bring a completely different note to your bathroom, you can choose between several wood tones and alloys for larger models and especially for designer brands.

Heatability

The extended version of a towel rail is the towel warmer. This is usually either operated electronically or connected to the heating network.

This feature also makes the holder a whole lot more expensive, but it provides a lot of carrying capacity and surface area and convinces with the health benefits.

It is also an extra radiator and due to its dimensions with well chosen design and material it can flatter the bathroom very much.

Trivia: Worth knowing facts about towel rails

How do I mount a towel rail?

There are two different mounting methods for towel rails:

Self-adhesive

    For this purpose, the surface to which the towel rail is to be attached is first cleaned and dried. The surface must be free of both dust and grease.
    Then the protective foil of the double-sided adhesive tape is removed and the towel holder is pressed into the desired position. The pressure should be applied for a few seconds. Afterwards you should let the towel holder hang without load for about 24 hours before using it.

With drilling

    First, a suitable place for drilling is found and marked on the wall according to the holes in the towel holder.
    If a tile or between tiles needs to be drilled, you should pay attention to some important points to prevent damage.
    The holes are drilled and dowels are inserted. Then the towel holder is fixed and secured with screws.

Where and how high do I mount a towel rail?

There are no common rules for the appropriate height of a towel rail.

A good rule of thumb is “a little above waist height”, as it usually goes up to about the height of the sink and it is the habit of most people. You should be able to reach the towel easily without having to bend over.

The following applies to the correct position in the bathroom: The closer to the washbasin/shower – the better. This prevents water drops from getting on the floor and guests from looking confused for towels.

How do I tighten a loose towel rail?

If a drilled towel rail becomes loose due to overloading or other reasons, it can be easily retightened with the screws in the rules.

To do this, the caps that cover the screws are simply removed and then the screws are tightened by hand.

When the desired stability is achieved, the caps can be reattached to the towel rail.

How do I repair a defective towel rail?

As a rule, a broken towel rail cannot be repaired because the load-bearing capacity is massively reduced by the breakage and, due to the moisture in the bathroom, functionality is not guaranteed in the long term even when the towel rail is glued.

However, if the drill hole is damaged, it can usually be filled and redrilled.

If your towel warmer leaks, you should switch it off and let the liquid run out. Careful! This may still be hot. At best, leave it on for a specialist!

How do I dismantle a towel rail?

With a glued towel rail, most people find themselves faced with the problem that the double-sided adhesive tape is relatively strong after all. This is best removed from the wall with a spatula or similar tool.

To do this, place the tape flat along the surface and slowly remove it from the wall with short, controlled blows. The remains can then be softened with glass cleaner or water and removed with a cloth.

With a drilled towel holder, simply remove the cover caps, unscrew the screws and that’s it.

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