5 Common Problems with Mosque & Surau design in Malaysia

Salam. We are still discussing about the mosque and surau design in Malaysia. Previously, I shared about my 10 most visited mosque and surau. Based on my observation, they shared common problems in term of architecture and interior design. Let’s see one by one.

1. Layout
There are few mosque and surau which has been expanded and renovated from their original design to cater the growing number of Muslim in the area. However, some of the renovation was conducted by contractors, they are not really keen on the circulation. These renovation led to a confusion of circulation for the first timer. I don’t like it when I have to walk around the mosque looking for the restroom and ablution area. Maybe some direction signage should be installed inside these mosque.

2. Orientation inside the Ablution area
Inside the ablution area, there are few number of mosque which don’t make the wall of pipes facing the qiblat. It is a sunnah to take ablution while facing the qiblat.

View more pictures taken at Sultan Mizan Mosque, Putrajaya.

3. Orientation of the Toilet
Some mosque or surau, once renovated, will experience odd orientation inside the toilet. It is makruh for Muslim to use WC while facing qiblat and that’s why some of the WC was rotated 90 degree. Users will find it hard to use the squat toilet while facing the wall. (Source)

4. Ventilation
Malaysia is a hot and humid country. Therefore, most of the mosque should have good ventilation to ensure the comfort of the user. However, most of the mosque was designed without proper ventilation and it causes the user to sweat especially in the afternoon. Some mosque or surau even installed air conditions to provide thermal comfort.

5. Acoustic
Last but not least, most of the big mosque will have the acoustic problem. This happen because the large prayer hall with brick walls causes noise and echoes. Its difficult to listen to the sermon with poor setting of the PA system inside the hall. However, most of the mosque manage to solve this issue by investing in good microphones and speakers.

These are the five common problems that I’ve been thinking about. Again, these are just my observation on the older mosque and surau. Some of the modern and latest mosque design has taken care of these problems.

37 thoughts on “5 Common Problems with Mosque & Surau design in Malaysia

    • masalah ventilation la tu. Tu pasal ada beberapa public toilet siap ada kipas siling supaya cepat kering dan keluar udara busuk tuh

    • masalah ventilation la tu. Tu pasal ada beberapa public toilet siap ada kipas siling supaya cepat kering dan keluar udara busuk tuh

  1. toilet kat masjid tu memang masalah normal, g mana2 masjid @ surau,selalunya toilet memang cam tu. sepatutnya, masjid jadi contohnya, sbb tempat ibadat..

  2. toilet kat masjid tu memang masalah normal, g mana2 masjid @ surau,selalunya toilet memang cam tu. sepatutnya, masjid jadi contohnya, sbb tempat ibadat..

  3. assalam..
    toilet tu tengok gak laa masjid mana..
    kalo masjid ada nama / ajk aktif toilet bersih gak..
    anyway.. this post remind me when i was an id student.. a lecturer asked “why mosque must have dome / kubah element.. sedangkan rumah ibadah pertama yg dibina bentuk square jer..” only moden masjid architecture yg ada kubah..

    • ada sesetengah masjid siap hire cleaning service sekali. tak payah AJK susah2 nak bersihkan.

      pasal kubah pulak, itu bukannya identiti wajib masjid. gereja kat Vatican City pun ada kubah, white house pun ada kubah. masjid kat melaka takde kubah tapi struktur yang unik juga,

  4. assalam..
    toilet tu tengok gak laa masjid mana..
    kalo masjid ada nama / ajk aktif toilet bersih gak..
    anyway.. this post remind me when i was an id student.. a lecturer asked “why mosque must have dome / kubah element.. sedangkan rumah ibadah pertama yg dibina bentuk square jer..” only moden masjid architecture yg ada kubah..

    • ada sesetengah masjid siap hire cleaning service sekali. tak payah AJK susah2 nak bersihkan.

      pasal kubah pulak, itu bukannya identiti wajib masjid. gereja kat Vatican City pun ada kubah, white house pun ada kubah. masjid kat melaka takde kubah tapi struktur yang unik juga,

  5. anon says:

    vectorism: lots of masjid, especially in western countries, don’t have domes actually…domes are introduced by Moorish people, hundreds years after the demise of Nabi SAW…

    • Imrankhalidmy says:

      domes are actually a byzantine architecture. the churches in palestine and syria during omars time have dome on them. the churches in istanbul all have domes, so is the st. basil church in moscow.

  6. anon says:

    vectorism: lots of masjid, especially in western countries, don’t have domes actually…domes are introduced by Moorish people, hundreds years after the demise of Nabi SAW…

  7. as says:

    true enuf…
    i simply dun like mosque which make up the ablution area far from the prayer hall…
    espcially yang amik wudhu’ kat bawah dan solat kna naik atas…
    kesian makcik2…sakit lutut..dan batal dulu wudhu’ mereka agaknya

    masjid nampak gempak tapi kat dalam arrangement sume tak praktikal..sedih..
    .-= as´s last blog ..thousands of it~ =-.

    • FYI, dekat masjidil haram, tempat wuduk memang agak jauh di perkarangan luar masjid (according to my parents). so memang kena praktis ambil wuduk dari hotel/rumah supaya tak perlu ambil wuduk di masjid.

  8. as says:

    true enuf…
    i simply dun like mosque which make up the ablution area far from the prayer hall…
    espcially yang amik wudhu’ kat bawah dan solat kna naik atas…
    kesian makcik2…sakit lutut..dan batal dulu wudhu’ mereka agaknya

    masjid nampak gempak tapi kat dalam arrangement sume tak praktikal..sedih..
    .-= as´s last blog ..thousands of it~ =-.

    • FYI, dekat masjidil haram, tempat wuduk memang agak jauh di perkarangan luar masjid (according to my parents). so memang kena praktis ambil wuduk dari hotel/rumah supaya tak perlu ambil wuduk di masjid.

  9. masalah sound ni memang tak best sebab kurang berkesan penyampaian ilmu tu. patut masjid negeri mesti peruntukan lebih.. patut invest PA sistem yang moden!

  10. Kalau ada yang minat nak kaji, ada 1 perkara menarik utk kajian. Berkaitan design tempat khatib berkhutbah. Ada ulama kritik mihrab yang melebihi tiga anak tangga. Mihrab zaman nabi hanya 3 anak tangga. Mihrab zaman sekarang ada yang dibuat hingga memutuskan saf solat. Mungkin ada kaitan faktor design mihrab dengan kualiti tumpuan pendengar terhadap khutbah.

  11. Umarabdaziz says:

    Salam.. trima kasih atas perkongsian.. Igt bole jgk wat research utk thesis final year ni.. dok tgh mncari idea ttg issues dlm interior design.. mintx izin ye bro..

    -6th batch iD AAD, IIUM

  12. Salam En Admin, any updates on acoustical quality in mosques/surau? After reading your notes on common problems in our Masjids, I think I should leave a comment on the acoustics point of view. It is a general misconception/misleading assumption when people starts to blame the PA system for poor speech intelligibility in rooms. PA system or SR system (sound reinforcement) should be a supporting system/reinforcement as the name suggests. Apart from it, some important points in having good acoustics are always overlooked at, especially during design stage of large rooms (at least in Malaysia). The shape and the finishing material of our mosques are determinants for its acoustical quality. Thus, having a look on the finishing materials and their placement should be a priority before enhancing the PA system. Most of the times this approach is the most cost-effective. We in ISTIQ Noise Control really look forward in contributing for a better acoustical environment in our mosques. Please let us know if we have room to cooperate. Thank you.

    • Thank you for your sharing. Yes, back then I’m not really aware how the acoustic in building works. Now, I have more understanding on how it affect the sounds and noise in the building. Thanks again.

  13. Mohamed Zakaria Mohamed Yahya says:

    Asalamkm sahabat, Pendedahan yg Sahabat buat ini adalah berguna utk pembangunan masjid di Malaysia. Pakya buat kajian PhD. Pembangunan organisasi masjid luar bandar, ttp malangnya sukar sekali utk mendpt pernyataan dan kajian masalah dan krisis masjid khususnya luar bandar lebih lagi kalau lokasi di Felda. Felda ingin menjadikan masjid felda sebagai contoh masjid luar bandar. Kita semua maklum masjid kita menghadapi krisis kehadiran solat waktu berjemaah, kurangnya penglibatan belia dan beliawanis, pendekatan pengajaran pengajian agama dan program dakwah masjid kurang menarik dan berkesan serta promosi yg lemah, pengurusan kewangan dan strategic financial yg lemah. Pengayaan kemahiran dan keupayaan Pengurusan dan kepimpinan yg lemah. Kemudahan dan infra masjid yg tidak kondusif Jika Sahabat sahabat menemui dokumen berkaitan dengan perkara ini harap dpt emailkan kpd saya mudah mudahan kita boleh bina model masjid contoh yg berkesan, Insy Allah.

    • Terima kasih. Memang memerlukan sebuah kajian yang menyeluruh berkaitan masjid ni. Kajian sebegini memerlukan dana ataupun geran dari universiti dan kerajaan.

      Semoga berjaya dalam kajian PhD tuan.

  14. MUHAMMAD says:

    Salam..saya Muhammad..saya belajar master of science in facility management. ..walaupun saya belajar mengenai facility management, tetapi saya terpanggil untuk membuat thesis dalam acoustic of mosque…3 masjid menjadi kajian saya iaitu Masjid Negara, Masjid Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah, dan Masjid Sultan Zainal Abidin…saya rasa mungkin ada di kalangan kita kenal akan tiga masjid ini kerana ianya adalah prominent mosque in Klang Valley….so terima kasih di atas info yg kamu berikan…kerana sedikit sebanyak membantu kajian saya….

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