the past, manufacturers offered little variety when it came to showers. Today,
the perfect design and style for any ensemble is available. This includes all
your shower fixings, such as valves, doors, and showerheads, handle bars, jet
sprays, etc. Your perfect shower is well within reach.
Because of the moisture and excessive water usage in a bathroom, all surface
materials that will be used should be installed on top of a waterproof or water
resistant material. Water-resistant drywall is very commonly used for this
purpose. It is sometimes referred to as "green board." Cement-board is also
common because it is more durable, but is more expensive. The expense seems
worthwhile with the peace of mind that comes along with it. Below is a list of
various available shower surrounds.
These surrounds vary from fiberglass, acrylic, vinyl, plastic laminate, and
synthetic stone. You can purchase one-piece kits or multiple piece kits.
This material is lifelong and easily cleaned because of its smooth acrylic
surface. Price is compared at $40 to $75 per square foot installed.
Price for fiberglass units compare at $200 to $400. This makes fiberglass
material the least expensive of all. It is also entirely waterproof, very
durable, and easily cleaned. Most manufacturers offer three-piece and five-piece
units in multiple sizes.
While you may desire a simple shower curtain for enclosure, they can tear easily
and are not always the most efficient way to keep water in the shower area. A
simple solution against water leakage is a fixed door. Because of new designs
and styles, fixed doors can also enhance the look of your shower. Due to the
layout of your specific shower, you may choose from a variety of configurations.
You may desire a one-piece enclosure over a tub or a custom doorway. You also
may choose a sliding door, swinging door, or combination of the two. The key is
to determine the best door for the layout of your bathroom.
Most commonly used, sliding doors glide on a track installed on either the floor
of a shower or mounted on the tub. These doors require much less space than any
other and may be purchased in two of three sections. They can be difficult to
clean though, due to the track.
Also requiring minimal space, bi-fold doors are made of accordion shaped folding
sections. This allows full access to the shower. Although spacious, this type of
door may also be difficult to clean and excessive use may cause the track to
jam. Curved doors take up little space as well and are perfect for corner
showers. The curved glass panel is attached to the top and bottom frame, which
allows smooth and stable operation. It is also right and left reversible.
Available from 36 inches to 48 inches, these doors are secured with magnetic
catches. They are offered in a pivot style of hinge-mounted.
Glass doors are available for a more unique style. Generally clear or opaque,
you may also desire a doorway that is obscure, fluted, etched, beveled, or
It is important to remember your ventilation fan. This will reduce condensation,
which could eventually damage materials in your shower. You may choose from
various styles, but make sure to choose the proper size.
Sprays range from soft-aerated, deep, strong, massage, pulse, mist,
concentrated, and a mixture of strong and pulsating. Now, the most common
fixture for sprays is a fixed showerhead. This may have adjustable water
direction and also adjustable spray styles as above. This all depends on the
manufacturer. Another possibility is a handheld spray. In this case, you will
have a hose connection in which you can mount to the shower wall or a sliding
bar. These sprays are quite convenient and usually have two adjustable spray
styles. Lastly, you may choose a body spray. This unit is most commonly
installed below shoulder height and in groups of two or more. Spray style and
water direction vary from unit to unit, but all of the above spray styles are
Today's new trends are showerheads with multiple spray patterns and multiple
valves. Unlike single-spray showerheads, these elaborate systems require a great
deal of additional plumbing. If you desire a state-of-the-art shower system
installation, you must consult with your plumber before construction. This will
ensure your designs are correct and the system is possible. Some well and septic
systems are unable to handle these units because they use an extreme amount of
Two of the main custom showers are full body spas and carwash showers & shower
towers. These consist of multiple-heads, valves, water outlets, volume controls,
and handheld or body sprays.
Carwash Showers/Full Body Spas
A full body shower has vertical mounted spray nozzles, "his" and "her"
temperature control valves, and a possible 6 or more water sources. It is
designed to spray the entire body with adjustable volume and pressure.
Different choices available include the body spa, which is a re-circulating
stand up whirlpool with a waterfall, or you may desire and electronically
controlled system. This shower includes pulsating and pivoting body sprays and
the possible addition of a showerhead. Usually, spas and carwash showers use
approximately 80 gallons of water per minute. That is 25 times the water flow of
a standard showerhead.
Another possible addition to your system is a steam generator. In this case,
consult with your electrician before construction to plan out the additional
layout and wiring needed.
If you are trying to avoid the complicating plumbing designs, then you may
prefer a shower tower. These showers are fountains that are integrated as
one-piece custom units. They combine valves, body sprays, handheld sprays, and
water jets using one single water line connection. If desired, multiple units
can be installed. Whatever your desire, you will have a unique and luxurious