Pros and Cons of Walk-In Showers

Pros and Cons of Walk-In Showers

Pros and Cons of Walk-In Showers

If you have been keeping up with the latest bathroom remodeling trends, you have probably heard of walk-in showers. In recent years, more people have been converting their tubs to walk-in showers for ease of access and to stay up to date with popular designs in the interior design industry. Updating your bathroom can feel like a big task, especially because we use our bathrooms every day, but the payoff can be amazing.

If you are converting your bathroom, there are key considerations to make before remodeling. Architectural layout, drainage and aesthetics are three points of concern for many homeowners. Understanding how a walk-in shower works and knowing how you want to incorporate it with the rest of your bathroom is essential.

What is a Walk-In Shower?

A walk-in shower is exactly that, a shower you can walk right into! The floor of the shower is flush with the rest of the bathroom with no lip or curb to step over. Many walk-in showers feature glass panes on the exterior, as opposed to musty shower curtains that collect mildew. To promote water drainage and avoid leaking, walk-in showers have lightly scaled flooring that allows the water to flow toward the drain.

Some walk-in showers do not have glass panes and are designed without a door, making them even more accessible. The bathroom may be architecturally designed with walls that naturally section off the space from the rest of the room. This creates an area that is still designated for the shower while still maintaining a degree of privacy while in use. Other designs simply have three walls around the interior and are completely open on one side.

These varying designs open the possibilities for customizing your bathroom to match the aesthetic choices in the rest of the room. From traditional to industrial bathrooms, walk-in showers can enhance and stylize your bathroom. With a wide variety of materials used to create the shower and smaller details to consider like the type of showerhead, it is easy to incorporate a walk-in shower into your bathroom that fits your style. Different textures and color schemes can differentiate the bathroom from the rest of your home as a space of luxury.

Whether you are building a new home or remodeling your bathroom, there are many reasons to consider the sleek, modern design that a walk-in shower provides. Walk-in showers open up the possibilities for customization in the bathroom, ranging from rainfall showerheads to steam baths. These features can create a relaxing and soothing space in your own home and can change your bathroom experience.

Pros of Walk-In Showers

There are many benefits to a walk-in shower in your bathroom, ranging from accessibility and comfort to practical solutions. Here are four pros of a walk-in shower.

1. Accessibility

Walk-in showers are very accessible to individuals with limited mobility. Walk-in showers do not have a curb on the floor. Instead, it is flush with the rest of the floor in your bathroom, which means that you do not have to step over anything to get into the shower. There is no barrier to entry, which means that individuals with disabilities, especially wheelchair users, have an easier time entering. Grab bars are easy to install, and many homeowners choose to add these for safety purposes.

Accessibility is a significant concern for older people. AARP reports that 87% of adults age 65+ want to stay in their house as they grow older. The risk of falling in your home increases with age. Over one in three adults over the age of 65 falls in their home each year according to the National Institute on Aging. Walk-in showers create a comfortable and safe environment that allows older individuals to remain in their homes for longer.

Walk-in showers create a more accessible environment for individuals who use a wheelchair because there are no architectural barriers outside of the width of the door. They also allow easy installation of shower seats for those who cannot stand for long periods of time. Paired with grab bars, walk-in showers create a safer space during a potentially dangerous situation.

2. Easy to Clean

Walk-in showers have fewer crevices than traditional tubs. Unlike the porcelain used in traditional showers with tubs, tile does not retain dirt and buildup. Tile is also much easier to clean, removing another barrier of inconvenience. Walk-in showers also allow for different kinds of drains. Tubs usually have smooth edges and a single, circular drain that clogs easily. Walk-in showers, however, have more options for drainage. Linear drains, for example, allow water to drain more quickly, preventing the grime, mildew and soap residue buildup in your shower.

Walk-in showers have fewer crevices than traditional tubs. Unlike the porcelain used in traditional showers with tubs, tile does not retain dirt and buildup. Tile is also much easier to clean, removing another barrier of inconvenience. Walk-in showers also allow for different kinds of drains. Tubs usually have smooth edges and a single, circular drain that clogs easily. Walk-in showers, however, have more options for drainage. Linear drains, for example, allow water to drain more quickly, preventing the grime, mildew and soap residue buildup in your shower.

3. Spacious Design

Because walk-in showers typically use glass doors, they do not section off the bathroom in the same way that tubs with shower curtains do. Your bathroom feels larger and more spacious, as there is less shower enclosure. This also helps with lighting in the shower, as the glass permits more light to feed into the shower area. Typical tub-and-shower enclosures typically close off the area and create a much darker area unless there is a light directly above the tub.
Bathrooms feel much larger when a dark curtain does not block off the shower. You can highlight the true size of your bathroom and feel less closed off from the rest of the room while you shower. These open designs are also much more modern and trendy. Different styles for your walk-in shower give you more options for making your bathroom feel larger and more fashionable. Varying textures can create depth for an elegant, seamless room.
Walk-in showers fit well into any kind of bathroom, from traditional to modern, small to large. Regardless of the color scheme, size or materials used in the bathroom, a walk-in shower can enhance the room by making it look and feel larger. The shower does not have to be a sectioned-off area–it can be easily incorporated into the design of the bathroom.

4. Luxury Experience

Walk-in showers provide a luxury experience in the comfort of your own home. Many walk-in showers have affordances like multi-spray nozzles that let you choose the water pressure and spray style. These showerheads can give a range of options from massage-like high-pressure streams to rain-like drizzles that optimize your shower experience. The spray customization, paired with accessibility features like shower seats gives the feeling of spa treatment.

Cons of Walk-In Showers

Walk-in showers have a convincing list of benefits. However, there are some drawbacks to this renovation varying from personal preference to long-term consequences. Here are four of the most common walk-in shower problems.

1. Less Privacy

The most apparent feature of walk-in showers is the glass doors, as opposed to shower curtains. If you live alone, then sectioning the shower off may not be a big deal for you. However, if you share a bathroom or have kids, then the transparent walls may be a concern if you want to keep your privacy during shower time. Privacy is largely a concern of personal preference, but you should be comfortable in your chic new bathroom.
A great solution would be to use architectural design to create privacy but still maintain the walk-in function. Using a wall as a barrier between the shower and the rest of the bathroom allows you to have the open concept while also designating specific, private space for the bathroom.

2. Home Value

When buying or selling a home, the bathroom may add or decrease value. Despite the chic design of a walk-in shower, without a tub, the room is considered a three-quarter bath. Families who are looking to move into a house typically prefer to have a tub for washing small children. Similarly, elderly individuals tend to look for a home with a tub for safe cleaning, especially if they are unaware of the perks that come with a large walk-in shower with seats and wheelchair accessibility.
Selecting the right bathroom to give a makeover plays a large part in maintaining home value for the future while also prioritizing your own luxury experience. Walk-in showers tend to be a great fit in homes with another full bathroom, in which a tub is available. The combination of a walk-in shower and a tub in separate bathrooms is very attractive to buyers who are looking for an accessible home.

3. Fall Risk

The floors of walk-in showers can be slippery when wet, which increases the risk of a fall. This is a considerable concern for elderly individuals, as the risk of a fall increases as you get older. Fortunately, it is easy to mitigate this risk. You can place non-skid tracks on the floor to create grip while it’s wet. Grab bars also reduce the risk of a serious fall, and they are easy to install.
Proper drainage also plays a large role in reducing fall risk. If water pools, then it is more likely to end up on the floor outside your shower. Prioritize your drain in the process and talk with the installers to make sure that it meets your needs. Use bath mats right outside the shower in case of water leaks, as they help give grip in what could be a slippery situation.

4. Shower Size

Walk-in showers come in many shapes, sizes and styles. If you have a smaller bathroom, then your shower, subsequently, will also be smaller than it would if there were a tub. Walk-in showers can make any size bathroom feel much larger since they do not section off the room in the same way as shower curtains. The glass panes draw more attention to the full size of the room regardless of the actual size of the shower. This accommodation does have a drawback, which is a smaller shower.
These showers still have plenty of room for you to take your shower, but they may have less extra elbow room. The largest concern for shower size comes with a smaller bathroom, and proper planning from a professional can easily resolve this issue. Different accommodations, such as wheelchair accessibility, can still be made.

Doorless Shower Pros and Cons

Some walk-in styles ditch the door. Doorless walk-in showers are becoming more popular in bathroom renovations. With proper planning and an important focus on drainage and architectural affordances, a doorless shower enhances the luxury experience. Here are some pros and cons of a doorless shower.

Pros

  • You get a more cohesive aesthetic for your bathroom: Without a shower curtain or door, the material of the shower becomes a seamless part of the bathroom without any disruption in the style. Doorless showers remove one of the steps of preparing a bathroom for use. The doorless shower also opens the possibility for materials you use. As mentioned earlier, showers can get slippery from water droplets. Rather than non-skid strips on the floor, you can use building materials on the floor that have a natural grip to tie the room together.
  • Your bathroom appears much larger: A significant benefit of a regular walk-in shower is that the room looks more spacious. Removing the door enhances this benefit, as the architectural design and material create the natural sectioning of the room. You can optimize the space in your bathroom by trying the doorless shower layout. The sleek design of a doorless shower creates a stylish, open bathroom.
  • There’s less to clean: Ease of cleaning is a significant selling point for many home buyers. Shower curtains collect mildew and soap residue, making them difficult to clean or requiring more frequent attention. Doors collect water droplets and, after cleaning, may show streaks. By nature, doorless showers remove this factor and make it easier to attend to the maintenance of your bathroom.

Cons

  • There is more airflow: Without a door, the cold air from outside the shower can enter freely. Showers with doors or curtains trap the steam and keep you warm while you wash, so eliminating that barrier means not only that your warm steam from the shower fills the rest of the bathroom more easily, but also that the cold air from the rest of the room easily enters the shower area. You can address this issue by placing a warming lamp above the shower or using warming flooring.
  • Your bathroom may not be large enough: A doorless shower requires mindful planning, from efficient drainage to building materials. If your bathroom is too small, then you risk more water droplets escaping the designated shower space and getting onto the rest of the bathroom area. You risk water damage to other parts of the room if your water is splashing to the rest of the room, so a door may be necessary for some bathroom layouts and sizes.

Bring Luxury to Your Bathroom With Limitless Renovations

Walk-in showers can bring accessibility, style and ease into your home. There are many considerations to be made as you plan mindfully for a bathroom renovation, so bringing in a trustworthy contractor is key.
Limitless Renovations has proven excellence in bathroom remodeling. We are experts in their field and have experience with many different styles to match your wants and needs. We can help you create a custom bathroom that feels refreshed and new. You can contact us to start your bathroom renovation by calling us at 404-369-0098 or using our online contact form.
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