By Brenna Malmberg, from Houzz
Project: Install a glass door or screen (aka panel) on your tub-shower combo.
It’s a good project for you if: You are remodeling your bathroom or want to replace your tub-shower curtain or door. It’s also for people who would like to make their bathroom look visually larger, want to show off the tile in their shower or are tired of having a shower curtain, says Michael Guttilla, president of Guttilla Contracting in New York.
Glass screen. A glass screen or panel extends about 60 percent of the way across the side of the tub and is fixed to the wall with brackets or hinges. It can be stationary or have a door that swings out from the tub. “There’s always a chance that when you shower, water will splash out,” Guttilla says, “but nine out of 10 times, that’s never a problem. If you shower with the water pointed all the way to the back of the shower, that’s when it becomes an issue.”
A glass screen is a great option in small bathrooms because it takes up less space physically and visually since less glass and hardware are needed.
In this bathroom, Jaci Springfield, designer and owner of Springfield Design, used a glass panel with a door that swings out because it fit the room’s contemporary feel and makes the tile in the shower a focal point. The swinging door allows better access to the water controls.
Glass style. While clear glass is the most popular, Guttilla says, you also can find etched or frosted glass.
Glass height. The top of the glass should go up at least to the top of the shower head.
Hardware style. A glass screen or frameless glass door requires little hardware compared with a sliding or framed glass door. Clients often opt to use the same hardware finish as the shower head and tub faucet.
Cleaning. One advantage to replacing your shower curtain with a glass enclosure is that it can be easier to clean, says Nureed Saeed, creative director and owner of Nu Interiors. “Shower curtains require washing or replacement due to molding,” she says. “Glass enclosures don’t have that issue. For a small space like this one, the panel allows for that spa feel and easy cleanup.
However, if you live in a region with a high concentration of minerals in the water, the glass requires constant wiping down after each shower (such as with a squeegee after every use). “Some people find this cumbersome to maintain,” she says.
Springfield agrees. “A squeegee in the shower is a must,” she says. “They need to be spotless to look their best.”
Cost. You can purchase a glass tub screen starting at $200, but Guttilla cautions that you get what you pay for and that the price doesn’t include installation. A custom glass screen or door that perfectly fits your space and is installed by a professional costs about $1,000 to $5,000. In general, Guttilla says, a glass door or screen will cost more than a sliding shower door or a rod with a curtain.
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