Dimensions for doorless walk-in shower stall....

idranoelJanuary 8, 2009

I once saw a full bath that had a walk-in shower that was so deep that it didn't even need a door. Most or all of the hall-like stall that went to the shower head was graded so that you didn't have to worry about water escaping the stall. Incidentally, the stall had cool exposed copper water supply lines. Anyway, does anyone know what dimensions would be appropriate for such a stall and what degree of grading would be appropriate?



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We are building a walk in doorless shower now. Our shower is 4' X 8'. We have a long, narrow bathroom (17' x 8') and we put the shower at one end of the room to kind of square up the space. It is huge. I think 3' x 8' would have been wide enough but DH won the debate.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 7:48PM
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I am in the "wishing" stages of a doorless shower - I would appreciate anyone's comments - we are thinking about renovating our master bath & installing a square doorless shower that would allow 2 people to stand next to each other under two shower heads on the "back" wall, if you can envision what I am thinking. Right now the space is occupied by a spa tub that we never use - we are shower people. It measures about 5 ft x 5 ft. Based on the shower spray from our current shower - a corner glass door unit - I think this amount of space is sufficient.

I know anything is possible with enough money - but do the experts here think that we can build this square shower without a huge amount of extraordinary expense?

Many thanks -

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 8:20PM
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Here's the link to a blog I did a while back that has a link to some really cool shower bases.

Here is a link that might be useful: doorless shower blog

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 9:27PM
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Most of the walk in showers I've done are "L" shaped, or have a demising wall between the doorway and showering area. The ones with the demising wall are usually about 4x7 over all.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 10:50PM
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My doorless shower is only 5.5' x 4'. The key is having the overhead rain showerhead, as the flow of water is directed straight down and doesn't have too much pressure. We have a teak mat just outside the doorway, and very little water actually escapes the enclosure. Two people can stand inside (there is a second handheld showerhead).

Sorry, can't do a better photo because the bathroom is pretty small.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 7:46AM
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We are in the processing of building one that measures 7' x 4'8" overall plus a small return with a low curb at the exit. Imagine a rectangle; north wall (7') is split - right 4' holds the shower head pointing south & left 3' is open and extends another 1' north for exit. East wall (4'8") is blank, south wall is 7' and west wall is 5'8". There is a tiled in bench in the SW corner with a 2nd (hand held) shower head mounted on west wall. Hopefully this set-up will carry us into old age. DH wanted a curb at exit because of this 2nd hand held. Can't imagine any water from the main head escaping from the exit. Biggest expense is the amount of tile necessary to cover the whole thing including floor & ceiling - about 250 sq ft!

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 8:15AM
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My walk-in is 5' by 8, one of the corners is partially clipped at a 45-degree angle, and that's where the door is.

The main shower head is on the clipped long wall, so the head is about 3-1/2' from the door. No water spray gets on the bath floor.

There's an overhead rain head as well, no water escapes when that is used.

I'd say that a shower head 5' to 5-1/2' from the shower entry if the spray points towards the opening, or 4' from a door with the spray perpendicular to the door, would put you in the 95th percentile of keeping the water in the shower. There's always a chance of overspray depending on the type of spray head used and how vigorous the bather is.


    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 11:56AM
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Here's ours:

Entry is the opening to the far right. Rough dimensions are 70x48. Plenty of room and the small glass piece attached to the far right wall protects the door and frame immediately adjacent to the opening.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 12:46PM
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While I realize it's a matter of personal preference, I don't quite see the advantages of a doorless shower, unless you're dealing with impaired access issues.

Because doorless showers have to be big enough to contain splashing, they take up a lot of valuable real estate in the bathroom. They also tend to be chillier and draftier than a shower with a door, even a generously proportioned shower with a door.

When I was in the planning stages of my master bathroom, my architect asked me about a doorless shower, but I decided I'd rather go with a door on a smaller 40" x 60" shower, and devote more space to an open area around around the bathtub.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 1:42PM
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the doorless showers i have plumbed i have installed floor drains out in front of them, where you step on the way out
and..i've installled in floor heat in the floors of showers
and...a tub spout about 18" off the floor

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 4:01PM
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Looks like "where there is a will there is a way" to fit what you want into the space you have.The use of the trough rather than a singular drain seems to offer a new concept for design.
Pic's to Ponder;

    Bookmark   January 10, 2009 at 7:06AM
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WOW- thanks for posting such great inspiration. I would say maybe next time to some of these ideas, but not me, twice is enough. But wonderful ideas!

First off, my doorless shower is not walk in as was originally planned. It got too complicated and my crew was already trailblazing, so I backed off that idea but do feel like I have enough wiggle room to easily modify for handicapped access if that is ever needed. My motivation for going doorless was not access, but was the desire to avoid "door crud" for lack of a better word. Every shower I've ever had inevitably had the nasty door sweep at the bottom or gross hinges that never quite came clean, etc. Yes, I do clean, but surely you know what I mean. It just seems to accumulate.

As for drafty, I realized that was a potential issue, so we situated our opening to an interior wall and also positioned our Panasonic heat fan to blow into the shower, which provides a nice warm zone for me. My husband doesn't use the heat fan when he showers and has no draft complaints, I just like the extra warm air. As long as your door opening does not face a window or another door or open area, I don't think drafts are a deal breaker. Location is everything, though.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2009 at 8:51AM
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the doorless or 'snail shower' idea was a must for DH. our doorless is 4' x 7' for the main shower area, with the little "L" jog for entry that's 3'x 3'.

sorry, I don't have a good picture of the opening (all my pics are too focused on the tile work!).

    Bookmark   January 10, 2009 at 9:35AM
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Cleaning was absolutely my motivation for not having a door. Not only to avoid ladycfp's dreaded "door crud" but also the chore of squeegeeing (sp?) the glass every shower and yet still ending up with unremovable waterspots due to our hard water. To be honest, that's why I don't understand doorless walk-ins that still have glass walls! We're still under construction so I can't speak to draftiness, although I am concerned about it, we have radiant heat in the floor so hopefully we'll be good. In the other 2 baths where space was an issue, we just opted for good ol' shower curtains.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2009 at 7:17PM
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I thought that too and was surprised how many photos I found that way, pretty but might as well have the door. To the other extreme, I was surprised to find small shower toilet so close, sure looks like everything would be a wet mess if one took a shower. Wet Room literally means wet.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2009 at 10:46PM
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I have hard water that turns everything green. I've heard of hard water turning things orange here, but mine turns green. It leaves layers of white and green on everything. I'm going for doorless. I'm willing to keep up the shower (tile) but I have a full live besides cleaning.

I don't get the glass showers with no doors. What is the point?

    Bookmark   January 11, 2009 at 12:04AM
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Cleaning was absolutely my motivation for not having a door. Not only to avoid ladycfp's dreaded "door crud" but also the chore of squeegeeing (sp?) the glass every shower and yet still ending up with unremovable waterspots due to our hard water. To be honest, that's why I don't understand doorless walk-ins that still have glass walls!

Ditto for me. Here's the floor plan of our doorless shower. It is in a small room with the toilet, which keeps the heat in quite well. We also changed the in swing door to a pocket door.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2009 at 11:13AM
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Hate to be a naysayer, but you should strongly consider whether or not you want a completely open shower.

My neighbor works in a high end tile showroom and says they get a lot of post installation complaints about these being too cold and drafty. The reason showers are warm is the steam being enclosed and if you have an open shower and a strong fan, you lose that captured steam. Last year I stayed at a hotel that had an open shower and I have to agree. Even with multiple showerheads it still felt a lot colder than my small enclosed shower at home.

That being said, most of the showers posted here arenÂt completely open. I think an L-shape or partially enclosed (like ladycfpÂs) configuration would help solve this problem.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2009 at 12:59PM
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This post and the pictures reminded me of an experience I had. In high school I went on a class trip to the then Soviet Union. We spent much of the trip traveling throughout the Ukraine. I remember the hotels - very small and sparse and probably cheap. Good for students and the teacher/chaperones! The bathrooms were memorable because they had open showers. A showerhead right between the toilet and sink. EVERYTHING GOT WET! Very difficult for the person who had to use the toilet after someone showered! Oh well.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2009 at 3:11PM
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I am in agreement with those who want a doorless shower to avoid the cleaning issues - we have hard water and although I clean the shower daily there are still lime deposits on the frame (aluminum) and water spots on the glass. I cannot wait to RIP it out - we will not have to pay anyone to demolish it as I want to every single day.

We have used doorless showers in hotels & love them - very sleek as well.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2009 at 3:30PM
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Doorless to avoid door crud and Showerguard glass to avoid glass crud. It is guaranteed not to spot for ten years. I will keep you posted on that!

    Bookmark   January 11, 2009 at 4:58PM
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My wife wants this walk in shower. (link hopefully attached)
I'm warming up to the idea. We'd have this monster, and no tub at all.
Think it ran a little over $3000.00

Here is a link that might be useful: Walk-in shower

    Bookmark   January 11, 2009 at 10:10PM
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A couple of posters have mentioned hard water. If this is a new experience for you, I would strongly recommend that you consider installing a water softener. When we built our home, we had to put in a well (our first time with one.) The water was tested for all the usual suspects, except for hardness. It made us weep to see all our beautiful Kohler faucets turn cruddy before our eyes, not to mention taking lousy showers, making lousy coffee, and doing lousy laundry. The softener became a necessity and not a "nice-to-have". Of course, hardness is all relative in that some folks have just a little hardness that can be tolerated okay while others can have very hard water. Yes, it's yet another appliance to maintain, but that hard water negatively affects so many of your home's systems.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2009 at 12:58PM
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Seattlemike, I am so tempted to install a whole house water softener. We already have a whole house water filter - but we're on a septic and I'm concerned about putting sodium in the ground. Know anything about this?

I measured our shower for tile. It's really 4' x 7' 8". What a monster! The door is only 27" wide and sits at one end. I'm hoping there won't be too many drafts. If so, I think I'll just stick up a curtain. I really don't want to do this as we arched the top of the door - to match the coved ceilings we just installed in our old house that is part Craftsman/Alfred Hitchcock/fraternity house and part coved ceiling and painted wainscotting. (1912)

    Bookmark   January 12, 2009 at 1:58PM
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was wondering how hostapasta's remodel is coming as we too are in the "planning stages" and are considering a doorless shower?

    Bookmark   February 1, 2009 at 3:17PM
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We have a doorless 4' X 8' shower that we are currently remodeling. There used to be just 2 regular showerheads in it, we have redone all the backing, tile (was 17 yrs old), and installed a bench, handshower, rainshower, regular showerhead, and 4 body spray watertiles. It has 2 lights in the ceiling as well, but we never need to turn them on (skylight in bathroom) unless it's night time.

We took out the glass block tiles we used to have (would not use again, they date your shower) and put in glass panels and used travertine throughout.

I highly prefer no door.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2009 at 3:04PM
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