Bench in the shower -- yes or no?

jewelisfabulousFebruary 5, 2014

We're remodeling our master bath and will have a 42" wide x 52" deep tiled shower. We need to decide if we want to have a 12" deep granite bench situated along the short wall opposite the shower door. If we give the go ahead, the finished shower floor space will be 42" wide x 40" deep.

At this point, we're not sure that we'll use the bench (granite is chilly to sit on!), but wonder if age or a medical condition in the future will make us glad to have a built-in bench.

Also, looking at re-sale, is a bench in the shower something buyers find attractive?

Your input would be appreciated!

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tibbrix

I think all showers should have benches in them. Granite is also slippery. What about teak?

    Bookmark   February 5, 2014 at 10:26PM
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suzanne_sl

And even if you're not old and creaky, a bench is handy for shaving your legs and storing large shampoo bottles.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2014 at 10:46PM
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sjhockeyfan325

I didn't use the bench in my shower ever - what a waste. When my daughter broke her leg and had to use our shower, we bought one of those little white stools like they use in hospitals. I wouldn't have minded a little shelf to rest a leg on while shaving.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2014 at 11:51PM
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Babka NorCal 9b

YES! I have had a bench for 30 years. Never sat on it. We put one in our brand new shower too. I DO use it for putting my foot down to wash my legs/feet. I do use it for occasional shaving. I do use it to put poofs and whatever for convenience. I like it...a lot. I suppose one day I could sit on it, and just aiming the hot water on it would warm it up rather quickly if that were necessary. When we travel I really miss having that foot rest about 20" up from the floor.

-Babka

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 1:05AM
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kirkhall

You can always get a nice teak or other wood bench for later. (put blocking in the wall now, if you want one later that might attach to the wall).

I put in a little triangle of stone (small--maybe protrudes 8") at a nice height, in a corner, for a shaving foot ledge... I don't take baths because I don't like my bum to touch the bottom of a tub. I can't imagine sitting on a stone shower bench. :/

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 1:06AM
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raehelen

52" isn't that long to have a built in bench. There are so many portable teak benches available. That's what I bought for my Master BR. Of course, I've been using as a make-up bench in my bedroom, to pile clothes on, etc. cuz we're still not finished the reno. But I think I'm really going to like the flexibility of having a bench that is removable if I want a two-person shower, and or to use outside the shower as extra seating.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 3:56AM
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tibbrix

There are also teak benches that can be folded down for use and back up when not in use, if the shower is small. Ideally, a shower is big enough to carry a bench and still have room to shower in comfortably, But if not, it can be a nuisance. But, not having anything to put your heel or foot on to shave legs and wash under feet is also a pain.

This one is just seat, but I'm sure they come in longer lengths.

Here is a link that might be useful: Fold-down seat

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 8:05AM
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tibbrix

Another tip: When buying tile, buy extra and store it, so that, in the future, if one breaks, or say you do install a foldable teak bench and decide in the future you (or a future buyer) want it out, you can remove the single tiles, replace them, and not have to redo the entire shower (floor, kitchen, wherever!) because the "style is no longer available" (or a new owner has no idea where to get it)!

This post was edited by Tibbrix on Thu, Feb 6, 14 at 8:32

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 8:21AM
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badgergal

My shower is approximately 42x48 with a built in bench on the short wall. We did not have the bench go down to the floor. Some would think the underside would get nasty but we haven't found that to be a problem. Obviously, you do have to reach under it at times to clean it. It works for us. Just thought you might like to see what it looks like.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 8:54AM
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Katy60

I did a curbless, doorless shower with aging in place in mind. I decided against a built in bench, because it is less flexible than a free-standing bench. Mobility problems associated with age can vary quite a bit and affect where a bench needs to be and its needed features. On the other hand, if your shower will require a certain level of mobility to use anyway (a threshold, no grab bars, etc.), a user would probably be able to use the built in bench if needed.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 10:34AM
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sjhockeyfan325

I don't even think it would be safe for an older person to sit on a granite bench.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 11:44AM
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divotdiva

ours is just under 4 x 6 ft and I didn't put in a built in bench. I will probably buy a small teak one like shown by raehelen, for shaving and sitting if needed. I couldn't figure out how to put in a little ledge to shave legs without it looking odd, so I'm sure I will miss that aspect as our old shower / tub combo had a wide ledge than ran the length of the tub and same height.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 1:40PM
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jewelisfabulous

Y'all are awesome! Thank you so much for your quick replies, the links, and the photos. After reading through your comments, we decided not to have a built-in bench. Instead, we'll find a teak bench or other kind of seat we can use when needed and take out when not needed. We'll also have a 6" deep ledge along one of the long walls that'll be at a good height for shaving and can hold things that don't fit into the niches. Whew!

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 4:58PM
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lewisoh

We installed a fold-down teak bench in our 42x54" shower on the wall opposite the shower head. I'm injury prone and having the bench along with a hand held shower head on a bar has come in handy for me. And it's great for tending to your feet :)

I liked the stability of having a permanently affixed bench as opposed to a moveable bench.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2014 at 8:55PM
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marykh

Jewel654 thanks for the question, and thanks to all of you who shared your answers. I was just about to ask the same thing.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2014 at 10:34AM
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AlyB

We decided not to put a bench in ours -- I thought I would buy a teak bench when the shower was done, but I haven't gotten around to it. I have one of those little suction toe rests for shaving legs. I am glad we didn't do the bench -- I like having the roomy shower!

    Bookmark   February 10, 2014 at 10:08PM
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chisue

I met a lady in a hospital waiting room. I asked her how she had fractured her leg. She slid off the built-in bench in her shower! (Remember, the bench has to have a slight tilt or the water will sit on it.)

    Bookmark   February 10, 2014 at 10:53PM
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jackfre

I do not recall th company, but I considered adding a flooding bench to a shower. I saw it in a showroom. Stainless and teak seat. Approx 24" long and again, it folds out of the way. Pricey, but nice.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2014 at 4:28PM
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