handshower placement--not on slidebar

socalsisterJune 8, 2010


We are installing a handshower on a stationary mount as opposed to a slide bar. We will have a fixed showerhead as well. We are using the diverter trim from a bath/shower setup to switch between the two fixtures (and unfortunately, according to the plumber, the handshower will turn on first). I need to add that the shower is very small, 32x48, and the fixtures will be centered on the 48" wall. We plan to use the showerhead to shower and the handshower for cleaning the shower. We are both right-handed, and intend to have two niches--one on either side of the shower plumbing. The shower door opens from the right which means we have to turn on the shower while partially in it. I was hoping to place the handshower below the right niche, but I think it will interfere partially with access to the niche as well as shoot water at us as we turn it on. How big does a niche have to be to be functional? Where should we place the handshower both for visual appeal as well as function? Any suggestions/comments are very appreciated. (Sorry for the long post!)

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I'm concerned you will not like the layout when you're done. Not only will you get wet when turning on the shower, but the water will be spraying on the door. This means no frameless shower for you, and chances are water will get out of the shower.

Is there some reason you are putting everything on the same wall (head, niche, hand shower)? Can you have the niches on the other walls? If so, I would move them to the left or right walls.

As for the size of the niche- it depends on what you're using it for. If for bottles- I would say min 10" x 12". You can fit about three shampoo bottles in that space. The other can be used for bar soap and razor.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   June 9, 2010 at 9:14AM
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We just completed a smaller shower than yours (~36x36). We had a similar sized existing shower downstairs with only a fixed shower head. In the new small shower we put ONLY a handheld on a slider bar. For everyday showering purposes, I leave the shower bracket in one spot on the slider bar. When DH uses that shower (which he has not yet!) he can move the head up. When I clean, I can take the handheld off the bracket. The handheld is essentially functioning as a "fixed" head. The reason I go into this on your post is that since I've had the handheld on a slider bar in the new shower, I really want a handheld in the old shower (to make cleaning easier). DH and I were just discussing the options for the existing shower and I asked him if he wanted to keep the fixed shower head (he primarily uses the old shower) and add a handheld on a fixed bracket with a diverter or add a handheld on a slider bar with a diverter. His answer was - just get rid of the fixed head and install the handheld on a slider as the only shower head. So, you might want to consider that the handheld can act as your fixed and you won't have the problem of switching the diverter every time you get in. Our slider bar is just above the valve, so the location is where a fixed head normally goes - and you can still move it lower for children, or just to make the shower head hit your shoulders or back, etc.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2010 at 12:37PM
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Thanks for the thoughtful replies! The fixtures have to go on one wall due to the door placement and code, unfortunately (showerhead can't face the door). I'll give some thought to a different layout. DH has strong aversion to a slide bar. Thanks again!

    Bookmark   June 10, 2010 at 10:24AM
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I have installed a shower head with a diverter to a small hand held shower in my new (not yet finished) bathroom. I have not yet drilled the hole for the mounting bracket, but I intend to mount it on the left side. We are right handed in our house as well, but as I do not anticipate the hand held used anywhere near as much as the shower head, I think the left should be fine. I also had concerns about it being on the right next to the shower curtain and having the diverter switched to hand shower and ending up with a major water situation.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2010 at 2:19PM
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I have had the same setup as kimkitchy for 15 years in two bathrooms. One is the master and the other one used by my two sons who are both around 6'. No complaints ever. Everyone likes it a different height. I move it to different positions depending if I'm washing my hair that morning. We've never missed the fixed shower head for a minute. In my previous home, we had a fixed head plus a side mount for the handheld and it was far less convenient. What is your husband's aversion to a slide bar? Just make sure you get a good quality bar. Our Moen is a lesser quality than our Grohe which operates the same as the day it was intalled. The clear finish on our Moen has rubbed off from moving the handheld and no longer "grips" as firmly as it once did. Grohe products are just awesome.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2010 at 12:02PM
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socalsister, did you ever decide what to do? i'm in the same boat! thanks!

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 6:26PM
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