shower bench optimal size? help!

tomalyseAugust 19, 2007

We are remodeling a bathroom and taking out the tub and replacing it with a shower. The shower dimensions will be approx. 24" wide x 46 - 48" long. We are debating building in a bench along the back but are not sure that we have enough room. How deep should a shower bench seat be? I think @ 10" minimum, my husband thinks we might only have room for @ 8". Would that be comfortable for an older person to sit on while bathing? How big should the standing area be so that it is easy to shower? (We've only had the one bathroom with a tub for 23 years). I worry that we might build in a bench that's too small to be useful. Conversely, we also don't want to build a bench that is too big that it makes using the shower cramped for an able bodied person. Thanks for your input!

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cynandjon

My suggestion would be to stand in the area your shower is going to be and put your hands up on your head like your washing your hair. See if your elbows touch the sides.
24 inches is pretty narrow. Our shower is 30in. Im very small and I whack my elbows on the sides.
Depending where your shower head is, the water may not even hit you.
cyn

    Bookmark   August 20, 2007 at 8:18AM
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cynandjon

I think minimum would have to be 20"long by 16 deep. I would sit on a chair and measure across your lap. Give enough space on the sides so you can move around. It really depends on your body size.
We are putting one into our new shower too.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2007 at 8:29AM
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kgwlisa

I agree, 24" is too narrow for a shower. The minimum is 30", which is also the size of most standard bathtubs. 30x48 is too small IMO for a bench to be built in and 8-10" is too narrow to be a useful bench. It's more like an oversized ledge. If you're just looking for somewhere to prop your foot up for leg shaving then you could get away with a more narrow ledge than that. If you are dead set on having a bench, consider a teak bench that can be removed if you feel it is cramping the shower too much. Alternately if you are planning to have an elderly person use the shower, a movable bench will really be ideal because it allows them to position it wherever they are most comfortable. My grandmother used to sit close to the controls so she could reach them from the seat and have a little more independence.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2007 at 8:41AM
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cynandjon

I agree with the moveable bench.They also make shower chairs for old people. Also if the person needs to sit while showering a hand held shower might be the best option so they dont have to move around.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2007 at 9:33AM
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tomalyse

The 24" wide is set by a window. Our current tub (1928 house) is only 24" wide x 60" long with a shower curtain and we have just gotten used to it. We want to make the vanity a little longer and that is why we are thinking of reducing the length of the shower to @ 48". The proposed bench would be 24" wide (width of the shower) but we are not sure of the minimum depth. Wish we had more room, but we don't! We will get a moveable bench if necessary - but my parents had one and it was less stable getting in/out of as it could move around. Thus, if at all reasonable, we wanted to build something in. But it sounds like the consensus here is that our dimensions are too tight. What would you do?

    Bookmark   August 20, 2007 at 8:56PM
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cynandjon

When your in a tub with a shower curtian its not as tight as solid walls. 48 L is good.
They do make shower chairs for elderly people that are stable. YOu can look at them at a medical supply store or probably find them online.
I just saw a shower on here with a bench, Ill see if I can find it.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2007 at 10:43PM
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cynandjon

Heres sharkm's gorgeous shower with a bench

Here is a link that might be useful: shower picture

    Bookmark   August 20, 2007 at 10:48PM
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