Shower head location help!

mizfitzAugust 11, 2012

I am planning out our bathroom remodel and have a shower planned that is 36" wide by 46" deep with two sides tiled (both of the possible shower head locations) and two sides frame-less glass surround. There will be a pony wall separating the lower half of the shower from the tub area.

I was originally planning to have the shower head centered on the 46" wall, but apparently there are some serious plumbing challenges to make that happen (it backs to a stairwell that is 2 stories high and the way the joist run makes it difficult to get the water to that location). Additionally I was told that there should be some sort of access panel and due to the challenges of my desired location, the access panel would have to be visible in the stairwell. The other option would back to the laundry room and easy to plumb/access.

I need advice!!! I know that having the shower facing the door opening and being farther from the opening is not ideal, but the costs and pitfalls associated with using the originally planned location are making my head spin. Any advice or real world experiences with a similar layout would be greatly appreciated ;)

I have attached a quick pic of the layout to better illustrate my room, though I was free-styling, so it is not to scale...

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oh, and at this point changing the layout is not an option, as some of the plumbing has already been moved and there is a full wall of windows to the right of the bath/toilet

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 10:47PM
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Could you put it on the other long wall (the one adjacent to the tub)? I know, it won't solve the access panel issue, but it would have the shower head where you wanted it in relation to the door.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 6:40AM
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I would want to put it on the alternative location, especially if anyone using it will be tall (5'10" or more). If that's the case, you'll need to angle the shower head up more and will need more space. But the problem (a major one) with using the alternate wall is that you cannot reach the valves to turn on the shower without getting wet (which you could do if you use the stairway wall).

Complicating matters more, I would have the shower door hinged the other way. I went through the same sort of decision (hinged left or right) with my remodel, and the glass company insisted that I do it the way I've described, contrary to what I thought I wanted. They claimed that I would feel like I was reaching across my body to hinge it along the knee wall and that the double hinge wouldn't work (meaning that I couldn't open the door toward the inside of the shower to get out of the shower because it would strike the shower head. And on top of all of that, it was more expensive to have the hinges on the knee wall side because of the hinge and support hardware you need, and often less structurally sound (they said). If they had wanted me to spend more money, they wouldn't have talked me out of my decision. Now, I couldn't be happier. I've posted my pictures below to show you how the door works in my application (60" x 36" shower), and how yours would look with the controls on the stairway wall and the door hinges on the stairway wall.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 9:31AM
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Thanks for the replies. EngineerChic - unfortunately, I can't have the shower head on the tub side because that wall will be a glass panel. Since it is not a very large shower, I want the open look for the illusion of more space and to have all that wonderful sunlight from the windows. Kevin, thanks for the heads up on the shower door! I hadn't really thought about the structural integrity (or added cost) of having the door supported by the other glass panel. I was just thinking about the location of the towel racks to the shower and thought it would be easiest to reach right out and grab one, but I guess I will be having a more in depth talk with the glass company I'm working with abut all that ;) Anyone else have a shower head facing the door on a frameless glass surround? Are you happy with the decision or would you change it?

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 11:28AM
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Ask your plumber about code in your area as I have read that in some areas you are not allowed to have the shower head facing the shower door.

Controls and the shower head do not have to be on the same wall - ours are on opposite walls. Put your controls wherever you want them so you won't get wet when you open the door.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 2:26PM
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Not sure if this is normal, but could you put the water on the easy wall, but have it go to a handheld shower head that you mount on a bar on the stair wall? The water would come out the easy side, but be sprayed from the preferred side. Hard to describe, but basically the hose comes out the easy wall to the end of the shower hose, which has the mounting bar and holder on the other wall instead of right next to the hookup.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 5:33PM
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