Bloga beautiful shower with a sink to the left and a wooden wall behind the shower

If you’re shopping for a glass shower door for your home for the first time, there are some basics you need to know in order to ensure the success of your project. With an increasing number of options available, it’s important to know the pros and cons of the many variations that exist in the realm of glass shower doors.

The Glass

Of fundamental importance is the type of glass used. The kind of glass you may think of as “normal glass” is annealed glass. This is actually no longer used on shower doors or enclosures because of safety issues.

The most common type of glass for a shower is tempered glass. Due to its being put through a regimen of heating and quick cooling, tempered glass is more durable than annealed glass and behaves differently if broken. Instead breaking into the razor sharp shards of annealed glass, a piece of tempered glass will disintegrate into small chunks that are not as hazardous.

In situations where there is special concern about the shower glass being fractured, you might see a unit made from laminated glass. While this looks like a regular sheet of glass, it is actually comprised of two sheets of glass attached to a central layer of clear vinyl. The result: even if the glass gets broken it will remain in place.

If you order a tempered glass shower door – which is what most people do – you will be able to choose from many different glass styles. The basic categories are clear, ultra-clear, patterned, acid-etched (frosted), tinted, and cast. Within the patterned, acid-etched, tinted, and cast groups, you have additional options. For instance, there are many, many textured patterns available for shower glass.

shower against a wall that has a seat inside the shower with a toilet in-front of it

The Structure

You’ll also want to have a good grasp on the differences among frameless, semi-frameless, and framed shower doors.

Frameless: These systems feature unframed pieces of glass. Structural integrity is achieved by using thick glass, metal clips, caulk joints, and sometimes a header.

Semi-frameless: Units in this classification have frameless door panels, but some framing is present on other glass edges.

Framed: A door or enclosure in this category will be built using aluminum framing, and there will be no bare glass edges present.

The Door

Finally, the door itself can be swinging, bypass, or sliding. Swinging is rather self-explanatory, while bypass is a bit more involved. A bypass shower enclosure will have two sliding doors that move in parallel tracks and will always be frameless or framed. Frameless sliding door systems typically feature a fixed panel of glass next to a single door panel that glides along some type of apparatus. The best door for your bathroom is determined by clearance around the shower entrance, personal preference, and the desired look.

Working with ABC

Ensure the success of your shower door project by teaming up with ABC Glass and Mirror, Inc. We will bring our decades of experience and our commitment to customer satisfaction to your remodel. Ordering a shower door from ABC is a convenient and easy process, and your custom unit will be installed by a trained team. Dial 703-257-7150 to learn more and to schedule a free in-home consultation!

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Contact us today at 703-257-7150 and let’s talk about your options and a free estimate. Or simply submit your comments below. We love hearing from you! Contact ABC Glass and Mirror Today!

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