Shower door vs. shower curtain: if you’re remodeling – or even just redecorating – a bathroom, this is a matter you’ll have to settle. Both products are widely used in American homes, and each has its pros and cons. Some homeowners will use one or the other in every bathroom, while others use glass doors for some showers and curtains for others. Let’s explore everything you need to know for successfully enclosing YOUR shower.
Let’s answer some FAQs about shower doors and curtains to get started.
What are shower doors made of?
You probably know that shower doors primarily consist of glass, but it’s important to note that standard annealed glass is never used. Since shower glass is used frequently and in close proximity to people, only tempered glass or laminated glass may be used on a shower enclosure. In addition to the glass, shower doors have metal components and sometimes vinyl seals.
Are both swinging and sliding shower door options available?
Yes. Glass shower doors can swing on wall mounted or pivot hinges, but you can also choose frameless rolling doors or semi-frameless bypass doors.
Where can a I buy a glass shower door?
Custom glass shower door installation is offered by glass companies such as ABC Glass & Mirror of Manassas Park, VA. Shower door kits are also available online and from home improvement retailers. However, you will have to do the installation yourself, and the glass panels won’t be custom-cut to fit in your bathroom.
How do shower curtains provide water containment?
A shower curtain is typically paired with a liner, and both hang from the curtain rod on the same rings. The liner must rest inside the tub basin, while the curtain hangs on the outside. Also, both curtain and liner need to be pulled across the entire shower entrance to block rogue water droplets.
What are shower curtains made off?
Shower curtains and liners are typically made of cloth or vinyl. Water resistant coatings or mildew fighting treatments are sometimes applied.
Where can I get a shower curtain?
Shower curtains and liners are available at a wide range of retailers including discount stores, department stores, home improvement stores, and online.
There is no doubt that a shower curtain is significantly cheaper than a glass shower door. However, this basic reality does not necessarily determine which choice is right for your situation. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each investment.
Pro: Shower curtains can be easily purchased online or at a store with prices starting around $15. Unless you already have them, you will also need a curtain rod and hooks, but these are also fairly inexpensive.
Pro: Hanging a shower curtain is typically a quick DIY task, especially if the rod is already place.
Pro: If you get tired of the shower curtain or want to change the bathroom’s style, switching to a new curtain is cheap and easy.
Con: On the whole, a shower curtain is a less luxurious and fashionable choice. If you’re getting your home ready to sell, for instance, a new shower curtain will not boost the home’s appeal like a glass shower can.
Con: While a shower curtain is fairly inexpensive, the water containment is offers can be iffy. For example, if the liner and curtain aren’t properly arranged, you’ll likely end up with a puddle on the bathroom floor. Over time, this can lead to costly problems relating to rot, paint damage, and mildew.
Glass Shower Door
Pro: A glass shower door can modernize a bathroom and make it more appealing to potential homebuyers.
Pro: A shower door or enclosure is more costly than a curtain, but it’s an investment that adds to your bathroom’s convenience and visual appeal for years to come.
Pro: Along with its higher price point, a glass shower barrier brings benefits that shower curtains can’t offer, such as transparency to make the bathroom look larger as well as more reliable water containment.
Con: A glass shower door is more expensive than a curtain, so your financial situation needs to be such that it’s the right time to make this investment into your home.
Yes! If you want a glass shower but are concerned about the cost, there are a few different ways to make it less expensive. At the same time, be sure you’re getting your money’s worth by working with a reputable, highly rated glass shop. Keep in mind that the lowest price is usually not the best investment, and if a price sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Instead, look into one of these price-lowering options.
Glass shower doors and enclosure do seem to be the more fashion forward choice. For example, in this Houzz collection of luxury bathroom pics, glass showers are predominant with not a single shower curtain to be seen. While shower curtains will most likely always be an acceptable décor choice, they do not bring a bathroom in line with today’s hottest trends and styles the way a glass door or enclosure will. Currently, two glass shower designs vie for the top spot:
Both options can work well for water containment, but experience suggests that glass shower doors can be more reliable. A few points to consider:
Showers use water, so any shower area is somewhat vulnerable to mold and mildew growth. When it comes to shower curtains, the liner is often the problem point. The bottom of the liner frequently remains damp long enough for bacteria, mold, or mildew to form. Some liners are machine washable, but stains can remain after they’ve been cleansed. Tips for dealing with this include:
The glass and metal on a shower door cannot get infested with mold, mildew, and bacteria the way cloth can. However, even a shower enclosed with glass is at risk of yucky situations if it’s not properly cared for. Tips for avoiding problems include:
Glass showers can definitely be customized to meet your décor goals and practical needs. Of course, you won’t see the same wide variety of colors, patterns, and pictures that are found on shower curtains, but glass showers are known for their versatility. This means that a glass shower will typically match any color scheme and many themes and decorating styles. Thus, while you’ll want a new shower curtain when you change your bathroom design, a glass shower will still “match” even if you alter the color palette and décor accent items.
One way to customize a shower door or enclosure is through the type of glass chosen. Let’s take a closer look at 5 typical categories of glass offered by custom shower companies.
Glass showers can also be tailored to your preferences in these ways:
Shower curtains and liners can be wiped down or spot cleaned, but more often they are machine washed or replaced. If the curtain and liner combo isn’t keeping water in the shower very well, moisture on the bathroom floor can lead to nasty buildup as well as mold issues that make cleaning day more of a chore. One pitfall that can occur is cleaning the tub and shower and not noticing that the liner is moldy or infested with pink bacteria. This is especially embarrassing if you’re preparing the bathroom for guests!
On the other hand, a glass shower door or enclosure will need to be cleaned regularly. However, you can minimize this by ordering coated glass. While spray-on glass protectants are better than nothing, custom glass shops such as ABC offer permanently protected shower glass. Benefits include:
In most circumstances, shower doors and shower curtains can be used interchangeably. Rarely, the structure and layout of a bathroom/shower will make it difficult or impossible to add glass. In addition, there are some situations that make one or the other more desirable.
The luxury and beauty of glass showers make them especially attractive in these settings:
Also, the reliable water containment provided by shower doors makes them appealing for showers used by children and teens.
However, if you have a tub where you bathe a baby, help a toddler with hair-washing, etc., a curtain may be more convenient. You can push the curtain aside and open up almost the entire tub entrance, giving yourself plenty of room to maneuver as you assist your infant or young child.
Homeowners in Northern Virginia and the surrounding areas can contact ABC Glass & Mirror of Manassas Park at (703)257-7150. The general process will look like this:
Once your custom glass and shower hardware are ready, we’ll set up another visit to your home, and an installation team will put the door or enclosure in its place. ABC is a veteran-owned family business with long-standing ties to the area and a commitment to customer satisfaction. If you’ve been wanting to upgrade your bathroom with shower glass, we invite you to call us and learn more about the many options we offer!