Add A Shower?

When considering bathtub to shower conversions there are many factors to consider. First, are you certain removing the tub is a good option? Many realtors advise homeowners to keep at least one bathtub in their home for good resale value. Perhaps adding a shower head to an existing tub is a more viable option. One problem with such addition is when a window is present. If a window exists you must decide if you will remove the window, replace the window with a glass block, or tile over the window entirely. Each of these solutions carries different costs which must be considered. In order to add a shower to an existing tub, you will need to demolish the wet wall behind the bathtub and change the current valve to a new unit that includes a shower riser and spray head which mounts on the wall at showerhead height. 

The Tub Is Out!

Once you decide it is time to remove the tub and replace it with a shower your options multiply. Removing your existing tub allows you to check for loose fittings, leaking pipes, and damaged subflooring and grants you the opportunity for repairs. Additionally, now would be a good time to upgrade the size of your incoming water pipes as well as the size of your drain pipe to allow for smooth running water. 

Kit Or No Kit?

Next, you will need to decide what type of shower you will use for replacement. Will you purchase a shower kit or custom-build your replacement shower? Kits come complete with skid-proof pans, curbs to keep water in the shower and off the floor, a pre-drilled drain hole, and doors. Prefabricated shower kits offer one-piece options or options that have two or three-piece walls that are relatively inexpensive, easy to install, and easy to maintain. 

Custom Designed Showers

In addition to multiple design options, a custom-built shower can provide easy access for elderly homeowners or those with disabilities. If wheelchair access is needed a curbless pan must be installed which requires, for proper drainage, that the pan is positioned lower than the rest of the bathroom floor. This added expense must be calculated in your costs. Custom building a shower is more expensive than a prefabricated kit but it allows you to customize the shower to best meet your family’s needs.

Size Matters!

Some things to consider when deciding on a custom shower replacement are the spacing required to ensure your design will work. The shower has a minimum size requirement of 30 by 30inches. However, a more comfortable 36 by 36 is recommended. The shower must be at least 15-18 inches away from the center of the toilet and 21 inches from the front of the toilet. If your replacement shower will have a swinging door adequate swing space must be calculated so it is not obstructed by the vanity or toilet.

Design It 

There are many options available to homeowners opting to replace their bathtubs with custom showers. There is a myriad of color choices, various materials for both walls and flooring, modern shower doors, or even showers without doors. Heated floors ensure a warm and delightful experience and custom-built seats offer convenience as well. Fancy showerheads like a rain showerhead can enhance your showering experience and adding multiple showerheads really makes a statement. 

The prospect of converting your old bathtub into an updated shower may seem daunting at first but, with a little planning and creative designing, you are well on your way to an inviting shower that is both good-looking, safe,  and functional. 

Are you thinking of a bathtub to shower conversion in your home? Contact us today! We are specialists in bathtub to shower conversions in Irvine, Orange County.