The demand for bathroom remodels has reached new heights as the most sought after home improvement service among home owners in the U.S.
Two main reasons dominate people's decisions for wanting to remodel their bathroom above other areas of the house: water damages to the surrounding structure due to inefficient designs of builder grade products and poorly designed bathroom layouts that are far from being functional.
A popular trend that has been gaining a lot of traction among a vast number of people remodeling their bathrooms is the installation of a 'Curbless Shower', also known as a walk-in shower (no threshold which allows for a seamless transition between the shower area and bathroom floor). This unique type of shower design is incredibly versatile and accommodating to people of all ages and various needs.
Here are 5 different reasons why you should definitely consider including a curbless shower design in your next bathroom remodel:
#1 Cost Effective
Alright, there is no denying that all of us love to save money any time possible, especially during a remodeling project where costs can quickly begin to add up. Curbless showers are an incredible opportunity to save you some bucks over other traditional shower designs when it comes to materials, costs, and even time!
A basic curbless shower minimizes the amount of materials and labor required to complete a shower area and instantly provides you with savings of at least 30% of your bathroom remodel. Take a traditional shower for example: it requires a full enclosure of the shower space by means of at least three walls and a curtain or glass door at the entrance point. Regardless of the shower area's configuration and the materials (i.e tiled walls or fiberglass panels), in a traditional shower area setting, the materials, time, and cost of labor immediately start multiplying and limiting your budget for other parts of the project.
By going with a curbless shower design, you have more control over your budget, and in many cases, you will only need to tile or install fiberglass paneling on only two walls and a single glass panel on the third side to create a proper enclosure. The fourth side remains open without the need to install a door or a curtain. Because installing curbless showers reduces labor costs considerably, you will not only be saving some dollars, but you will also have a fully remodeled bathroom in a shorter period of time.
In our experience here at Zevart interiors, accessibility is a fundamental component to designing showers that can stand the test of time and serve as many people as possible. The curbless shower design and layout provide ease of access into the shower area for everyone, especially for people with special needs and disabilities.
Not having a threshold dividing the shower area and the main bathroom floor makes it easy for people in wheelchairs, for instance, to access the shower area hassle free and without additional assistance. Another great aspect of the curbless shower design is allowing better accessibility through strategic positioning and orientation to best fit your needs.
#3 Open Concept Design
Just like with any other open concept floor plan in residential construction, the curbless shower is minimalistic both in design and in concept. It automatically opens up the space inside the bathroom, and in consequence, provides a plethora of possibilities for what you can do with the rest of that newly available space.
#4 Increased Functionally
Curbless showers are simple, basic, and perfectly fitting for those of you who are practical (you care less about other fancy features and only use the shower for its primary purpose.) On the other hand, if you would like to scale up and perhaps have something a little more grand and multifunctional, then a curbless shower should still be your top pick.
Curbless showers are typically spacious even in their smallest configuration, so you'll definitely enjoy that feature. In the case of master bathrooms today, most people opt for removing the bathtub permanently. These bathtubs are typically right next to the shower area, so when they are removed, you will have plenty of space for new opportunities: a second twin shower, linen racks, a bench area for sitting and drying-off, and the list goes on.
Curbless showers maximize the potential of any bathroom space and increase functionality if planned and designed properly ahead of time.
#5 Great For People of All Ages and Needs!
For several of our customers already aging in place or planning to, there is no better option than to go with a curbless shower when remodeling the bathroom. Most of them prefer small 3' x 5' shower areas. No threshold means reduced risks of falling accidents when stepping in and out of the shower.
But younger generations are also finding the curbless shower design greatly beneficial over other traditional designs for a number of reasons, cleaning and maintenance being at the top of the list. Time spent cleaning is significantly reduced since there is less surface area. Also, growing families benefit from the curbless shower because there is more space for bathing children. The fact that curbless showers have less surface joints eliminates the opportunity for mildew and mold to grow, creating a healthier and safer environment for everyone using the shower.
How is a Curbless Shower Built?
When it comes to building a curbless shower for your bathroom, you have two options:
A. Install a Ramp
This is perhaps the easiest and most cost-effective way to create a curbless shower. Simply have a small ramp installed at the entrance of the shower area, and you have yourself a curbless entry. This is a great option for bathrooms that sit on concrete slabs, or where major plumbing lines run directly underneath the shower floor and recessing the subfloor is not an option.
B. Recessing the Shower Floor
If recessing the shower floor in your bathroom is a viable option, then it will give you a true 'seamless' transition in between the bathroom and shower floors. The first step is to remove the existing shower subfloor. Next, add supporting blocks secured to the floor joists (with 3/4" offset to the top of the floor joists). Finally, a new piece of OSB or Plywood subfloor is then installed on top of the supporting blocks, creating a recessed shower floor. Once the shower pan is installed on top of the newly recessed shower subfloor, it will become flush with the bathroom subfloor outside the shower area.
Recessing the shower subfloor is ideal for bathrooms with OSB or Plywood subfloors.
If you would like more space, functionality, accessibility, and, most of all, savings, then a curbless shower is the option for you! And if you have any questions or would like us to design a curbless shower for you, please contact us at Info@ZevartInteriors.com. We will provide floor plans, specifications, material spreadsheets, and we'll be along for the ride right from the beginning of your project to its completion. We serve clients anywhere in the in the United Sates.