Trying to work out how and where to fit a shower can be a daunting task. But it also can be fun as long as you start at the beginning.
The first task is to work out how much available room there is in the bathroom and where the shower enclosure could fit. After this, decide on a budget and choose the shower enclosure style you prefer.
Shower enclosures come in a huge variety of sizes, shapes and functions.
• Hinged panels and screens that work well where space is at a premium.
• Inward folding or sliding doors so that other space in the bathroom is not used.
• And over-bath mounted shower screen is also ideal for confined spaces.
• Wet rooms are one of the most popular shower enclosure styles. The room itself is sealed and all the excess water is simply channelled into a specially designed drainage system.
Before you choose the design from retailers such as www.bellabathrooms.co.uk, some important matters to look out for are:
• How adjustable is your chosen design? Will it fit into a space in an older property where the walls may be out of true?
• If you are fitting a bath screen, how much access does it allow? Will it pivot a whole 180 degrees or will it hit another appliance such as a cistern or wash basin? If the shower door could hit an obstruction, it may be a better idea to buy a sliding door.
• How easy is the unit to clean? Can you clean the hinges? Do the glass screens have nano-technology coatings that allow easy cleaning?
• What are the professional qualifications of your manufacturer and retailer? How long have they been in business, what type of customer service do they offer and are they members of any professional organisations?
• How good are the water seals? Will you be able to repair or replace them when they wear out? Is the enclosure sealed well enough so that you can use a power shower?
• What type of standards, British or European Union, is the glass manufactured to? Does it comply with the latest standards?
• Does the shower enclosure come with its own shower tray? If you need to buy one separately, will you be able to buy a standard size or will you need a bespoke model? If the answer is the latter, remember that bespoke trays may be difficult to find in the correct size.
• Make sure that the shower tray is made of a material that is suitable for the rest of your bathroom. Ceramic trays are robust but they can be extremely heavy. Modern acrylics do not have that “cheap plastic” appearance and can be an effective substitute for ceramics. You also must make sure that the shower tray comes complete with fittings. If not, you will need to buy them separately.
• Decide on the types of controls and mixers that are easiest for you to use. These may be manual, pressure-balanced, thermostatic or pumped mixers.