In years past, you may have had a shower/tub with a shower curtain. Then, you stepped up to a framed shower door (a shower door that has thin metal framing on all four sides). Then, you may have thought: Well, a frameless shower door would certainly enhance the look of my bathroom. How about it?
Frameless Shower Door Basics
- Better Looking - Face it, frameless shower doors look great. It's a simple slab of thick tempered glass that pivots smoothly from the shower wall or a glass shower enclosure.
- Thicker Glass - Because frameless shower doors do not have the structural benefit of metal framing, the glass must be thicker. Glass is typically about a quarter-inch thick.
- Heavy - A 72" x 36" frameless door may weigh as much as 70 pounds. Compare to a framed shower door, which may weigh about 45-50 pounds.
- Expensive - Costs run from the $400s to the thousands. Framed shower doors easily will cost 40% less.
- Easier to Clean - Solid sheet of glass has no framing to impede cleaning.
- Difficult to Install - Because of the frameless door's excessive weight, care must be taken to ensure that it is securely installed--a task often best left to professionals.
- Left or Right Opening - Most frameless doors have the option of hinges being installed on either side--but don't assume so. Check the specs.
Bypass or Pivot Door?Frameless shower doors can be either bypass or pivot. Bypass doors are simply sliding sheets of glass that allow entrance into a shower/tub.
A pivot door is probably the reason you are reading this article in the first place. These are hinged slabs of thick glass that pivot open/closed just like a door.
The Kohler Purist Pivot Frameless Shower door shown is 72" high and from 33" to 36" wide (width is adjustable).