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Shower pivot doors are probably the most common form of shower door available and are used almost exclusively in stand-alone showers. The most common types of shower pivot doors are the left, right, and center pivoted types. Which one is used is primarily a result of the shape of the bathroom and where the shower is in relation to objects, such as toilets and cupboards.
Most shower enclosures come with a pivoted door that opens outward, away from the shower. These types of shower pivot doors usually open to the left or right and are used in standing-type corner showers units. If these types of shower pivot doors are used, it is important to consider placement of furniture, such as cabinets, toilets, and basins. They don’t save as much room as a sliding shower door, but they are typically easier to get in and out of.
A center-pivot door could be used in spaces with more room or for increased style. Center-pivot doors have one or more doors that open in the center of a shower enclosure. This can prevent the doors from hitting furniture or a toilet when opening and also provide a certain freedom of movement when moving through the door, as they can be made bigger than most left or right pivoting doors.
Most shower pivot doors, regardless if they open to the left, right, or center, can be made larger to accommodate people who have special needs. They typically have to be special ordered or bought from a specialty store. There are also center pivot doors that open from either the left or right side which can be easier to open if movement is constrained, as is sometimes the case for people with a handicap.
Most shower pivot doors are made of Plexiglas® or glass, and are usually very similar to hinged doors. The difference between a shower pivot door and one with a hinge is location of the axis. Hinged shower doors have hinges on the side of the door, and shower pivot doors pivot on rods on the bottom and top of the shower door.
One disadvantage of a shower pivot door is that they don’t typically open quite as far as a hinged shower door. Shower pivot doors also have the advantage of not having metal hinges exposed to water, which can easily lead to rusting. Pivot doors are also usually cheaper than hinged doors.
excellent article on pivot shower doors, thanks!