What are the Different Types of Walk-In Shower Enclosures?

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  • Written By: T. L. Childree
  • Edited By: R. Halprin
  • Last Modified Date: 10 November 2019
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Walk-in shower enclosures are manufactured in a number of different materials, shapes, and sizes. These enclosures are typically constructed of glass or acrylic materials. They are available in several different shapes such as square, rectangular, round, and oval. Walk-in shower enclosures can be installed in the corner of a bathroom, along a wall, or as a freestanding structure. Several different door choices are available for walk-in shower enclosures including hinged, sliding, bi-fold, and pivot styles.

A walk-in shower enclosure typically consists of a shallow horizontal tray surrounded by vertical walls and an entry door. The top of this structure is usually left open for moisture to escape. The bottom tray is generally constructed of a heavy-duty fiberglass or acrylic material. The walls are usually made of semi-transparent glass or acrylic panels. Walk-in shower enclosures can generally accommodate one or two people.

Walk-in shower enclosures are manufactured in square, rectangular, round, and oval shapes. Square enclosures are usually quite small and designed to accommodate a single user. These small units are generally inexpensive and are often installed along with a bathtub unit. Rectangular enclosures are somewhat larger and can sometimes be adjusted to a particular size by adding or removing wall panels. Round and oval units offer a more stylish appearance and sometimes have frameless glass or acrylic walls.


Smaller walk-in shower enclosures are often installed in the corner of a bathroom to save space. This type of installation is especially useful if a bathtub unit is also used. Rectangular and oval enclosures are usually located along the middle of a wall when no bathtub is installed. Round enclosures may be placed in a corner area or installed as a freestanding structure in larger bathrooms. An oval unit may also be utilized for a freestanding installation.

Walk-in shower enclosures can be fitted with several different door types. The most common types are hinged and sliding. Hinged doors are usually wide and require quite a bit of space to open outward from the enclosure. Sliding doors move along a metal track and are typically utilized with rectangular enclosures. Hinged and sliding doors are usually constructed of semi-transparent glass and have a metal frame for safety and stability.

Bi-fold doors are also available for smaller walk-in shower enclosures. These doors are composed of several narrow panels that fold flat when opened. This design is intended to save space in confined areas. Pivot doors are also designed for small, confined installations. These doors open outward and have a pair of offset hinges.


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Is virgin acrylic stronger and better quality for a shower than reground acrylic?

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