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Shower remodel - no step up or down
Old 04-12-2019, 12:53 AM   #1
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Shower remodel - no step up or down

We are getting ready to completely remodel our bathroom. We are working with a designer and the shower area will be about 12 feet long and about 3 1/2 feet wide. Not all of the length is shower. The far end is a drying area with a bench. This is not meant to be a bench in the shower. It is a bench so you can sit and dry off and get dressed if you want to.

The shower will not have a door. I would like to have the entry flush with the floor with no step up or down. Several years ago I was in a wheelchair for a few weeks when I broke my ankle and then I had to use a walker for awhile. I learned how difficult it is to get in and out of the shower. At that house, the shower had a typical entry where you step the edge.

In the proposed design you step up to the drying area and then step down into the shower from the drying area. One option has a more pronounced step down. The second looks flush with the floor but the designer says there is still a smaller step down.

I would much prefer the second option to the first. Apart from the potential future access issue (right now DH and I both have great mobility but things can change), one of the things I am scared of is falling. I have fairly mild osteoporosis and I want to limit fall hazard. I would worry about a large step down.

The reason for the step down -- whether large or small -- is in case something occurs where the shower overflows. It isn't to keep water from coming out of the shower during normal use.

I was hoping to not have any step down. But I wonder how concerned I should be about the hypothetical potential of some disaster when we are not at home and the shower overflows.

Does anyone have a shower flush with the floor? If so, how did you deal with the potential problem of water overflow (if you did)?2016-09-05 23.28.56.jpg

3best shower full wall (2).jpg
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Yes, I have opinions
Old 04-12-2019, 02:27 AM   #2
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Yes, I have opinions

We have curbless shower. Shower is level with floor.
After 7+ years with it, we will never own any other configuration. We have never had a water problem.
The design needs to slope towards the drain.
Fire your designer and hire one who practices “universal design”.

While you are doing this renovation:
1. Add a towel warmer - https://runtalnorthamerica.com/
2. Add an electrical outlet near the potty for the washlet.
3. Consider a wall-hung toilet for easier cleaning.
4. Buy glass with Shower Glass for Enclosures & Modern Bathrooms - ShowerGuard
5. Install a 100+cfm quiet exhaust fan. We have this https://na.panasonic.com/us/home-and...hispergreenr-1

If your contractor is not using https://www.schluter.com/schluter-us/en_US/ products, find another contractor.

This our shower
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Old 04-12-2019, 05:32 AM   #3
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Mine has short curb to step over but I've never seen water get to it in 18 years. I have a different configuration though, the shower head is on a wall that separates the shower from the room, so it points toward the back wall, instead of being on the end and pointing toward the other end. The shower drain is in the drying end though. I'm not sure why they did that. If the drain gets clogged by hair and soap it starts pooling and grows toward the edge so I guess I'd want to keep the lip in case I didn't notice. It wouldn't be an issue if the drain were in the standard place under the shower head.
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Old 04-12-2019, 06:12 AM   #4
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DW wants a similar shower. I looked into it. Since we have 2x12 floor joists with more than enough support, I could remove the floor and plane down the floor joists slightly (maybe 1/2") near the drain area. Then install concrete board and tile.

The shower floor would be flush with the bathroom floor, but be slightly lower at the drain, making it so water wouldn't go all over the place.

It's a lot of work, but doable.
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Old 04-12-2019, 06:35 AM   #5
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Not having to step over a tub wall is close to a "must have" for me as I get a little older and less flexible, and I see the path I'm on in that respect. I also like not having a shower door to clean.
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Old 04-12-2019, 06:46 AM   #6
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We gut remodeled our master bath 4 or 5 years ago. On the list of must haves was a shower with no lip. Out bath designer who outfitted the entire bath for handicapped access, installed a french drain which runs the length of the shower door, about 36 inches. I'm sure you can get them in any length. It has never once leaked and is actually beautiful to look at. With the shower running full blast, there is never any leakage. We also hung the toilet, with the tank inside the wall and our most important addition was a heated floor. Oh my do I love the floor. Don't forget to have all lighting be LED.
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Old 04-12-2019, 06:53 AM   #7
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If the entire bathroom is being remodeled, an additional drain can be put in the floor of the bathroom to deal with any overflow from shower or sink.
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Old 04-12-2019, 07:58 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davebarnes View Post
We have curbless shower. Shower is level with floor.
After 7+ years with it, we will never own any other configuration. We have never had a water problem.
The design needs to slope towards the drain.
Fire your designer and hire one who practices “universal design”.

While you are doing this renovation:
1. Add a towel warmer - https://runtalnorthamerica.com/
2. Add an electrical outlet near the potty for the washlet.
3. Consider a wall-hung toilet for easier cleaning.
4. Buy glass with Shower Glass for Enclosures & Modern Bathrooms - ShowerGuard
5. Install a 100+cfm quiet exhaust fan. We have this https://na.panasonic.com/us/home-and...hispergreenr-1

If your contractor is not using https://www.schluter.com/schluter-us/en_US/ products, find another contractor.

This our shower
Great list of options to have. A friend of mine just did a new shower. The walls were impregnated with some sort of silver product so as to never allow mold to grow. I would certainly consider that if I ever do another shower.

https://newbathalabama.com/silver-shield-technology/
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Old 04-12-2019, 07:58 AM   #9
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What if a very heavy person uses that wall-hung toilet? Did you happen to know what weight are they rated for?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golden sunsets View Post
WWe also hung the toilet, with the tank inside the wall and our most important addition was a heated floor. Oh my do I love the floor. Don't forget to have all lighting be LED.
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Old 04-12-2019, 08:17 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Katsmeow View Post
Does anyone have a shower flush with the floor? If so, how did you deal with the potential problem of water overflow (if you did)?
When I designed our house I wanted it to be fully wheel chair accessible in case we ever need to use a wheelchair or walker. That included 36" doorways everywhere and our master bath is set up as a "wet room" (common in Europe). Our shower area is 6'x6' and we framed it about 2" lower than the rest of the floor. This allowed us to slope the floor to the drain and come out flush with the rest of the bathroom floor. No lip, door, or curtain of any kind. Then we waterproofed the entire bathroom.

See my old message thread at https://www.johnbridge.com/vbulletin...=12876&page=10, specifically post #145 to see the finished product. I also have some photos on my web site at 2003 - Building Our Own House.

I did worry about overflow if a washrag or something covered the drain, but I calculated the capacity of the shower pan somewhere around 20 gallons before it would overflow onto the rest of the floor. Even with both low flow shower heads dumping 2 gallons per minute (4 total), they would have to run about 5 minutes with a fully clogged drain to overflow. It's possible, but unlikely. There's no water unless we're taking a shower, in which case we would clear the drain obstruction or turn off the showers. Even if Calgon took us away, I think we would have time to react.

We've lived here over 14 years now and have never had a clogged drain. The water always stays within the shower area. Occasionally we get a light misty overspray into the rest of the bathroom, but that's rare. It has not been a problem for us.

We also have wood trim around our shower, which many people said would never last, but there have been zero problems. It generally doesn't get wet and has a protective polyurethane finish, so it will probably outlast us.

Once you get used to a fully open shower like we have, it's hard to take a shower in those little cramped shower cubicles.
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Old 04-12-2019, 08:36 AM   #11
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IMG_1342.JPG

This is our no step, no door shower.
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Old 04-12-2019, 08:43 AM   #12
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What if a very heavy person uses that wall-hung toilet? Did you happen to know what weight are they rated for?
"16-gauge, powder-coated, structural-steel tubing rated to 880 lbs. (400 kg) without damage to finished wall or carrier unit"
https://www.geberitnorthamerica.com/...-construction/
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Old 04-12-2019, 08:53 AM   #13
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Attachment 31200

This is our no step, no door shower.

So is that loose stone in the bottom of the photo & is the drain there?
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Old 04-12-2019, 09:04 AM   #14
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OP - Lots of good advice from others.

- Go with NO lip, (take no lip from your unimaginative designer) , you can always put a french drain across the doorway as a second drain if super worried, even though I have no idea how water would magically turn on and block your normal drain while you are out.

Have you thought of hand-holds or bars in the shower to help with balance ?

Example of a french drain they come in various lengths, which could be put across the doorway:

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Old 04-12-2019, 09:09 AM   #15
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So is that loose stone in the bottom of the photo & is the drain there?
Not really. That's decorative rock around the tub, although there is a drain under the tub that would work if we ever had an overflow or backup of the shower. We never have. Look back at the end of the shower wall and you will see a french drain all the way across the back.
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Old 04-12-2019, 09:12 AM   #16
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IMG_1343.JPG

This will give you a better idea of the rock.
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Old 04-12-2019, 09:31 AM   #17
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You've received a lot of good advice here and I would concur that your designer is not familiar with universal design principles. Our shower is completely level with the bathroom floor and we've had no issues in nearly 10 years (even though the slope of the shower drain is less than ideal because we're on slab and it was difficult to get the drain in during the remodel). We do have a tiled half-wall on the shower side with glass to the ceiling - this keeps the shower warmer which is important for DH. The dressing side is open (although we've added a shower curtain on a tension rod for warmth for DH).
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Old 04-12-2019, 11:26 AM   #18
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Not really. That's decorative rock around the tub, although there is a drain under the tub that would work if we ever had an overflow or backup of the shower. We never have. Look back at the end of the shower wall and you will see a french drain all the way across the back.


Ah I see it. Very nice!
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Old 04-15-2019, 12:15 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Katsmeow View Post
We are getting ready to completely remodel our bathroom. We are working with a designer and the shower area will be about 12 feet long and about 3 1/2 feet wide. Not all of the length is shower. The far end is a drying area with a bench. This is not meant to be a bench in the shower. It is a bench so you can sit and dry off and get dressed if you want to.

The shower will not have a door. I would like to have the entry flush with the floor with no step up or down. Several years ago I was in a wheelchair for a few weeks when I broke my ankle and then I had to use a walker for awhile. I learned how difficult it is to get in and out of the shower. At that house, the shower had a typical entry where you step the edge.

In the proposed design you step up to the drying area and then step down into the shower from the drying area. One option has a more pronounced step down. The second looks flush with the floor but the designer says there is still a smaller step down.

I would much prefer the second option to the first. Apart from the potential future access issue (right now DH and I both have great mobility but things can change), one of the things I am scared of is falling. I have fairly mild osteoporosis and I want to limit fall hazard. I would worry about a large step down.

The reason for the step down -- whether large or small -- is in case something occurs where the shower overflows. It isn't to keep water from coming out of the shower during normal use.

I was hoping to not have any step down. But I wonder how concerned I should be about the hypothetical potential of some disaster when we are not at home and the shower overflows.

Does anyone have a shower flush with the floor? If so, how did you deal with the potential problem of water overflow (if you did)?Attachment 31195

Attachment 31196
My perspective is different than many on this forum and is not to try to convince you or anyone else that it is better. After considering making this house more aging friendly including a curb free walk in shower, I decided that my location is way too remote to go the age-in-place route. When the time comes I will move into the city where I am closer to the kids and retirement housing is plentiful. In the mean time I opted for a cast iron shower pan, but it does have a fancy cover over the drain.
20190415_120020.jpeg
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Old 04-15-2019, 02:24 PM   #20
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Google ‘snail shower’.
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