Posted on November 16th, 2017.

Barrier free showers are a must have for a home that has a disabled individual living in it. The very design of these showers is meant to negate the many obstacles that a disabled or wheelchair bound user has to navigate around while entering, exiting and using the shower space. So if you are in process of getting one of these installed in your own bathroom, here are some technical aspects about barrier free showers that you must know about.

The curb

The ideal threshold height in a barrier free shower should be, yes – you guessed it right – zero! But if you are worried about water spilling over to the rest of the bathroom floor and creating a slipping hazard, you can think about creating a shower curb but it shouldn’t be higher than half an inch or else the space will not be wheelchair accessible anymore.

The drain

Instead of creating a small shower curb, users can also use a rapid drainage system to ensure that the bath water is sucked out by the plumbing immediately, thereby avoiding unnecessary spillage outside the shower area. You must buy a barrier free shower with a drain that is located right where your existing shower drain is so that they align perfectly and ensure maximum water outage. The floor of the enclosure should have sufficient tilt to trap the water near the drain area to prevent spillage.

The door

Wheelchair accessible barrier free showers should have outward swinging doors that swing full 180 degrees towards the outside of the enclosure. This will give the wheelchair bound user sufficient space to maneuver around and into the entryway without facing any difficulty. Sliding doors are a strict no-no here as they can end up being tough to open and close by a disabled individual.

The material

If you are planning on getting a barrier free shower with swing open door, ensure that it is made with tempered glass or a similar material that doesn’t shatter upon impact. This will prevent many injuries and accidents that may occur if the door shatters into shrapnel like shards upon impact.

The support

Installing grab bars and guard rails in the shower enclosure is a good idea, particularly near the place where the disabled individual will be seated while taking a bath. This will provide reliable support to the user as they hoist themselves up or down on the bathing seat.

Keep these things in mind when designing a barrier free shower in your space. All the best!

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