Before you start construction of your new bathroom, here are some tips to consider.
Shower door Swing
Minimum Width for Glass Panels
Slope of your curb
Level & Plumb Walls
Shower head position
Slope of your shower seat
Shower door SwingWhen planning your shower design, keep in mind that Building Code Requirement states that all hinged shower doors must open outwards. Hinged shower doors that swing inwards only are not permitted by code. There are reasons this code is in place. The shower enclosure must permit unobstructed access to a showering person in case of a fall. Your shower door can open in both directions, outward-opening and inward-swinging. You'll need about 30" of clearance space outside your shower to install a swinging shower door. If your bathroom is not configured for a shower door, consider choosing a sliding shower door. Your other alternatives include double sliding doors, which come either semi-frameless.
Minimum Width for Glass PanelsEach glass panel needs to be at least 4 1/2" wide, which is the minimum width for tempering glass and supporting the hardware. Also, the door will need to be a minimum of 22" wide and no more than 36" wide.
Wall SupportBe sure the wall on which you would like to install a hinged shower door has proper studding behind it (double 2x4 is best, though single 2x4 is acceptable). Your frameless shower door will weigh between 80-90 lbs. Always provide wood studs or blocking where doors hinge or panels are anchored, especially when metal studs were used in the original construction of the wall.
Slope of your curbThe curb or lip around the bottom of the shower should to be slanted inward at a 5-degree (approx. 3/16" to 1/4") "pitch" or slope so water flows in toward the drain. A level curb would cause the water to stand, while a curb angled away from the drain would cause water to leak onto the bathroom floor.
Level & Plumb WallsWalls will hold a door or glass panel need to be completely level, or "plumb", in order to prevent gaps, uneven joints, and hinge "bind". This means the wall can't lean in any direction, or be "bowed" or "bellied". Any walls that are more than 1/4" out of plumb make it very difficult to install a shower properly because they cause unsightly gaps, are more likely to leak, and have a greater likelihood of hinge bind. We can work with walls that are less than 1/4" out of plumb. When one of our technicians comes out measure your bathroom shower, he'll use a six-foot level to test your bathroom walls and floor (and ceiling for airtight enclosures). A majority of the homes we work in do not have perfectly straight walls, so this is a common problem that we're very good at handling. For less than 1/4" out of plumb walls, we will cut the glass so it will lie flush against your wall.
Glass TilesAt all cost, we like to avoid mounting door hinges and clamps onto glass tiles, as breakage is likely to occur during and even after installation. This can result in delays in getting the project finished and additional charges from the tile installers for repairs.
Shower head positionTo cut down on water leakage, position shower heads toward tiled walls or fixed panels. Shower heads should never be positioned opposite a door or other opening. (Exceptions may be made for smaller or low-flow shower heads or shower heads that point straight down at the floor.)
Slope of your shower seatIt is best to design a shower seat to slant toward the drain at a 5-degree (approx. 3/16" to 1/4") slope so water flows off the seat and into the drain. Water will stand on a level seat or pool in a seat with a backward angle.)