If you are looking to remodel your bathroom by converting your standard tub into a custom walk-in shower, you probably know of the advantages, such as personal safety and easy access. However, there are certain aspects you need to consider apart from the basics and final cost. Consider the construction time from start to finish, choosing between full-cut vs. tub-cut step, and additional features to incorporate into the project. The following 3 factors should be pondered carefully:
1. Downtime During Construction
Consider that you may have limited access to your bathroom during the remodeling and construction process. This all depends upon the degree of work that needs to be done. For instance, if the bathtub and tiles are being entirely removed, and the plumbing needs to be replaced, total access might be restricted for a day or two, and in some cases, even longer.
Consider that drains may need to be jackhammered, shower pans need to be installed, ceramic tiles might need replacing, and a shower door has to be installed. The timeline to complete the project might take several days or longer, depending upon whether a custom shower door is readily available in stock or needs to be ordered. However, some companies offer speedy completion and even next-day installation. If time is an important factor for you, inquire about this from your contractor before work is to begin.
2. Choosing Between a Tub-Cut Step, Full-Cut or Shower Conversion Kit
When converting your bathtub into a walk-in shower, consider the options you have. Here are a few popular conversion designs:
Full-Cut: A full-cut conversion involves cutting the full length of the tub (without removing it entirely) for easy access. This option works best for small bathrooms, as it tends to offer an effect of more space. It's also ideal for seniors, as it provides a higher level of safety and easy access due to the lower profile all around. The full-cut also offers the look and function of a traditional walk-in shower, although it is more affordable and less time consuming than ripping out the tub completely. It also allows you to install a custom-made frame-less shower door.
Tub-Cut Step Conversion: This is an affordable option for many, as it involves less work. A section of your bathtub wall will be cut away to provide access to a walk-in shower. The cut typically involves removing anywhere from 20-48 inches. Those with mobility issues enjoy the convenience and safety of a low profile entry, without having to fully cut the entire bathtub wall.
Shower Conversion Kit: If you want to avoid the cost of hiring a contractor, this may be an option worth considering. Designed for the do-it-yourself handyman, a shower conversion kit will include all the materials (and step-by-step instruction sheet) you will need for the conversion of a tub to shower.
3. Special Features for Your Conversion Project
Depending upon the space you have to work with and your budget, you have several options. These added extras include more than the standard towel holder. Here are a few of the luxury features you might want to consider:
Overhead Rain Shower: Special panels will be installed overhead to provide an ambient rain shower effect. This typically incorporates several nozzles and adjustable spray-heads for the ultimate hydrotherapy benefits.
Built-In Foot-Height Ledge: This short ledge is ideal for providing a seat for shaving the legs or for other tasks.
Custom-Built Niche: This is a little nook or shallow recess built into the interior shower wall. It's perfect for holding soaps, shampoos and toiletries.
When investing in a custom tub-to-shower conversion, be sure to think long-term and consider your needs for the future. For instance, don't overlook important safety features such as slip-resistant flooring and safety grab bars, which may be helpful into your senior years. Contact a company like Bath Planet Inc for more info.