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Hinged vs. Pivot Shower Doors: Which Is Better?

Hinged vs. Pivot Shower Doors: Which Is Better?

When it comes to choosing a shower door, you can choose between a hinged door or a pivot door. Both have their own pros and cons, so it’s important to weigh them against each other before deciding which one is right for you.

We’ve created this guide to help you decide which is right for your bathroom. By the time you finish reading, you’ll be able to make an informed decision about which type of door is best for your home.

What is a Hinged Shower Door?

We’ll start with the hinged door. Hinged shower doors are a classic and popular option for more traditional bathrooms. This type of door swings on side-mounted hinges from the side to the center of your shower room. Hinges are a type of fastener that connects two objects at a joint.

This type of door is attached to a stationary frame with hinges which are then attached to the wall. They do not require any mechanism for opening or closing. When you open the door, it swings open and closed by 90 degrees like a normal door would, but it does not allow the door to move in or out like pivot shower doors.

They also tend to be more economical and simple to install. This door often requires more floor space than a pivot one because the door itself is larger. Hinged shower doors come in a variety of materials, including framed and frameless varieties.

What is a Hinged Shower Door?

Image Credit: orangecontracting

What is a Pivot Shower Door?

The pivot shower door, on the other hand, as it is named, is a revolving door. It requires more hardware than its hinged counterpart, although it also uses a hinged—but it’s more flexible in terms of installation options. The pivot hinges are attached to the central point of the door from top to bottom. In this setup, the door opens 180 degrees inward (or outward) by swinging toward (or away from) the user. It will take about 75% of your bathroom space.

Outward-swinging doors are best if your bathroom has room to open outwards without hitting other objects, while inward-swinging doors give you more space when you enter the shower. The pivot shower door doesn’t require additional support structures or extra frames around them like those required by hinged doors. You can open it from any direction, but you’ll need to push down on the center of the door to open it if you want it to swing outwards.

Finally, you’ll want to consider the design features available when selecting a pivot shower door. Most models come in a variety of glass door designs and finishes, allowing you to pick just what will work best with your bathroom’s style and decor.

Hinged vs. Pivot Shower Doors (Features, Cost, Installation)

To help you make your decision, we’ve created this guide to help you compare the features, costs, and installation processes for both hinged and pivot shower doors.

1. Hinged Shower Door: Pros and Cons


  • Large opening
  • They’re easy to install, relatively inexpensive, and come in many different styles that will complement your bathroom décor. You can choose a frameless design or one with a frame in a variety of colors and finishes.
  • Can be sealed to help keep water from leaking out.
  • Offer good ventilation as they don’t completely seal with the walls or tub; this helps reduce any steam build-up and mildew or mold growth in your bathroom.
  • You also don’t have to worry about them swinging outward when pushed open; this is one of the advantages of hinged doors.
  • Additionally, you can usually find hinged shower doors in different sizes and frame materials like acrylic, brass, bronze, and stainless steel. This offers plenty of options for homeowners to find a door that fits their style.


  • One disadvantage of hinged doors is it takes up more space than their pivot counterparts because of the door’s arm that must be mounted to the wall or tub.
  • Due to their design and weight, there’s a greater chance for them to get misaligned or squeaky over time if not properly maintained. This is why they require more installation work.
  • When it comes time to clean your bathroom, you’ll find that the hinges on a hinged shower door might make for some awkward cleaning methods. You might have to lift the entire door off its hinges just so you can clean underneath it—or worse yet, you might need to remove all of the glass panels from their frames to get all those hard-to-reach spots.

2. Pivot Shower Door: Pros and Cons


  • Have minimal tracks and brackets at the top and bottom, giving off a seamless look.
  • It swings back and forth. This allows you to get in and out of the shower quickly and clean up easily because it lets you open the door from both sides.
  • Pivot shower doors take up less space than hinged doors, making them a good choice for a  limited space. They also work well in bathrooms with limited wall space.
  • Made from stainless steel and chrome components, giving them an incredibly sleek look.
  • Another great thing about pivot shower doors is that you can adjust their height depending on the height of your ceiling or bathtub walls. This allows you to customize them to fit perfectly in your bathroom, no matter the size.
  • Finally, since pivot shower doors don’t require additional mounting hardware, they tend to be easier to install than other types of shower doors.


  • Relativity expensive from the design to the installation
  • Can be difficult to retrofit into existing bathrooms or homes with plumbing or electrical systems designed specifically for something other than this type of door.
  • Can be messy outside the shower area since water may leak from the door when you slide outward.
  • Tends to have leak issues than hinged doors, according to the website of Upgraded Home.

3. Hinged vs. Pivot Shower Doors: Cost

Hinged and pivot shower doors are quite similar in price, as listed by Home Cost Helper, with the average cost for a hinged door being $250 to $1,000. Pivot doors tend to be slightly more expensive than hinged shower doors at around $200 to $2,000 or more. Keep in mind that installation costs will also be added to the total price of your purchase, plus the cost of hiring a professional.

Additionally, if you decide to upgrade your bathroom with a custom built-in shower with glass walls, expect the price tag to go up considerably. The total cost can be between $2,500 and $7,500 or beyond, depending on how large and luxurious your dream bathroom is.

It is also worth considering the upkeep costs for each type of shower door. Pivot doors are relatively easy to clean as all you need is warm water and mild soap to do a quick wipe down. Hinged doors require a more thorough cleaning process as it requires you to remove and then reattach them after each cleaning session.


Image Credit: lemonbayglass

4. Hinged vs. Pivot Shower Doors: Differences in Installation

Now that you know a bit about the differences between hinged and pivot shower doors, you’re probably wondering which one will be easier to install in your home.

Hinged doors are typically simpler to assemble and install, although they do require more space to open and close. With hinged doors, most of the work is done during the installation process since it needs to be attached to the framing around the door opening.

Pivot doors are a bit more complicated. They require careful measurements since they need to be installed on a plane that runs perpendicular to the wall. Additionally, you will need to make sure that any shower pan or tiling is flush in order for it to properly seal when closed. It also requires additional time for assembly before it’s fitted into place.

Overall, both types of shower doors can have their own sets of positives and negatives when it comes to installation—so make sure you weigh your options carefully before making your decision!

When Choosing Between Hinged and Pivot Shower Doors…

Here are a few things to look for when choosing between hinged and pivot doors:

1. What kind of space do you have?

If there’s a lot of room in front of your new shower door, a hinged door is probably best for you. If there isn’t much space, then a pivot door will fit in better because it opens up more—but it also means that there will be less room for other things in your bathroom.

2. What kind of style do you want?

Hinged doors give off an elegant, classic vibe, while pivot doors look more modern and sleek. You may like one style more than the other, or maybe neither one suits your tastes. It all depends on personal preferences!

3. How often do you plan on using your shower?

If you only use the shower occasionally, then a hinged door will be more convenient to open and close. However, if you use your shower several times per day, then a pivot door is likely more convenient because it opens and closes faster than a hinged door.

4. Are there any small children in your home?

In this case, you should choose a more secure option than a pivoting door for safety.


In conclusion, a hinged shower door might be the best option if you want an affordable, functional, and classic look with ease of use. But if you’re looking for more flexibility and a look that stands out and makes your bathroom feel luxurious, then go with a pivot door! It will also save space and offer more options. Ultimately, you’ll want to choose the shower enclosure that best suits your needs and your home.