Skip to Content

6 Different Types of Shower Doors (Pros & Cons)

6 Different Types of Shower Doors (Pros & Cons)

Do you need help choosing the right door for your shower? If you answered yes, you have come to the right place. Choosing the shower door can be challenging especially if you have something special in mind.

Furthermore, the shower generally takes up most of the space in a bathroom, so you will probably want to have an aesthetically pleasing shower that is also functional and durable.

When choosing the proper shower, some people pay more attention to accessibility and efficiency, while others want a shower door that will fit their specific style and bathroom’s décor.

Luckily, today there are different shower doors with various styles that will cater to even the pickiest customer. In addition, one can choose doors based on how they close, such as a bi-fold shower or sliding doors.

Let’s check out some of the potential choices for your bathroom!

Types of Shower Doors

1. Bypass Shower Doors

Bypass Shower Doors

Image Credit: monasglass

Bypass doors, also called sliding shower doors, are an excellent choice for tubs and wide shower stalls. If you have limited space in your bathroom, the bypass doors will do the trick for you.

They consist of two sliding glass panels, which typically roll on tracks attached to the shower enclosure. However, you can also purchase sliding shower doors without a frame, but they tend to be more expensive.

They operate similarly to patio doors, and mechanical rollers can assist their movement. Most people use bypass doors on stand-alone showers, but they can be mounted on a bathtub with a shower configuration.

Advantages

Disadvantages

  • Most bypass doors require a metal frame on top and bottom, making them more expensive, and it can also be very tricky to clean because the debris and dust tend to stick to them.
  • Although they do not take up space, the opening is smaller than other shower doors.
  • Generally, frameless shower doors tend to leak due to gaps and spaces around the door.

2. Bath Screen Door

Bath screen doors (bi-fold or tri-fold) are another great space-saving option known as inward-opening shower doors. These doors have a hinge connecting the two panels/doors, allowing them to fold inward and slide.

They also have a fixed third glass panel, while the other two can be moved and folded.

Advantages

  • They are ideal for small bathrooms.
  • They are common, stylish, versatile, and can be in many sizes.
  • Installation is a very simple process.

Disadvantages

  • They have a higher frame ratio than glass panels, so you have a slightly obstructed view when you close them.
  • Because they have numerous frames, there is more potential for thermal bridging and energy loss.
  • They can look highly cheap if the glass panels are thin and the metal frames are of low quality.
  • Depending on the type and style, some bi-fold doors tend to leak.

3. Neo-Angle Shower Doors

Neo Angle shower doors are usually installed in the corner of the bathroom, making them ideal for a bathroom with little space. These shower doors have two smaller side panels perpendicular to two side walls with the door between them.

Most Neo angle shower doors open out into the bathroom, but you can also purchase inward-swinging doors. In addition, they come in two main types, like other doors, which are framed and frameless.

They are usually made of tempered glass and come with a metal frame, giving them a unique, modern, and sleek look.

Advantages 

  • Excellent as a corner shower in bathrooms that are low on space.
  • Due to the size of the doors and the shower in general, fewer tiles are needed.

Disadvantages

  • The cleaning process with these types of doors can be tricky because most styles have tracks, and grime tends to build up in the corners.
  • Very complicated to install them; you will most likely have to call a professional for this job.

4. Pivot Shower Doors

Pivot doors swing with a handle and a unique hinge mechanism that allows them to open both inward and outward. As a result, they are very versatile and can be used with shower stalls with different shower enclosure shapes, such as straight or curved.

Furthermore, you can attach the pivot hinge to one side of the door or mount it in the center to create revolving doors which can be opened from both sides. This pivot hinge is mostly found on modern and curved glass shower doors.

In addition, they are an excellent choice for curbless showers, providing wheelchair accessibility.

Advantages

  • They are very easy to clean, considering they do not have frames, meaning there is no accumulation of debris and dust.
  • They can be customized.
  • Pivot doors allow a larger opening.
  • Provide a modern, elegant look.

Disadvantages

  • Given that pivot doors have no frames, it means that water may escape the bottom of the shower, causing leakage.
  • Pivot doors are not a good choice for smaller bathrooms as they take up a lot of space.
  • They tend to be more expensive.
  • The installation process is highly complex and challenging.

5. Steam Shower Doors

Steam Shower Doors

Image Credit: glass_are_us_nyc

Steam doors are designed for air-tight showers with steam features, meaning they are steam-tight from the floor to the ceiling. They consist of solid glass panels and a hinged door with an air-tight seal. This new technology holds the steam and vapor inside the shower enclosure.

These shower enclosures also have movable panels that you can use as a vent. Due to these features, they can be used both as a shower and steam room.

Today you can find numerous styles, such as transparent or obscure glass, and finishes, such as gold, silver, or brushed nickel.

Advantages

  • Perfect addition to luxury bathrooms
  • They are very easy to clean as they usually have no tracks
  • They use innovative seal technology

Disadvantages

  • You will need to hire a professional for the installation of these doors
  • One of the most expensive door options for a shower
  • It cannot be used/installed in a smaller bathroom.

6. Hinged Shower Doors

Hinged doors are the most common type of doors found in houses that have been used for centuries. The hinged shower doors are a single glass panel that you open by swinging in one direction. The hinge can be attached to a stationary glass panel or the wall.

Because of the way these doors open, they are not ideal for smaller bathrooms, which is why they are used in shower stalls with plenty of space. Although most hinged doors open by swinging outward, you can also find inward-swinging types.

In most cases, hinged shower doors have tracks on the bottom, on which they rest when you close them. However, the tracks complicate the cleaning process, as they tend to be perfect spots for accumulating dirt, dust, and debris.

Advantages

  • Very versatile in use and styles
  • Relatively easy to install if they have framed
  • Framed types of hinged shower doors are affordable

Disadvantages

  • If the hinged shower doors have frames, you will have to maintain them regularly
  • The door tends to drip onto the floor when you open them.
  • Not as elegant as pivot doors
  • Not a good choice for a small bathroom and shower

Framed vs. Frameless Shower Door

Framed vs. Frameless Shower Door

Image Credit: emeraldcityshowerdoor

Most shower doors (not all) can be either framed or frameless, which can significantly influence your decision. Both types have advantages and disadvantages, so let’s check them out!

1. Framed Shower Doors

Framed shower doors have a metal frame usually made of aluminum around the interior edges. If you want to upgrade your shower curtain, framed shower door are a highly suitable replacement.

They are generally easy to install because you can hang the frame, and voila! Framed shower doors are cost-effective, very stable, and made of tempered glass, which does not shatter shards but small circles when broken.

In addition, there is a low chance of leakage with these types of doors, and they come in numerous frame designs. On the other hand, they are tough to maintain, and their motion can be limited

2. Frameless Shower Doors

Like framed doors, frameless shower doors are available in plenty of design options, but unlike framed doors, they can be swung both inward and outward. Also, considering they have no frames, they are much easier to maintain and clean.

Ultimately, these doors can be a great addition to your bathroom aesthetic because they can emphasize other features and make it seem more spacious.

However, frameless shower doors have drawbacks; they tend to be more expensive. Then, they have less stability compared to the framed shower glass. Although they do not have frames, the glass used for these doors is thicker but still has less strength.

Lastly, installing frameless shower doors can be a nightmare because there have no hinges. Therefore, we do not suggest that you try to make this a DIY project. Instead, hire a professional who will set up hinges.

Conclusion

You can tell you can choose from many types and styles of shower doors. However, the most crucial factors you need to consider when selecting the right shower door are your shower type, bathroom size, and budget.

For example, some showers, such as steam showers, must be used with steam doors; otherwise, the purpose of the shower will be rendered useless. In addition, maintenance is also a significant factor for some people, and if you are one of those, maybe try using frameless doors.

Which door do you think is the best? Can you please share your experience with us? If you have any comments or questions, do not hesitate to ask!