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How to Add a Walk-In Shower in Your Bathroom5 min read

Adding a walk-in shower to your bathroom can give you extra space and convenience. Let’s start by explaining what a walk-in shower is and how it works.

A walk-in shower is an enclosed shower that is designed to allow for easy access. This feature lets you step into the shower without having to step over a threshold or other barrier to enter it, which makes it safer to use than standard bathrooms with a bathtub. Walk-in showers typically have a door or curtain that can be closed to keep the water inside the shower area and prevent it from spilling over onto the floor; although there are walk-in showers that have a partial wall instead that achieves the goal.

Walk-in showers come in many different shapes and sizes, so it’s a good idea to take some measurements before you start shopping for a shower. This will help you to determine what size shower would work best for your space. You should also choose a design that fits your personal style and budget.

walk in shower
white themed bathroom

Determine the Space You Have Available

Measure the space you have available to determine the type of shower you can install. Some showers require an alcove, while others can fit into small spaces like a corner. 30 inches is the minimum shower size set by the International Residential Code, but a larger size will be more comfortable. Also keep in mind that the bathroom door will intrude into your shower area in most cases, so leave enough room for the door to open and shut without hitting your shower, or opt in for a sliding door.

If you are leaning more towards double walk-in shower or spa walk-in shower, be sure you have enough space between the center of your shower fixtures and any opposite fixture, wall, or obstacle–this is usually a minimum or 36 inches. Depending on the design you want, you might have to move pluming or move walls. This is where having a professional to guide comes handy.

Design Your Walk-In Shower

Work closely with your contractor to create a design that will work for your home. While you have a wide selection of different configurations you can choose from, there are a few basic elements that you should consider when choosing a layout for your walk-in shower.

The first step is to determine what the purpose of your walk-in shower is. Some walk-in showers are purely aesthetic and are mainly for show, while others serve a practical use. We put together the following questions to help you determine what type of design you need to focus on.

  • Who will primarily use this shower?
  • Will it be used only by adults or will it be used by both adults and children?
  • Is the primarily person using this shower a handicap or an elderly person?
  • Is this walk-in shower for a couple?
  • How many shower heads do you need?
  • What shower features do you want?
  • Do you need space to shower your pet?
  • Are you aspiring to have a spa-like walk-in shower?

These questions will help you narrow down a design to suit your lifestyle. Once you have decided on the purpose of the shower, the next step is to choose the layout and design of the shower itself.

modern bathroom with upgraded features

Design the Layout of Your Walk-In Shower

The layout of your walk-in shower will be dictated by how much space you have available. Most showers have a rectangular shape, although some are square or round instead. The layout of your shower should complement the style of the rest of your bathroom. The layout you choose should be practical and functional. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when designing the layout of your walk-in shower:

  • If you are using a shower head with multiple settings, ensure it is within easy reach, but far enough away from your soap and shampoo to avoid accidentally turning it on while you are in the shower.
  • Avoid placing shower curtains directly over faucets as this could cause the water to flow out, which can ruin the paint job on the walls of your shower.
  • If there will be a disabled person or elderly person using the shower regularly, make sure the floors are non-slip and have sufficient cushioning for the knees. Space should also be accounted for wall-mounted bars for supporting someone in the shower.
  • Build-in benches in the shower will need to be planned ahead. Bench seats are often placed in the corner of the shower to offer extra support and comfort to users.


Remodeling your bathroom and installing a walk-in shower is a great way to increase your home’s value. It is important to consider the cost, materials, and functionality when selecting a walk-in shower. Working with a contractor that has a showroom will save you a lot of time, from getting help designing your new walk-in shower, picking materials, and staying within your budget. Here at DMV Kitchen and Bath, we have experience with walk-in showers, no matter how small or big the project is. Our team will help you create a walk-in shower that is perfect for your family and your home. Sign up for a free estimate today!