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Aging in Place  /  December 17, 2021

Kelowna Aging in Place Service: What Is A Zero-Threshold Shower?

zero threshold shower

When it comes to home repairs for seniors, one of the most common modifications that are made for aging in place is installing a zero-threshold shower. Also known as curbless showers and no-threshold showers, zero-threshold showers make it easier to navigate in the bathroom and decrease the risk of falls, allowing you to carry out your daily hygiene in safety and confidence.

What Is a Zero-Threshold Shower?

A standard shower usually has some sort of barrier separating it from the rest of the bathroom. If you have a combined bathtub and shower, then you obviously have to step over the side of the tub to get inside. Even with a standalone shower, there is some sort of threshold or lip that you have to step over. This can be difficult to maneuver if you have mobility limitations and could increase your risk of falls.

A zero-threshold shower has no ledge or sill to step over. It is flush with the floor of the bathroom. This makes it easier to get inside if you use a wheelchair or a walker or have mobility limitations without using an assistive device.

What Are the Benefits of a Zero-Threshold Shower?

A zero-threshold shower is consistent with a universal design. This means it is equally accessible to people of all ages and abilities. Even if you are not elderly or have a disability now, that may change in the future. Installing a curbless shower now may make it possible for you to stay in your home and keep living independently in the future. Furthermore, you may have a family member who is elderly or has a disability, and a no-threshold shower is more accessible for him or her.

There are many other benefits of a zero-threshold shower beyond accessibility. It is extremely versatile and can be customized according to your taste. You can have it completely open to the rest of the bathroom if you want, or you can have a more defined shower area with walls on three sides and a glass door. There aren’t any standard sizes or dimensions for a curbless shower, so you can make it as large or as small as you wish, space permitting. If you use an assistive device, such as a wheelchair, you should at least make sure the shower is large enough to accommodate it.

Some people install no-threshold showers primarily for aesthetic reasons. Because there is no visual break between the shower and the floor, it makes the bathroom look larger and gives it a cleaner look. You can use just about any hardware or tile that you want to achieve a particular style. It doesn’t have to look clinical or institutional. Even fixtures such as handrails for fall prevention can be integrated into the design to the point where they are hardly noticeable.

What Are Some Special Considerations To Make With a Zero-Threshold Shower?

With a curbless shower, it is easier for water to splash onto the floor of the bathroom, which may make it slippery. For a no-threshold shower to drain properly, the floor of the shower needs to be sloped to an appropriate angle. You need to choose a tile that allows for this. Even with the sloped floor and proper drainage, some splashing onto the bathroom floor can occur. To prevent falls, you need to be sure that the tiles you choose for both the bathroom floor and the shower floor (if different) are slip-resistant.

Handyman Connection Performs Home Repairs for Seniors

In addition to repair services in Kelowna, Handyman Connection also performs updates to facilitate aging in place. Modifications for accessibility can be made throughout the house, not just in the bathroom. Find out more about all the services we offer to help you remain independent in your home regardless of age or disability.

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