It’s easy to overlook the importance of shower door hardware. But when it comes to frameless shower doors, the hardware is the accent piece that really creates the beauty and elegance. The materials used in production and the finishes thereafter make all the difference when it comes to the quality and longevity of the shower.
From shower door handles to hinges and clamps, to pulls, knobs and towel bars, the options are endless. So where do you start? What should you be thinking about when it comes to choosing the right shower door hardware? Here are some of the top considerations for the best in form and function.
Top 5 Shower Door Hardware Must-Haves
1. High-Quality Hinges
Sometimes choosing the right shower door hinges is as simple as aesthetics. What “look” do you want to achieve? Other times, safety and space requirements are the more crucial components.
- Wall-mount hinges are a good if you have a fixed panel of glass that doesn’t go all the way to the ceiling and you’re not interested in a header,
- Glass-to-glass hinges are visually appealing and less obtrusive, and tend to be the most expensive of all shower door hinges. They feature two metal plates connected in a single plane designed to support the weight of the door off of the surrounding glass rather than the wall.
- Top and bottom pivot hinges are growing in popularity among nearly every shower door specialist. They carry the majority of the weight on the bottom and have the ability to be inset from the wall, enabling clearance for tower bars and other projections. They also achieve the “all-glass” look that many homeowners desire.
2. Shower Door Handles
When you work with a shower door installer, you’ll find that there are shower door handles to complement the décor of virtually any shower door—and you’ll want to find those constructed of only the finest materials. Whether you choose a back-to-back or single-sided handle, each is typically easy to install and available in a variety of designs and finishes. From crescent and square to Victorian and Colonial, there is a style and shape that will match your taste perfectly.
Glass clamps (or “clips” or “brackets”) keep stationary panels secure in frameless showers enclosures. Whether it’s a glass-to-wall clamp, a corner clamp (where glass meets at 90 degrees), or a neo angle clamp (where glass meets at 135 degrees), you’ll want to use clamps that feature solid brass construction and a finish that matches your shower door hinges.
4. Shower Door Rollers
Think about the wheels of a sliding glass door, which roll on the top of a track. If the wheels (or shower door rollers) are made poorly and of cheap quality, the screws will eventually rust, corrode, break or fall. And if this happens, the glass door will fall down, risking serious injury to whoever’s showering. From header-less rolling shower door systems to those with headers, and rounded or square style roller systems, be sure to choose something sturdy that offers smooth and quiet door operation.
5. Shower Door Hardware Finishes and Colors
Shower door hardware is available in a variety of beautiful stock finishes to enhance the décor of your bathroom. There are brushed finishes for ‘soft’ décors, bright mirror-like finishes that sparkle, antique and high-tech finishes, and painted finishes like white, red and black for enclosures that go beyond the conventional. Oil-rubbed bronze is a hot seller in the industry, with a hand-brushed appearance that captures the timeless beauty of old-world artisanship. The deep, rich texture of oil-rubbed bronze is complemented with hints of copper, adding visual interest to any bathroom. If your shower door installer doesn’t have a stock finish that matches your style, they can most likely produce the hardware in virtually any finish compatible to their brass or stainless steel construction.
Keep in mind, problems arise when a manufacturer or retailer uses poor-quality hardware that ultimately rusts, corrodes or falls apart. Your best bet is to hire a professional shower door installer whose work is guaranteed. They can install shower door handles, hinges, shower door rollers and more rest for long-lasting enjoyment.