Best Walk-in Shower Companies
Walk-in showers ease the way for bathing for those who have mobility issues and create a brighter, more open feel to the bathroom. This guide provides the tips you need to choose the best walk-in shower, whether you are looking for a luxury spa-like addition to your home or you have safety concerns. You will also learn about installing walk-in showers and discover the right design to enhance your bathroom.
We evaluated 22 walk-in shower companies to help you find the best mobility options or a more luxurious shower experience. We researched features, materials, warranties and costs. Our five best walk-in shower choices are from Safe Step, American Standard, Independent Home, Jacuzzi and Kohler.
Tips for a Wise Walk In Shower Buyer
- If a luxury walk-in shower is your goal, consider adding safety features for the future.
- A bathroom with only a shower is considered a 3/4 bath. Keep this in mind if you plan to sell your home and wouldn’t have a full bathroom in the house.
- Walk-in showers designed for mobility and safety must meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards.
What is a Walk-in Shower?
Walk-in showers either feature a shallow threshold or have an entrance that’s flush with the bathroom floor. A properly-installed walk-in shower with flexible flanges or a linear drain keeps the bathroom floor from getting wet.
A walk-in shower can look great in your bathroom and be safe
If you have mobility issues or are planning for years to come, there are walk-in shower designs that comply with ADA safety regulations. These showers are at least 36 inches by 36 inches with an attached seat. Many people find this size too restricting while seated, and it won’t accommodate a roll-in shower chair. Consider a more spacious walk-in shower for effortless movement in the stall.
Types of Walk-in Showers
In addition to basic and luxury walk-in showers, transfer showers and roll-in showers are additional solutions for those with limited mobility. A person in a wheelchair can roll up alongside a transfer shower and safely move from the chair to the shower seat. Roll-in showers are the roomiest mobility showers, with enough space to enter sitting in a shower chair or wheelchair. The controls for each of these specialty walk-in showers are within easy reach of the bather.
A larger walk-in shower is better for most mobility issues.
Walk-in showers designed for mobility come with anti-slip floors and multiple grab bars. If you’re still concerned about safety, consider a walk-in tub with a handheld shower attachment.
Walk-in Shower Designs
Many walk-in showers, such as those available from Safe Step and Independent Home, are installed as one insert or prefabricated walls and a floor. These shells are sized to utilize the space left after removing the existing shower or tub. You may be able to choose from a variety of doors, showerheads and other fixtures with these models, but you won’t be able to customize the design further.
- Walk-in showers with no doors have a spacious feel and can be any size allowed by building codes. This design has no curb to step over and a gently-sloping floor or linear drain to keep water off the bathroom floor. Doorless walk-in showers typically come tiled or with polymer panel walls. These materials add to material and labor costs, but you’ll have the best choice of colors and textures.
- Walk-in showers for small bathrooms can be three full walls and a translucent panel creating a partial wall. One-piece walk-in shower enclosures come in smaller sizes and are easy to install. Triangular bases are available to create a corner walk-in shower. The smallest walk-in showers are usually 30 inches by 30 inches, but other sizes are easy to find.
- Luxury walk-in showers can be designed with safety, spa-like conveniences and comfort in mind. High-end walk-in showers are the most customizable, from the size to fixtures. You can choose from many shower tiles, including painted, patterned or subway tiles. Other options are faux stone or high-gloss wall panels and heated floors.
|Walk-in Shower Features|
|One-piece enclosure||Lower cost yet very safe. Fast installation if no replumbing is required.|
|Glass panels or block||Glass panels contribute to open concept design but offer no privacy. Glass block walls let more light in with some privacy.|
|Solid polymer wall panels||Easy to keep clean. Attractive colors. Extreme durability. Create any size shower with this material.|
|Tiled walls and floor||Expensive. Doorless with zero (flat) entry is possible. Widest choices of colors with no size restrictions.|
Pros and Cons of Walk-in Showers
Walk-in showers are a great way to prevent slipping and falling, and they can add a beautiful ambiance to the bathroom. However, you should carefully consider both negative and positive aspects of a walk-in shower before deciding to buy one.
Walk-in Shower Benefits
- Open concept makes the bathroom look larger.
- Ease of entering and exiting the shower.
- Walk-in showers for seniors are a solution for maintaining independence.
- The latest walk-in showers are eco-friendly.
- Accessible to those with mobility issues.
- Multispray nozzles and wall jets create a relaxing massage, alleviating muscle and joint pain.
- Walk-in showers have many of the best bathroom safety features.
- Design options are endless, depending on your budget.
Walk-in Shower Problems
- You may need to install a more powerful exhaust fan.
- Privacy can be an issue.
- Replace grout every other year for optimum maintenance.
- Improper design or installation can cause water pooling on the bathroom floor.
- Could affect the home resale value if you don’t have a separate full bathroom or a tub in the room.
- You will get wet while bathing children.
Installing a Walk-in Shower
Before you have a walk-in shower installed, call your city hall to ask about local building codes and permits. It’s best to leave the installation to professionals unless you are experienced with shower installations and plumbing. All of our best walk-in shower companies provide installation or can put you in touch with an installer in your area.
Installing a walk-in shower can require a great deal of renovation. You will have the existing bathtub or shower removed, and some plumbing may need retrofitting. A tiled stall looks sophisticated but is very time-consuming and may require knocking down one or more walls. The easiest way to install a walk-in shower yourself is to buy a prefabricated product.
Another DIY option is to buy a walk-in shower conversion kit for your shower over the bathtub. Be sure you feel confident about installing a conversion kit because you will have to cut your existing tub.
How Much Do Walk-in Showers Cost?
The cost of walk-in shower installation varies widely by region. The materials, size, plumbing and extent of bathroom remodeling are among the factors influencing your final price. Installing a walk-in shower in new construction costs less than an extensive renovation.
|Walk-in Shower Costs
Cost of Installation not Included
|Single or multiple piece prefab stall||A single unit costs less to manufacture, with prices starting at $800. Three walls and a tray can cost up to $1,000 more.|
|Size||32” x 32”: $800 to $1,200
36” x 36” ADA compliant: $900 to $2,800
40” x 63”: $2,000 to $4,000
Large luxury walk-in shower: $8,000 to $12,000
|Custom walk-in shower||$6,500 to $15,000 and up for a professionally-designed and installed custom walk-in shower.|
|Walk-in shower and soaking tub||Add $2,000 to $4,000 or more to project cost. Cost increases with more durable materials or a plumbing reinstall.|
Our Search for the Best Walk-in Shower Companies
Choosing the best walk-in shower for your needs can get confusing. Many well-known walk-in shower companies offer several models, and there are quite a few new companies in the industry.
We started our search with the 22 most popular walk-in shower companies. We narrowed our recommendations down to the five best options using these steps:
We evaluated the walk-in shower marketplace.
To narrow our search, we first considered consumer and expert reviews for the top walk-in shower companies. We removed those with a three-star rating or below from consideration.
We assessed the top walk-in shower companies based on industry ratings and awards.
We wanted to find the top walk-in shower companies in terms of value, customer satisfaction, available options and customer support. We also considered awards for quality and innovative design.
We shopped for walk-in showers and followed the advice in this guide.
We focused on finding walk-in shower manufacturers based on our wise buyer standards. We evaluated each company’s walk-in shower lines, pricing associated with models and options, warranty details and other relevant criteria.
If a company failed to provide both materials and installation, we removed it from consideration. Also, if a company did not include online information to explain products and options, we excluded it from our search.
Bathroom. Source: Getty
Walk-in Shower Company Reviews
After our evaluations, we chose the best walk-in shower companies: Safe Step, American Standard, Independent Home, Jacuzzi and Kohler. Each of these companies stood out above and beyond the competition.
Safe Step Walk-in Showers Review
Great Standard Safety Features |
Safe Step specializes in designing and manufacturing walk-in showers and walk-in tubs for seniors and others with mobility issues. Professionals install Safe Step walk-in showers in the existing space occupied by the current shower or bathtub. This limits the expense of extensive remodeling. All Safe Step products meet or exceed ADA standards and come with a lifetime warranty covering all parts and labor.
Safe Step walk-in showers feature a Tru-Temp anti-scald valve, an adjustable hand-held shower wand with a quick on/off button, a curtain rod, and a shower curtain. Shower controls are easy to reach, and the floor has a commercial-grade anti-slip surface. Safe Step offers several options to customize your walk-in shower, like three different seats, sliding glass doors and metal finish upgrades.
American Standard Walk-in Shower Review
Custom Stalls |
American Standard’s broad selection of ADA-compliant bathroom fixtures combines to create a custom walk-in shower that blends in with the rest of the bathroom. Shower faucets feature the Hot Limit Safety Stop to prevent scalding, and bases are slip-resistant for safety. American Standard sells numerous coordinating showerheads and trim kits.
American Standard offers several options for walk-in shower bases. We like the ADA-compliant Studio 38-inch by 38-inch Acrylic Shower Base for narrow spaces. The base is made of fiberglass-reinforced acrylic material for years of durability. American Standard is a top North American plumbing and building products manufacturer with a 140-year history.
Freedom Showers Review
Great Selection |
The Accessibility Professionals offer the Freedom Showers line to help people easily remodel their bathrooms for aging in place. The company sells over 50 Freedom Showers-brand walk-in showers for residential and commercial applications. The broad range of choices may sound overwhelming, but the customer care team fully educates consumers about options before they complete their orders.
Freedom accessible walk-in showers are available in sizes ranging from 48 by 37 inches to a 61-by-61-inch corner shower. Some of the 22 ADA-compliant roll-in shower models feature the lowest molded linear drain threshold in the industry. Freedom Showers produces seven transfer showers in sizes up to 48 inches by 39 inches. The Easy Step line has 13 walk-in shower selections with safety bars and seats.
To get a quote or learn more about the brand, visit Freedom Shower’s website or call (888) 594-8649.
Independent Home Walk-in Showers Review
Great Installation |
Independent Home distributes walk-in shower systems and other products to modify homes for those with mobility challenges. A representative comes to the consumer’s house to see where they want to install a walk-in shower, perform a site inspection and make walk-in shower recommendations.
Independent Home walk-in showers are designed to fill the space of the existing bathtub or shower over tub. Trained professionals with at least five years of experience handle installation. Many units install in one day. Independent Home offers wheelchair-accessible options, many standard safety features and glass door upgrades.
Jacuzzi Walk-in Showers
Great Comfort Features |
Jacuzzi has been in business for a century and has been selling hot tubs since the 1960s. The company’s product line expanded over the years to include the Finestra walk-in shower. The attractive high-gloss acrylic alcove measures 60 inches by 30 inches and is 77 inches tall.
Jacuzzi Finestra’s safety features include slip-resistant flooring, an anti-scald guard and designer grab bars on every wall. Jacuzzi walk-in showers come with comfort features you won’t find elsewhere:
- Move the seat securely to any wall, or remove it
- Hand-held and fixed showerheads
- Easily adjust between showerhead, hand-held shower and four body jets
- Shelves are deep enough for large shampoo bottles
Kohler Walk-in Showers Review
Great Luxury Options |
The Kohler Company has been designing and manufacturing kitchen and bathroom fixtures for over 140 years. The quote you get from the company includes installation, so there are no surprises in your final bill. Kohler’s price is good for one year.
Kohler’s LuxStone walk-in shower combines safety features with sleek accessories for those with mobility challenges. Stain-resistant, grout-free walls can be custom-fitted to any size. Choose from 14 colors, five showerheads, three handheld showers and many other options. Create a luxury walk-in shower with Kohler’s digital shower system that activates your perfect water temperature, spray volume and more at the touch of a button.
Frequently Asked Questions about Walk-In Showers
Does Medicare cover walk-in showers?
Medicare does not pay for walk-in showers. Medicaid or a Medicare Advantage plan can help defray a walk-in shower’s cost by paying for a bathroom renovation. Many walk-in shower companies offer financing deals as well.
Does a walk-in shower with no door get drafty?
You may experience a slight draft in a walk-in shower without a door. Proper installation usually keeps drafts to a minimum. If you easily get chilled, consider a glass enclosure on your walk-in shower.
Can I have a walk-in shower installed on a wall with a window?
Yes. An experienced installer or residential construction professional can install a walk-in shower on a wall with a window. The window can be replaced with frosted glass or glass blocks for privacy while providing natural light.
What are linear drains in walk-in showers?
Linear drains replace standard drains in walk-in showers to keep water off the floor in a walk-in or roll-in shower. This type of drainage allows for a flat shower floor with no slope to guide water to a central drain. Linear drains are a channel that runs under the shower floor covered by a grid. Water flows into the home’s drainage system. You’ll typically find a linear drain at the entrance of a walk-in shower, but then can be installed at the bottom of any wall as well.
Do walk-in showers use more water than a regular shower?
A walk-in shower does not necessarily use more water compared to standard showers. The amount of water used depends on the time spent in the shower. Today’s showers are designed to use water efficiently, and walk-in showers use less water than walk-in tubs.
Concluding Thoughts on Walk-in Showers
A walk-in shower can bring safety, luxury and added value to your home.
A walk-in shower adds space to your bathroom and makes it appear larger and more open. These showers are excellent for preventing dangerous and often life-threatening falls and can add value to the home. Many people don’t think a walk-in shower would be affordable, but there are models available for nearly any budget.
The Best Walk-in Shower Companies
|Walk In Tub Company||Best For||Phone|
|1||Safe Step||Great Standard Safety Features||888-653-9934|
|2||American Standard||Great Custom Stalls||(888) 594-8649|
|3||Freedom Showers||Great Selection|
|4||Independent Home||Great Installation|
|5||Jacuzzi||Great Comfort Features|
|6||Kohler||Great Luxury Options|