Standard Shower Sizes: What To Know Before You Remodel
When remodeling your bathroom, choosing the right shower size is one of your most important decisions. Whether you’re installing a new shower or replacing an old one, the shower’s size and shape will have a big impact on the look and feel of your bathroom.
But with so many different standard shower sizes and styles to choose from, how do you know which one is right for you?
Whether you’re remodeling a small powder room or a master bathroom, this guide will help you choose the best standard shower size and layout for your needs. So, let’s get started!
Understanding Standard Shower Dimensions
While there are many different sizes and shapes to choose from if you are designing and customizing your shower, most manufacturers offer showers in standard sizes.
Some standard showers are rectangular, others are square, and some are designed to meet. ADA requirements. Sizes of standard showers are listed in the table below:
|Shower size||Dimensions (L x W)||Description|
|Small||32” x 32” (81.2 x 81.2cm)|
34”x 34” (86.3 x 86.3 cm)
|Ideal for small bathrooms, this shower offers a cozy, enclosed shower experience|
(Meets ADA requirements)
|36”x 36” (91.4 x 91.4cm)|
42”x 36” (106 x 91.4cm)
|Offers a little more elbow room and a comfortable shower experience without taking up too much space|
|Large||48”x 36” (121 x 91.4cm)|
48”x 48” (121 x 121cm)
|A more luxurious shower experience with space for two people – great for families|
|Extra-large||60”x 36” (152 x 91.4cm)||Great for larger bathrooms – offers a spa-like shower experience|
What Are The Standard Sizes for Tub/Shower Combos?
If you are looking to install a tub/shower combo in your bathroom, as opposed to a shower only installation, it’s important to know the standard sizes available in this shower/tub type to ensure that it will fit comfortably in your space.
If you are remodeling and installing a new tub/shower combo in an existing bathtub space, you might need more room. Whereas a standard bathtub is rectangular and 60 inches long 32 inches wide (152cm x 81cm), tub/shower combos can be longer and wider.
Of course, if you’re converting your existing bathtub into a shower/tub combo, make sure you buy the right-sized fittings and fixtures to match what you already have.
Here is a table to help you find the perfect tub/shower combo size for your bathroom:
|Shape||Size (L x W x H)||Description|
|Alcove/Rectangular||60” x 30” x 72” (152 x 76 x 182cm)|
60” x 32” (152 x 81.2cm)
60” x 36” (152 x 91.4cm)
72” x 36” (182 x 91.4 cm)
72” x 42” (182 x 106cm)
|Designed to fit into a standard alcove space between three walls|
Standard Shower Sizes
Now let’s talk about walk-in showers that are not part of a tub/shower combo.
Before you customize your bathroom for your needs, you should understand standard shower sizes to know what will work best in your space – and what will suit your budget. Standard sizes will be more affordable than customized showers.
|Shower type||Sizes (L x W)||Description|
|Walk-in||60”x 30” (152 x 76cm)||Customized curbless shower.
Prefabricated shower unit or wall kit.
|Rectangular||60” x 42” (152 x 106cm)||Uses 2 existing walls with your choice of door. Various sizes for a comfortable shower.|
|Square shower enclosures||32”x 32” (81 x 81cm)|
42”x 42” (106 x 106cm)
|Length and height are the same on all four sides. Space-saving design, especially for small bathrooms.|
|Corner shower enclosure||36”x 36” (91.4 x 91.4 cm)|
42”x 42” (106 x 106cm)
|Maximizes space using 2 existing walls and a curved entranceway – typically square-shaped enclosures.|
Shower Door Sizes
If you are looking to install a shower door or replace an existing one, choose the right size to ensure a proper fit. A great shower door can add to the décor in your bathroom and improve the look and feel of the space.
Shower doors are available in many shapes and sizes – this is a list of the most common shower doors:
|Shower door styles||Size (H x W)||Function|
|Pivot||74” x 48” (187 x 121cm)|
74” x 36” (187 x 91.4cm)
|Pivots on a fixed point to allow entry to the shower.|
75.5 x 48” (191 x 121cm)
82”x 60” (208 x 152cm)
|Moves from one side of the frame to the other, allowing for step-in access.|
74”x 36” (187 x 91.4cm)
82”x 60” (208 x 152cm)
|Hinged swinging doors, tempered glass.|
26”x 65” (66 x 165cm)
34”x 70” (86 x 177cm)
|Swings in and out, requires additional bathroom space.|
Upgrade Your Bathroom with Various Shower Types
Customizable showers are available in many shapes and sizes to suit your needs, while prefabricated showers are generally used to create a shower enclosure around an existing tub. This table provides an overview of the different shower types:
|Corner/Curved||Fits into any bathroom corner with 2 glass screens|
|Floating||Has a single static glass screen to allow for access from either side|
|Recessed/alcove||Generally used to replace a bathtub. Fits into any alcove, a single glass screen attached to a wall with entry from one side|
|Curbless||No raised floor or curb allows for easy access|
|Prefabricated||Molded shower walls or one-piece units|
|Square||Fits snugly into any corner or against a wall|
|Rectangular||A great space-saving method offers tub and shower facilities|
How to Choose the Right Standard Shower Size
Before you start shopping for a shower, it’s important to know the standard sizes available for different shower types. The right shower can make a big difference in the functionality, comfort, and overall aesthetics of the space.
Consider the following before you decide on the best shower for your space:
- Your needs and preferences
- The size of the bathroom
- Is this for a powder room or master (aka primary) bathroom?
- The size of the available shower space in the bathroom
- The height of the shower head
- Other fixtures in the space
- Hot water requirements
Step-by-Step Guide to Shower Sizing
Once you’ve decided on the type of shower you’ll get, it’s important to accurately measure your bathroom to ensure yours fits perfectly.
Before you measure the shower space, consider the following and make sure that your chosen shower design will fit in with the decor:
- The location and position of the shower
- How much space is available for the shower
- The design and aesthetics of the bathroom
Here are some steps you can take to measure your space accurately:
Tools Needed for Measuring
You don’t need any fancy tools to measure the shower space. Take a picture of the space with you when you shop at the hardware store to remind you of the setup:
All you need is the following:
- A tape measure
- Pencil and paper
- A helper
- Digital laser (optional)
How To Measure An Alcove/Rectangular Shower Space
Watch the video above to see how easy it is to measure your shower.
By measuring your bathroom accurately, you can ensure your new shower fits perfectly and looks great. Always begin by measuring the height from the floor to the top of the space.
Follow these simple steps to measure your space for a new shower:
1. Measure length and width
Measure the length and width of the area where you want to install the shower. Be sure to measure from wall to wall and from floor to ceiling.
2. Measure the depth
Measure the depth of the shower area, which is the distance from the back wall to the front edge of the shower base.
3. Measure the Height
Measure the height of the shower area, which is the distance from the floor to the ceiling.
4. Record all measurements
Record all measurements on a piece of paper, and be sure to label each measurement clearly.
Tips for Measuring Unusual Shower Spaces
Measuring for a shower can be more challenging if your bathroom has an unusual shape or layout (think corner shower). Here are some tips to help you measure unusual spaces accurately:
1. Use a digital laser measuring tool to get precise measurements.
2. Take multiple measurements from different angles to ensure accuracy.
3. Create a scale drawing of your bathroom to help you visualize how the shower will fit in the space.
Shower Size Requirements: International Residential Code Guidelines Explained
The International Residential Code (IRC) is a set of regulations that govern the construction of residential buildings in the United States by maintaining safety standards. The IRC must be consulted together with local building codes as they may have additional requirements or restrictions.
According to the IRC:
- Showers should measure not less than 30 inches wide x 30 inches long (76.2 x 76.2cm)
- A shower compartment should not be less than 30 inches wide x 70 inches height(76.2cm x 177.8cm), allowing enough room for a standard small shower in a small bathroom.
- All hinged shower doors should open outward.
- Built-in shower/tub combos must comply with the relevant sections regarding waterproofing.
Local Building Regulations
Building codes can vary from state to state and even from municipality to municipality, so it’s always important to check with your local building department for specific regulations that apply to your area.
Before you begin your shower remodel or installation, check that your plans comply with all the relevant rules and regulations.
These could include permits if you are making any changes to the plumbing or electrical systems – failure to comply with any of these could result in heavy fines, or you could be instructed to tear down your remodel, apply for the necessary permits, and start again!
Optimal Spacing for Bathroom Fixtures
When planning your bathroom remodel, it’s important to consider the optimal spacing for your fixtures as stipulated by the IRC and your local zoning office.
The National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) is a well-respected trade organization that provides recommended guidelines for optimal spacing in the bathroom. These recommendations are not legal requirements, but they are used by designers when laying out bathrooms.
IRC & NKBA Recommendations
Following these guidelines, you can ensure that your bathroom fixtures are spaced optimally for maximum comfort and functionality while adhering to the safety codes.
Keep in mind that these are general guidelines, and you may need to make adjustments based on the size and layout of your bathroom. These are the recommended spacings for optimal comfort around your shower:
|Distance Between||Recommended Spacing (IRC)||Recommended Spacing (NKBA)|
|Shower and front of the toilet||24″ (60.1cm)||30” (76.2cm)|
|Shower and side of the toilet||15″ (38.1cm)||20” (50.8cm)|
|Shower and sink||21″ (cm)||30” (76.2cm)|
|Shower and all other fixtures|
Shower entry and all other fixtures
|Clear floor space in front of the shower||24″ (60.9cm)||30” (76.2cm)|
Measuring For The Perfect Shower Curtain Fit
A shower door is almost a necessity for any shower unless you are installing a walk-in shower without a door.
Privacy is at the top of the list for most people while showering, but a glass shower door can be expensive. What else can you use to provide the privacy you need while showering?
A shower curtain will provide privacy and keep water from splashing out of the shower onto the bathroom floor. Shower curtains are available in a few standard sizes to fit standard-sized showers:
|Shower type||Size (L x W )|
|Shower stall (stand-alone shower)||78” x 54” (198cm x 137)|
|Standard shower over bath||70” x 70” (177 x 177)
72” x 70” (182cm x 177)
|Extra-wide shower||72” x 144” (182m x 365)|
|Extra-tall shower||84” x 70” (213m x 177)|
However, measuring for a shower curtain can be challenging if you’re unsure what to look for or how to do it.
This is how you can measure to find the right size shower curtain for your shower:
1. Measure Width
Measure the Width of the shower area from one end to the other. Measure the top and the bottom of the enclosure, as sometimes these measurements can differ.
2. Measure the Height
Measure the height of the shower area from the shower rod to the floor.
3. Decide Length
Determine the length of the shower curtain according to height and width. The curtain should hang with folds, so always add 12″ to the width of the shower.
Measuring For A Perfectly Fitted Shower Bench
A shower bench is a fantastic idea! It’s great for those with mobility issues, but it can be used for so many more functions:
- Heated benches provide an in-house spa experience.
- Shaving your legs is so much easier.
- Cutting your toenails? No problem!
- Need storage space? Build a bench.
Shower benches can be any size or shape that you need, but they should meet certain requirements to provide a comfortable sitting experience:
|Standard Measurements||ADA requirements|
|Depth: 15″ to 16″ (38 – 40cm)|
Height: 17″ to 20″ (43 – 50cm)
Width: 14″ (35cm)
|Depth: 15″ to 16″ (38 – 40cm)
Height: 17″ to 19″ (43 – 48cm)
Width: 14″ (35cm)
This is how to measure for your perfect shower bench:
1. Pick location
First, decide where the bench should be located in the shower, ideally across from the showerhead.
2. Choose bench style
Second, decide on the bench style – corner, side, folding seat, bench, L-shaped, U-shaped, floating, wall mounted, free standing.
3. Sketch Design
Third, draw a basic sketch of the design of the bench and record the following sizes:
- Height: standing barefoot on the shower floor, using a tape measure, measure from the back of your knee to the floor.
- Depth: sit on a comfortable dining room chair and measure from the back of your buttock to behind your knee.
- Width: a good standard size should be around 15″ – 20″ (38 – 50cm), but use the space available in the shower.
4. Figure Out Shower Enclosure Dimensions
Fourth, determine the space in the shower enclosure according to your measurements. Adjust the bench size as necessary.
So, what size shower do you need for your bathroom?
Understanding standard shower sizes will help you discover the ideal size for your space. Figuring out the space required, your budget, and your preferences and needs will help you design and create the best shower area for you.
Reading this post, you might realize that measuring for a shower can be complicated. You’d be right. So take your time and get it right.
While you may be tempted to rush ahead and purchase the shower that fits your decor, slow down and and double check your measurements from various angles. Get them as precise as you can. You’ll save yourself time and money in the end. Use a digital laser or sketch your design.
It’s a lot easier to erase your design on paper – but not so much after you’ve racked up a credit card bill, ordered products and begun installation.
Sizing Other Bathroom Fixtures
And of course, the shower is just one fixture in the bathroom that requires precise measurement. In order to get your bathroom remodel to look like you hired a pro, you’ll need to follow size guides for every fixture, from bathroom vanity sizing, to choosing the right size bathroom mirror, and even the right size tile. Follow our detailed guides to create a stunning bathroom remodel.
Note: If you’re planning a bathroom remodel, you can get designer hacks to literally save thousands of dollars. Just sign up for my newsletter below and I’ll send the Save Big $$$ Cheat Sheet straight to your inbox.Tags: Bathroom Fixtures, International Residential Code Guidelines, shower door sizes, shower types, standard shower dimensions, standard shower sizes