Frameless Glass Shower Enclosures - Buying Guide

February 18, 2022

Frameless custom glass shower enclosures are as custom as they come. Not only do they come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but there are many different ways you can tailor them to your liking. There are different options for the type and thickness of the glass you use, the finish and style of your hardware, and dozens of accessory-items you can choose to make your enclosure stand out. 

This equates to numerous possibilities for designing an extraordinary frameless shower enclosure, as well as a great degree of freedom to choose what items you want. 

That’s why we created this guide. To help you determine what you want and how you want it, so that you can be one step closer to having the shower enclosure you’re happy with. Follow along as we explore all your options when it comes to buying and choosing a frameless shower enclosure that’s truly custom-made. 

Enclosure Options

When it comes to frameless glass enclosures, there’s no such thing as a “standard size.” Just like with made-to-order clothing, frameless shower doors and enclosures must be custom cut to their own unique size and shape. 

At Southwestern Home Products, you can choose both the glass thickness of your shower enclosure (and the doors themselves) as well as the angle of your shower doors to match your own personal style and taste. 

Frameless Glass Thickness Options

Glass Thickness Options

When it comes to glass thickness options, you can choose between ⅜’’ and ½’’ glass for your new glass enclosure. 

Why only ⅜’’ and ½’’? At Southwestern Home Products, we only utilize ⅜’’ and ½’’ for all of our frameless shower doors and enclosures because they’re thick and sturdy. This ensures our enclosures won’t break and are safe to use long-term. 

Frameless Enclosure Angle Options

Angle Options

You can also select the angle of your frameless shower enclosure—the angle at which the glass meets the walls of your bathroom. You can either have a ‘right angle shower’ at 90 degrees, an enclosure at 180 degrees, or a ‘neo-angle shower’ at 135 degrees

Although you’re free to choose a specific angle for your new frameless shower door enclosure, we recommend you go with one of the most common angles—90, 135, or 180 degrees—which are easy to use and look great!

Frameless Glass Styles

You can also select from the various glass styles—which determine the type of glass we’ll use for your fixture. You can choose from:

Clear Glass which looks great on any bathroom style (giving your bathroom a timeless look). 

Frosted and Opaque Glass which provides privacy, and prevents bathroom light from passing through, making it semi-transparent. 

Rain Glass which has patterns that resemble rain drops, while allowing light to pass through. Perfect for contemporary bathroom styles. 

Glass Styles for Frameless Shower Enclosures

Glass Coating

In addition to glass styles, you also have the option to add on a glass coating—a protective film that coats the glass itself. At Southwestern Home Products, we offer ShowerGuard® glass coating for all our frameless glass enclosures. 

ShowerGuard® is an advanced coating that literally fuses to the surface of the glass when it’s manufactured. This protects the glass from the damaging effects of hard water and high heat and humidity, as well as soap residue and cleaning agents. By stopping corrosion before it starts, our ShowerGuard® coating provides superior shine, gloss and protection—a great investment in the longevity of your enclosure.

Hardware Options

There are a wide range of hardware options to choose from when customizing your shower enclosure—perfect for homeowners who want to match (or compliment) a specific aesthetic. You can select your own hardware finishes, door hinges, sliding door systems, pull styles, and door headers, as well as determine any specific add-ons you want, like towel bars and grab bars. 

Follow along to learn about all your options.

Hardware Finishes

As Southwestern Home Products, we provide a large selection of shower door hardware finishes—in fact, it’s one of the largest in all of El Paso. Our extensive options mean you can compliment the look and feel of virtually any interior aesthetic you have in mind. 

Our favorites include polished chrome for an elegant look, brushed copper for a satin-sheen, or matte black for a sophisticated shower that’s slightly edgy. 

Hardware Finishes

Shower Door Hinges

We provide a diverse selection of door hinges to pick from. You can choose from wall mounted hinges,’header to floor pivot-mounted hinges, and glass-to-glass hinges, among other styles, or contact us to help you determine the hinge style that’s right for you.

We recommend the Vienna series of premium shower hinges, because they’re designed for wider, heavier doors (providing lasting durability) and can accommodate a wide range of finishes. 

Frameless Glass Shower Enclosure Hinges

Sliding Shower Door Systems

Sliding glass doors (as opposed to pivot doors) are a great way to make space or add a modern touch to your enclosure. 

For those who want a frameless enclosure with sliding doors, we provide a number of different shower door sliding systems—including both single sliding and bypass systems. 

Single sliding systems, as their name implies, are mobile only on one side. As such, they use less hardware—making them more affordable—and are great for when the shower door is on the same side as your water controls. Bypass systems, in contrast, will slide on both sides of the commode—allowing you to enter from either one.In the event that your commode blocks access to your water controls—bypass systems allow you to lean over the commode to turn on your water before entering on the opposite side. No more getting hit with cold water!

Our most popular sliding shower door systems include: 

  • The Serenity Series Single Sliding Shower Door System, which uses minimal hardware to provide a unique ‘floating appearance.’ 
  • The Cambridge Series Two-Door Bypass Sliding System, which utilizes a modern top-roller system for easy sliding. Made from high quality stainless steel, it’s a convenient (and gorgeous) way to open and close your shower doors. 

Door Pull Styles

Want a unique way to open and close your shower door? Southwestern Home Products provides a diverse array of door pull styles—including both pull handles and knobs—to help our customers find the perfect way to accentuate their shower doors. You can select from pulls in any finish, length, or material, including glass, brass, or crystal. Our knobs can be back-to-back or single-sided as well. 

Towel Bars & Grab Bars 

Towel bars are a great way to keep your new bathroom looking tidy, while grab bars are just as helpful in preventing slipping and falling while in the shower. 

We offer an assortment of optional towel bars and grab bars to compliment the look of your shower enclosure hardware. You can choose from a variety of different towel bars in a variety of shapes, sizes and finishes. Whether you want a single, double, or freestanding design—we have it! 

Shower Door Headers & Support Bars

If your frameless shower enclosure has glass panels that don’t reach the ceiling, it may be wise to add shower door headers or support bars to your shower enclosure configuration.

Shower door headers are a specific type of panel (made of metal) that are used to stabilize and carry the weight of your shower door. This relieves some of the tension created when you pull on your attached glass panel. Shower support bars, while not as extensive, stabilize a single panel of tempered glass—making the enclosure more stable.

We provide a range of options to keep your frameless shower enclosure safe, secure, and stable—for the lifetime of its use. You can choose from any of the following options to keep your frameless enclosure sturdy and secure: 

  • Deluxe shower door headers
  • EZ-Adjust shower door headers
  • Shower door thresholds
  • Support bars

*Keep in mind that if your enclosure requires panels larger than 30’’ or requires the door to be hinged off a panel greater than 20”, you will definitely need header support. 

You can work with a shower enclosure expert at Southwestern Home products to help you determine the best door header and/or threshold for your custom glass shower enclosure. Contact us today to learn more. 

Order Your Custom Glass Shower Enclosure Today

Overwhelmed by your options? We’d be surprised if you weren’t!

Whether you need help choosing the type of glass enclosure that will fit in your bathroom or are stuck on hardware finishes and accessories, we can help. Our experienced team of shower enclosure specialists know the ins and outs of custom frameless shower enclosures. We can help you determine the best options for your custom enclosure, and recommend specific products and features to match whatever look you have in mind. 

Contact us today to get started crafting your one-of-a-kind frameless glass shower enclosure!

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