How to Install a Stall Shower Door

Written by sarai jeremiah
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How to Install a Stall Shower Door
Install a shower door. (Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Homeowners looking for an alternative to shower curtains might consider installing glass doors in their shower stall. Not only do glass shower doors give bathrooms a stylish look while providing privacy and protection; they also allow more light into a shower than curtains and are typically more convenient, more durable, easier to clean and maintain and longer lasting. Glass shower enclosures can also make bathrooms appear larger. Shower door kits are available in two types: framed, which require thicker glass, and frameless, which cost and weigh less.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Pencil
  • Level
  • Tape measure
  • Caulking gun
  • Silicone caulk
  • Pan-head screws
  • Screwdriver
  • Plastic mallet
  • Drill
  • Masonry bit
  • Hacksaw
  • File
  • Plastic anchors

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Instructions

    Preparing the Base Track

  1. 1

    Measure the length of the shower threshold with a tape measure. Use a hacksaw to cut the base track to length. The base track should fit tightly between the walls of the shower stall.

  2. 2

    Smooth the ends of the base track with a file. Clean up metal debris.

  3. 3

    Set the base track on the shower threshold. Use the tape measure to check that the track is accurately centred from front to back.

  4. 4

    Mark with a pencil on the each end of the threshold where you will position the base track.

    Installing the Hinge Jamb

  1. 1

    Place the hinge jamb against the wall where the shower door will be supported and slide the lower end of the jamb into the base track.

  2. 2

    Hold the track tightly in place and use a 4-foot level to plumb the jamb. Stick a pencil through the screw holes of the jamb to mark the screw locations. If possible, have a helper stabilise the track or hold the level.

  3. 3

    Create pilot holes where you've made the pencil markings, using a drill with a masonry bit.

  4. 4

    Tap plastic anchors into each screw hole in the wall with a plastic mallet.

  5. 5

    Hold the jamb plumb to the wall to align the jamb's screw holes with the plastic anchors. Use pan-head screws and a screwdriver to attach the jamb.

    Placing the Glass Door

  1. 1

    Lift the door up, positioning the attached hinge rail as if the door were in an open position. Guide the hinge rail into the jamb.

  2. 2

    Hold the door tightly in place and use the level to plumb the door. Slightly lift the hinge rail out of the top or bottom of the jamb if it's not aligned correctly. Check that 1/2 inch of space is between the hinge rail and the jamb, signifying that the door is plumb.

  3. 3

    Drill pilot holes through the existing hinge rail holes into the mounted jamb while someone holds the door in place. Use pan-head screws to attach the hinge rail to the jamb.

    Completing the Installation

  1. 1

    Install the second door jamb, using pan-head screws to attach the jamb to the wall once the second jamb is correctly aligned.

  2. 2

    Measure the length of the header from wall to wall and use a hacksaw to cut it to length. Fit the header in place over the top of the hinge jamb and side panel.

  3. 3

    Attach the strike rail (magnetic bar) to the strike jamb (vertical member of the shower door frame) with screws. Screw together the handles and frame. When closed, the door and rail should produce a watertight seal.

  4. 4

    Cut the drip rail with a hacksaw. Use a file to round off the ends. Attach the drip rail to the bottom of the shower door frame with screws. The drip rail is a horizontal moulding that prevents shower door leaks.

  5. 5

    Apply a bead of clear, mildew-resistant silicone caulk with a caulking gun along both sides of the door jamb and on the inside and outside edges of the base track.

Tips and warnings

  • Shower door kits come with shower door, complete installation instructions, and hardware necessary for installation. Use the hardware list included with the instructions or owner's manual to identify parts such as the strike rail and drip rail.

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