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Framed vs Frameless Shower Doors: Making the Right Choice

Remodeled shower enclosures can transform a bathroom from drab to glamorous. However, the wide variety of shower glass door designs makes many homeowners unsure of what to buy. Whenever someone considers framed vs. frameless shower doors, it creates a dilemma.

Both options are safe and stylish, but each has its limitations. Homeowners should understand the pros and cons of each type so they can make a choice they enjoy for years. Once the best shower door type is chosen, homeowners should contact their local glass door provider to start the bathroom makeover process.

Framed Shower Doors

A framed shower door remains the most popular choice for a bathroom renovation. It has a metal framework surrounding the glass door and panels, allowing homeowners to match the trim with other bathroom fixtures. A framed glass shower door remains a solid choice for homeowners upgrading from a shower curtain because they are more durable, easier to clean, and provide a more modern look.

Pros of Framed Shower Doors

Enhanced Stability

Framed glass shower doors prioritize safety with the use of tempered glass. This type of glass shatters into small, dull pieces instead of sharp shards, reducing the risk of harm. The metal frame surrounding the glass door adds extra stability, decreasing the risk of breakage.

Easy Installation

The installation process for glass shower doors varies based on whether they are framed or frameless. Framed doors are easier to install because a premeasured frame will fit in almost any shower opening.

Framed designs have thinner glass and lighter doors, making installation easier. The frame supports the glass without clips or hinges. Caulking will seal the space between the metal frame and the wall to keep the water in the shower stall.

Versatile Design Options

Property owners can choose between brushed nickel, polished chrome, matte black, and other types of metal frames for a sleek, contemporary look. Choosing a door that slides or a pivot door instead of a hinged door will save space. Custom framed glass doors are available in several designs, allowing property owners to find the perfect match for their décor.

Framed shower doors offer sliding doors that smoothly move along a track. Selecting framed doors remains cost-effective because they have a 10% to 15% lower installation cost than frameless shower doors. Framed glass doors often use thinner tempered glass, which cuts back on costs.

Cons of Framed Shower Doors

Maintenance Challenges

Excess moisture might lead to corrosion of the metal frames and promote mildew growth. Soap scum may gather where the frame meets the glass. Framed showers have a bottom track that collects water, increasing the risk of metal corrosion and mold growth and making upkeep more challenging.

Traditional Design

Some framed shower doors may look outdated when installed in bathrooms with modern designs. However, homeowners often prefer the framed shower door type for its timeless charm and compatibility with most interior designs. As a result, the framed option remains the most popular and versatile shower door for homeowners.

Frameless Shower Doors

Frameless shower doors offer a clear view into showers, showcasing stunning tiles, rain shower heads, and other high-end fixtures. They are made of strong, tempered glass panes and do not need metal frame support. The absence of a visible frame creates a clean, modern appearance. Also known as seamless glass shower doors, frameless doors remain highly sought after by homeowners.

Pros of Frameless Shower Doors

Customizable Design

When shopping for frameless glass shower doors, homeowners will find a range of styles. Frameless doors allow homeowners to choose the finish of their metal hinges and handles. Choosing a semi-frameless shower door with one or more framed sides creates an opportunity for additional customization.

Unobstructed View

Frameless shower doors create a sense of open space and airiness in bathrooms, even in small ones. While taking a shower, homeowners may enjoy a view of the bathroom unobstructed by framing and seals that typically limit line of sight.

Fully frameless showers offer several advantages, such as an unobstructed view of beautiful tiles, easy cleaning without nooks and crannies, and a breezy, open feel that no other glass shower door can match. Choosing the beauty and utility of a frameless shower door will enhance any bathroom.

Easy Maintenance

Cleaning a frameless shower door proves easier than cleaning a framed glass door. The lack of a frame reduces corrosion and the accumulation of soap scum in the crevices, which also collect mineral deposits.

Many manufacturers coat frameless shower doors to limit water stains and make cleaning easier. Selecting the simplicity and practicality of frameless glass shower doors is a sensible decision for any bathroom.

Enhanced Appearance

Frameless glass doors showcase impressive brickwork and fine marble tiles that would otherwise remain obscured by a framed door. The chic, frameless design uses airtight and watertight seals to prevent leakage. Installers may personalize the appearance by using knee walls to create a three-panel glass shower enclosure for a minimalistic, open feel.

Fixed, frameless splash panels without a moving door aid in spray containment without obstructing the doorway. Choosing the beauty and utility of frameless shower doors can transform a bathroom into a welcoming, contemporary retreat.

Cons of Frameless Shower Doors

Higher Cost

Frameless shower doors are more expensive than framed doors due to the need for stronger, heavier glass. They also require tougher hardware to maintain structural integrity.

As a result, frameless shower doors may cost hundreds of dollars more than their framed counterparts. Despite the higher cost, many homeowners see frameless doors as a worthwhile investment during a bathroom remodel.

Complex Installation

Frameless glass doors require competent installers to ensure safety and produce flawless results. Homeowners should consult with professionals to ensure their houses will support frameless doors.

Frameless door installation requires more intensive labor than a framed door. Installers should perfectly level the shower door clips to prevent drooping. If the shower enclosure has tiles, it may require special drill bits to secure the hinges.

Thick silicone caulk creates a watertight seal where the glass meets the walls, preventing leaks. A proper installation ensures the durability and long-term functionality of a frameless glass shower door.

Framed vs. Frameless Shower Doors | Gatsby Glass

Now that you know the benefits of framed and frameless doors, you can decide which one is right for you. Improve your bathroom’s appearance with shower doors from the best glass solutions company. Call Gatsby Glass at 866-GLASS-64 to schedule a free consultation today!