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5 Shower Remodeling Tips

Don't start every day looking at this. Remodel!
Don't start every day looking at this. Remodel!
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You may not have time to let Calgon take you away, but a quick, hot shower can still do you a world of good at the end of your busy day. Depending on how much money you want to spend, you can do a modest upgrade with some new tile and a rain shower head, or you could go all the way with a five-head steam shower and a frameless door. There's a wide range of range of prices and options for remodeling your shower, so here are some tips to help you with your homework.

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At the end of the day, nothing will affect your shower experience as much as the shower head itself. A popular trend in bathrooms these days is adding additional heads. This can range from one extra head so two can shower at the same time, to showers that have as many as eight to 10 heads up and down the wall so your whole body gets a powerful water massage. Rain shower heads are also popular and rely more on the rain-like experience than a powerful jet spray. Keep in mind when you're picking out your head how much water it pumps out per minute.

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Replacing your shower and tub with a new unit means you'll have to tear out the old one and start over. This is a major remodel job, and if you're going to go through the trouble of doing it, you should go ahead and do it right. Bathrooms and kitchens are rooms that have a good rate of return for the money you put into the job, and home buyers are always looking for updated bathrooms. Splurging for that nicer tile means you get to enjoy it now and you have a good chance of getting back the investment when you sell.

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Shower styles may come and go, but the frameless glass shower has been associated with spas and luxury bathrooms for a while now. Check into any four-star hotel, and you're likely to find a frameless shower in the bathroom. These units provide a nice, sleek look, but they aren't exclusive to modern design. You can install a frameless shower in every type of bathroom, blending easily in an arts and crafts bungalow or a mid-century modern home. And not only will you enjoy the clean lines of your frameless shower, they're a hot item that home buyers are on the lookout for, too.

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Never leave plumbing to chance.
Never leave plumbing to chance.
iStockphoto/Thinkstock

Working with tile is something that many DIY enthusiasts feel comfortable with. While laying a new tile floor is within the range of capable do-it-yourselfer, tiling a shower and tub area is a different deal. Floors are the easiest things to tile because you're working with a horizontal surface, most likely covered with backerboard. It's nice and flat and you're generally dealing with right angles. Tiling a shower means you're working with vertical walls, difficult angles and, in many cases, a more intricate pattern than you'd find on your floor. Unless it's something you've done before, put down the trowel and leave the finishing to a professional.

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If you're looking to push your bathing experience over the top, think about adding a steam unit to the shower. Steam showers used to be exclusive to spas, but savvy homeowners looking to pamper themselves are adding them to home bathrooms. These showers are sealed up to the ceiling and with a push of a button, a hot steam cloud will envelop you. A nice hot steam is also great for sore and overworked muscles.

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Sources

  • D'Agnese, Joseph. "Steam Shower: How It Works." Thisoldhouse.com, 2011. http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,20165598,00.html
  • Power, Stephen. "A Water Fight Over Luxury Showers." Wsj.com, 2011. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704913304575371462611463490.html
  • "Remodeling Tips." Texasshowercompany.com, 2011. http://texasshowercompany.com/category/remodeling-tips
  • "Showers With Sizzle." Hgtv.com, 2011. http://www.hgtv.com/bathrooms/showers-with-sizzle/page-2.html

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