Walk in Showers: Building your own Wet Room

a walk in shower with tray and screen

What exactly is a walk in shower?

A walk in shower, also known as a wet room, is where the floor of the shower is flat (or low access). This is usually created by having a level access floor former (such as our Marlin, Rhino or an AKW Tuff Form) or a shower tray where the “lip” of the entry is low.

Walk in showers can be enclosed within a wet room screen or enclosed within walls (which are tiled or using wall panels for example).

What are the advantages of a walk in shower?

Walk in showers offer a wide variety of advantages over a traditional style shower within a bath.

  • When a walk in shower is built using a flat floor former, the shower room can be used for the less able or mobile and is the perfect solution for wheelchair users or people who need help when showering.
  • Walk in showers are a great solution when you have limited space and need an extra bathroom within a property. They are ideal for en-suite rooms, or where you are converting an existing room into a second bathroom.
  • Walk in showers are modern and can add real value to any property.
  • Walk in showers are easier to maintain. Providing minimalist designs, there is less room for mold and dirt to gather, and because the water drains away naturally to a waste gully, water does not get caught and cause further issues.
  • Installing a walk in shower normally is a much quick job than a complete bathroom installation.
  • When used with slip-free surfacing, they are much safer environment, especially for the elderly and young.
  • Showering takes less time and is much more environmentally friendly than having a bath.
  • Having a shower is refreshing and can re-invigorate!

What will I need to create my walk in shower?

From an equipment perspective, there are some essentials you will need when designing your dream walk in shower room:

  • You first need to decide on what kind of tray you want. If you want a truly level access floor, you will need a floor former. If you are comfortable with having a small step into the shower, then a shower tray will be fine.
  • When creating a walk in shower, you’ll also need a tanking kit. A tanking kit is used to waterproof your shower room (remember, there is no water container like a bath in a walk in shower, so water will get everywhere). We provide both paint on tanking kits as well as membrane tanking kits.
  • If you’re purchasing both a floor former and tanking kit, we offer a great range of wet room kits.
  • Of course, you’ll need a shower. For a truly modern walk in shower, the best shower is a wall enclosed one rather than one where the shower unit sits on the outside of the wall. We have a range of shower units perfect for walk in showers and wet rooms.
  • You may need a shower screen or shower wall panels depending on the specification of the room.
  • If you’re using a shower tray, you may need a shower enclosure. Shower enclosures are a great solution when you have a shower tray in an enclosed space (either two or three walls surrounding the shower room).
  • The perfect end to any shower is a warm towel. Our range of wall mounted towel rails bring elegance and a contemporary finish to any walk in shower.

Choosing an installer to install your walk in shower

Unlike a traditional bathroom, a shower room will have a few differences, especially if you’re using a flat floor former. For example, formers have to be built in such a way that the water drains to a gully. This means that the floor needs to be sloped to create this. Gullys need to be built into the floor, and the shower room needs to be tanked (waterproofed) correctly to ensure that you don’t have water leakage problems.

Therefore, when you’re choosing an installer you need to know that they have the relevant experience. It always helps to ask them for examples of previous wet rooms they have installed.

Looking for an installer in your area? Check out our plumbers & fitters directory. An ongoing project, we’re aiming to build a directory of installers across the UK who have provided evidence they have installed shower rooms to a high standard.

What else will I need for my walk in shower?

Don’t forget, you’re going to need tiles, lighting and other equipment such as sanitaryware (think toilets, basins etc).

You’re installer should have the relevant skills to help with all of the jobs you’ll need when installing your new walk in shower.

I’ve never had a walk in shower, where do I start?

For those people who are used to traditional bathrooms, a walk in shower can be a new, daunting experience when it comes to specification. However, don’t panic! Our Simply Wetrooms professional team are to help! From working out the correct equipment you need to answering any questions you may have, that’s why we’re here. And we’ve been helping customers just like you for over 20 years.

To find out more, why not call us today on 0845 139 0385 or visit our contact page to send us a message? We understand that not everyone knows everything about shower rooms, so don’t be afraid to ask us any questions, however simple you may think they are!