Designing and building a shower available to users with physical challenges requires more planning and space compared to a conventional shower requires. There is a good deal to be taken into consideration when you install an accessible shower, however also the Americans with Disabilities Act provides guidelines for builders who wish to design a shower that could be utilized safely and easily by nearly anyone.
To meet ADA requirements, a shower must have minimum inside dimensions of 36 inches by 36 inches and a door opening at least 36 inches wide if the shower will be used by a person who will transfer from a wheelchair to a seat inside the shower. If the user will roll a wheelchair into the shower, the interior dimensions of the shower has to be at least 30 inches wide by 60 inches deep, with a 60-inch door opening.
Exterior Clear Space
The ADA specifies a transfer-type shower requires clear floor space outside its entry of at least 36 inches wide and 48 inches long, as measured by the wall where the shower controls are mounted, so the user has enough room to transfer from a wheelchair to the shower seat. A roll-in shower requires clear distance of at least 30 inches by 60 inches. In both cases, the threshold in the entrance of the shower should not be higher than 1/2 inch.
The shower spray unit at an accessible shower ought to be a handheld sprayer that could be applied as in a fixed position, and the sprayer’s hose must be at least 59 inches long. The shower controls need to be between 38 and 48 inches above the floor, and at a transfer-type shower, the controls must be on the wall opposite the seat. In a roll-in shower, the controls could be on any wall.
A transfer-type shower requires a seat on the rear wall of the shower, and the seat must extend to within 3 inches of the entry of the shower so the user readily reaches the seat from beyond the shower. A roll-in shower does not need to have a seat, but if it has one, the seat has to be a folding type. The top of all seats must be between 15 and 17 inches high, and they need to be capable of supporting 250 lbs. You should not position any shower seat so it interferes with the shower’s minimum inside clear space of 30 inches by 30 inches as specified in the International Residential Code.
Transfer-type showers need grab bars around the exact same wall as the shower controls, as well as on the rear wall, extending 18 inches from the control wall. Roll-in showers must have grab bars on all three walls, and the bars need to extend to within 6 inches of curved walls. Grab bars must be between 1 1/4 and 2 inches in diameter, and they must be positioned horizontally between 33 and 36 inches above the floor. Ideally, you must install grab bars during the initial construction of this shower, with reinforcing blocking at the wall framing that will allow the bars to support at least 300 lbs.