Do you cringe every time you step into your outdated, cramped shower? Does maneuvering in such a tiny space feel next to impossible? If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. Many bathrooms are plagued by showers that barely have enough room to turn around, making showering an uncomfortable and unsafe experience.
Luckily, there is an elegant solution to transform even the smallest, most awkward bathroom into a spacious oasis–installing a 5 foot shower base. Extending to a lengthy 60 inches, a 5 foot shower base provides ample room to move around freely. But it offers more than just extra space. With its low threshold and textured floor, this accessible shower base also prioritizes safety. Its reinforced and pre-sloped construction ensures durability and proper drainage. Ultimately, a 5 foot shower base delivers the spacious, accessible, and modern shower you’ve been dreaming of.
Benefits of a 5 Foot Shower Base
It’s clear a 5 foot shower base offers one major perk: a lot more room. But how exactly does all that extra space improve your shower experience? Here are some of the key benefits of installing a 60 inch long shower base.
More Room to Move
The main advantage of a 5 foot shower base is the extensive length. At 60 inches long, this shower pan provides ample space to walk, stretch, and turn around comfortably. You’ll no longer have to squeeze, contort, and shimmy just to wash yourself. The expansive area allows caregivers adequate room to assist loved ones during showering as well. Additionally, the space accommodates shower benches and mobility aids with ease.
For those with disabilities or mobility impairments, the extra room is especially valuable. The 5 foot length leaves plenty of space for wheelchairs or walkers to maneuver during entry and exit. Within the shower, users have the freedom to move safely. A longer base also makes installing grab bars simple, further improving accessibility.
Low Profile Threshold
Accessing a standard tub or shower can be challenging for many. But a 5 foot shower base is designed for easy, safe entry and exit with its ultra-low threshold. Typical models feature a threshold ranging from 1/2 inch to 1 1/4 inches tall. Some are near flush with the floor. This low lip minimizes tripping hazards and eases transitions for those with mobility impairments. When evaluating brands, compare the threshold height to select the lowest option.
For example, the Sterling Accord Shower Base has an ultra-low, ADA compliant 1/2 inch threshold. Meanwhile, the DreamLine SlimLine base has a 1 inch threshold height. While thresholds are low, note that curb-less, completely flush thresholds can present leakage risks.
Given the wet environment, slipping is an obvious hazard in showers. But a 5 foot shower base combats this risk with strategically textured floors. Brands use slip-resistant coatings like Safe-T-Surf or Embossed patterns to create traction. This texture provides stable footing when entering and exiting the shower.
Within the shower, grippy textures like diamond plate, rice paper, or heel grip patterns keep feet planted firmly. This sure footing allows users to confidently move about and perform tasks like shaving legs or washing pets. For optimal safety, look for coarse textures rated for high slip resistance. Smooth floors or small pebble textures lack adequate grip.
Reinforced and Sloped
To ensure their longevity, 5 foot shower bases feature reinforced construction. Most brands use thick layers of fiberglass or acrylic to create a robust, waterproof shell. Some steel bases provide further reinforcement. Sturdy materials prevent flexing and warping from humidity and weight over time.
Proper sloping facilitates drainage in 5 foot shower bases. All feature pre-sloped floors directing water toward the drain. Slopes range from 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch per foot. Built-in slope eliminates the need for pitch-adjusting during installation. Pre-leveled bases also simplify the transition from an existing tub.
Together, the reinforced pan and integrated slope promote efficient, reliable drainage. This prevents stagnant puddling that could lead to mold growth. Pre-sloped bases with low-profile linear drains optimize drainage. For example, the DreamLine SlimLine base combines these features to keep water flowing.
Ideal for Bathroom Remodels
Given its spacious design and safety features, a 5 foot shower base is an excellent option for remodeling bathrooms. Here are some ways this accessible base can transform your dated bathroom into a functional oasis.
Updating Existing Small Bathrooms
For bathrooms afflicted with cramped, narrow tubs or showers, a 5 foot shower base can vastly expand your footprint. Replacing a standard 36-42 inch tub with an extended 60 inch base immediately boosts your square footage. You gain up to 18 more inches of bathing space. The lengthy dimensions allow installing wider benches or storage as well.
This base is ideal if your current shower or tub is wedged into a tight corner. The excessive length lets you pull the base away from the walls, opening up the space. Strategically placed grab bars and seats benefit from the additional room. Here’s an example of a dated corner shower remodeled with a roomy 5 foot base.
As homeowners age, accessibility often becomes a concern. Aging in place remodeling aims to modify homes for safety and ease of use. For bathrooms, installing a 5 foot shower base facilitates accessible showering. The low threshold and textured floor enable safer entry and exit. Meanwhile, the ample room accommodates walkers, wheelchairs, caregivers, and grab bars.
Many 5 foot shower bases meet ADA guidelines for accessible design. For instance, the DreamLine SlimLine base complies with ADA standards with its ultra-low 1 inch threshold and textured slip-resistant floor. ADA showers require minimum dimensions of 60 x 30 inches, which this 5 foot base fulfills.
Modernizing with New Fixtures
During remodels, the shower base provides the perfect opportunity to update outdated fixtures. Coordinate your 5 foot shower base with fresh enclosures, showerheads, and spa-like accents. Contemporary shower bases paired with new glass doors and rainshowers create a relaxing, modern sanctuary.
Look for bases with optional tiling flanges to integrate tile, inlays, or mosaics. Accent your base with sleek shelves, benches, and grab bars in coordinating finishes. For example, pair a stainless steel base with coordinating stainless shelves and chrome fixtures. With its clean lines and neutral tones, a 5 foot shower base serves as the ideal backdrop to showcase new bath wares.
What to Look for When Buying
When selecting a 5 foot shower base, compare factors like materials, brands, and specifications to find the best model for your needs and budget.
5 foot shower bases come in diverse materials, each boasting unique traits. Fiberglass is lightweight yet durable and scratch-resistant. Acrylic bases provide a glossy, colorfast finish. For a natural stone look, select polymer resin composite. Stainless steel offers unmatched strength.
Consider your bathroom’s aesthetics when choosing materials. For contemporary designs, sleek acrylics or stainless steel suit modern sensibilities. Polymer resin emulates the look of natural stone like marble or travertine for a high-end vibe. Evaluate material thickness as well–thicker bases tend to be more durable.
When evaluating 5 foot shower bases, look at leading brands like Swanstone, DreamLine, Kohler, Maax, and Sterling. Compare construction, size options, textures, drain placement, thresholds, warranties, accessories, and price.
For instance, Kohler offers an enameled cast iron base for unparalleled strength. DreamLine is known for ultra-low profile linear drains and slip-resistant textures. Swan boasts quick ship models and metal-composite bases. Assessing multiple brands will help you select your preferred features and specifications.
Factor in a few additional criteria when selecting your ideal 5 foot shower base:
- Warranty – Look for at least a 10 year limited warranty.
- Cost – Prices range from $200 to $2000. Set a reasonable budget.
- Customization – Some brands offer made-to-measure bases and design consultations.
- Delivery and Installation – Determine if bases come preassembled or require on-site assembly.
Also evaluate your base’s drain style and location, weight load capacity, color options, and accessories. This diligent selection process will help uncover the optimal model for your bathroom and needs.
Incorporating a 5 foot shower base is one of the simplest ways to give your bathroom a full makeover. The expansive 60 inch length provides ample space for safe, accessible showering. Low profile thresholds, textured floors, and reinforced construction prioritize ease of use, safety, and longevity. For small, cramped bathrooms, installing a 5 foot base can completely transform the space.
When shopping, carefully compare factors like materials, dimensions, textures, and brands to find your perfect product. With proper selection and installation, a 5 foot shower base offers the luxurious, spa-like experience you deserve. No longer will you dread showering in a tiny, outdated space. Instead, you’ll look forward to relaxing in your new, roomy oasis.
Advancements in technology have led to the development of smart shower bases that can be controlled via a smartphone or voice assistant. These shower bases come equipped with features such as adjustable water temperature, showerhead positioning, and mood lighting, providing a luxurious and personalized bathing experience.
In addition to their functionality, some 5 foot shower bases are now being designed with eco-friendly materials, such as recycled glass or bamboo, to reduce their environmental impact. This trend is becoming increasingly popular as more people become aware of the need to conserve resources and minimize waste.
Another emerging trend in 5 foot shower base design is the incorporation of hydrotherapy features, such as adjustable jets and heated surfaces, for a spa-like experience. These features not only enhance the overall shower experience but also offer therapeutic benefits, such as reducing muscle tension and promoting relaxation.
With the rise of multi-generational households, there is a growing demand for accessible shower bases that cater to the needs of elderly or disabled individuals. Some 5 foot shower bases now come with features such as grab bars, adjustable height, and low thresholds, making them safe and easy to use for all members of the household.
In response to the increasing popularity of minimalist and modern design aesthetics, some manufacturers are now offering sleek and minimalistic shower base designs that seamlessly blend into the overall bathroom decor. These designs feature clean lines, simple shapes, and neutral color schemes, creating a stylish and contemporary look.
As the demand for small-space living continues to grow, there is a need for compact yet functional shower base designs that maximize space utilization. Some 5 foot shower bases now come with built-in storage solutions, such as shelving or niches, to provide ample storage space without taking up valuable floor space.
In line with the growing trend of DIY home renovations, some manufacturers are now offering easy-to-install and customizable shower base kits that allow homeowners to create their own unique shower spaces. These kits come with all the necessary components, such as the shower base, wall panels, and drain, making it easy for homeowners to install their own custom shower base.
As the demand for healthier and more sustainable living spaces continues to grow, some manufacturers are now offering shower bases made of eco-friendly and natural materials, such as bamboo, recycled glass, and composite wood. These environmentally conscious bases appeal to consumers’ increasing desire for products that minimize ecological impact.