Basic to Advanced Understanding of Roll in Shower

what is a roll in shower

Elderlies or disabled homeowners seek a more safe and secure bathroom than the conventional one. The best option is a roll in shower. 

It can be categorized into handicap-accessible showers. Wheelchair shower is another common term for roll in shower. These showers with greater size, no barriers, and special requirements allow wheels in the shower for the convenience of disabled people. 

What is a Roll In Shower?

what is a roll in shower


Roll in showers, also known as Roman showers, are specially designed showers for persons with restricted mobility. These are a good choice for seniors, those with physical disabilities, and people who are dependent on wheelchairs.

Bathing is a difficult task for elderly and disabled people and extra precautions are required to make their showering procedure comfortable, safe, and to avoid any accidents.

Roll in showers can be distinguished from the typical ones with an absence of a shower curb at the entry. It indicates that the floor of the whole bathroom is at the same level as the shower floor. This special feature makes it possible for wheelchairs to enter the shower area without any complications.

The rimless and leveled floor of the bathroom makes the entry and exit of a wheelchair easy in the stall. This allows people with disabilities to bathe independently without being a liability to others. 

What Is Meant by a Roll in Shower in a Hotel?

It is believed that hotels accommodate the same design and layout for special rooms but it’s not true. Accessible bathrooms in hotels are designed with the feature of roll-in showers.

A roll in shower in a hotel is a specially designed shower for disabled people. The shower comes with a seat attached to it that can be folded downwards after use. Grab bars with handheld showers and water control units are located next to the seat for easy access.

These specially designed bathrooms with proper positioning of faucets and well-thought layout have a tremendous effect on the guests in terms of their comfort.

Basic Design of a Roll in Shower

what is a roll in shower


The design of the roll in shower resembles a standard shower cubicle with a rectangular form. Of the four walls, two are shorter, one forms the long sidewall, and the fourth is usually totally unobstructed and without a curb. This minute detail permits entry into the bathing area without any obstacles.

To achieve barrier-free access, these showers generally feature a totally open side. A slanted floor holding drain allows water to flow down and drain rapidly. The showerhead is also angled to assist the draining of water and reduce spatter. 

The walls of these showers are usually cladded with acrylic or polyester gel coating. The latter is sprayed over a mould and cured, which results in a shower with constant thickness and uniformity. Roll-in showers are often designed with a complete plywood backdrop that eliminates the requirement for drywall. It also enables you to put accessories as per convenience rather than placing them over fixed studs.

Roll-in showers are generally much bigger than regular baths in order to accommodate a showering seat. Households that add this feature to their bathrooms may need extra budget, though participants of disability insurances can consult if their NDIS plan management providers if these expenses are valid.

Elements of Roll in Shower

As roll-in showers aim at safety and comfort, the features of these showers differ from a conventional shower. Elements ensuring an easy bath for elderlies and disabled users are: 

1. Grab Bars

what is a roll in shower


Grab bars are the ultimate assisting element in roll in showers. They can either be positioned horizontally or vertically or even at an angle to assist the user in transferring from a mobility aid to a shower seat or aid in standing.

These must be installed 33”-36” above the floor level on all sides of the roll in shower.

2. Shower Head

what is a roll in shower


For greater accessibility, handheld showerheads with lengthy pipes are required. To be approachable, it should be mounted on the rear wall surface no more than 27” from the chair. 

They are generally height-adjustable if mounted on vertical bars, making them appropriate for everyone, handicapped or not.

3. Controlling Area

what is a roll in shower


The roll in shower’s control area has to be between 38”-48” from the floor. These can be installed on either of the shower walls.

In the case of a shower with a seat, the control needs to be installed on the rear wall, not more than 27” parallel from the seat wall.

4. Threshold

what is a roll in shower


A Threshold is placed to keep water from spilling out of the shower area. A high barrier makes the wheelchair less accessible, thus, it shouldn’t exceed 0.5” and should be installed with bevelled edges. 

5. Trench Drain

what is a roll in shower


Instead of a threshold, a trench drain can be installed to block the water flow running out of the shower. This solution makes the shower easier to use and prevents any painful obstacles or bumps. 

6. Foldable Shower Seat

what is a roll in shower


Shower seats come in handy for elderlies who need to sit and rest. These should be positioned about 17”-19” high from the floor and should be able to hold up to 250 pounds of weight.

In case an L-shaped seat is installed, the shorter half should be fastened against the rear area and a grab bar should be present from the seat’s edge to the opposite end of the rear wall.

7. Shower Ramp

To remodel an existing bathroom into a wheelchair-accessible shower, all it requires is a small ramp. With a level difference less than 3” but more than 5”, a ramp is required to help the transition go smoothly. Ramps with a ratio not harsher than 1:8 are the best to fulfill the demands of mobility aids.

Advantages of Roll in Showers

what is a roll in shower


Easy Functioning

The main concept of a roll in shower is easy accessibility and use. Either for a disabled user or non-disabled user, these showers can prove to be highly efficient and practical with easy access.

Maximization of Space

Without the requirement of a curb, these showers take up limited space and don’t make the bathroom look cramped.

Visual Appeal

These showers are known for their functionality, however, they offer a unique design that can be converted into stylish and aesthetically appealing showers. The major eye-catchy characteristic of these showers is the absence of a curb.

Low-Maintenance Showers

Roll in showers is easy to maintain with no impediments in way of cleaning with an absence of a curb of level difference. If water overflows from a shower without a trench drain, it can be rapidly directed into the shower.

Also Read: How to DIY Outdoor Shower? (With Few Outstanding Ideas)

Common Issues with Easy Solutions

1. How Can I Maintain Privacy?

Many roll-in showers aren’t equipped with shower doors, which might obstruct mobility. Although openness might make a person feel vulnerable, there are a few solutions available.

Solution: Instead of placing a shower door, a shower curtain can be installed to maintain privacy. Another option is to go ahead with curvy barrier walls.

2. How Do I Control the Flow of Water? 

The absence of a curb may direct water to spill over the whole bathroom floor. It can be dangerous and increase the chances of slipping and injuries.

Solution: Installation of Trench drains can keep water from overflowing. Another possible solution to this problem is using a precise shower head.

3. Can I Control the Temperature of The Shower Area? 

Besides the water, heat frequently escapes the shower space, causing it to become cold. 

Solution: The easiest method to deal with the temperature issue could be to install heated flooring.

Easily-Accessed Showers

what is a roll in shower


These showers are mainly designed to provide ease for oldies or disabled people to fit in their mobility aids in the shower area.

A roll in shower cubicle can also assist individuals who do not have a disability. The modules can save room in a bathroom compared to a traditional tub and shower pair, as well as modify the look of a relatively small area. Barrier-free showers provide an open, modern appearance in the space.

For more architectural guidance and home improvement ideas, keep coming to Interiorcraze.