If you're remodeling your bathroom and are looking at getting new shower doors, you've likely seen something called a bath screen or a half-wall bath screen. This is a stationary piece of glass or plastic that sits along the half of the tub that's closest to the wall with the showerhead. This is a common setup in Europe that's becoming more common in the United States. As cool as it looks, though, you are better off getting full shower doors made for your shower and tub enclosure.
Making a Splash
The reason shower doors extend along the entire tub is because showerheads can spray water over some rather far distances. Even if the main spray stays within the tub, the spray from the water hitting you and slashing off can fall outside, unless you have those doors. The next time you take a shower, look at what areas got wet -- chances are they are not limited to just the area by the showerhead and faucet handles.
The bath screen does have some advantages. Having shower doors installed can be expensive; HomeAdvisor notes the national average cost for this ranges from $180 to $1,650, with some areas such as New York City paying as much as $2,000 (you can toggle between these using the "change location" and "national" links on the chart). Bath screens can go for about $300, which is a steal if you're in one of those higher-priced zones.
But the screens are not movable -- you have to basically get drenched when you turn on the shower. If your water starts out cold, that can be unpleasant, especially in winter. The screens also require that you stand close to the faucet and showerhead if you want to minimize that splashing. If you prefer to use your entire tub and have some room in which to move, the screen won't provide full splashing protection. Having a handheld showerhead can help somewhat, but that's no guarantee that your bathroom will remain totally dry.
If you need to get new doors installed but are worried about the cost, talk to the shower door companies in your area, and contact some companies about ordering custom shower doors online. Shopping online can allow you access to older, less expensive styles not displayed in showrooms that would work just fine for you and save you some money. Bath screens look nice, but if you want the versatility of movable, full glass shower doors, contact installers today.