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Shower and Tub Enclosure Education

Welcome to the Insight Glass Shower/Tub educational page. At Insight Glass, we believe an educated customer leads to a satisfied customer. Since Insight Glass offers such a wide variety of enclosure options, configurations and hardware, we have published this page to educate and answer your questions.

First of all, congratulations on your decision for a new shower/tub enclosure - It will not only add beauty to your bathroom, but will add value to your home - Bathroom remodeling has a high return on investment when reselling your home. The following are the important considerations for your new enclosure:

1) Framed/Frameless Enclosure

A framed Shower Enclosure has aluminum framing around the perimeter of all the glass. The glass thickness standard for a framed enclosure is 3/16" but can be upgraded to 1/4". Insight Glass offers Cardinal Shower enclosures for our framed units - High quality enclosures built strong to last.

Framed Inline Chrome Shower Framed Corner Shower Framed Door Only Shower Framed Sliding Shower Framed Sliding Tub Enclosure

A frameless Shower Enclosure (also called a Heavy Glass shower), has glass thickness of 3/8" to 1/2". Because the glass is so thick and sturdy, it does not require the framing support of thinner glass. A frameless enclosure is installed with either U-Channel or Clips (see photos below). It is a personal preferance on deciding between U-Channel and Clips, however, U-Channel is the preferred installation method when the walls are not plumb (out conditions) as clips will leave gaps. To learn more about the differences between Framed, Semi Frameless and Frameless Shower Enclosures, click here.

Heavy Glass U_Channel Heavy Glass Clips

2) Configuration

There are many Shower Enclosure Configurations available and Insight can design any custom configuration but the more common configurations are:

Single Door Door with Inline Panel Door with 90 degree return Panel Door with Neo Angle Panels Tub Slider Shower Slider

Many times, the door with inline panel and the 90 degree corner shower have a notched panel that sits on a butress. The project managers at Insight Glass will be more than happy to guide you through the process of designing your dream shower.

3) Glass Type

All shower glass is tempered for safety reasons so if you have the misfortune of breaking the glass, you will have a million tiny pieces instead of some large, dangerous slivers. Clear glass is by far the most popular but some fairly common options include Rain, Obscure and Starphire.

Clear glass has a slightly green tint that becomes a little more pronounced as the glass gets thicker. The edges of clear glass also has a green cast that becomes darker as the glass becomes thicker or larger. If a dark green or blackish edge color is undesireable, Starphire glass, which has a jewel-like blue edge, may be more to your liking. While the glass edge color may not be hugely important to you, we at Insight Glass like to educate our customers to avoid any surprises. See pictures and chart below.

Clear and Starphire Glass Clear vs Starphire Edges

Below are photos of some more common glass types:

Rain Glass Obscure Glass

To see a few other glass types, click here.

4) Color

The three most popular colors for shower framing, clips and hardware are Chrome, Brushed Nickel and Oil Rubbed Bronze with Chrome the most in demand. The colors below are available for our semi frameless shower enclosures. To view the colors available for our heavy glass (frameless) enclosures, click here.

Finish Colors

1. Antique
2. Brushed Nickel
3. Chrome
4. Gold
5. Oil Rubbed Bronze
6. Roman Bronze
7. Satin
8. White

5) Hardware Options

Hardware options include Pull Handles, Towel Bars, Pull Handles/Towel Bar combination, and Knobs. These options all include hole cutouts in the glass so unless you decide on 3/16" thick glass (no cutouts thus no hardware options), you will need to choose. Insight Glass partners with C.R.L., a leading supplier of shower enclosure hardware for these parts. The BM series is the most popular and you can view photos of the most common items below. To see more details on hardware options, click here.

24 inch Chrome Towel Bar 6 inch Chrome Back-To-Back Pull Handle
Towel Bar/Pull Handle Combo

6) Shower Maintenance Tips and Kit

It is important to put a little maintenance in your new shower enclosure to keep it beautiful for many years. Click the following link for Shower Maintenance Tips and Kit

Insight Glass hopes this page helped answer some of your questions. At Insight Glass, we understand that purchasing a shower enclosure will not only beautify your bathroom, but is an investment that will add value to your home. That's why we've developed this page to equip you with the information you need to make an informed decision.

If you have any more questions, please call us at (707) 746-6571 or take a minute to send us a quick email. We would love to hear from you.

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