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Frameless vs. Framed Shower Doors

Is your shower more than ten or fifteen years old? Have you been thinking about making an upgrade soon but are still in need of examining the details? At House of Mirrors, we want to help you renovate your glass shower with ease.

Over the years, showers have come a long way, and so have our designs for shower doors. Frameless shower doors are a newer trend, largely because they use clear glass to create the appearance of no boundaries for your shower door.

The older, more traditional option is to find framed shower doors. This option has been around longer and still makes sense for many homeowners because of their relatively lower cost. That being said, your ultimate choice will come down to personal preference, as well as what fits with your budget and lifestyle.

Here are a few important things you need to know about the differences between frameless and framed shower doors:

The Basics

Framed shower doors usually have a metal frame or trim around the outer edge of a thin glass panel. Manufacturers have made significant strides in the framed glass and metal trim used for these doors, and there are a wide variety of framed doors, different colors of metal trim, and selection of glass finishes to choose from.

Frameless shower doors are most often made out of thick pieces of glass that lack a border or frame. This option is popular because it creates the appearance of glass floating in air. Frameless shower doors are usually supported by heavy-duty hinges that are placed at the top and bottom of the door.


If your showerhead will be close to the door, framed doors and sliding glass doors that overlap will be a good fit because they are made with extra rubber seals to prevent water from leaking onto the floor. While framed shower doors have a sleek look that shows off the interior of your shower, they will allow some water to splash out of the shower because of the ¼-inch gap around the edges of the door.

When it comes to size and exact measurements of your bathroom, you will find more flexibility with framed doors, in general. Framed doors can be placed at any angle with the pivoting trim on the hinge track. On the other hand, frameless shower doors must be set in at a small selection of angles in relation to the hinge panel. If you’re bathroom doesn’t have common measurements, a framed shower door will give you more freedom to make things fit.


On average, frameless shower doors cost about double what you’d pay for a framed shower door. This extra cost is largely due to the heavy-duty hardware that is necessary to hold the thicker glass doors in place. In addition, the production process involved in making frameless glass doors requires extra sanding on the edge of the glass, which also raises the cost.

If you’re thinking of installing new shower doors, you should take some time to consider these factors and talk to a professional glass and mirror company to consult them on your project. Give the pros at House of Mirrors a call today at 1-403-253-3777!