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Choosing your shower grates

Upgrading your bathroom has been a continuous cycle due to the ever changing developments and increasing demands of the household.

From having separate toilets and baths, to his and hers bathrooms with an array of choices in theme and functions, upgrading your bathroom takes good sense of style and good knowledge on what to look out for and consider when choosing the right fixture to satisfy both your style and the functionality needed in the bathroom.

Grates are one of the upgrades or changes done in order to improve aesthetic and functional value of a bathroom.

shower grate - tile insert

Choosing the best shower grate includes considering the type of drain you have, what style of grate you like, shower drains come in several different sizes and shapes, knowing which kind you have is the first step in choosing which grate is best to cover it.

Drain Types

The most common shower drains are trench drains and circular drains. Trench drains are a long narrow rectangle that is embedded into the floor of a shower.  A circular drain is also embedded into the floor of a shower, is round, and looks more like the traditional shower drain. Determine the size, shape, and type of drain that you have before looking for a shower grate to help you narrow down your choices.


drains23-042Shower grate style includes the pattern made by the openings. The holes in a shower grate not only are essential for allowing the water to pass through but can also add an element of style to the grate. Square patterns tends to have a more modern look while wire patterns are a more traditional. New ideas and patterns are being introduced all the time. Visualize which one will compliment the style of your shower and your bathroom.



tile insert shower grateThe material a shower grate is made of and what kind of finish it has makes a difference in how well you like it in your bathroom. Commonly, shower grates are of stainless steel, but there are also trench drains made withtile on the top that matches the tile in the shower. This makes the grate inconspicuous and gives a whole new look to the shower. Also, if you do choose stainless, pay attention to the finish, as some may be shiny, but others appear almost matte.

Finding a grate that is durable and fits your drain properly is important. The grate needs to have enough space between the openings to filter debris and let water through at the same time. Drain grates are made from a variety of materials, including aluminum, cast iron, and stainless steel. Other materials include bronze and plastic, primarily in the form of polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Aluminum grates are easy to maintain, lightweight, durable and don’t corrode easily, which means they work well if you are installing the drain outside. A drain grate made of stainless steel is also durable and non-corrosive, and it can offer a stylish look to a drain.

For special types of shower grates, such as those that go under the ground or in large pipes, you might need to check with a plumbing supply company. Usually, those types of grates need to be installed by a professional, particularly if they are underground. The same is true for other specialized drains, such as those found in pools.