If you’ve been thinking about installing an outdoor shower, you’re not alone. Homeowners are increasingly adding showers to their outdoor living spaces. You might think outdoor showers are only for those who live near the beach but they can be installed almost anywhere to help keep homes free from dirt, mud, sand, pet hair, and other things tracked in from the outside.
An Outdoor Shower Leaves the Dirt Outside
Here are just a few reasons to add an outdoor shower:
1. Keep Your House Cleaner
An outdoor shower is great for rinsing off muddy kids after soccer practice. It’s also an easy way to rinse dirt and mud off of bikes and other sports equipment before storing it. Keeping sand, dirt and mud out of your bathtub drains also helps prevent plumbing clogs.
2. Wash Your Dog
Bathing dogs indoors can be a challenge. There’s often a mess to clean up and pet hair can lead to clogged drains. With an outdoor shower, you can get your pets clean and keep the mess outside.
3. Rinse the Beach Sand Off
If you live near the beach, being able to wash off sand and salt before you go inside keeps your home and drains cleaner.
4. Clean Up After Yard Work
If you’re an avid gardener or do routine lawn work, you know that these activities can be hot and dirty. A quick rinse in an outdoor shower helps keep dirt and grass outside and feels great on a hot summer day.
5. Shower Before and After a Swim
Many pool owners install an outdoor shower so that people can rinse off before entering the pool. Keeping sand, grass and other contaminants out of the pool means the pump and filters don’t have to work as hard. And rinsing the chlorine off your body after getting out of the pool is a good idea as well.
Which Type of Outdoor Shower is Right for You?
There are three basic types of outdoor showers to consider. Determining how you will use your outdoor shower is the first step. For rinsing off dirt or sand, a simple shower head or foot spray may be all you need. If you’d like a more luxurious experience, than an enclosed shower with hot and cold water is best.
1. Portable Shower
Portable showers are the most budget-friendly option. Portable showers are attached to a flexible hose and can be moved anywhere the hose can reach. These showers typically only use cold water. You can move them around your yard and even take them camping.
2. Stand-Alone Shower
These are built away from a home and include their own underground plumbing. They can be plumbed for both hot and cold water. Stand-alone showers are often installed near swimming pools and hot tubs.
3. Stationary Shower
These showers are typically wall mounted and usually include an enclosure for privacy. They must be attached to an outdoor plumbing supply. They offer the most design versatility and can be customized with wood, tile, and other textures.
Factors to Consider for an Outdoor Shower
There are pros and cons to outdoor showers but most homeowners seem to think the pros outweigh the cons. According to a recent realtor.com report, outdoor showers can add value to your home when it comes time to sell. Although it’s possible to install a simple portable shower on your own, many homeowners want something more permanent like a stand-alone or stationary shower.
- Location. A firm, level surface that can withstand water and foot traffic is best. Shower walls and floors will stay drier, preventing mold and rot, if they are located in an area that receives a lot of direct sunlight. And locating an outdoor shower near existing plumbing lines will keep installation costs down.
- Materials. If you live in an area with freezing temperatures, you’ll need to be sure the materials you select can withstand the elements. Materials found in the natural environment are good choices. Cobblestone, a textured brick floor, distressed or natural wood, and the right plants can come together to create an outdoor shower that can survive the elements while adding beauty and value to your property.
- Design. The design options for outdoor showers are numerous with features to complement any home and landscape. The right combination of plants and other natural materials can help outdoor showers blend seamlessly into a backyard landscape. Some homeowners are even incorporating bathtubs into the design to create a spa-like atmosphere.
- Privacy. If you have neighbors nearby, you’ll want to incorporate a screen of some type. It’s also important to consider whether or not your neighbors will be able to view your shower area from a second story window or deck. If possible, consider locating your outdoor shower in an already private corner or nook in the landscape to maximize privacy.
- Practicality. When designing your outdoor shower area, don’t forget to include things such as a place to keep shampoo, soap and a dry towel. A bench or hooks are important features to add. If you plan to use your shower to bathe pets or small children, factor in features that will make those tasks easier as well.
- Installation. Installing an outdoor can be straightforward or challenging. It all depends on where you want your outdoor shower to be located, whether or not you want both hot and cold water, and local building code regulations. Ideally, an outdoor shower would be installed on an existing plumbing wall where hot and cold water pipes are already located.
Drainage is another important installation consideration. Many building codes require the installation of drain pipes to carry wastewater away. This helps protect the quality of groundwater and the city’s drinking water supply.
Hire a Professional Plumber to Properly Install Your Outdoor Shower
If adding an outdoor shower is on your home improvement list, the experts at Simply Green Plumbing, Sewer & Rooter have the expertise to make sure the installation meets all local code requirements. We can help you select the right outdoor shower to meet your needs.
We know that plumbing problems can happen day or night. That’s why we offer emergency plumbing services at no extra cost. Contact us today for a free consultation.