Steam Shower Buying Guide
Steam showers are one of the hottest luxury fixtures, and with good reason. These all-in-one enclosures offer convenient designs in sizes and styles to fit most bathrooms, allowing people to enjoy the health benefits of steam at home. When shopping for a steam shower, main considerations include materials, size, features, and safety.
Construction & Materials
Quality steam shower units are typically made of aluminum, glass and acrylic. Tempered glass is a strong and safe material for bath fixtures and acrylic is known for being durable as well. Aluminum frames provide strong, long-lasting structural support for the unit. Our showers feature high quality acrylic with layers of high quality fiberglass reinforcement in areas of vulnerability. The glass used in our showers is at least 6mm thick with protected edges, and is tempered so if a break does happen, there will not be sharp edges.
Steam enclosures come in many sizes to fit all bathrooms. If space is a concern, consider stand-up corner models, which can have foot prints less than 3 feet wide. The smaller units will still have body jets, rainfall showers, and other important features so a size is not a constraint. Often, people will want to replace a standard tub enclosure with a steam shower. For this, we recommend retrofit models that are designed specifically for replacement of standard tubs and measure 5ft long. For larger bathrooms, two person models offer a perfect solution with both corner and rectangular styles available. Two person steam shower units allow a couple to use the unit simultaneously and will have multiple jets, two seats and typically two showers for convenience.
Features of Steam Showers
One of the most important features is the steam generator, with higher wattage producing greater output and heating quicker. 3 kilowatt generators provide ample power, though 6 kilowatt models will heat up twice as fast and are preferred especially for larger units. Enclosures with whirlpool tubs will also have pumps to power the jets. Automatic cleaning systems are helpful as this will ensure the internal components stay sanitary.
Steam enclosures have many different features designed to improve your experience and comfort. Combo units with either bathtubs or saunas integrated into one unit are very popular since they save space. Most shower units have luxurious overhead rainfall showers as well as hand-held showers. Almost all steam showers will have body massage jets that further enhance the shower experience. Thermostatic valves keep the water temperature steady as it comes out of the faucet, which reduces the risk of scalding or large fluctuations in temperature.
For aesthetics and entertainment, our models have other features like sound and lighting. Integrated sound systems with speakers allow you to enjoy the radio, or an mp3 player (with use of a transmitter). Chromatherapy lighting uses interchangeable colors to create different moods. Some models also have aromatherapy capabilities that allow the use of scent oils to further enhance the ambiance.
Installing new bathroom fixtures can easily become a problem if the manufacturing standards are sub par. For advanced items appliances and fixtures, it is important to make sure you are buying a unit with UL or ETL certification. Not only does this mean the item conforms to UL standards, but also that it will pass home & city inspections. The electrical components can either be 110V or 220V, with 110V being the standard in most US homes. Also, keep in mind these units must be installed by licensed contractors that have professional experience with plumbing and electrical installations.
Finally, you should ensure the steam shower you are purchasing has warranty coverage on parts. The first year is most essential, as most problems with components will reveal themselves in this time frame. Many of our showers and tubs also have optional extended warranties for greater protection.