Showers doors add class to a shower, but after a while, they become too hard to maintain. Shower doors are hard to clean, and no matter how hard you try, dirt and mold form behind the doors where your brushes can’t reach.
Apart from mold, shower doors can become leaky. So if you want to remove your shower door and replace it with a good old shower curtain, we totally understand, and we will show you exactly how to do it right.
Curtains, on the other hand, are easy to clean. Unlike bulky shower doors, curtains don’t hinder your shower cleaning but more on why you should make the switch later. If you’ve made up your mind to remove your shower door, there are some tools you will need as you follow our guide.
What You Need To Remove Your Shower Door
If you’re a DIYer like I am, then you might already be familiar with some of these tools. If you don’t know or don’t have them, they are available in hardware stores around you. The tools and materials you need include:
- Caulk Gun
- Caulk Softener/Remover
- Utility Knife
- Screw Driver
- Plastic Scraper
- Silicone Caulk
- Shower Curtain Rod
- Shower Curtain Hook
- Shower Curtain
Once you’ve got all the tools and materials ready, then you can start working on your shower door. Sliding doors and swinging doors are the two most common types of shower doors; we will be covering how to remove both types of doors.
1. Remove a Sliding Shower Door
Sliding shower doors are easier to remove off the frame because they aren’t screwed down, unlike swinging doors. If your door feels heavy, get someone to help you, so you don’t break the glass during transit.
Prepare your shower
Remove anything that might be in the way during and after you remove the door, including your shower chair. Plan your route across the room, so you don’t hit the shower head or sinks. Clean the bathroom floor to avoid slipping. Lay a towel on the floor if you recently tiled the shower. If the
Check the bottom Frame
The bottom frame is made of aluminum, and you might notice that more of the rail is outside the shower than is in the shower.
Check the Top Frame
There should be wheels that ride between the rail and the door.
Move Inside the Shower
This is because your sling door probably slides out into the shower
Lift the Door
With both your hands on both sides of the shower, lift the door and tilt the lower part towards you. The door should disengage easily since this is similar to how it was erected in the first place.
If you’re alone, bend your knees slightly to increase your stability. If you have help, let him hold the door while you lift it from below. You can wear gloves to strengthen your grip.
Lower the Door
When the door is totally off the bottom rail, remove it from the top rail and lower it gently against a wall.
The next step is for people with swinging, or pivot shower doors, so feel free to skip it.
2. Remove a Swinging Shower Door
Swinging doors usually have pivots that hold them to the frame and allow it to open or close in one direction. To remove the door itself, you will need to separate it from the pivots with a screwdriver.
Prepare your Shower
Replicate the preparation stage in the section for sliding doors above. Additionally, you can use a stool to examine the upper part of the door and its hinges.
Remove the Screws
Open the shower door a little and ask your companion to hold it in place. If you’re alone, hold the door while you use the screwdriver to remove the screws on the pivots.
We recommend unscrewing the bottom pivots first so that you can keep it stable while you unscrew the upper hinges. The screw arrangement for different doors varies, and some don’t even have bottom screws.
Remove the Door
After removing all the screws, lift the door from the shower gently and place it in a safe place.
3. Remove the Stationary Glass
If your shower has a stationary glass beside the mobile glass, then read this. If not, skip this step and read the next one.
Examine the Stationary Glass
Check along the frame to see how the glass is attached to the wall.
Caulk might have covered some of the screws, so you need to remove any caulk on the frame. You can use a caulk softener to make it easier
Using your screwdriver, remove all screws holding the door to the frame starting from the bottom screws. Remember to grab the door throughout the process.
Remove the Door
Once all the screws have been removed, slide or lift the door away from the frame to remove it.
4. Remove the Caulk
After removing the doors, you’’ need to remove the frames that held the door in place. The frame attached to the wall with caulk so you can use a caulk softener to make the removal easier.
Apply Caulk Softener
Caulk softeners are made by different manufacturers, but they are all applied the same way. Spray the softener onto the caulk or wipe it on the caulk using a paintbrush or a Q tip. Let the softener sit for 30 – 45 minutes.
Remove Old Caulk
Push your utility knife in between the wall and the shower door frame. Always push parallel to the tile so as not to damage the tile. If you push at a perpendicular angle to the tile, you risk scraping it and leaving undesirable cuts in your wall.
Alternatively, you can use a razor blade holder to remove the caulk. This step might take time, but eventually, the rail will come off the wall.
5. Remove the Top Rail
In most cases, the top part of the frame is not attached down, so it is usually easy to remove. Push against the rail with your hands till it comes free. Don’t forget to wear your gloves to avoid injury.
6. Remove Side Frames
Remove the side frames on both sides with your utility knife. Slide the utility knife downwards in between the frame and the wall.
If the caulk refuses to come off, hit the frame on the sides with a rubber mallet. Once loose, pull the frame off the wall with a little force.
7. Remove the Bottom Frames
If your shower door was installed years ago, you should expect to see a lot of dirt and disgusting mold under the bottom rail. Free the rail of anything that might have been used to hold it down and lift it off the floor.
8. Remove Any Remaining Caulk
Now that all the frames have been removed, the caulk should be easier to scrape off. Your old credit card can even do the trick here.
Scrape carefully, so you don’t damage the tiles or surfaces on the shower. The caulk behind the frames might be discolored and dirty, so I imagine you want to get rid of it fast.
If it seems tough, you can reapply your caulk softener and let it sit for 30 minutes before trying again. Scrape off any other adhesive you find while you’re at it.
9. Fill the Holes in Your Walls
All these removals will leave holes in your wall, and there are a couple of ways to fix it, but I prefer filling the hole up with silicone caulk. Use the same color of silicone caulk as your tile and scrape any excess caulk off with your utility knife or old credit card.
Let the caulk sit for at least eight hours. If you had plastic anchors in your holes, use a long-nosed plier to extract them before filling them up with silicone caulk.
10. Install Your Shower Curtain
You could have installed the curtain earlier in the process if you had to use the shower. Curtains are more convenient for many reasons:
- They are easy to clean, and they make the shower easier to maintain
- They are easy to replace with many other varieties
- It creates more shower space
- Curtains make the shower more accessible for kids
Start by measuring the height and space of your shower entrance. Install your shower curtain rod and add rings on your shower curtain.
Add a liner to the inner part of your shower curtain by hooking up the rings together. Hang the hooks on the curtain rod and place the liner inside your shower while keeping the curtain outside.
Removing a shower door, however large, can be done with a maximum of two people who have read this guide. The hardest part of this guide may have been the hidden mold under the rails.
If this guide was useful to you, please let me know in the comment section below. I would also love to answer any questions you might have.