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Custom Steam Shower vs Steam Shower Enclosures

Installing a Custom Steam Showers vs. a Steam Shower Enclosure

Article 1 of 3

We often get asked whether one should buy a steam shower enclosure or custom build their own steam shower. In this series of articles, we will discuss the pros and cons of both so you can make an informed decision on which one is right for you.

Steam shower enclosures provide a quick and effective way to enjoy a steam bath without the added effort and expense of building a shower from scratch. Building a steam shower from scratch requires planning and customized work like installing a tile enclosure, glass panels and your own plumbing and electrical.

Pre-fabricated steam shower enclosures (while convenient and cost effective) don’t allow a lot of customization and often include features that are not important to you or don’t meet your specific needs.

Steam shower enclosures typically cost about half of what a custom tiled steam shower would cost however their pre-fabricated design has specific dimensions that must fit into your existing space. Otherwise you may be required to modify your existing space to accommodate the shower which can be costly. In this article we will cover the basics of building a custom steam shower.   

Once you've decided on the shower's space and size, it's time to start building. Understanding a steam shower's key components, costs and materials will ensure the outcome you want.

In this first article we will discuss the most important component of the shower which is the steam generator. The steam generator is used to make the steam for your shower. They vary widely in price and options. The key to finding the right size steam generator for your steam shower requires knowing the cubic feet of space that must be filled with steam. For example, a 3-foot by 5-foot shower that is 8-foot tall would encompass a total of 120 cubic feet.

Steam generator output is measured in Kilowatts (kW). The larger the kW of the steam generator the more steam output. A 6kw steam generator for example will cover up to 150 cubic feet, while a 9kW steam generator will cover up to 360 cubic feet. 

Here is a great sizing tool to determine the steam generator size you will need for your shower dimensions.

http://virtualspa.mrsteam.com/#/generators

Costs of steam generators range from $700 up to $2,500 depending on the manufacturer and size of generator. You will also need a control pad to operate the steam generator. Most control pads can be installed inside or outside the shower. Keep in mind, most manufacturers have basic and deluxe control pads that vary in cost and if you want additional options like chromatherapy lighting and aromatherapy this will add to the cost.

 

In our next article, we will discuss additional planning and installation considerations for a custom steam shower including some popular add-on features you may want to incorporate into the design.

Please call one of our steam shower planning experts today at (800) 791-8232 if you have any questions planning your steam shower project.