American Shower and Tub Door FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

What is an enclosure?

An enclosure is a door or panel that goes from wall to wall or around your shower base. It can be framed, semi-frameless or frameless and comes in many configurations.

What is a framed enclosure?

Framed means all the glass has a frame around it, i.e. all glass edges are in a frame. Frames come in many finishes, such as: chrome, gold, white, brushed nickel, oil rubbed bronze, roman bronze, satin, antique and more than 60 custom powder colors.

What is a semi-frameless enclosure?

Semi-frameless doors still have some framing material on them. Generally, by-pass doors do not have any framing around them. Swing doors will not have any framing on the leading edge and top of the door. There are side jambs and a sill on this style of door. Depending on the design there could be a header.  The glass could be: 3/16, 1/4, 5/16, 3/8 or 1/2 inch thick. 

What is a frameless enclosure?

No enclosure is entirely frameless; all enclosures require something to hold the glass in place. A “frameless” enclosure might have glass clamps or a small channel to hold the glass to the walls and base. Some designs may require a header to hold all the glass pieces together. These are the best-looking doors, and generally the glass is clear and 3/8 to 1/2 inch thick.

What is a bypass/sliding door?

A bypass/slider is where one door passes behind or in front of another. By-pass doors require a header, sill (bottom track), and side jambs.  When ordering a by-pass door please tell what side your shower head is on as you face the shower from the outside looking in, i.e. Left or Right side.  We want to be sure the overlap prevents water from getting out between the doors. 

What is a hinged door?

A hinged door might have full-length hinges or two to three hinges on it. Think of your home’s front door. This style is generally found on shower stalls up to 36 inches wide or custom designs. Depending on the style, they can be frameless, semi-frameless, or framed.  The door can hinge off the left or right wall or off the panel should you have one.  We will need to know which side you want the hinge on, i.e. Left or Right as you face the door from the outside looking in.  Be sure the door will clear any object such as the toilet, cabinet or sink. 

What is a door and panel?

A door and panel is used when the opening is more than 36 inches wide. The panel makes up the difference. The door could be mounted on the right or left wall or off the panel.

What is a sill/threshold?

The sill is the part you step over when getting into the shower. The sill is generally three to four inches high and may be four to six inches wide.  The sill should pitch 1/8″ into the shower area but not more than 1/2″. This way water will run back into the shower area and not onto the bathroom floor.

What is a custom enclosure?

A custom enclosure is made specifically to meet your needs because the layout does not meet any standard applications.

What is a center line measurement?

If your sill/threshold (what you step over to get into the shower) is 5 inches wide, the center line would be 2½ inches. This is a very important measurement as it affects how your custom-made doors fit or won’t fit. Please call us (1-413-822-7308) should you have any questions about this critical measurement.

How thick is the glass?

Our Cardinal doors range from 5/32″, 3/16”, 1/4”, 5/16, 3/8”, and 1/2” thick. The style and cost of the door drives the thickness of the glass.

How safe is the glass?

All of our glass is tempered safety glass. However, it is not meant to be hung from, beat on, or slammed shut. Shower enclosures should NOT be a unsupervised play areas for young children. 

What is a Buttress Wall?

A Buttress Wall is a half wall that may divide the shower from the toilet area for privacy reasons, but can also be done simply for design reasons. A Buttress wall can be on the front and side walls depending on the desired look. You can see examples of buttress walls by looking at our Measure It section on the home page. 

Is my shower enclosure watertight?

No, shower enclosures are meant to keep the majority of the water on the inside of the shower area. You can make them leak by having too much water pressure, body sprays pointed at the door area, or multiple shower heads. It’s best to place a mat outside of the door.

Please feel free to contact us with questions. Call us at 1-413-822-7308,

 fax us at (866) 938-7062, or e-mail us at astdoor@gmail.com 

Our office is open from Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST, or 24/7 on the Web.

Phone us at: 1-413-822-7308 for a sales associate
Fax: (866) 938-7062
E-mail: astdoor@gmail.com