uncovering Red flags & hidden dangers in this aging in place shower
It may not look like it at first glance, but Josephine and Charles Wiseman were dealing with dangerous problems in their Marion, Ohio shower. Installed to meet their aging-in-place needs in a newly built condo, the acrylic walk-in shower looked good from the outside, but had scary problems behind the walls.
"we didn't feel safe at all"
Mrs. Wiseman says that shortly after moving in, she asked their homebuilder to install grab bars in the shower to give her and her husband more security. “All we had was a little soap dish to hang onto, and we didn’t feel safe at all,” she says. “Sometimes I would bring my walker into the shower with me just to have something else to hold on to.”
The builder informed the Wisemans that grab bars couldn’t be installed, which seemed strange. At that point, a number of problems surfaced, including an unsafe and uninsulated stud wall, and installation failures with the shower base. Thankfully, the Wisemans contacted Improveit and our team was able to make it right.
a wall of protection for an aging in place shower
The inability to install grab bars in their shower was a red flag for the Wisemans. As it turned out, there was no blocking built up behind the shower to support grab bar installation. In fact, when experienced ImproveIt Installer Paul Gorgias took out the original shower, he discovered the situation was even worse.
“The stud under the window had been removed and reinstalled flat using only 1-inch nails attached to the exterior sheathing,” he says. This modification was made to fit two niches built into the old molded shower, but compromised the integrity of the wall itself.
Gorgias worked diligently to repair the stud wall, reinsulate, adding blocking for grab bars and install greenboard on all three walls.
This achieved a warm, secure wall, plus the waterproof shower installation ImproveIt is known for, while also providing the Wisemans with a shower that could accommodate their original request for grab bars.
ADDING A safe base for this marion, OH shower
The next step for Gorgias was to install the new shower base. The base for the old shower “was not glued or mortared to the slab,” he says, noting a significant amount of buckling was already occurring in the shower base because of the poor installation. “I could feel the base moving against the slab when it stepped into it.” This was incredibly dangerous for the Wisemans, who could easily have tripped or fallen because of the uneven shower floor.
Moving forward with ImproveIt’s waterproof installation method, Gorgias fully adhered the new shower base to the slab with silicone adhesive, followed by the same process to install the shower walls. He completed the project by installing three grab bars exactly where the Wisemans needed them. Even with the wall repairs, ImproveIt’s grab bars with SecureMount anchor technology allows them to be for installed at any location or angle that works for the homeowner, so installation was completely customizable. Mrs. Wiseman says she’s pleased with all the work that was done.
We feel safe now,” Mrs. Wiseman says, “and we recommended ImproveIt to our neighbor across the street who’s also thinking of putting in a new shower. We’re very happy.”
Don't Let an Unsafe Aging In Place Shower Happen to YOU!
The ImproveIt team is so pleased to have been able to help the Wisemans with their bad contractor experience and provide them with an affordable walk-in shower that will help meet their aging-in-place needs.
If you or a loved one is interested in making safe bathing update, but concerned about which company to choose, reach out to Improveit today. Our team will be happy to walk you through all your options, make sure you’re comfortable with your decision, and have our 5-star installation and lifetime warranty service teams ready to help along the way.