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How to Install Shower Grab Bars

Grab bars can provide added safety for anyone, young or old, when they take a shower. The key aspect of this task is anchoring the bar securely so that it is able to support weight when it is grabbed. However, drilling into tile and supporting a lot of weight can be tough.

You can install a shower grab bar.

Grab bars can provide added safety for anyone, young or old, when they take a shower. The key aspect of this task is anchoring the bar securely so that it is able to support weight when it is grabbed. However, drilling into tile and supporting a lot of weight can be tough. Here is an easy step by step guide on how to install grab bars.

  1. Find the studs in the wall. Stud finders will not penetrate through tile. Either try to find a stud above the tile where you have drywall or drill small exploratory holes in the tile at an angle and use a thin wire to detect studs. Once you find your studs, mark them with a pencil. Be careful not to drill into wires and pipes.

  2. Hold your grab bar against the wall and center the screw holes over studs. Use a level to make sure the grab bar is at equal heights on both sides. Mark the screw holes with a pencil.

  3. Drill the holes out that you marked earlier for the screws with tile/glass bits. Start with the smallest bit you have and work your way up. This will prevent cracking in the tile.

  4. Drill pilot holes into the studs with a drill bit that has a slightly less diameter than the screws you will be using. Attach the grab bar by sinking in 3-inch stainless steel wood screws directly into the pilot holes using a screwdriver bit on the end of your drill. This will give a firm and sturdy mounting surface for the grab bar. When all the screws are in place, test the bar with your body weight.

  5. Apply a bead of bath caulk to the outer rim of the section of the grab bar that is touching the wall.

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