Removing & Repairing Frameless Glass Shower Doors


Glass shower door with stainless steel handle Frameless shower doors are sleek and simple. Image Credit: Jupiterimages/ Images

Frameless shower doors provide an elegant look to your home's bathroom. These doors have no metal frame holding them in place. Showers in older homes often have metal frame doors in which the glass slides open and closed, however, these frames become traps for mold and mildew. Frameless shower doors are not susceptible to this problem and are much simpler to remove and repair.

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Removal of a frameless shower door is fairly simple. Many frameless doors are simply connected with two or three brass hinges. These hinges are usually attached to the shower wall itself, or to another piece of glass that serves as an enclosure for the rest of the shower. To avoid dropping the glass and breaking it, always remove it with the help of another pair of hands.

Removal generally involves a simple unscrewing of the hinges. In some cases, you may need to remove the additional glass pieces and not just the door that opens and closes. Shower door panels fastened directly to the wall usually have braces that need to be unscrewed. You may also have to take a utility knife and run it in the seam between the wall and glass to remove any caulk holding the door in place.


Repairs to frameless glass shower doors are rarely needed. One case that might be an exception to that rule is if a door leaks. Shower doors need a minimum clearance of 1/4 inch around all edges. At the bottom, without the proper shower rail, you may experience a leak under the door.

The shower rail is usually a piece of raised stone or tile higher than the shower floor on which the glass door sits. A sweep, which is a small rubber attachment similar to a squeegee's rubber edge, can be attached to the bottom of the door to prevent leakage. Leaks from higher up generally mean that the shower head is not properly positioned.

Glass Replacement

In the event you need to remove and replace the shower door, you may need to remove the entire glass enclosure. Frameless shower doors come in a variety of shapes, sizes and thicknesses. Replacement glass comes in many styles, some clear while others are glazed or have another finish. To provide the best look for your home, ensure that any glass you remove for replacement has matching glass for the rest of the shower.


One you have made the necessary adjustments, you can then reinstall the shower door. Use the same hardware unless the old hardware has become damaged or you have replaced the glass with a new style or brand. You also have to make the necessary preparations for the glass by thoroughly cleaning the shower rails and the wall where the glass will attach. The surface needs to be dry, so once you attach the glass using the necessary brackets and hinges, you can then caulk along the seam between the wall and the glass to prevent the shower from leaking.

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