Shower Head Height (Standard Measurements)

Here’s our shower head height guide including standard, rough-in height and ADA shower head height and methods to raise shower head.

Shower head height with freestanding tub large wall tile vanity with vessel sink

If homeowners are designing a new bathroom or updating a current one, one essential thing to consider is questions about shower heights. Shower heights will matter whether the choice is a mobile hand shower or a very luxurious rain shower.

How high or low a shower head will make or break the entire shower routine, which many people use as an escape after a hard day’s work. 

There are a lot of details to mull over when it comes to deciding how high a shower head should be installed in bathroom showers. Factors like the average height of the user, construction codes and regulations, the type of shower head, and many others.

Standard Shower Head Height

Standard height for shower headIn the United States, the standard shower head height is more or less 80 inches or around 203 centimeters. This shower height is based on the average adult male height in the country, which averages 5 feet and 10 inches or about 178 centimeters.

Although this is the standard shower height, it can still vary and be adjusted according to personal preferences and the height of the users. 

Deciding on a specific shower height is essential since it will dictate everything from how comfortable the shower will be and how convenient it will be if people inside the home need more assistance. Such assistance can be a bench inside the shower or a support bar on the sides of the shower room. 

Another reason a homeowner should consider shower height is for people remodeling the bathroom. To make sure that their homes are following updated building codes, it’s essential to know if shower heights need adjustment. This rule will also apply to apartment or building owners who rent their rooms to tenants in the city or the suburbs. 

Another consideration is personal preference, whether a homeowner would like to install a higher or lower shower to accommodate taller guests or family members.

Height from Floor for Shower Head

Bathroom with freestanding tub picture windows large wall tilesThe ideal shower head height from the floor up will vary depending on the average height of the person in the house who will be utilizing the shower.

On the other hand, there are standard height dimensions that anyone can follow or make as points of reference when deciding their shower head height, and that is a space of 72 inches to 80 inches or around 183 to 203 centimeters. 

This size is considered a comfortable enough height that the average person can have a nice shower with this shower height. But for some, the best option is to have a shower head that could be adjusted for the person’s height using the shower, especially if there are small children in the home.

If the average size of the person in a household is shorter, the best thing to do is to install the shower head low enough that they will be able to reach it comfortably. 

The height of the shower head is usually installed so that the shower will allow water to flow on the person’s body instead of hitting them only one angle at a time. 

Rain Shower Height 

Rain shower heightAside from the average height of the person living in a given household, another consideration when deciding on a shower head height is the type of shower head.

The different shower heads will require different sizes when mounted. Some shower heads will require a lower elevation than a rain shower, which is an excellent option for the maximum bathing experience. 

Rain shower heads are designed in a way to simulate the feel of standing under the rain during a shower. Because of this, it requires a larger and higher elevation when mounted more than the traditional handheld shower. 

There are two ways to install a rain shower head, either on the walls or as high as the ceiling. Both methods will have different height suggestions and requirements.

For the wall mount, the usual height for most rain shower heads will range from 85 to 90 inches or about 216 to 229 centimeters. 

Rain shower heads or ceiling shower head are often combined with an adjustable shower head. The height of the shower and height of the ise will dictate the distance the shower head can be hung from the floor. – Kitchen and Bath Design, A Guide to Planning Basics, Mary Fisher Knott

For homeowners opting to install their rain shower head on the ceiling, it should be installed around 5 to 6 inches or 13 to 15 centimeters from the ceiling bed. 

Maximum Height For Rain Shower Head 

There is no maximum height to install or mount a rain shower head since it is dependent on different factors like personal preference or features that come with the rain shower head. Although this is the case, homeowners are not recommended to install their rain shower heads too high.

Installing it too high might cause problems like weaker water flow which defeats the purpose of a rain shower and even affect coverage. 

For homes with a ceiling height of around 8 feet, which is standard for most, the best height for a rain shower is to install it 6 to 8 feet or approximately 72 to 96 inches from the shower floor. This is the standard height for most, and it will also ensure that the user is getting the most out of the rain shower head’s benefits. 

For homes with taller ceilings, gauging on whether to install it higher will raise the question of problems with water pressure and flow rate. The best thing to do for homes like this is mounting the rain shower head on the wall, which can be done depending on the type of rain shower head to purchase. 

Shower Head Rough In Height

Shower head rough-in measurementThe shower head rough-in refers to determining the proper locations a shower head should be installed during renovations or home construction. It is the distance between the shower floor to the center of the shower pipe. This dimension is vital before installing everything from wall covering to shower tiles. 

The standard rough-in height will start from 72 to 78 inches or about 183 to 198 centimeters from the finished tiled floor. The most common shower head rough-in size is around 76 inches or 193 centimeters.

At the same time, the exact height for a specific home will depend on the tallest person that will be using the shower in a household. Other factors will include the shower design and the slope of the shower enclosure or wall.  

The best way for any homeowner to ensure that the rough-in size is optimal is to consult a plumber or contractor specializing in shower systems. Consulting from the get-go will ensure that there will be no costly and time-consuming changes that will be done in the future. 

Shower Head Height Code 

The IRC or the International Residential Code does not specify a particular minimum or maximum height for shower heads.

Although this is the case, it still provides guidelines regarding shower control placements to make them accessible for everyone. These two dimensions are totally different but can affect the shower head height generally and indirectly. 

Shower controls should be mounted on walls around 38 to 48 inches or 97 to 122 centimeters from the floor. This size will make it possible for anyone to access the controls.

The shower head, in this case, will be installed at a height to ensure more than adequate water coverage and maximum comfort for the user. 

Although some will not have a specified shower head height, it is still essential to look at local building codes, which can vary from one place to another. Plumbing fixture code source: ICCsafe

Consulting an accessibility specialist and the ADA codes will also help to ensure that renovations are on par with what is needed for the shower head to be accessible to persons with a disability, whether in commercial or residential buildings.

ADA Shower Head Height 

ADA shower head control heightThe Americans with Disabilities Act or ADA mandates shower heads and controls to be at a given height to ensure that they are accessible to everyone, especially people with disabilities. This will require that they be mounted around 38 to 48 inches or 97 to 122 centimeters from the floor inside the shower. 

The best shower type to be used is the hand-held shower spray unit since it can also be fixed and manipulated simultaneously, which can be convenient no matter what.

At the same time, for fixed shower heads, the best height recommended is 48 inches or around 122 centimeters at a maximum. 

How to Raise the Height of a Shower Head (Easiest Method) 

Shower arm extenderSee this shower arm at Amazon [sponsored link]

There are many methods to raise any shower head height, but one of the cheapest and most accessible is utilizing a shower arm extender.

This device is attached to the shower arm and helps extend it upwards, making sure that the shower head can be adjusted higher or lower than the mounted height. All that it will require is loosening and retightening nut fillings to fit any ideal shower head height. 

It is attached and wrenched to the plumbing before the shower head is screwed on the end of the arm extender. There are specific arm extenders for specific shower types. This means not all extenders will work for all shower heads.

Ensuring that the arm extender is made from high-quality materials will also ensure longevity because cheaper ones will succumb to problems like strong water pressure or even heat of the water. 

Visit our guide to shower sizes for more related content.

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