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Old 11-05-2013, 09:19 AM   #1
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


We just had our bathroom remodeled and the contractor did a pretty nice job on the shower tile. However, installing a shower door was NOT a part of the original contract (didn't find out until later). Anyway, we need to purchase a shower door and will probably go with a 'frameless' one we saw at Home Depot for about $300. I don't have any experience drilling into tile and I am concerned about cracking it so we are considering paying HD to do the install, which would be about $150. I guess my question would be is if installing this shower door is a reasonable DIY project or if I am risking too much there. What tools are needed? I presume a hammer drill and masonry bits?

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Old 11-05-2013, 11:56 AM   #2
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


We went with a curtain, otherwise I would have done it myself.
I'm sure you can find directions online and see what it entails before you decide

I've drilled into loose ceramic tile many times with just a bit for tile and a regular cordless drill. Patience is essential. Don't rush it! You are much more likely to crack tile by leaning on the drill and rushing it. Let the bit do the work.

I'll tell you how I would go about drilling into a vertical piece of ceramic tile. The hardest part is to get the hole started without the bit jumping around. Start with a washer just big enough for the bit to fit through, and secure it in place with a couple pieces of duct tape. Once the bit bites into the ceramic enough to stay in place you can remove the washer. Keep the bit wet and cool while you are drilling with a spray bottle of water.


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Old 11-05-2013, 12:40 PM   #3
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


Instead of buying an off the shelf unit, go to the local Glass company, and have a custom made unit for your bath done. They will come and install the unit.
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Old 11-05-2013, 02:04 PM   #4
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


If you tap where you want the hole drilled with a prick punch it will break the glaze and the drill will not slide around.
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Old 11-07-2013, 10:26 PM   #5
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


Should have been built from the beginning with a shower door in mind. Do not use a hammer drill on tile. A frameless shower door is not a diy project. A reputable glass company will need to know if it was properly framed for a shower door. That tile job may look great to you but the door guy may not think so. The clearances are very tight on those doors.
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Old 11-07-2013, 11:19 PM   #6
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


Your getting in over your head. Those frameless showers doors are a pain in the ass and better left to the glass company. My advice go to local glass company. They will hook you up rite. It won't be cheap. NOT 300
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Old 11-08-2013, 02:36 PM   #7
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


I think we have small misunderstanding here. I have seen two types of shower enclosures called "frame-less".

The first pic is an example of one you can pick up at a box or apron store and could be done DIY. This is what I thought the OP was considering.

If you are looking at something like the second pic, however, that is definitely a custom hire-a-pro job.
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Old 11-08-2013, 06:09 PM   #8
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


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Originally Posted by Eagle One View Post
We just had our bathroom remodeled and the contractor did a pretty nice job on the shower tile. However, installing a shower door was NOT a part of the original contract (didn't find out until later). Anyway, we need to purchase a shower door and will probably go with a 'frameless' one we saw at Home Depot for about $300. I don't have any experience drilling into tile and I am concerned about cracking it so we are considering paying HD to do the install, which would be about $150. I guess my question would be is if installing this shower door is a reasonable DIY project or if I am risking too much there. What tools are needed? I presume a hammer drill and masonry bits?

Does not sound like you have much to install. Drill slowly with correct bit.

My frameless cost 2k, so I left it to the pros with a lifetime all inclusive warranty.
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Old 11-09-2013, 07:39 AM   #9
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I'm not sure this applies here - but I found it easier to drill new holes in the aluminum fame to line up to a grout line than drill through the porcelain.
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Old 11-09-2013, 04:53 PM   #10
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


$150 is not a bad price to install a door-----just a thought.

If you do choose to install your own---come here for help----many of us have done that job---
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Old 11-09-2013, 05:57 PM   #11
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


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Does not sound like you have much to install. Drill slowly with correct bit.

My frameless cost 2k, so I left it to the pros with a lifetime all inclusive warranty.
I bet it looks sweet for this price.
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Old 11-09-2013, 09:47 PM   #12
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


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I bet it looks sweet for this price.

It is, as a matter of fact shortly after the install, we noticed that the edge on one of the panels had a slight chip. We mentioned it to them and a week later they were out with a new one!
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Old 11-13-2013, 08:58 AM   #13
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


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Originally Posted by Blondesense View Post
I think we have small misunderstanding here. I have seen two types of shower enclosures called "frame-less".

The first pic is an example of one you can pick up at a box or apron store and could be done DIY. This is what I thought the OP was considering.

If you are looking at something like the second pic, however, that is definitely a custom hire-a-pro job.
Yes, let's clear this up. The term "frameless" is being used too often now in the industry to describe doors of different styles. A TRUE "frameless" shower door has no frames on the top, bottom, sides or in the glass and is installed using expensive high tech brackets. Those doors run anywhere between $1500-$2500 and definitely should be installed by a pro. I would NEVER even considering doing this myself. Think about the prospect of lugging around those pieces of $2K glass. You break it, chip it or whatever while trying to install it, you are out $$$ in a big time way. Not worth the risk for sure. Also, while they look very nice, I definitely don't think it is worth it to spend that much on a shower door.

The other type of 'frameless' shower door, the one I am considering doing the install on, is a FRAMELESS GLASS door, the key difference in that only the GLASS is frameless. The entire assembly may include frames on any sides but I have seen ones that have minimal frames (maybe even just one on the side) that look really really nice for around $400-$700. Too often, both of these types of doors are just labeled FRAMELESS and therein lies the confusion.

Now, having clarified this, is the consensus that this is a DIY job? My biggest concerns are cracking the tile and not having it fit properly. I have some extra tiles leftover from the job so I am thinking that I will practice drilling through those. Are the measurement issues still a concern given that I am not doing the higher priced full frameless?
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Old 11-13-2013, 05:57 PM   #14
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


I've installed many of these---I use a miter saw to make any cuts to the aluminum--

Holes in the tile --I use diamond core drills--with a slow conventional drill---keep the bit wet---

I have also drilled hundreds of holes in porcelain tile using a carbide bit and a hammer drill----most people say this is dangerous to the tile---however,I have never broken one using this method.
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Old 04-04-2014, 10:28 PM   #15
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Installing shower door on new tile - DIY job?


Yes, it is a frameless glass door. There are two tracks I have to screw into the tile. The bottom one is only a couple feet long and has two screw holes (1/8" bit) into the tile threshold. The vertical one goes up about 5 feet and has four holes. The instructions say to use 5/16" bit and then insert plastic wall anchors in the vertical holes so I don't think I have to worry about finding a stud.

The center point of the threshold is where they recommend to put the bottom track but if I move it over 1/4 inch, I can screw the four vertical holes into the center of the 1/4 inch grout line up the wall. This should make it easier to drill and I can avoid having to drill 2/3 on tile and 1/3 on grout, which I can imagine would not make for an easy drill point.

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