Installing a Shower Door

By Kate Riley December 2, 2014

*This post brought to you in partnership with Delta Shower Doors.

We’re making our way room by room through the Las Vegas fixer remodeling as we go which I’ve been blogging about since summer. Last week another DIY project we took on while we were in town was replacing the shower door in the downstairs bathroom.

When we bought the house, we considered ourselves pretty lucky to have a full bath downstairs instead of just a powder room since so many two story homes we looked at didn’t have a full bathroom downstairs. Back in October, we finished the sink and toilet side, but the replacement of the shower door loomed as the final project for the space.

I designed the door with the Delta Shower Doors customization tool on their site providing the measurements and choosing the finish (it was incredibly easy) and the door shipped to the house on a pallet three weeks later.

delta shower design


I chose oil rubbed bronze for the frame finish for the shower door track and knob to coordinate with the existing light fixture and faucet in the bathroom.

delta door order


DIYers take note, this is a time consuming project, to do it right it does take a slow and steady approach, but the extra time concentrating on all the details and following the instructions paid off in the end with a perfect pivoting shower door.

We considered hiring a professional but Matt believed he could do it himself and I’m proud to say, he pulled it off! I’ve watched him build and tile over the years, but I was most impressed with this latest accomplishment, he can now add “shower door installation” to his growing list of DIY talents. We kept the old tile since it was in great condition, replaced the shower head, but still need to replace the temperature valve. We also reversed the swing so the shower door opens into the room and not into the bathroom door which was awkward. 

Here’s Matt to tell you about the process and the final result!

new delta shower door


“I’ve done a lot of projects over the years, built and remodeled several homes but I’ve never taken on the challenge of a shower door installation. I was a bit stressed in the beginning because I had to both remove the dated swing shower door and then install a modern pivot shower door. Delta declared on their website that it would be “easy” and provided detailed instructions but it wasn’t until I watched their installation video that the stress melted away.

This project will bring you satisfaction when complete but is one that you should not rush. Unless you’re a seasoned pro, expect to spend several hours on the removal of the old door and its caulking and then 6 to 8 hours on the new door installation.

The hardest part of the project was removing the old shower door that was not only screwed to the tile but held in place by formidable 25 year old silicone caulking. The door removal took several hours but finally with a lot of prodding and little help from my friendly neighbor Andre, the door came loose.

matt removing door copy

Be prepared to have a battle with the caulking on your old door! After I scraped clean the surfaces, I washed them with WD40 and cleanser, the WD40 makes the silicon come off easier.

The installation was slow but thankfully the instructions are very thorough.

shower wall jams


I spent a lot of time checking my measurements, often three to four times just to be sure since there is no room for mistakes with the cuts. I measured the doorway to make sure it was plumb and as is always the case, it wasn’t. But I was not deterred and plotted along following the excellent instructions.

The amazing thing about the design of the Delta pivot door is how you can make adjustments to make the door strike plumb inside the frame so that even in a non-square doorway, the swing works perfectly.

The only part in the instructions that gave me trouble was when I had to cut the header. The header had to be cut from left to right or right to left depending on the swing. Get this wrong and you are in trouble. They did mention this but I think it should have been given a bigger more important “BE CAREFUL HERE” warning.

new bronze trim for shower door

Fortunately, I cut the header the right way. The other part of the instructions that could use more detail and a warning is in the adjustment phase stating that the door could come loose, which my door almost did and gave me a brief scare that it might break but fortunately that didn’t happen.

matt silicone

The final step was applying new silicone adhesive and allowing it to cure, then carefully aligning the panes of glass so they fit inside the frame. The installation was time consuming and a bit challenging; this project is not for the novice. But for anyone who has a little home improvement experience, it can be done as a DIY project as long as the instructions are followed precisely.

I’m proud to say the door works perfectly and looks much more modern compared to its predecessor. The header is slightly lower than I would like, as I am 6’2” but overall I am very pleased with the outcome. We’re happy the new door trim and knob now coordinate with the existing faucet, hardware, and light fixture.  

delta shower head and dial

I installed the shower head but ran out of time on the water temperature valve so I’ll replace that on our return, we also chose a Delta product for those fixtures too.”

We’re so pleased with the result! We both love the contrast between the dark bronze trim and the white tile, and now I can finally finish the wallpaper in this corner.

installing a shower door


Thanks so much to Delta Shower Doors for partnering with us on this project! Find out more about the process of customizing and installing your Delta shower sliding or pivoting door on their site

*This post is sponsored by Delta Shower Doors. We received a complimentary shower door and compensation for featuring this project. All efforts followed by victory dances and opinions are our own.


  1. That is a mighty fine looking shower door. I particularly like the oil rubbed bronze. Thanks for the heads up on the patience required to install it. It may be a future project for me.

  2. Hi Kate! I really love that door! Do you like having a door vs a curtain? I wonder which is easier to maintain.

    Yours is the only blog I check regularly for updates, we have the same style! Keep up the good work! ;)

  3. Looks fantastic! I hope to redo bathrooms in our next home. Not sure it will be worth it to us in our current home since other upgrades are more important to us at the moment. If we change our mind, I’ll keep this post in mind as a guide!

  4. Kate, thanks for sharing this! It is perfect timing. Our builder grade home didn’t come with a door in the guest bath and I have be uninspired by those I found in the store. I love the custom design and the price isn’t bad either! That house is really shaping up! I love seeing your progress.

  5. Great advice to not rush the installation. A shower door is one thing that you want to work correctly. Thanks for sharing!

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