Thursday, February 18, 2016
Twenty years ago, I generally encountered outdoor showers only when I went on a trip to a tropical or sub-tropical locale. Having been to a few, I started to notice some pros and cons of the various designs I experienced (who does that, except contractors?). In the last decade or so, I’ve built a lot of outdoor showers at beach houses and lakeside vacation homes, both in warm climates and cooler climates. Taking an outdoor shower is something of a luxury when it’s very warm outside, and it’s almost a necessity with a beach or lake house. If you've always wanted an outdoor shower, but weren't sure about the design, I’m here to show you the way. We’ll start with some of the things you’ll have to think about as you pick a privacy fence for an outdoor shower, like material, style, and special properties.
Considerations for Building an Outdoor Shower
While some outdoor showers are used only sporadically and are situated in mild climates, others are used frequently and some are exposed to rainy and even snowy weather conditions for much of the year. And that’s of course in addition to the regular wetting they get from being used. That’s why building your shower from materials that can stand up to the elements is essential for having the shower work smoothly during the summer months. Here are the characteristics you want to focus on when you look for a privacy fence for your outdoor shower:
Materials for an Outdoor Shower
There are quite a few ways to build a beautiful and long-lasting outdoor shower, so long as you choose your materials wisely. These are some of the more common materials I’ve seen used:
Aesthetic Considerations: Choosing a Style
There are all sorts of ways to build an outdoor shower. Some people simply erect a few posts and then string shower curtains between them. There are brick enclosures, and beautifully crafted walls made of stone, concrete, and tile. There are simple structures made of pressure-treated wood and walls made of bamboo. There are as many styles as there are aesthetic sensibilities and I’ve been able to help make a few these become a reality.
So much of the final choice comes down to the scene and the setting. A lot of the houses that I work on are either contemporary or old craftsman and Victorian homes. These housing styles don’t always vibe very well with outdoor structures made of concrete, faced with bamboo, or even lined with basalt stone, and pressure treated wood isn’t always refined enough for the situation. While a cedar enclosure can look good with just about anything, sometimes this style of enclosure is just too much maintenance for a homeowner looking to put in a structure at what is often a vacation home (who wants to be sanding and staining over vacation?). In these cases, I’ve found that the simple lines and classic appeal of a low maintenance iron and wood or composite security fence fill in this aesthetic gap rather nicely. These types of fences can be hard to find, but they use well-coated steel pickets to create a rust-resistant, sturdy frame for the fence, along with wooden or composite board infill for privacy and a unique look. The wooden or composite boards bring in an element of earthiness, and go well with nearly any style of house.
As I’ve already said, there are plenty of ways to build a fantastic outdoor shower. Different houses and landscapes call for different materials and designs. If you decide that a galvanized steel and wooden infill fence is the perfect fit, then I can recommend the systems produced by Fortress Building Products. With their tough, unique coating system that uses an e-coat for moisture resistance and a powder coat to protect against UV, they’re highly resistant to the water, sun, salt, and sand, and can provide classic beauty for years and years. And if you’re on the lookout for more durable and beautiful building products, Fortress® has innovative items like durable, beautiful deck railings, and super tough bamboo-based decking.