Shower Head Height: What is the Standard Measurement?


Do you have to compromise on your showering experience because of the improper shower head height?

Do you frequent bad shower experiences every time you step into the bathroom?

Then read on, this is exactly what we are trying to debunk here. We seek to answer and enlighten you about the right shower head height. And in turn, ensure a satisfying and relaxing showering experience.

More often than not people end up adjusting themselves in the shower instead of adjusting the height of the shower head. This is mainly due to the fact that there is very little knowledge about the right shower head height.

People take it for granted and don’t pay enough attention to it. There is hardly any conversation around this topic. And this leads to poor decisions that create discomfort later on in your showering experience.

However, there are ways to ensure that the shower head is installed at the right height. This mainly depends on your height, the type of shower head extension that you have and the rise or elevation of the head.

Here we aim to provide certain guidelines and principles that you can adhere to ensuring that the height of the shower head is optimal for your height.

Importance of shower head height

The right shower head height is very important to ensure a relaxing showering experience. It is responsible for the distance between the shower head and your body. The vertical distance from you and the shower can bring about a lot of difference to the showering experience. You can also make your shower experience enjoyable by installing a waterproof shower speaker.

This in turn decides the distance the water droplets must travel after leaving the shower head before it hits your body. This is responsible for the force of the water you experience during your showers.

The pressure of the water on your body is dependent on the height of the shower head from your body and it is this pressure that relaxes your body. Also, by installing a water softener you can enjoy the shower immensely, and your hair will appreciate it.

If you maintain enough distance from the shower head height, then there will be higher pressure of the water to clean off the debris and the dirt.

This ensures that the soap or shampoo that you have applied is wiped off by the water itself or else you will have to do it by hand.

Also, maintaining this pressure of water allows acupuncture of the body which can relax and relieve stress from your muscles.

This ensures that the showers are effective in cleansing the body and do not end up being burdensome and creating new challenges for you.

Disadvantages of having an inaccurate height

There are various disadvantages of having an inaccurate shower height. Fixing or using the right shower head at the wrong height leads to an ineffective showering experience.

It can lead to you doing everything by yourself, whereas the water simply remains an agent to moisten your body.

Due to the inaccurate shower head height, you have to tolerate the low pressure of water on your body. The water droplets will fail to strike and deliver its momentum onto your body.

This scenario is likely to occur when there is hardly any room between the top of your head and shower head. This can create an atmosphere of confinement and result in a very bad showering experience.

This hardly leaves any room for you to extend your arms or move your body freely in the shower. It can also be of grave concern to all those who suffer from claustrophobia.

Improper cleansing of the body, confinement of space around you, low water pressure and improper bathroom aesthetics are some of the concerns or disadvantages of inaccurate shower head height.

This is why one must take precautions and follow the guidelines before installing or mounting the shower heads in their bathrooms.

Why Do We Have Different Standard Shower Head Heights?

There are a number of different standards for shower head heights in the world which are influenced by both tangible and intangible factors including geography.

Depending on who you ask, there are various set standards for the shower head height. It depends on the average height of the person which can vary from country to country.

In the United States itself, there are a number of different standardized shower heads due to the varying heights of an individual.

This leads to the standard height of the shower head being decided to keep in mind the average height of the individuals, both male and female residing in a given country.

It also depends on the general build of houses in a given area or specifically the build of the bathrooms. These standards have been established to ensure that everybody’s needs are met.

It also takes children operability into consideration, so that people in family conditions don’t find it inconvenient.

The policies and regulations of houses in a given geographical area and the general size of the bathroom are two of the main factors considered.

The affluent population of the society is likely to have larger bathrooms than the commonwealth and the impoverished population of the society.

As a result, the standard height is likely to be more in the former case than the latter.

What is the standard height of a shower head?

shower head height

Having discussed the varying factors affecting the standard height of the shower heads, one might wonder what exactly the standard height of the shower head is.

To put it bluntly, the given standard height of a shower head is 80 inches or 203 centimeters above floor level.

However, we know that there are different kinds of shower heads available in the market from wall mounted and rain shower heads to hand held ones.

All of these cater to the varying body shapes and sizes and the purpose of the individual. People’s heights and needs can be unpredictable and hence there exists a range for the standard height of the shower heads.

This standard shower head height of 80 inches is a general number and can change depending on the type of shower head installed.

For a wall mounted shower head, which the majority of the people use, it is 80 inches, but for something like a rain shower head it is 84 inches.

This is because the rain shower head alters the texture of the water by using custom filters that end up reducing the pressure of the water.

This loss is compensated by the extra inches provided in the shower head height. For hand held shower heads, the standard height is not fixed to a specific number but is in a given range of 72 inches to 78 inches.

This is definitely fair given that hand held units are most likely to be used by kids and the elderly and sometimes even for pets and hence their height can vary.

However, the numbers mentioned above should not be firmly followed in all cases. The requirements and usability of the bathroom should be looked at in general. It is to be best reconsidered in case of bathrooms in hotels, gyms, pools or other public places.

What is the average height of a shower head?

shower head height

The average height of the shower head paints the picture of the shower head most people have in their bathrooms.

This informs us about the common decisions being taken by the people with regard to their shower heads.

The average height of a shower head is 80 inches. This is an indication of the preferred height for shower heads.

To put it in perspective, it means clearance of 6 feet and 8 inches is provided in the bathroom and is very appropriate for most people keeping in mind that the average height of individuals is not likely to exceed 6 feet 2 inches.

Different Types of Shower Heads and Their Required Standard Height:

shower head height

  1. Standard wall mounted shower heads have a set standard height of 80 inches.
  2. Rain shower heads have a standard height of 84 inches, which is a few inches more than the wall mounted ones.
  3. Handheld shower heads have a standard height in the range of 72 inches to 78 inches.

Wall Mounted Showerheads: Wall mounted shower heads are the most common type of shower heads available and are inexpensive and easy to maintain.

This shower head fixed at a specific elevation and you cannot readjust it based on the needs of the person using it. The standard specified height is 80 inches, however, it should be decided based on the height of the person intending to use it.

However, it may be difficult to come to that conclusion with people in family conditions. Then it may be advisable to calculate the average height of the adults in the family and then decide on the height for mounting the shower head unit.

Given its rigid and definite nature, a lot of planning and care should be taken before installing the mount.

You should definitely have a discussion with your plumber of choice before finalizing on the fixture of this unit.

If mounted at the right height it can be lead to a delightful showering experience.

Rain Showerheads: Rain shower heads make you feel like as if you’re standing in the rain. This type of shower head has come back to trend in recent times.

The water droplets come pouring down with rain like texture and also it allows water to spread as it travels. The standard specified height is 84 inches.

Not only is it ideal for tall people, but it is also useful for people with a wide body or a pear shaped body.

The flat and large surface of this shower head allows it to cover wider surfaces and requires a straight extension to use.

You should also keep in mind that it needs to maintain some distance from the end of the wall to provide the optimum shower experience.

The rain shower heads are definitely delightful to use and provide a relaxing showering experience.

Handheld Showerheads: Handheld shower heads are the go to choice for a kid and the elderly. It can suit the needs of children who are still growing and will continue to suit their changing heights year after year.

They can act as a multi-purpose shower head. You can use it for showering, also to clean pets and bathrooms or any bathroom utensils.

The standard specified height falls in the 72 inches to 78 inch range. The particularizing of the range makes sense since it designed to remain flexible and multi-functional in nature.

This shower head comes with a hose that allows it to move freely in the shower. This allows you to contort your body and helps clean those hard to reach places.

This is also a great option if you want to wash only specific parts of your body while keeping the rest of the body dry.

How to raise the shower head height?

Would you like to bend or crouch just to make your hair wet? There are many people, for whom the shower head sprinkles water at their chin or face level, leaving their hair dry.

If you already have a shower head in place and do not want to go through the troublesome and expensive route of discarding it and installing a new shower head at the right height, then we have a possible solution for you.

It is possible to find deliverance by making use of an ‘S’ pipe, sometimes referred as the ‘S’ shower arm. Literally, you can use this S shaped pipe to add an additional 6 to 12 inches to the shower head.

However, this requires you to remove the previous pipe and install this new one and may require you to call up your plumber. It is also not flexible, which makes it important to think carefully before opting for this option.

shower head height

Another great option is the adjustable shower arm. This is the easiest and the most affordable way of going about raising the height of your shower head.

This type of shower arm attaches to your existing shower arm pipe which allows you to elevate the height your shower head and retighten it at the required elevation.

You can use it as a hand held shower head. This hand held shower is definitely the most flexible as it depends on how you use it and who is using it.

You can adjust this shower arm in various elevations and heights, perfect for everyone. The only problem it should operate by you, which makes it quite tiresome and prevents a wonderful showering experience.

Another option is the shower slide bar which incorporates the hand held shower unit as well.

It is complex and very high end but allows you to install a slider that can mount the hand held unit.

It is capable of altering the height of the shower head to about 25 inches.

How to drop the height of shower head?

Sometimes we may want to drop the shower height instead of raising it. There may be children who can’t make use of the shower head or people of less height who are not enjoying the shower due to the placement of shower head at a higher height.

There are various options available for dropping or reducing the height of the shower head. Those strategies that let you raise the shower head height also allow you to reduce or drop the height.

The adjustable shower arm is great for budget conscious home owners. This shower arm extension attaches to the already existing pipe and allows you to reduce the height of the shower head.

It requires you to tighten the extension at the required elevation and allows for occasional readjustment.

shower head height

Hand held shower arm unit is great as it is perfect for every height. It cannot be a bad fit if viewed from a height perspective, as it is totally dependent on your height. The same unit short people can use, and it also allows them to reduce shower head height.

The slider bar slightly complicated option if you want to drop the shower head height. It incorporates and makes use of a hand held unit and allows tightening of the unit. It is extremely flexible and can suit almost everybody’s height.

Swivel Ball adapter is another inexpensive and simple option that can be opted for. You can purchase it from a local hardware store and allows you to drop the shower head height by a few inches.

However, it may not be of great relevance if you want to drop a remarkable amount of height, say more than 6 to 8 inches. It is also available in a pipe format to reduce more than 6 inches of shower head height, however it compromises on the aesthetics of the bathroom.

What is the Standard height for Shower Enclosure?

shower head height

The purpose of a shower enclosure is to protect the wall and the bathroom beyond the shower pan. The standard height of the shower enclosure should be 72 inches to 78 inches from the bathroom floor.

Most people usually decide to opt for the higher end of the standard, i.e. 78 inches. However, you can reach as high as 96 inches, you can buy it ready made in retail shops.

Any size beyond that measure requires you to get the shower enclosure custom made.  Your shower enclosure should have enough space for you. Actually to move freely in the shower and get a good wash done enough space is important.

It should not be of any hindrance to your body needs which may mean that taller people might have to consider the extra space in the shower enclosure. You also do not want the water to collect on your enclosure, leading to an ever humid bathroom.

Types of shower enclosures

Shower enclosures come in many styles and sizes making them versatile for lots of different room layouts. With so many options available we would advise shopping around and finding the best style for you, Bellabathrooms have a large variety to choose from and have handy guides to help you make your decision.

The size and shape of your room will usually dictate what type of shower enclosure you go for. It is always a great idea to measure out the floor area you have to work with and either draw a plan or use an online tool to help design the space.

Normally homeowners either have the option of a corner or recess installation.  In a recess, you will already have 3 walls that help create the shower enclosure for you. Typically in a corner, you will need to purchase a full shower enclosure.

Corner Fitted Shower – If you are able to use one wall it gives you far more flexibility. Corner shower enclosures come in the quadrant, corner entry, and offset quadrant styles.

Recess Fitted Shower – You will need to buy a shoer tray and also a shower door when installing a shower enclosure to a recess.

There are different door types to consider:

Pivot – A pivot shower door tends to open out the way and as a result, you will need to ensure you have sufficient room for this in your bathroom.

Sliding – Sliding doors are a great way to save floor space and there are loads on the market of different thicknesses.

Bi Fold – With a Bi Fold Shower door, it folds into the shower enclosure creating more space outside of your shower.

Hinged – Probably the most common shower door is the hinged door. These doors open out into the bathroom space so you will have to check how much room you have.

What is the standard height of a Shower Grab Bar?

shower head height

The standard height of a shower grab bar is specified as 33 inches to 36 inches, i.e. 84cm to 91 cm above the floor. This standard specification allows better leverage of the shower grab bar.

The shower grab bars are usually horizontal in design. However, sometimes people have a need for the vertical orientation of the bar.

Shower grab bars allow us to safely move around the shower enclosure without the possibility of hurting ourselves. Installing shower grab bars give you the required stability to conduct yourself in the bathroom.

Otherwise slipping and falling in the bathroom can lead to fatal injuries due to the confined space.

It is of great significance to the disabled as horizontal bars can help them get out of their wheelchairs and provide them the strength and sturdiness they need.

Vertical bars due to their orientation appear to take less space coverage and can suit different people with different heights.

What height should a shower ceiling be?

shower head height

The standard height of a ceiling can vary anywhere between 84 inches to 120 inches, i.e. 213 to 305 centimeters above the shower floor.

The height depends on the shower space and the design of the bathroom. You must decide based on everything else in the shower, especially the shower heads.

Selecting the lower end of the standard ceiling height of 84 inches can prevent you from installing the rain shower head.

After deciding on the shower head height, only then decide on the height of the shower ceiling ensuring that there is sufficient space even after the shower head.

The ceiling height, if it’s too less, can give a suffocating feel and lower the aesthetics of the bathroom. Also selecting the upper end, i.e. 120 inches without really utilizing can lead to an unnecessary increase in costs.

It is important to keep in mind that the shower ceiling should not collect any water or moisture. Or else there will be most probably the growth of organic matter on it.

What is the standard height for Shower Valve?

shower head height

The standard height for a shower valve is between 38 inches to 48 inches. There is a lot of preference for the upper end, i.e. 48 inches as this is the height of shower valve installation in most homes.

The shower valve should be accessible from both inside and outside the shower spray. You should crosscheck the house or building blueprints. To find out if any provision provided or one needs to construct it.

If one is already provided at the standard height, then you need not worry about it. The valve height will also affect the height of the rest of the shower units. Like the shower head and the shower extension.

The other units will add their own heights and the cumulative height of the shower head you may decide later. Hence it is important to look at the showering unit as a sum of parts that affect the whole unit.

What is the standard height Shower Wall?

The standard height of the shower wall inside the showering enclosure should be at least 70 inches from the drain. However, outside the enclosure the height can be up to 72 inches from the bathroom floor.

These standardized height values secured from the book by R. Dodge Woodson titled “2003 International Plumbing Codes Handbook”. The height of the shower wall depends on the height of the shower head installed in the shower.

The height of the shower wall should be as long as the shower head. And it should not spray outside the enclosure on the floor making it slippery and wet.

You definitely should not aim for a shower wall height that is less than the shower head inside the bathroom. The purpose of the wall is to keep the actual showering area enclosed. And isolated from the rest of the bathroom and avoid injuries of any sort.

What is the standard height Shower Door? 

The standard height of the shower door ranges between 72 inches to 78 inches. The most commonly used shower doors are of 72 inches in height. They can even be as high as 96 inches, which are not at all uncommon.

The height of the door is usually dependent on the shower wall and obviously limited by the shower ceiling height. The shower doors usually of the sliding type and most prefer this type of doors in the shower. It gives small and confined nature in most bathrooms.

However, many people do opt for the standard hinged doors. The shower door extends from the base of the sink all the way up to the shower walls.

It may or may not meet the ceiling. However, in most cases, it does go all the way up to the ceiling. Shower doors may either be transparent or opaque, which depends on the shower walls.


There are various decisions to make with respect to measurements alone. While designing a showering unit in the bathroom or selecting a pre-existing one.

Keep in mind the cost and future family expansion plans. Various decisions you should consider with respect to the shower heads, walls, doors, ceilings, and other showering units.

Having looked at each unit individually. We can definitely decide on the first and the most important task which is to write down your requirements.

Then you must establish the height of the shower valve before moving onto the shower heads and other units.

Then the height of the entire shower enclosure including walls, ceiling, and door needs to look at as a sum of parts and decide upon the space requirements.

Finally, you can move onto the actual shower heads to successfully and rightly install the other units. Now you can decide the shower head unit based on the type of shower head you want. This should avoid you the trouble of changing shower elevation.

However, if you have kids or seniors in your house, then different options for increasing and decreasing shower head heights can be explored. Like the ‘S’ arms, handheld units and slide bars.

This guide explores the showering unit as a whole and attempts to build confidence and enlighten people to make decisions with respect to the different facets of the showering units.