We spend a lot of time in bathrooms, it comes with the territory. So, like it or not (and actually we really kind of do) we have picked up a lot of knowledge and ideas about what makes for a great bathroom indoors. But how about outdoors?
If, like so many of us, your outdoor living space (aka back garden) literally becomes your second home in the summertime then adding an outdoor shower into the mix in time for this summer is an idea well worth considering. As they are both useful and attractive an outdoor shower can add extra aesthetic appeal as well as make your outdoor space that little bit more functional.
Why Bother with an Outdoor Shower?
Once you actually have one in place, you will find that simply the new experience of getting to cool off on a hot day in this way is a delightful experience that was worth the time and expense of installing an outdoor shower in the first place, but it will have more practical implications as well that you will quickly come to appreciate.
For pool owners, showering right before you dive into the pool after a sunbathing session will quickly wash away a lot of perspiration, oils and sticky perfumes that can pollute your pool and even jam up the filter. Showering after a dip in the pool will eliminate all of that stinky chlorine from your body and even help your swimwear last longer as well.
An outdoor shower spot is great for parents as well, both those of kids and pet parents. No more herding muddy kids and/or dogs through the house to clean up, cutting down on the time spent on housecleaning and general clean up.
As they become more and more popular prefabricated outdoor shower options are also becoming easier to find. Most of the big box home stores have started stocking range of them, some for as little as about $75, although you can expect to pay more for the fancier options.
On the other hand, a number of landscapers are also building shower facilities into their overall designs for clients and some are extremely attractive. You will likely pay more if you choose this option, but you will also be getting something unique to you, rather than a mass produced offering that thousands of others (maybe even your neighbours) have as well.
Design Options We Love
There are so many ways you can make an outdoor space like this attractive and functional. If your tastes veer towards the natural earthy look, teak is an excellent option, as not only is it fabulous to look at – the patina change as the wood ages in the most beautiful way – it is also an excellent choice for use in wet outdoor spaces in terms of durability, the very reasons it has been used so much in shipbuilding for hundreds of years.
Bamboo is a somewhat less expensive alternative and is a great choice in its own right, especially if you have a garden space that is very green. Bamboo also offers the advantage that it possesses natural bug repellent properties and resists mold and other fungus as well.
We have also seen some wonderful looking examples of stone based outdoor showers, whether that means opting natural stone – or faux stone ceramic – tiles as a floor base or creating a complete enclosure this way.
An outdoor shower is still a shower so there will be plumbing involved. Can you do it yourself? Possibly but we’d recommend calling in a pro. As water will have to be diverted from indoors all of the connections have to be just right and there are drainage considerations that have to be kept in mind to avoid runoff to the house, leading to potential structural water damage. It is also crucial that the whole system can be switched off and shut down in the winter to avoid pipe freezes. A good professional plumber will make sure all of these safeguards are in place so it really is worth the extra expense.
Not sure what modern outdoor showers look like? Take a look at the gallery below to see some of the best outdoor shower ideas we could find to give you a little extra inspiration and incentive to begin planning one of your own.