View Full Version : shower seat

11-02-2011, 12:56 PM
Hi I am trying to obtain a 'fold down' shower seat to fit against a 'paramount' type wall (plasterboard hollow section) which is tiled inside the shower area,and I have been informed that this type of seat is considered 'unsafe' even though it is fastened with six special wall clips, made to support this type of appliance. I do not have a weight problem, and the Health Authority fitter has told me that this type of seat has never ever been fitted so far as he is aware. I find this hard to beleive as there are numerous appliances of this type advertised - they can't all be wrong! Any comments or advice please? S.

11-02-2011, 01:54 PM
When you say Health Authority do you mean Social Services ? If you are putting the seat in yourself then I guess its up to you. However, if Social Services are supplying the seat then they have to go by their own rules and regulations

11-02-2011, 02:31 PM
Hi Andypandy, Thanks for the input. Social Services looked at the problem and passed it to the local health authority who in turn refused to fufil the request as the contractor had indicated that the seat was 'unsafe'!! I wonder how this fits in with the numerous supplyers of this type of equipment! S.

11-03-2011, 01:04 PM
Hi having read your responses I find it difficult to belieive that any company would fit a disabled shower seat to a unsupported wall, even with braces behind the tiled wall it is in our opinion an absolute NO. We fit our own folding shower seat, approximately 300 per annum and would never fit it to an unsupported wall. The problem we find with many seats is that there is a price war to produce a cheap seat to sell volumes of these products, councils look at cost (not all) and an unsupported chair is a massive risk. there are currently chairs on the market that have been produced for this cheap market with arms that have no support other than a fold down hinge, they only support 20 stone, they seem to forget that a disabled person may transfer all of there weight to one side of their body and put excessive force onto 1 arm. We have tested these products and are disgusted at how simple they are to bend.

We currently produce a chair with supported arms and legs, its produced with 1" steel rather than 18mm the chair has a rating of 35 stone. I am not here trying to sell my chair as I do not promote our company, I am here to advise people that these chairs are a major threat to a disabled people.

When tackling disability we need to cater for the future of the persons disability and not what we see, some people in the past have had a chair fitted with a 20 stone weight limit and found there weight steadily increase over this limit. these chairs cannot deal with 20 stone plus being distributed on one side and can cause major accidents.

In short to answer your question on the tiled wall, if your disablement menat that your weight was distributed to one side you may see your tiled wall eventually collapse, with a seat with only 2 legs means legs could be trapped underneath, falling forward or the the sides could/would mean possible fatal results, dont take the risk!!! please look at the long term and get the wall supported, you may find other people heavier than yourself use it in the future.

I hope this helps and you understand that disability is something that requires a medium to long term solution that caters for all eventualities.

If you need any advice I am happy to share some of my experieinces.


11-04-2011, 09:54 AM
Some great advice here, so I will add to it by saying what happened with us. We have a plasterboard wall & Social Services refused to put in a suitable chair for me because they said the wall could not support a chair safely. I had to fight this for several years, to prove that some walls can be reinforced to take the weight of the chair & myself safely. Our wall is also tiled. This was the same issue I had with drop-down hand rail for the loo.

Now, I cannot say your wall is the same as ours, or that your needs are the same. What I can say is that there could be options for you, if you fight for them. This could be reinforcing the wall & fitting the correct chair for the wall & your needs. It could be that there is not room in the shower for this to be done. However, there are other options, such as opening the shower up.

I should add that we have a full wet-floor disabled showerroom, this could also be a factor. I doubt they would be willing to pay the cost of redesigning your bathroom to accommodate a chair, but that does not mean there might not be options for you. I had to prove they could meet my needs, but it took years to do that.

The wrong chair, or if it is not fitted correctly for your needs, can be very dangerous.

11-06-2011, 03:09 PM
Hi, The problem rolls on....Thanks for the comments, I would add, in my case the following: 1. I am the sole user of the shower (en suite) 2. I do not have a weight problem (I weigh 9+ stone) 3. I have a medical disability rather than a physical condition 4.The seat which I am considering has a metal plate which has six fastenings to the wall (via screw/clips, made for the purpose) and has two drop down legs (braced) which should take most of the weight, the wall plate should secure the seat to the wall in a rigid fashion thus adding to the safety factor. (the wall is of plasterboard on joist construction, face plastered and tiled on one side) 5. I have tried and tested three different shower stools/perch stools and shower board which I have found not fit for purpose as there is not enough space in the shower area for a free standing appliance, which I found to be unsafe, due to tripping or stumbling over the appliance. Finally I would add that I have a handrail fitted inside the shower cubicle (which, if pulling the weight of a body from a seating position to standing, the weight factor is greatly increased beyond any weight applied to a wall seat) and this handrail was put in situ by the same man who condemned the seat!!

11-06-2011, 05:49 PM
The wall could still need reinforcing. Not all plasterboard/stud walls are the same.

11-08-2011, 01:43 PM
My mother-in-law had one fitted by her housing association. What they did was to find the location of the timber uprights in the plasterboard wall, then attached an approx two-foot square piece of 3/4 inch ply with 6 long woodscrews. It had about four coats of gloss to seal it. The chair was then screwed to that.

However - she only weighs about 7 stone.

11-08-2011, 06:07 PM
That is a reinforced wall for her, to make sure the chair is safe. It can be done with a person weighing much more, if the wall is the correct wall & it has the correct chair for the wall & the person.

11-09-2011, 03:23 PM
Sorry, but nothing that holds human weight should be used on a internal plaster wall. I've seen it times and eventually the plaster cracks and comes away.

Think seriously about a stand alone shower stool instead. They're very light and easy to pick up and remove from the shower tray. X

11-09-2011, 05:30 PM
These sorts are not on a plaster wall. The walls are reinforced & long screws are used to secure them to the wall & the batons or uprights.

11-09-2011, 06:07 PM
I used to have a small shower with a pivot door which made it impossible to fit in a chair/stool. In the end I got a corner stool which allowed the door to open and close and I could use it. Many of the catalogues give the footprint so you could measure up before buying.
Would that be an option?

11-09-2011, 09:05 PM
Yes, Beau, & you can get free-standing shower seats too for disabled people, of many sizes. I do not just mean those shower chairs with huge wheels on, with brakes that are too hard to put on & off. Social Services should discuss this with you actually. It is about meeting your needs.

11-25-2011, 12:29 PM
Hi, I am glad to report that the problem has been solved!! I have obtained a three legged shower corner seat with adjustable legs. I have been able to adjust the 'rear' leg to allow the seat to be right in the corner, thus taking up much less room in the shower. It is free standing so I have not been subjected to reinforcing the wall etc. Many thanks for your comments and advice. S.

11-25-2011, 05:18 PM
That is good to hear, I am glad you have sorted it out.

02-13-2012, 03:55 PM
Hi all, Many thanks for the interest and comments. I now have a three legged stand alone shower stool which seems to 'do the job'!! Regards, S. :)

02-13-2012, 06:17 PM
Hi all, Many thanks for the interest and comments. I now have a three legged stand alone shower stool which seems to 'do the job'!! Regards, S. :)

Thank god you sorted that out. A flip up stool attached to any framework would have been an accident in the making. Let's hope the shower tray doesn't crack where the stand alone stool feet touch it.

What a shower!

02-13-2012, 09:36 PM
Good news. I hope you enjoy the shower now.