What Is The Difference Between Hinge And Pivot Shower Doors?

It’s no secret, shower door completely changes the aesthetics of your modern bathroom. That’s why many homeowners are replacing their old shower curtains with frameless shower doors.

Apart from beauty, it makes a smaller bathroom look bigger! A true space-saver indeed.

But not every shower door type is suitable for you. They come in a lot of variety with different functionalities. If you have a larger bathroom, you can get any type you want. But the problem is for the smaller bathroom.

For those homeowners, it’s important to know the difference between hinge and pivot shower doors.

Hinge Vs. Pivot Shower Doors

Let’s get started. Among all those different types, I will take about mainly the differences between hinge and pivot shower doors. I will cover their pros and cons and how they differ in terms of features.

hinged vs pivot shower doors

Hinged Shower Door

Let’s talk about the hinged glass shower door first. They have the ability to swing outward when you need to open. For stand-alone showers, they are hugely popular.

If you have a smaller (less than 60 inches) stand-alone shower, this is a great choice.

For their extraordinary convenience and functionalities, many homeowners really love it. But you need to understand a lot of other factors of hinged doors if you seriously consider your recent bathroom renovation project.

Pros of Hinged Shower Door

  • Unlike frameless shower doors, you don’t need any overhead support bar for the installation.
  • They can swing up to a 90-degree angle outward to offer you a large opening. Now, if you have physically challenged family members with little mobility, this is a safe option for them. Because of its wide and open entryway, any senior family member can enter the bathroom without any difficulty.
  • One major advantage of the hinged shower door is it doesn’t require any tracks to open or close, unlike its sliding shower doors counterparts. Apart from being rust-proof, you don’t have to worry about the gunk buildup either. This unique feature has made it super easy and simple to clean up.
  • If you are looking for a minimalistic aesthetic for your bathroom, this is it. With wide glass panel that swings to open and close is aesthetically pleasing.

Cons of Hinged Shower Door

It comes with some disadvantages too. Since it’s expensive and time-consuming to replace once installed, it’s important to know some cons too.

  • The swing feature of such doors may be challenging for homeowners with limited space. Do you have enough space to accommodate such a swing feature to open and close it? It takes up a lot of space!
  • Unless you have side-mount hinged doors, you will have the water-leakage problem too. In between the door and the wall, the swing creates a tiny space through which water may leak out. However, if you don’t point the showerhead towards the door, it is not a problem.

Pivot Shower Door

These are really cool if you want to give your bathroom a modern look. They got pivots on the top and bottom of the door to support the weight and to open and close the glass door.

Unlike its hinged counterparts, it lets you enter the bathroom either opening or closing it.

Pros of Pivot Shower Door

It works like a hinged door but it offers more benefits. Let’s check some of these benefits.

  • It saves a lot of space and this primary benefit has made it stand-alone than the hinged doors. Because of its space-saving feature, it’s hugely popular among homeowners who have space constraints.
  • It is strong and stable more durable than the hinged doors. The reason is pretty simple – the pivot device at the bottom mainly carries the whole weight of the door that is crucial for long-lasting performance.
  • Since there are no tracks and it offers large openings, it’s safer for older people.
  • It requires little to no maintenance. It has more budget pick maintenance tools available too.
  • More options available than the hinged doors.
  • It radiates the elegance of the contemporary bathroom.

Cons of Pivot Shower Door

  • Serious water leakage issue. In fact, it’s much worse than the hinged door. You can seal the hinged door but you can’t do the same for the pivot doors because of the way it works.
  • You will be needing a top-bar (header) to install the top portion of it. However, it still requires less hardware than the hinged doors for complete installation. So, there will be fewer cleaning requirements as well.
  • It’s true it takes less space than the hinged doors but takes more space than the sliding doors.


Manufacturers produce various types to meet the specific needs of homeowners. It’s not a daunting task to pick the right one if you know what is the difference between hinge and pivot shower doors.

Analyze your available space and situation, then it should be an easy decision to make. Besides, you can always call a professional to help you out.

Clyde Mitchell

I run a hardware store nearby Court Anaheim, CA. Over the last 7 years, I have been blogging about home improvement and yes, I own ReliefInBath.com From me and this website, you can expect some useful tips on great ideas for a modern bathroom.

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