RM Blog Inside, Out11/16/2010

Bathroom Window Worries

Hi Amy-

I bought a house built in the 1940s with my fiancé back in the spring. One of the things on my to-change list is the downstairs bathroom, theres an original window in the shower area right above the bathtub. In theory, this is a lovely idea since natural light in a bathroom is a big plus. But in reality, and now that there is a shower in there as well, the wood window frame is clearly not a good idea. The previous owners put up a shower curtain and a small bar, but it just looks so awful that Ive yet to bring myself to soak in the tub. I hear that we can get a frosted window pane installed, but Im really at a loss for how to go about that, and what to look out for when choosing a new window, and hiring the right a person to do this.



P.S. We live in Iowa where the winters get crazy cold and windy, so Im also concerned about getting a tight seal around the new window, if youd like to take that into consideration!


Ahh, windows in the shower: so luxurious, and yet so subject to rot and unintended exhibitionism.  The shower-curtain-over-the-window is really only a temporary fix, and since you can’t bare the heinous sight of it to soak in the tub, it’s really no fix at all, is it?  

The long-term deluxe solution is to replace the whole window.  The wood frame and trim will rot sooner or later and it really can’t survive very long without the heinous shower curtain which we already decided needs to go.  

In order to last in such a moisture-rific environment you’ll want to order your new window in a vinyl or a vinyl + wood composite material, and specify a patterned glass for privacy.  For the interior trim use a rot-resistant vinyl or wood composite instead of wood and caulk around everything with a waterproof silicone sealant.  

As far as finding the right professional to install it, you could try looking for local references on Angie’s List, or you can use a window replacement service like Renewal By Andersen – they’ll send a rep out to measure your opening so you get a great, energy-efficient fit, help you specify and order your perfect window (like a Fibrex frame with Obscure glass) then send an Andersen-approved pro out to install it for you, backed with a warranty to boot. 

Good luck!

[Image via Centers and Squares]