10 Best Accessible Grab Bars for the Bathroom
Offering support and safety when showering, bathing or using the toilet, grab bars range from basic to luxurious. Here are our top picks.
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Buying a Grab Bar
We see them everywhere — in homes, hotels, hospitals and public restrooms. Most of us don’t think much about grab bars, until we need one.
Grab bars help someone who’s unsteady on their feet lift themselves or maneuver around, especially in the bathroom and the shower. Before deciding which grab bar to buy, think about why you need one, and for whom.
And don’t just consider the needs of today — look ahead to the future. Being safe and avoiding falls in the bathroom becomes more important as we grow older.
To help you choose the right grab bar, here are the major factors to consider.
Your featherweight mother may not require a heavy-duty grab bar, but your 240-pound father might. It’s a good idea to go with the highest weight capacity bar available.
Lots of factors go into placement of grab bars. For a shower/bathtub, is it roll-in or transfer? With or without a permanent shower seat?
In general, expect to install one bar on the back wall and another on the control wall (where you exit and enter). Although not required for private residences, we suggest checking out the ADA guidelines before installation.
Much like location, orientation matters. Generally, bars for showers/bathtubs bars on the back wall are placed horizontally. However, diagonally positioned bars are thought to work better with the angle of your hand, making them easier to grab. Bars on the control wall should be installed vertically.
Textured surfaces and rubber grips reduce the chance of hands slipping, which could cause a fall. Also, look for metal bars with coatings that resist corrosion and tarnish. Plastic bars with suction cups may not be as strong, but make sense when traveling as a temporary solution.
Functionality is of utmost importance, but don’t ignore style. Well-designed and beautifully crafted bars work just as well as utilitarian-looking ones.
Most fixed bars (especially ADA compliant ones) must be anchored into wall studs, which may require hiring a professional. If you’re a competent DIYer, be sure you have the correct equipment and tools to do the job correctly. A life may depend on it.
Hopefully, you’ll live to a ripe old age and accessible grab bars can make it possible to grow older in your own home. Here is our rundown of the best grab bars on the market.
Delta Modern Decorative ADA Grab Bar
We asked Carlos Coronado, lead designer at Muretti, to suggest a functional yet attractive grab bar. He recommended this Delta angular modern decorative ADA grab bar. “This is stainless steel, with a modern, simple design, which also comes with a modest price tag,” he says.
Besides being ADA compliant, it features Delta’s Brilliance finishes that guarantee it will look like new for life. It resists corrosion, tarnish and discoloration.
Rejuvenation Round Shower Grab Bar
If you have room in your budget, consider the Rejuvenation round shower grab bar. A timeless bathroom fixture made from solid brass, it was designed in collaboration with Watermark, a plumbing mainstay for more than 30 years.
Manufactured, assembled and finished in Watermark’s Brooklyn, N.Y. factory, the bar is available in 16-, 24- and 32-inch lengths. It comes in five elegant finishes: aged brass, brushed or polished nickel, polished chrome and oil-rubbed bronze.
Changing Lifestyles Safe-er-Grip Bath and Shower Handle
For a no-drill, temporary solution, Changing Lifestyles Safe-er-Grip bath and shower handle works at home or away. The handle attaches to any smooth, flat, non-porous surface with a strong suction-cup device. Textured rubber on the inner side provides the surest grip.
It’s not intended to bear your full body weight, but the handle/bar helps you balance when entering and exiting slippery tubs or showers. To install, simply flip the tab levers down to secure in place.
AmazonBasics Bathroom Handicap Grab Bar
The classic, no-nonsense design lands AmazonBasics bathroom handicap safety grab bar on our list for its high customer rating.
First off, it’s strong, thanks to stainless-steel construction. Second, it complies with ADA standards and can be mounted vertically, horizontally or diagonally. Finally, it’s offered in two diameters and four lengths.
As one Amazon five-star reviewer writes, “As much as it pains me to admit it, my wife and I are getting older. This thing is solid! Mounted directly to the studs, it does not move. I am so much more comfortable with my wife using the shower now, and I find it handy myself.”
Drive Medical Adjustable Bathtub Grab Bar
Because people of all sizes and weights may use a grab bar, the Drive Medical adjustable bathtub grab bar is a great addition to a household — especially a multi-generational one. Made of durable, powder-coated steel to withstand daily use, it mounts on just about any style bathtub and is super-easy to install.
The height adjusts from 14- to 17-inches and the width from three to seven inches. It features a locking system and non-wearing rubber pads so it won’t scratch the tub enamel.
Kohler Choreograph Shower Barre
Ballet dancers inspired this thoughtfully and beautifully designed Choreograph shower barre by Kohler. This sleek shower bar provides stability for getting in and out of the shower without taking up too much space.
Rather than distracting from your bathroom’s décor, it actually complements it. Whether you need the bar for mobility assistance, shaving legs, scrubbing feet or practicing your pliés in the shower, the Choreograph is there to support you.
Stander Security Pole and Curve Grab Bar
As the name implies, the Stander security pole and curve grab bar is a tension-mounted floor-to-ceiling rail that can be placed virtually anywhere. Put it in front of the shower or bath to help you safely step over ledges, or near the toilet to assist getting on and off the seat.
Made of rust-resistant zinc-plated steel, the height-adjustable, telescoping pole fits in rooms with seven- to 10-foot ceilings. It comes with rubber pads to protect the ceiling and floor from damage and can be installed permanently by screwing it into the ceiling.
Moen Grab Bar With Shelf
We love multi-purpose products because they not only save money, they make life easier. The Moen Home Care 16-inch grab bar with shelf is one of those products.
It doubles (or quadruples) as a grab bar, soap dish, shower caddy and/or washcloth rack. Anchor it securely into any wall stud at any angle and it will support up to 250 pounds.
Pulse ShowerSpas ErgoSafetyBar
Stretching 24 inches long, this Pulse grab bar exceeds ADA standards. Made of industrial-grade stainless steel, the innovative design features an ergonomic soft grip to provide the most comfortable and safest grip possible. An escutcheon (metal flange) conceals the mounting screws, giving it an elegant, upscale look.
Moen Eight-Inch Grab Bar With Integrated Toilet Paper Holder
Another multipurpose option from Moen, this eight-inch stainless steel grab bar with integrated toilet paper holder comes in a chrome or brushed nickel finish. Amazingly, will support up to 500 pounds when installed into a stud or using SecureMounts (not included).