Exposed Shower Fixtures: Pros And Cons
Exposed shower fixtures are designed with the piping that runs from the handles to the shower or bath head. Exposed fixtures bring a classic style look to a bathroom.
Benefits of Expose Shower Fixtures
The biggest benefit to exposed shower fixtures is short installation time. Since you don't have to install complicated plumbing behind the wall, your shower will quickly be finished.
Easy access to the pipes also makes repairs easier. This also makes replacement of the system or pipe significantly easier and reduces the chance of having to tear out or knock a hole in the wall.
Disadvantages of Exposed Shower Fixtures
Exposed fixtures are more prone to external wear due to exposure to water from the shower. Use of water-resistant materials such as aluminum, chrome and stainless steel to minimize this problem. Many models use an added sealant to help protect the piping.
Exposed shower fixtures also require a greater amount of care. To ensure a long lifespan, periodically apply a coat of sealant for protection against water.
Exposed fixtures can also be quite a bit more expensive than traditional fixtures. Lower end models start at around $200, while traditional in-wall fixtures can be found for as little as $40. The difference in cost is largely related to the materials used to prevent corrosion. Most in-wall models use plastic piping, which is costs less to manufacture.
Making The Decision
In the end, it all comes down to looks. While exposed fixtures were common in classic homes (and still in places like Europe), nearly all modern homes feature plumbing that is hidden behind the shower wall. Exposed fixtures offer an element of elegance and old-world aesthetics that traditional fixtures may not.