Below are some definitions of commonly used shower door terminology. Use this guide in the initial stages of your buying journey, to aid in measuring, or to simply understand shower doors better.
Accurate Measurement - Measurement that includes all the necessary information to complete the order of your shower door
Acrylic - An extremely durable bath and shower material. With its strong surface and composite backing material, it's resistant to the rigors of everyday life - no cracks, no chips.
Buttress - A panel that is elevated off of the curb, sometimes called Knee Wall. This option would make the door completely custom to your opening and is available in any frame type.
Centerline - An imaginary line that is often at the center of the curb of threshold; exact location where the shower door will sit in the opening.
Corner/Neo-Angle - Shower door opening type option. With this option, the shower door is located in the center of two panels, both of which are most often angled at 135 degrees.
Fiberglass - Gelcoat is short for "gel-coat fiberglass reinforced polyester," more popularly known as "fiberglass." The "gel-coating" is a thin layer of smooth, shiny material that lays on top of the fiberglass. It is what gives the material its smooth finish and color. The fiberglass reinforced polyester lies beneath, and is what gives the material its strength.
Filler - Additional material which matches enclosure lineals that is used to fill gaps or uneven openings. Fillers may be tapered if required to fill out-of-level or out-of-plumb conditions. These are most commonly used on framed and semi-frameless shower doors.
Framed - A framed enclosure has aluminum framing around the door glass and around any panel glass.
Frameless - Frameless doors have minimal framing in order to provide the clearest view into your shower.
Heavy Glass - 3/8-inch or 1/2-inch glass
Inline - Shower door opening type option. These doors fit in a shower that has a single straight opening and include bypass doors (meaning sliding doors), single swing doors, and any door and panel configuration without angled panels.
Notch - Cutout(s) or sections(s) removed from a panel. This option would make the door completely custom to your opening and is available in any frame type.
Out-of-Level - Non-level, horizontal curb, ceiling, and/or buttress wall condition.
Out-of-Plumb - Non-level, vertical wall condition
Screens - Assuming a strategically positioned shower head, and featuring no moving parts, shower screens keep the water in, while allowing for total freedom when entering.
Perfect Overlap - The condition in which a bypass slider is sized to have ideal panel sizes to minimize panel overlap and maximize the walk though opening.
Return - Shower door opening type option. The panel doesn't line up to the door, but instead sits at a 90 degree angle. You can choose from a swing door or bypass door with a return panel.
Rolling Door - Rolling doors travel along a single panel. Advanced ball bearings ensure a premium glide along the track on a fixed panel.
Semi-Frameless - Has framing on each side of the enclosure, but not around the door glass or panel. It's ideal if you want to incorporate your finish without obstructing the view into your shower.
Showerhead Position - Determine showerhead position as if looking at the shower from the outside
Sliding Door- Sliding doors move along a single line. Some sliding enclosures feature bypass doors, where both sides slide, while others feature a sliding panel coupled with one that's fixed.
Swing Door - Much like any door in your house, these doors swing out into the bathroom to allow entry into your shower.
U-Channel - A metal rail that is used to secure glass panels to the floor, ceiling, or wall