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I have a fiberglass bath and shower. I would really like to mount a bar inside it on the back wall for hanging washcloths up to dry.

I've tried the suction cup mounted ones with moderate success. They stick for a few weeks at a time but after that they fall down and I have to go in and stick them back up.

If I bought a bar with screws, I'm not sure how I would screw it into the fiberglass. Is that even possible?

Are there other mounting options that I have overlooked?

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Does no one like the 3M command strips? –  Jason May 31 '13 at 14:28
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@monso not for something that might be grabbed in a fall –  HerrBag May 31 '13 at 15:44
    
@HerrBag because suction cups are superior? –  Jason May 31 '13 at 23:41

3 Answers 3

I know of 2 methods to create a safe mount that will support the fiberglass

  1. Wood blocking directly behind fiberglass.

This method relies on access to the other side of the wall, to place the blocking (1x4 is close to the spacing) such that it is against the fiberglass and secured by 2 studs.

  1. Special self supporting brackets (Solid Mount™)

These can be placed from inside the shower, but require you to anchor the rear of the mounting plate to the stud (in 2 places). If the spacing is not optimum for your towel bar, a waterproof sub mount (spanning the 2 mounts, made of solid surface material, Swanstone or Corian) could give you a few inches. Cantilevering any more than that would be unsafe.

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Most fiberglass enclosures don't go to the ceiling, so a "single rung" towel bar could be stud mounted just above the fiberglass.

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When the shower was installed blocking could have been added to allow for a bar. Since you don't know what is behind the fiberglass to anchor the bar I would look for another method. As @HerrBag has stated even a slip that results in grabbing the bar without a fall could damage the fiberglass. In some locations an improperly mounted bar is more of a liability than no bar at all. Although not as visually appealing you may consider a rack and bar assembly that hangs on the shower head.

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Glue on towel bars are getting pretty common. The link I have is just an example. Never used it. Basically you just need a bar with a flat backing. You can use glue or a more powerful adhesive to keep it down (Loctite makes a construction adhesive for fiberglass).

I would google "glue on towel bar" to see choices. There is tons of stuff.

As for installation, this ranges all over the place. Some come with their own install pads - where you glue down the pad and slide the backing over the pad.

Just know that the stronger you glue it down then less chance your shower enclosure will be able to be "cleaned". So if you go with a construction adhesive (99%) secure then please make sure it is where you want it for the long haul.

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I would agree if the towel bar is mounted somewhere that it unlikely to be used as a grab bar in the event of a slip. I would say in the shower enclosure doesn't qualify. –  mikes May 31 '13 at 18:11
    
They sell handicap shower bars that glue on. Also if it is a washcloth bar it should be in a dry area - probably around the shower head - so it wouldn't be grabbed. Also I would get something smaller so it doesn't look like a grab bar if you were worried. –  Tom May 31 '13 at 18:19
    
Since the strength of the enclosure is unknown the adhesive may stay fixed for the 250lbs of force required the face of the fiberglass may not. –  mikes May 31 '13 at 18:41
    
I think some people are making this out to be a big deal. He wants a towel bar, not a grab bar. Just put the bar somewhere where it wouldn't be grabbed. And as I said before buy a smaller bar - not a grab bar. Seriously there are thousands glue on shower bars and almost all are good to go with fiberglass... so I am pretty sure the manufacturers understand the liability. –  Tom Jun 4 '13 at 4:43

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