What are the best shower drains?

Susan Fernandez February 02 2022

Shower drains come in various types and they each have their own pros and cons. A basic understanding of what's available will help you choose the perfect shower drain for your bathroom renovation project.

Types of Shower Drains

Shower drains are typically found at the end of the shower stall. Their purpose is to collect water that's leftover after showering. Think of it as a street drain. When you wash your car or dump out some dirty kitchen water, you need a place for all that liquid to go so it doesn't just sit in the street.

Well, the same idea works for showers! A shower drain will hold on to any leftover water until it has enough of it and then sends all that excess down into either another pipe or directly into your local sewage system. To avoid this overflow, most homeowners choose to install an anti-flood device. Let's look at each of the shower drain available:

  • The Standard Pipe Shower Drain

This is the most common and least expensive type of shower drain. It consists of one long pipe that's attached to the bottom of your shower pan and then extends into another pipe or into a wall.

Standard pipe drains come in different lengths depending on how far you want it to extend. The further the drain, the easier it will be for water to leave your bathroom! If you choose a standard shower drain, avoid putting anything too heavy over the tops of it such as an oversized tub or enclosed cabinets because this could damage or even break your drainpipe.

  • Mesh Shower Drains

A mesh drain isn't actually made out of metal mesh, but rather it consists of multiple rings that are joined together in a circular pattern. So instead of a single pipe, it actually has many rings that pull water down from the shower walls instead of pushing it all the way through a long extension pipe.

Mesh drains have an advantage in being much stronger than standard drainpipes so they won't break as easily if a heavy object falls on top of them. On the other hand, because mesh drains are so sturdy and strong, you'll need to drill directly into your flooring for installation which leaves holes that could potentially leak over time.

  • Slotted or Drain Grate Shower Drains

If you're looking for a shower drain with built-in noise suppression, choose one with slotted drainage holes. This kind of drain comes with either round or rectangular slots cut into the very top of it. The noise comes from trapped water that's trying to escape through these openings but can't because they're too small.

Over time, enough water builds up pressure and releases with a loud "plunk" sound. To avoid this, keep an eye out for any leaks coming from the drain itself which could indicate that your shower floor has become damaged or broken in some way. If you suspect damage, shut off your water supply immediately and call a professional plumber.

The best shower drains of this year

Matte Black Shower Floor Drain

This variant from Zurn has a matte black finish which makes the drain blend in seamlessly with almost any interior design. Even better, it's compatible with most standard-sized shower pans so you don't have to worry about measuring beforehand.

They come in different sizes so you can choose one that's perfect for your needs. All of the necessary hardware is included; all you have to do is install it.

The durable AISI 304 stainless steel will protect against rust and corrosion so you can feel confident that your shower drain will last for many years. You'll also get a limited lifetime warranty with this purchase so any defects in workmanship or material are covered by the manufacturer.

The price for this shower drain is around $250, which is fairly expensive compared to the other variants. It's also not currently available on Amazon so you'll need to buy it directly from Zurn's website.

Round drain

In cases when you need a drain cover that's designed to fit your existing shower floor, choose one with a round shape. This model from Oatey has an ABS plastic construction and the design ensures that no water will escape over time.

The rounded corners ensure there won't be any risk of cuts or other injuries while standing in the shower so you can feel completely comfortable using this for your daily routine. The drain comes with a reinforced flange which will prevent leaks even if it receives direct pressure from something heavy such as an oversized tub .

Installation is simple and doesn't require any tools since it snaps directly onto your current shower pan. Just make sure you have enough space beneath it before buying! Keep in mind that all standard pan measurements are 48" x 48A?, with the exception of 60" x 30A? and 36" x 36A? which may also fit.

The average price for this drain is $25, though it is currently out of stock on Amazon so you'll need to buy directly from its manufacturer instead.

Stainless steel drain

This shower drain grate from ZURN is made from 304 stainless steel so it can handle rust and corrosion without showing any signs of damage. It has a satin nickel finish which will provide a neat and modern appearance in your bathroom.

It's compatible with most standard-sized shower pans and comes with all of the necessary hardware that you need to get the installation process started right away. There won't be any leaks around this grate because it has reinforced flanges, meaning you'll no longer have to worry about water dripping through the seams over time. The fasteners are zinc-plated for maximum strength and durability, while also preventing rusting or other issues down the line.

The drain only weighs 3 pounds so you shouldn't have trouble carrying it into place when it's time to install. You'll also get a limited lifetime warranty with this purchase, which guarantees that your shower drain will be free of any defects in workmanship or materials for as long as you own it.

The average price for this unit is around $100 but keep in mind that it's not currently available on Amazon so you'll have to buy directly from ZURN instead.

Kohler shower drain

When it comes to sleek and stylish shower drains, few designs can compete with the look of this unit from Kohler. It's made from corrosion-resistant stainless steel for maximum durability and comes in a polished chrome finish which will provide a sleek appearance.

The drain has an anti-clog design so you won't have to worry about debris building up inside it over time. The grate is also designed to be easy on your feet to prevent any harm during your daily routine before or after taking a shower.

This particular model has very solid reviews and most buyers report high satisfaction with its performance. If there are any issues at all, Kohler includes a lifetime warranty with this purchase that guarantees complete protection against defects in materials or workmanship.

The price for the Kohler Majestic shower drain is around $250, though it is currently out of stock on Amazon so you'll need to buy directly from Kohler instead. This 4-piece set provides plenty of options when it comes to choosing the right drain for your shower floor. It's also one of the most affordable models you can find at this price range, making it an ideal choice if you don't want to spend too much money getting your drains set up.

The grate has a round shape and is made from durable ABS plastic which won't show signs of rust or corrosion over time. The bottom doesn't have any edges which makes standing in the shower more comfortable, while the reinforced flanges ensure that no water will leak through even after heavy use.

Oatey stainless steel shower drain

This drain grate is made from 304 stainless steel, which makes it incredibly durable thanks to its resistance to rust and corrosion. It's also polished to a bright finish that will look great in any modern bathroom.

Since this shower grate has reinforced flanges, you won't have to worry about water leaking through the seams underneath the grate over time. The free-flowing design means there won't be any clogs or jams with this unit so you'll always have unobstructed water flow anytime you decide to jump in for a long bath or shower session.

The average price for the Oatey shower drain is around $70, though it may vary depending on where you buy it from. Most people seem satisfied with their purchase of this product, so it's certainly worth considering when you need a new drain.

Brass Caulk shower drain

Brass is a great choice when it comes to materials for shower drains because it's resistant to rust and corrosion, which helps ensure that your drain will look great through many years of use. Even better is the fact that there are no seams on this grate so you won't have to worry about water leaking out from underneath it even after heavy usage over time.

The brass used in making the Brass Caulk shower drain has been polished to a shiny finish that will add a classic touch of elegance to almost any modern bathroom design. You'll also get a limited lifetime warranty with this purchase, giving you complete peace of mind knowing that this product has been made with superior craftsmanship and quality control.

This unit is currently out of stock on Amazon so you'll need to buy directly from Brass Caulk to get one.

At around $200, this is one of the more expensive options when it comes to shower drains. However, this model is made in America by AquaLux which has a reputation for producing quality products that will last you through many years of usage without any issues whatsoever.

The round grate looks sleek and stylish with its polished surface and there are no seams anywhere on the drain itself, ensuring that water won't leak out underneath even after heavy long-term usage. This particular model also features an adjustable design that lets you choose between different drain sizes (2", 2 1/4", 2 1/2").

Neodrain linear shower drain

This 2-piece drain comes with all the hardware you'll need to get set up in your shower. There are adjustable flanges that will let you fine-tune how close or far away from the wall you want your drains to be, while also preventing any leaks underneath it when in use.

The Neodrain linear grate is made from corrosion-resistant ABS resin which has been reinforced by fiberglass for added strength and durability. You won't have to worry about rust or corrosion over time so this drain should look great even after several years of repeated usage.

The price for this unit is around $110, though it varies depending on where you buy it from. Most people seem satisfied with their purchase of this product, especially since you get 2 grates in one purchase, so it's worth considering when you're shopping for a new shower drain.

You can choose between an overflow version of this grate or a non-overflow version to suit your specific preferences.

Which drain is better for your shower?

Every shower drain has its pros and cons, so it's crucial to choose the best option for your specific needs. Take some time to evaluate which aspects are most important to you before making a purchase so you don't end up with a drain that doesn't work well in your bathroom.

Here are some key factors you should keep in mind when shopping around:

Do I need an overflow version or not? If you prefer an uncluttered design then you can just go for a grate that does not come with an overflow feature. However, if your shower is more than 3 feet deep then chances are it may accumulate water anyways even without the overflow holes on the grate itself. It's also worth noting that many homes feature fiberglass or acrylic walls that are more prone to water damage, so take special care to avoid letting any excess water leak out from your shower drain.

Do I prefer a metal grate or a plastic one? Some people go for metal grates because they can withstand daily usage without deteriorating or rusting over time. On the other hand, you may want to opt for a plastic grate instead if you don't like the look of metallic ones and would rather have something with a cleaner and classier design underneath your shower.