How High Should Grab Bars Be? (Know The Right Heights)

Grab bars whether used around the toilet or in the shower are crucial in helping the safety with someone that needs extra help with balance and stability while in the bathroom.  But how high should grab bars be?    Should grab bars be horizontal or vertical?   We have the answer to these questions and more.

So, how high should grab bars be?

Grab bars that are being installed in toilets and showers should have the top of the horizontal grab bar 33 to 36 inches from the floor.  If using a grab bar in a transfer shower, then the bottom of the vertical bar must be 3 to 6 inches above the horizontal bar on the wall. 

How High Should Shower or Shower & Bath Grab Bars Be Installed?

Accidents happen in showers and baths and studies have shown that there are still over 225,000 non-fatal bathroom falls that happen each year for people over the age of 15. 

Because some baths and showers have to be steeped over there are chances especially for seniors of falling.  Having something to hold on to when wet makes getting in and out of the shower or tub safer.

Shower Stall Grab Bar Placement and Height:

When placing shower grab bars they should run horizontally along the sidewall and be 34-36 inches above the floor. 

Shower and bathtub combination Grab Bar Placement

If you are looking to install a grab bar in a combination tub and shower use these guidelines and tips to do so.

  • The entrance bar should be secured on the wall that is opposite the faucet. 
  • The horizontal bar should be secured on the sidewall and should be a long bar and should be roughly 30 inches up from the combination floor. 
  • A vertical bar should be installed at the faucet end wall by the faucet handles. 

How High Should Toilet Grab Bars Be Installed?

Grab bars around a toilet are important for anyone with difficulties standing, keeping their balance, or who has issues with mobility.

When installing a grab bar around a toilet here are ADSA height requirements for grab bars by the toilet. 

The back wall should have a 36-inch minimum length grab bar that is then mounted 33-36 inches above the finished floor 

The side Wall should have a minimum length grab bar that is 42 inches.  This needs to be spaced a maximum of 12 inches from the back of the wall and that needs to extend a minimum of 54 inches from the back of the wall.   It also has to have a height of 33-36 inches.

Should Grab Bars Be Vertical or Horizontal?

Depending on where the grab bars will be mounted they may have to be vertical or horizontal.   Each position has its purpose and each makes it really versatile and safe for someone that needs some extra help by grabbing on to bars for support for either sitting or getting up.

Vertical bars will be easier to grip and help with stability and limited balance.

Horizontal grab bars are easier for pulling yourself up and to rotate your body around.  They are easier for the person to get in and out of a bathtub and out of wheelchairs

Do Grab Bars Need to be Installed in Studs?

While we believe installing grab bars in studs is better.  But what if mounting into studs is not possible?   There are methods that call for installing grab bars without anchoring them into studs.  Using heavy-duty toggle-bolts anchors can also work.   

We suggest using a professional to help install your grab bars as a considerable amount of weight and force may be used on these bars and failure of the bars could result in serious injury.

Benefits of Installing Grab Bars in Your Bathroom

There are many benefits to installing grab bars in your bathroom.  The biggest is the piece of mind that you are safer because you have the ability to hold on to bars for greater stability.  

You also make it easier to get in and out of the shower or up and down on the toilet.    It also gives back some independence in the shower and toilet that you might not otherwise get if you didn’t have the ability to use grab bars.  

Shower Chairs

Shower chairs are an extension of grab bars in the sense that once you get into a shower using a shower chair can also help you stay relaxed and gain some independence.  Bathtubs represent a big risk for seniors and thousands of people each year fall and sustain injury once in the tub.  

Improve hygiene as seniors could start refusing showers because of fear of falling once making it the shower.  Installing a shower chair may help senior citizens to take an active role again in their personal hygiene. 

Some Top Grab Bars to Purchase

Below are some excellent grab bars that you can purchase and install or have a professional install in your bathroom.

1. Moen 8742 Home Care 42-Inch Bath Safety Bathroom Grab Bar

This Moen 42-inch grab bar is n ADA grab bar can support up to 500 pounds.  This bar is great for helping you stay safer in the shower, bath, or toilet.  We love that this bar can be installed at any angle.  

It is ADA compliant and has a limited lifetime warrants.  The lightly warm brushed warm gray metallic will look good in any bathroom

Best Grab Bars Moen

Score: 4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)


  • ADA compliant
  • 500 weight limit
  • 42 inch


  • Secure mount needs to be purchased separate

2. AmazonBasics Bathroom Handicap Safety Grab Bar, 16 Inch

This bathroom handicap safety grab bars are constructed of strong and durable, corrosion-resistant stainless steel and come with a 1-year warranty.  They will make any area of your bathroom including the shower or toilet area after for anyone who needs extra support getting in and out of a tub.  They will also work great for anyone who needed extra support to get out of a wheelchair getting on and off a toilet.

Grab bar dimensions:

  • Construction: Stainless steel
  • Supports up to 500 lbs
  • Bair diameter: 1-1/4-inch
  • Length: 16-inch
  • Mounting screws: Included 

Top Grab bars for shower

Score: 4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)


  • Supports up to 500 lbs
  • Stainless steel construction
  • Comes with mounting screws


  • May form rust after some time

3. AmeriLuck Stainless Steel Bath Grab Bar

Made from premium 304 stainless steel ADA compliance up to 500 lbs loading capacity this bathroom grab bars will make an excellent choice to getting you or someone you love after while in the bathroom.  Finishes are available in either brushed nickel or polished chrome that will look great in any bathroom.  The high-quality stainless steel screws are also included.

Measurements you should know: 

  • Product dimensions: 15 x 3 x 2.75 inches
  • Weight: 2.25 pounds 

Top grab bars

Score: 4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)


  • 500 lbs weight limit
  • ADA compliance
  • Look great in any bathroom
  • Set of two bars
  • Screws included


  • Not many shortcomings

Final thoughts on installing grab bars

Grab bars are a great way to make a home safer and more independent for the senior or person that needs help getting off the toilet or into the shower. Grab bars are a relatively cheap investment to insure the safety of you or a loved one.

You may need to hire a professional that can install the crab bars for you but in the end, we believe it’s well worth the price.

5/5 (1 Review)
About ASmith

Adam Smith is the main researcher and contributor at Mobility Medical Supply. Adam has many years of research in public data, and software security. With Mobility issues within Adam's family, he decided to dedicate in-depth guides on mobility products to anyone looking to improve movement and gain independence.