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Suction Cup Grab Bars

Updated on April 21, 2014

Suction Cup Grab Bars - Are They Safe?

My Mom bought herself a suction cup grab bar. She wanted something to help feel secure when she was getting in and out of the bathtub for her shower.

At first she wanted a regular grab bar that you screw into the wall. Then my Dad pointed out that they have tile around the tub and it isn't easy to drill into tile without damaging it.

Since they didn't want to risk damaging the tiling they went with a suction cup grab bar instead. Now their only questions were would it work and would it be safe?

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How To Install A Suction Cup Grab Bar

Suction Cup Grab Bar Review

Photo By: whatsittoyou

We were all impressed with how well it stuck to the wall. I'll be honest I didn't think it would have the grip that it does. What my Mom likes to use it for is to help steady herself when she puts her head back to wash her hair. Putting her head back can make her a little dizzy so it helps to keep her centered.

However it is not something my parents felt comfortable with for leaning or pulling on to help enter and exit the shower. Which is understandable when you see what Consumer Reports thinks about some suction cup grab bars.

If that's not enough it says right on the product "Use as assist only". They also tell you on the box that it is not designed to hold your weight. So while it does help my mother and she still uses it, it didn't solve their original problem.

That's when I went looking for a solution to their problem. I found something that actually works and they didn't need any tools to install it.

Suction Cup Grab Bars

HealthSmart Shower Grab Bar, Suction Cup Grab Bar, Bathroom Safety Grab Bar with Germ Protection, Adds Stability and Balance, Chrome, 16 Inches
HealthSmart Shower Grab Bar, Suction Cup Grab Bar, Bathroom Safety Grab Bar with Germ Protection, Adds Stability and Balance, Chrome, 16 Inches

This one gets some of the best reviews. It actually has an indicator that is green when it is secure. It turns red when it loses suction.


Bathtub Safety Bars

Photo By: whatsittoyou

I wanted to find them a bathtub safety rail that would actually hold a persons weight. That way my parents could be truly safe when using it. I also had to take into consideration that they did not want to have to drill it onto the tile or wall.

I did some research and found the perfect solution an AquaSense Multi-Adjust Bathtub Safety Rail. It is designed to hold the weight of someone weighing up to 300 pounds. Plus it attaches to the side of your bathtub.

It has vice like device that has rubber pads so it won't damage your tub and it provides a better grip. There are no tools required to attach it. You just put it over the side of your tub and tighten the handle which clamps it on solid.

I like that the one I bought them has four different height settings. That way you can set it to the height that you want based on how tall or short the person is who will be using it.

The Best Bathtub Safety Rail

AquaSense Multi-Adjust Bathtub Safety Rail with Steel Construction
AquaSense Multi-Adjust Bathtub Safety Rail with Steel Construction

This is the one I bought for my mother. It secures easily to your bathtub and it is designed to hold your weight. This is what you want for people who need help getting in and out of the bathtub or shower.


How the Safety Rail Attaches to Your Tub

Bathtub Transfer Bench

Another good choice is a transfer bench. That was what I used to safely get in and out of the shower when I broke my ankle. It was perfect as I never had to transfer all my weight onto my left leg (the broken one).

Part of the transfer bench actually sits over the tub wall and onto the floor. So I could just sit down on it and then swing my legs over into the tub. Once I was in I could just stand with most of the pressure on my right leg. Plus if I got tired I could sit down for a bit.

When I was recovered I gave it to my Grandmother who is now in her 90's. She doesn't use the sit and swing method to get in. Instead she holds onto the back of chair for balance. She likes the chair because that way she can sit down to wash her legs, since bending over can make her dizzy.

Drive Medical Plastic Tub Transfer Bench with Adjustable Backrest (color may vary)
Drive Medical Plastic Tub Transfer Bench with Adjustable Backrest (color may vary)

If you have injuries this is what I recommend for getting in and out of the shower. You can sit down to get in so you don't have to put pressure on one leg. It also gives the person the ability to sit down in the shower if they get tired.


How To Use A Tub Transfer Bench

Do You Think A Suction Cup Grab Bar Is Safe?

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    • Sicilian profile image


      5 years ago

      I have a suction bar in my shower. Be sure to keep them clean. They come off real easy if they start to get funky. Be careful.


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