Unfortunately, if we old folks lose our balance, we instinctively reach out for the grab bars. When we need
them most is when we are possibly exerting a great deal of force. I am over 6'7" and still weigh 262lbs, that
represents a lot of energy being transferred, in a short period of time, to the grab bars.
I have stainless bars in my large, walk-in, unenclosed shower and have really needed them three times. I was
quite grateful they were firmly attached. One time my wife said she felt the wall of the house shudder when I
Sure, a well secured bar is best, but something is better than nothing.
Most of the time you can avoid the need to put full weight by simply
holding the bar while entering or exiting the shower. I use the bar as
a device for balance, not keeping from hitting the ground. Pound in a
16d nail about a third of the way and bend it over and it will prevent
some falls just by holding the nail to steady yourself.
For a couple of years in my old fiberglass showers we used the suction
cop bars and they were a big help.
On Thursday, November 24, 2016 at 7:51:05 PM UTC-5, Ed Pawlowski wrote:
Didn't we just go through this a few months ago?
"Most of the time you can avoid the need to put full weight..."
Sure, when you are intentionally trying to avoid putting full weight on it.
The problem comes when you reflexively need to put full weight on it and
your eyes/brain expect the bar to be secure. You don't even consider
another option because the bar is there. The bar with the suction cups.
No thanks. I'd rather do without.
Yes, we did; I was wondering how long before you'd disagree. IMO, going
without any aid is dumb if you can have something that will prevent a
fall or slip. Have you ever used a suction cup bar? They are pretty
damned strong and reliable. I also think I'm a decade or two older than
you and can better appreciate an aid to prevent a slip so that full
pressure is never needed.
As stated, even a bent nail can prevent a fall as it will steady you.
Put a foot of rope hanging from it to make it easier to hold if you want
to get fancy.
Perfect? No, but far better than noting.
It grips, but we still have a few gripes. First, that disconnect between
claim and instructions: If you're not supposed to use the handle for
stability, what's the point? Also, installation can be a bit of a chore
for people with limited hand strength. Under our steadily increasing
load, the BB&B versions with larger cups held 196 pounds on average; the
Get A Grip Web-site version held 136 on average.
For someone who needs a little assistance in the shower or tub, either
version of Get A Grip should work fine. But don't rely on it for support
in a fall.
Starts with a 7.
Can't be sure full pressure is never needed. OTOH, if you have
nothing, what do you do if you start to slip? Put your soapy hand on a
wet wall?. Grab a shower curtain? Perhaps if you had a handle to put
your hand on you'd not slip.
On Thursday, November 24, 2016 at 11:33:29 PM UTC-5, Ed Pawlowski wrote:
I have a built in bar in the shower stall and a built in bar in the tub-shower.
I didn't say I don't think grab bars are a good idea, I said I'd rather do without than
rely on a bar where even the manufacturer's lawyers don't trust it.
I don't care what it would take to install a proper grab bar. I would do it. I would never
install a suction cup grab bar any sooner than I would put a sawhorse at the edge of a
deck and call it a railing.
Not everyone can do or have done a proper installation. While a screwed
in bar is best, something is better than nothing. That wet soapy hand
reaching against a wet flat wall is not going to help much. The suction
cup bar will though.
The sawhorse at the edge of the deck is not going to provide the same
safety as a railing, but it does give people visual clues that they are
near the edge. Could be a life saver.
I agree with your idea and concept in general.
One key point would be whether the grab bar installation would be for me in
my own home or if it would be for someone else's home (or a rental property)
where the installer (me or a contractor is putting it in for third party
In my own home, I don't have a true grab bar. On the wall of the tub/shower
there is a metal towel rack. It was there when I bought my home. I doubt
that it would meet any standard as a safety grab bar and, fortunately, I
have never had to test it by falling and grabbing the towel rack to prevent
or slow my fall. My guess is that in a worst case scenario, involving a
conscious slip and fall, where I grab the towel rack for safety, it may help
slow or break my fall -- which I think is a plus. And, I do sometimes use
it for "balance" to keep myself oriented when turning around in the
shower/tub etc. But, it is also high enough up that I wouldn't be able to
try to use it to pull myself up out of the tub while taking a bath.
So, again, for my own use, what I have now is useful and I don't want to
remove it or replace it with a "real" grab bar. But, I also know that I am
unlikely to sue myself if I use to towel rack to break a fall and it fails.
In addition, in a true "I passed out unconscious" fainting episode, no grab
bar will help because the person who passed out won't be conscious enough to
even reach for anything -- unless maybe the person got dizzy first and then
On the other hand, if I (or a contractor) were to install a grab bar for a
third party, I think that it would be important to install it up to all of
the safety codes as a defense in case and occupant/user of the premises
decides to sue the installer (me and/or a contractor) if there is a slip and
fall and the installed device fails in some way.
Nothing is nothing and zero help. The suction cup bars are really
pretty rugged. The idea is to PREVENT the fall where you have to put
extreme pressure on it. Most times you just use a light hold to keep
yourself steady. We used one for a couple of years and it is a great aid
for safety. When the bathrooms were remodeled the new bars were anchored.
As I stated before, even a bent nail to hold is better than nothing.
I just installed a suction cup grab bar in the shower to help with some
balance issues. The bar appears to be quit sturdy and there is no way I
could pull the bar off of the wall. The bar is described here:
They do say on their website and in the instructions included with the bar:
"This product is to be used as a balance assist only. Do not use it to
support your full body weight. Do not lift yourself up with or hang from
this product. This product is intended for temporary attachment and
should be periodically reapplied as instructed."
On Sun, 27 Nov 2016 13:26:09 -0500, Arnie Goetchius
That is the big problem with suction cups, environmental changes
combined with cleanliness and chemistry cause the cups to lose vacuum
at unpredictable times.
If you reapply them before using them each day, you will "probably" be
I have used suction cup devices in the shower and my experience is as
I cautioned above. I have also used powerful suction cup devices for
pulling very large, glued on mirrors off several walls and they are
ridiculously powerful. However, I did notice the vacuum can bleed off
if left in place for several days.
That is another consideration, the vacuum cup grab bars could easily
provide enough leverage to dislodge older or poorly set tiles.
Going through the tiles into studs eliminates all such considerations.
On Sun, 27 Nov 2016 21:03:21 +0000, Stormin' Norman
And the earlier remark that someone could connect one end to a stud
but the other end didn't match to another stud means someone was using
the wrong grab bars.
16 and 32 inch bars mount horizontal. 24 inch bars mount on an angle,
and bars shorter than 16 inches mount vertically. There is no such
thing as "won't reach a second stud" if you use the right stuff.
On Sun, 27 Nov 2016 21:03:21 +0000, Stormin' Norman
This has been a very popular thread; no doubt because of all the old
crips in here. Another topic that I think you oldies would be
interested in is "walkers"
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Lots of nice one there.
Always offer to help little old ladies because they always thank you. The little old Black ladies will say,"Thank you baby." I don't wish disability on my worst enemy (I want them to burn in Hell) but youngsters will one day be oldsters so don't make fun of anyone who has a difficult time getting around or you'll burn in Hell. +( ?_?)+
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