5 Answers About Shower Curtain Rods (Helpful Tips!)

Shower curtains effortlessly take all the glory, but the fixtures that hold them in place deserve some spotlight as well. These fixtures are none other than shower curtain rods. 

Shower curtain rods aren’t so hard to install, but you’ll need some insight into how to get the perfect shower rod size, the type of rod best suited for your shower, and a lot more.

With that said, let’s take a look at the most searched questions about shower curtain rods and other helpful pieces of information that’d help you make better use of them. 

Shower Curtain Rod

How Wide is a Standard Shower Curtain Rod?

A standard shower curtain rod should have a diameter between 0.85-1.38 inches. As for length, it depends on the size of your shower stall and the type of shower rod you’re looking to get.

There are three types of shower curtain rods you’ll come across when shopping. You’ll find below everything you need to know about them including their pros and cons,

1. Tension Shower Curtain Rods

This type of shower curtain rod has to be the easiest to install. It consists of a slightly smaller rod placed inside a larger one and a super strong string in the middle.

The string enables the length of the shower rod to be adjusted. All you have to do to install this type of shower rod is compress from both ends and wedge it between your shower walls.

Tension or adjustable shower curtain rods come in varying lengths namely, 26 to 42 inches, 42 to 72 inches, 54 to 90 inches, and 76 to 110 inches.


  • Very easy to install
  • Doesn’t cause damage to shower walls
  • If curved, provides more shower space
  • Length can be adjusted to fit shower space


  • Possibility that shower curtain may fall off the wall
  • May not support the weight of heavy shower curtains
  • Difficult to resize or trim

2. Fixed Shower Curtain Rods

Fixed or traditional shower curtain rods are not adjustable and require some form of hardware to be mounted.

This and all other types of shower curtain rods can come in different shapes and designs.

They are usually available in the following lengths, 41 inches, 60 inches, and 72 inches or 70 x 70 inches, 70 x 72 inches, and 72 x 72 inches.


  • It requires drilling to be installed, so it’s super secure
  • Available in the right lengths for most standard showers and bathtubs
  • Slim chances of shower curtain rod falling off


  • Drilling holes to install the wall can cause damage
  • If your shower size is unusual then finding the right rod length will be challenging

3. Double Shower Curtain Rods

As the name implies, double shower curtain rods consist of two rods, one for your shower curtain and one for your liner.

This type of shower curtain helps reduce the build-up of mold and mildew in your bathroom and ensures that your shower curtains dry fast.

Double shower curtain rods can either come in tension rods or fixed rods. You’ll most definitely be able to get this type of shower curtain rod in the lengths listed above.


  • Cuts down on the chances of mildew or mold build-up
  • Comes in both tension and fixed rods
  • It separates your shower curtain from the liner


  • You’re going to need assistance installing this shower curtain rod type

What Size Shower Curtain Rod Do I Need?

To get the exact size of shower curtain rod you’d need in your bathroom, you must first decide on what type of shower rod you want, then proceed to measure your shower space or stall.

Here’s a general guide on how to get and install the right shower curtain rod size, with key pointers peculiar to the various types of shower curtain rods.

You’d need the below materials to get started,

  • Pencil
  • Retractable measuring tape
  • Stud finder
  • Shower curtain rod
  • Screwdriver
  • Drill and bits
  • Drywall anchors

Step #1: Measure Your Shower Space

Using a retractable measuring tape, measure the distance between the walls of your shower.

If you’re going with a tension shower curtain rod, you’re going to have to purchase a rod that’s several inches longer than the measurements you takedown.

For fixed shower curtain rods, use the exact measurement you takedown to select your rod size.

Curved curtain rods, on the other hand, are about six inches longer than a standard shower rod, so consider this when choosing a size.

Step #2: Choose a Shower Curtain Rod

After measuring the distance between your shower walls, use the figures you take down to select a shower curtain rod.

Make sure you do not bypass the pointers given above on selecting the right size of shower curtain rods according to their types.

If you end up being stuck with a rod that isn’t the right fit for your shower, or you come across an existing shower rod that’s larger than your shower, you can still make use of them.

All you have to do is resize them with a saw, this is super easy if you’re working with a straight shower rod.

Step #3: Install Your Shower Curtain Rod

Once you have completed the above steps, proceed to install your shower curtain rod.

As I mentioned earlier, a tension shower curtain rod is super easy to install, all you have to do is wedge it into place between your shower walls.

Use the marks you made on the wall with your pencil to place your shower rod at the right height.

Fixed shower curtain rods aren’t as straightforward to install tension shower curtain rods. This type of shower rod requires some drywall anchors to be installed to successfully go up.

Before you put in place the drywall anchors, check for studs behind your markings using a stud finder, if there are no studs, then you can proceed to make use of these anchors.

Predrill holes in your shower walls then install your anchors. Once you have done this you can hang your shower rod.

How High Should a Shower Curtain Rod Be?

A shower curtain rod should be about 75 to 77 inches high. Shower curtains are typically 72 inches long, so you should install your shower rod at a height that’d keep your shower curtains a couple of inches away from the floor.

Here’s a rule of thumb that’d help you install your shower curtain rod at the right height.

Get your shower curtain and hold it against one of the walls of your shower, slightly above the apron of your bath.

Once you have done this, raise or lower your curtain until the hem is about 6 inches below the tub edge.

Using a pencil, mark the height of the shower curtain height on the shower wall.

Proceed to measure the height, using the pencil markings as a guide. Takedown the measurement and duplicate it on the other shower wall.

How Do Shower Curtain Rods Work?

Shower curtain rods are the long bars of metal that can be found in most household bathrooms. They work by keeping your shower curtains suspended and functional.

In other words, without shower curtain rods, shower curtains can’t prevent moisture or water from escaping the shower area or bath nor ensure the privacy of its users.

As I mentioned earlier, shower curtain rods come in different shapes, sizes, and types but they ultimately serve the same purpose.

Although these fixtures generally work fine, you should keep in mind the pros and cons given above, when choosing them.

Can You Use a Shower Curtain Rod to Hang Clothes?

If the need arises, you can use your shower curtain rod to hang lightweight clothes. A shower curtain rod might also function as a closet rod rack, but you must consider the below points. 

A shower curtain rod isn’t as sturdy as an everyday closet rod, so you’re going to have to install some brackets to give them extra support.

Another challenge arises from the size of brackets available in the market. Closet rod brackets are designed to accommodate a different size range from shower curtain rods.

While it is possible to get a bracket that goes perfectly with your shower curtain rod, it might be difficult.

Also, you can’t hang too many clothes on a shower curtain rod as it may get damaged or break. You’re also going to have to trim your shower curtain rod to fit in your closet.

You might not have to trim your shower curtain rod if you plan on making use of an adjustable or tension rod.

Using this bathroom fixture as a closet rod isn’t a terrible idea, if you can work your way around the limitations then you should be able to make it serve another purpose.

A shower curtain rod can be repurposed into many other things apart from a closet rod it can be repurposed into a shoe rack, a window treatment, a litter box coverage, and intriguingly a photo display.

Final Thoughts

Shower curtain rods have to be the easiest home items to install.

We hope we’ve been able to answer all the questions you might have about shower curtain rods and hope this article can be used as an efficient shopping guide.