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Welcome to Ledge Products, the leader in wholesale shower niche designs made of recycled materials and engineered concrete. Our team will be posting news and tips right here on our shower niche blog. For now, please feel free and contact us at any time, or browse our gallery for more information about our designs.

The pieces of a building’s plumbing system run behind walls, above ceilings, and underneath floors in the majority of homes and commercial properties. This out of the way location keeps often unattractive pipes from view. It also protects the plumbing. An accidental bump or freezing temperatures can lead to costly plumbing issues, and an interior location provides an insulated barrier.

Because different parts of a plumbing system may need ongoing access or maintenance, a hole in the wall allows a plumber or contractor to reach hidden pipes and valves. An access panel seals up that hole, but can be easily opened when necessary.

Where to Place a Plumbing Access Panel

The location of plumbing components will determine where the access panel is placed, making kitchens and bathrooms common locations. Many property owners prefer to place panels closer to the floor or behind an object for aesthetic reasons, especially when using a panel made of a substrate that stands out from the wall. Access panels are often installed over:

  • Water Shut Off Valves
  • Water Pumps
  • Pipe Couplings
  • Water Heaters
  • Leaking Pipes

While some plumbing access panels may be installed during construction or renovation, it is also common to place them when a repair requires cutting away a portion of the wall. Rather than replacing a section of drywall, installing an access panel offers a simpler and often more affordable fix that offers the benefit of allowing future access to the same pipes in the future.

Pros and Cons of Plumbing Access Panel Materials

Of the available materials, plumbing access panels made of metal, plastic, and glass fiber reinforced gypsum (GFRG) are the most typically used. Each has certain advantages that make it ideal for different uses.

Metal:

  • Pros - Often made of galvanized or stainless steel, metal panels are waterproof and resistant to rust. They will not break, even over years of use. Many metal access panels can be primed and finished as desired.
  • Cons - Metal is a heavier material, making installation more rigorous to give these panels the support they need. Because of the durability and material cost, metal tends to be a more expensive option.

Plastic:

  • Pros - Chosen for its affordability, plastic panels are often simple to install. Many rely on adhesive rather than hardware to hold them to the wall. These panels are lightweight and readily available at most hardware stores.
  • Cons - Plastic can warp in heat and offers little insulating effect. It can last for several years, but will often show wear sooner than other materials. Cheaper commercially available plastic access panels are harder to conceal, giving a less professional look.

GFRG:

  • Pros - Plumbing access panels from GFRG are resistant to scratching, breaking, and warping. It is lightweight for convenient installation and able to be painted or finished in the same method as the rest of the wall because of its similar composition. GFRG access panels are the most inconspicuous material and will not stand out.
  • Cons - GFRG is not waterproof, and should not be used in an area where it is likely to get wet. If waterproofing is needed, the related GFRC should be used.

GFRG plumbing access panels from Ledge Products are made from 100% recycled content that offers all the benefits of reinforced materials. But our standard of production also sets these panels apart from others on the market. With decades of experience working with GFRG through our parent company GC Products, we are able to make the highest quality access panels and competitive prices.

Whether you are a contractor or private individual, choosing a GFRG access panel from Ledge Products gives you the most functional and attractive access panel on the market. Browse the wholesale access panels on our website or contact us with any questions.

A visible mess of electrical wires and cables is not only an eyesore, it’s unsafe. Tampering with the electrical system of a building can cause malfunctions and injuries. This is why electronics are run through walls and ceilings whenever possible.

When choosing the electrical access panel during construction or to insert into an existing wall, most contractors and property owners select a commercially available panel. They come in a range of sizes measuring between 6” and 24”. Access panels come in polystyrene plastic, galvanized steel, stainless steel, and GFRG. Additional features like locks or hinged openings will vary by manufacturer.

Plumbing in both commercial and residential bathrooms requires regular maintenance to keep it functioning properly through the lifetime of the building. An access panel allows you to reach plumbing systems that run behind walls, making this maintenance more convenient and affordable.

A bathroom access panel is often installed when the building is constructed or during a renovation of the bathroom. When selecting a type of access panel, the greatest concerns are often the functionality, the expected life of the panel, and the visual impact different materials will have on the bathroom’s design.

Many important building components are housed beneath the structure in a crawl space, such as plumbing and electrical wiring. While these systems are generally kept out of reach for both safety and appearance, they need to be reachable if repairs, replacement, or the installation of a new system is needed.

A crawl space access panel offers easy access to the area, but keeps out animals and vandals that might otherwise try to enter the crawl space. These panels are made of a variety of materials which are selected based on the benefits and finished look they offer.