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For the best grip and non-slip grab bar surface features, especially for wet hands in the shower or bath, we recommend peened or knurled grab bars, which feature textured surfaces. A slip-resistant grab bar surface can reduce the risk of slipping or falling, thereby reducing the likelihood of injury, enhancing patient safety and reducing liability risk for facilities.
In 2018, new test data revealed that satin-finish “smooth” grab bars provide superior grip performance in wet areas as compared to “peened” grab bars. In September 2018, a test commissioned by Bobrick Washroom Equipment, Inc., and performed by Bureau Veritas Consumer Product Services, Inc., concluded that the slip-resistance of a satin-finish “smooth” grab bar surface provides similar traction to a peened-finish grab bar when grabbed with a dry hand. When grabbed with a wet hand, the surface of the satin-finish “smooth” grab bar was found to provide 10 percent more traction than the surface of the peened-finish grab bar.
As a result of these findings, we at GrabBars.com are updating our recommendation for non-slip grab bars to include the standard “smooth” grip.