In this report
Overview
May 2009
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Some gripes with a grip

The claim

Get A Grip
Get A Grip

Get A Grip is a safety handle with "two powerful suction grips ... strong enough to provide the grip you need to safely enter or exit the bath tub or shower." It "attaches in seconds" and is "just as easy to remove as it is to install." We ordered Get A Grips from the product's Web site (www.getagriphandles.com) and from Bed Bath & Beyond's Web site (www.bedbathandbeyond.com). Handles from Get A Grip's site cost $19.98 plus shipping for two handles; BB&B charged $12.99 plus shipping for one handle.

The check

First we had to figure out what we had received. The logos on the Web site and BB&B products were similar, but the suction cups on the BB&B product were larger, and the colors and style on the Web-site samples differed. Then we had to wonder why instructions on three of our four samples seemed to contradict the main claim. They state, "Do not use to provide leverage or stability or to maintain balance while lifting yourself." We tried one Web-site version of Get A Grip and the BB&B version, along with a stainless steel grab bar that's compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. We attached each bar to tiles and applied weight in two ways—with a gradual increase and with a quick tug. We also had panelists use Get A Grip on fiberglass shower walls or tile at home.

Bottom line

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.

 
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Safety