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    Bathroom outlets

    Bathroom outlets

    New postby Dave F on Wed May 10, 2017 10:00 am

    I'm planning a 2nd bathroom at my house. it will be 7' by 11'. I've read about outlet spacing minimums, and that any wall more than 2' wide needs an outlet. It also seems there are different standards for different types of room. the way the bathroom is laid out, the toilet will back against the "short" side of the room, next to the shower stall. the wall width behind the toilet is about 45" wide before the shower stall starts. do I need to put an outlet on that wall?

    Thanks,
    Dave
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    Re: Bathroom outlets

    New postby Jerry Peck - Codeman on Wed May 10, 2017 10:33 am

    Dave F wrote: ... a 2nd bathroom at my house. it will be 7' by 11' ... outlet spacing minimums


    Dave,

    The receptacle outlet spacing requirements you refer to do not apply to bathrooms.

    What does apply to receptacle outlets in bathrooms is:
    - all 120 volt, 15 and 20 ampere receptacles are required to be GFCI protected (since the 1975 NEC)
    - depending on where you are (what edition of the code they use) the receptalce outlets are also required to be AFCI protected (since the 2014 NEC)
    - at least one receptacle outlet within 3 feet of each sink
    - no receptacle outlet within the tub/shower area
    Jerry Peck - CodeMan
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    Re: Bathroom outlets

    New postby Dave F on Wed May 10, 2017 10:48 am

    Thanks,

    I didn't think it would be too wise to put an outlet that close to the shower. As far as AFCI devices go, is an AFCI also a GFCI? in other words, can an outlet be both at the same time? I would think so. On another note, I've also read that a light switch cannot be within 60" of a tub or shower. Is that accurate? This wouldn't be an issue with the main overhead lights, but I would need to rethink where I'm putting the switch for the vanity lights if this is true. Not a big deal to change the plan.

    Thanks
    Dave F
     
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    Re: Bathroom outlets

    New postby Jerry Peck - Codeman on Wed May 10, 2017 4:01 pm

    Dave,

    Dave F wrote:As far as AFCI devices go, is an AFCI also a GFCI? in other words, can an outlet be both at the same time? I would think so.


    AFCI and GFCI are two different things - basically, GFCI requirements are for people protection of outlets while AFCI requirements are for protection of the circuit within the structure (to help keep a circuit which is arcing from burning a house down).

    Based on the above, the GFCI protection is typically installed at each receptacle outlet which is to be protected, while AFCI protection is installed at the panel (an AFCI breaker) to protect the wiring itself, which means that a circuit which is AFCI protected may also have receptacle outlets which are GFCI protected on that circuit.

    On another note, I've also read that a light switch cannot be within 60" of a tub or shower. Is that accurate?


    A receptacle outlet is not permitted to be within the tub or shower space ("406.9(C) Bathtub and shower space. Receptacles shall not be installed within or directly over a bathtub or shower stall."), and, switches are not permitted within tub or shower spaces ... mostly ... ("404.4(C) Switches in Tub or Shower Spaces. Switches shall not be installed within tubs or shower spaces unless installed as part of a listed tub or shower assembly.")

    The "tub or shower space" for receptacles and switches is not defined to the extent it is for luminaires, which stretches the space out from the tub or shower to 3 feet from the edge of the tub or shower, but limits the height to 8 feet above the tub or shower ... switches and receptacles are simply not permitted "within" (receptacles and switches) or "over" receptacles - no height above which is okay is given, and switches have that tricky exception if "part of a listed tub or shower assembly".

    Which brings us to:
    This wouldn't be an issue with the main overhead lights,


    No part of any light (luminaire) is permitted to be within the space (think of it as a large box) which starts at the top of the tub or shower curb and goes up 8 feet, and which completely surrounds the tub or shower to the surrounding walls or outward 3 feet from the edge of the tub or shower - most tubs are three side walls, so the 3 feet out would apply to the open side, but an island or peninsula tub would have no walls or many one wall, so the 3 feet would apply all the way around the tub where there is no wall. The only lights allowed in that space are recessed lights - if the light is not a recessed light, the closest part of the light needs to either be 3 feet away from the tub or shower or 8 feet above the tub or shower. Again, the easiest way to visualize this is to think of a box setting on the tub or shower which is 8 feet tall and extends out 3 feet past the tub or shower - no part of any light is permitted to touch or be within that box (such as is shown here - place cursor over link, right click, then click on 'Open in new Tab/Window": http://ecmweb.com/site-files/ecmweb.com ... CQfig1.jpg ).
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