service location

Reply

  #1  
Old 08-13-02, 11:09 AM
T
tinman1
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
service location

Hey Guys and gals,
I have a question for all you NEC buffs. I am planning a full bath in my basement where a 200A service is located. Anybody know what the NEC says about having a service panel in a bath. Do I need to build a wall to seperate the service from the bath. Any help will be appreciated.
Thanks
Jay
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 08-13-02, 11:15 AM
J
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
The answer is simple. The NEC says "no". You may not have a panel in a bath or clothes closet. There are quite a few other rules too about where a panel may go.
 
  #3  
Old 08-13-02, 07:25 PM
J
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
John,
I guess my question should have asked about the NEC rules about access to a service panel. The proposed bath would in fact not have the panel in the room or closet, but rather be in a room accessed by walking through the bathroom. The only alternative given the location of the panel now is to cut another doorway in the media room to access the panel, furnace and water heater unless access is allowed through the bath to this utility room. Hope this makes sense.
Jay
I can find no code restriction that would prohibit a panel in an area that is only accessible by passing through the bathroom, as long as the panel is not in the bathroom. Would there be a service door somewhere in the bathroom that leads to the area where the panel is? Keep in mind that there are many accessibility rules. You must have 36" clear space in front of the panel, you must have 30" side to side clearance, the panel door must open at least 90 degrees, the maximum height of a breaker handle is 6'7", you must have at least 6'6" of headroom where the panel is, and the panel must be readily accessible. None of the space required to meet these clearance requirements can be in the bathroom (e.g., the panel can't be 2 feet behind the service door from the bathroom).

When in doubt, be sure to ask your inspector.
 
  #4  
Old 08-13-02, 11:07 PM
C
Captain Avenger
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
If this is new construction, my comment is - what does the approved plans designate the room as?

John is correct. You can not have it in a bathroom in residential. If it was commercial you could have it in a bathroom.

You can not even have it in a clothes closet or a closet that is used for storage.

Please post back and let us know what the heck is going on. Where is the panel being located?????????
 
  #5  
Old 08-14-02, 09:18 AM
T
tinman1
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
service location

Captain,
The panel is in an existing utility room. The idea is to make a full bath in a part of this utility room. Hence the questions about access. All the clearance requirements can be met with room to spare. The basement is finished except for this utility room and the absence of a bath. So we want to put in a bath. Hope this makes this whole scheme clearer.
Thanks for your help and input, John and Cptain. It is greatly appreciated.
Jay
 
  #6  
Old 08-14-02, 04:01 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 15,115
Received 69 Votes on 59 Posts
As the Code requires the service to be as near as prctical to it's point of entry in the house, how do you intend to meet this requirement? Exterior disconnect? What about all the wires in the panel now?
 
  #7  
Old 08-14-02, 05:55 PM
W
Wgoodrich
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
If we nit picked the Code, I would interpret that panel in that utility room as in the bathroom is you have a cased opening and no door that shuts off that utility room from the bathroom.

If that utility room has a door that shuts off the bathroom then you have a utilty room and the panel may be installed in that utility room as long as your are not using that area for a place of storage.

You are in a gray line area in this design you discribe, The only true person that can make the ruling if you can or you can't is you local inspector appointed as the Authority Having Jurisdiction. A phone call to that AHJ for a ruling on the subject is the only prudent thing to do becuase you are in a gray line of interpretation of this code and bathrooms. The Inspector is liable to rule either way.

Why invite trouble. Make the phone call then you have his or her ruling on the subject.

Wg
 
  #8  
Old 08-14-02, 06:10 PM
C
Captain Avenger
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
What is a bathroom?

Jay,

We've all answered without telling you the NEC code definition of a bathroom, which is,

"An area including a basin with one or more of the following: a toilet, a tub, or a shower."

Captain Avenger.
 
  #9  
Old 08-14-02, 07:56 PM
J
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
pcboss, my interpretation is that tinman1 is neither moving nor installing a panel. He's merely building near an existing panel. So the "near as practical to the point of entry" rule would not be a consideration.

Wg, I interpreted that tinman1 would indeed have a door between the bathroom and utility room, and not just a cased opening, because he said that my clearance requirements would be met with room to spare, and I did say that none of the area three feet in front of the panel could be in the bathroom.

And just to clarify, you can still use the utility room for storage, just not within the clearance area that I described.

However, as you and I both pointed out, checking with the inspector is always a good idea when there is any doubt. But I think tinman1 is in the clear (as nearly as I can tell without seeing his basement).
 
  #10  
Old 08-14-02, 08:27 PM
W
Wgoodrich
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
JOhn, I agree with what you are saying and thinking on this subject.

However I have seen over the years AHJs rule differently declaring that utilty room to be nothing but a walled off part of the bathroom. Don't think they are right in that ruling but it is close enough that I have seen it ruled either way many times by AHJs. Your right checking with his AHJ for a ruling before he commits is his best insurance from disappointment.

Wg
 
  #11  
Old 08-15-02, 08:29 AM
K
Member
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Kansas City, KS
Posts: 588
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I seem to remember something about the breaker box having to be accessable at all times. I don't know if that could be a violation if there is a lock on the bathroom door.

Its kinda a really grey area as far as I can see. I agree you should call the inspector or whoever is the main authority.
 
  #12  
Old 08-17-02, 04:42 AM
S
sequoia_s
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
What about subpanel?

Would the same codes apply to a subpanel. Last year when we added a in-law quarters off the garage, the Inspector approved locating the sub-panel in the bathroom (my in-laws did not want it in the dressing room [to be a kitchen at a later date] and the inspector rejected it in the garage as it was located on a firewall).

I was surprised that the inspector (City of Los Angeles Building & Safety) approved it, but I didn't think too much of it at the time. Now I wish we had put it someplace more accessible.

- Sequoia
 
  #13  
Old 08-17-02, 01:46 PM
J
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Yes, it applies to a subpanel too.

Comments such as yours arise frequently (e.g., "you said it's illegal, but my inspector approved it"). There is no satisfactory rebuttal.
 
Reply
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: