Switches with plumbing

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Old 10-13-09, 12:41 AM
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Switches with plumbing

I'm remodeling my bathroom and i don't have alot of knowledge when it comes to codes. I was wondering if theres any problem with putting the 2 switches for the lights and fan on the same wall that the shower/ tub plumbing are in only on the reverse side? If so what do i need to do to follow code?
 
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Old 10-13-09, 04:23 AM
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I see no problem with doing that.

Jim
 
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Old 10-13-09, 04:38 PM
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As long as they cannot be reached from someone standing in the shower or tub. At least 3' from the edge of the tub
 
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Old 10-13-09, 05:04 PM
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As long as they are not above the footprint of the tub you would satisfy the NEC.

Larry, could you expand on the 3' distance you talk about? Is this a regional code?
 
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Old 10-13-09, 05:50 PM
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Some illustrations from Mike Holt's site follow that may be useful. Be careful as I think these are based on 2005 NEC and newer codes may be different (likely not for these I would guess however).
MikeHolt.com
MikeHolt.com
http://www.mikeholt.com/freegraphics.php?id=2005
 
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Old 10-13-09, 06:13 PM
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Originally Posted by chandler View Post
As long as they cannot be reached from someone standing in the shower or tub. At least 3' from the edge of the tub
I have heard of that 3' with switches. I know that's a rule with receptacles.

JimBeer 4U2
 
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Old 10-13-09, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by rukkus11 View Post
I have heard of that 3' with switches. I know that's a rule with receptacles.

JimBeer 4U2
I think you might be thinking about within 3' of the basin?
 
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Old 10-13-09, 08:22 PM
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Jim, yes, it probably is. Our guy extends the basin rule to include the shower area. Sort of makes sense to me, anyway, not having an electrical source that is not wet location approved reachable in the shower. He only made it a "request" when I installed my walk in shower in the rental cabin, to move the overhead switch over from adjacent to the opening.
 
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Old 10-14-09, 07:48 AM
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Originally Posted by pcboss View Post
I think you might be thinking about within 3' of the basin?
I made a mistake in my writing. I meant to say I HAVEN'T Heard that rule.
Sorry!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Jim
 
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Old 10-15-09, 09:49 AM
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I have heard that rule that receptacles must be within 3' of lip of sink, but never really understood reasoning of that? Why do they want you to place a receptacle close to the sink which potentially could be full of water? Now it is supposed to be GFCI protected, but still seems strange to mandate it being close to sink.

so NEC only states not within footprint of tub or shower for switches or receptacles, correct? So unless there is local addendum ( there is nothing listed on this issue on the web site that lists local addendums) I should be fine with the shower light switch right outside the door to shower?
 
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Old 10-15-09, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by hammerash View Post
I have heard that rule that receptacles must be within 3' of lip of sink, but never really understood reasoning of that?
The reason is to prevent stretching cords out which could produce a tripping hazard and to prevent the use of extension cords, powerstrips and the like. It's basically the same reasoning as kitchen countertop receptacle spacing. I'd wager 99% of people use some type of device near the sink that needs to plug in, so the code is just ensuring it can be done safely without the need to hunt for a plug.

NEC only states not within footprint of tub or shower for switches or receptacles, correct?
Correct.
 
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Old 10-15-09, 10:58 AM
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To answer your question:
The NEC only requires that a switch not be installed within the wet location of a tub or shower spaces, unless the switch is part of a listed tub or shower assembly. If you live in Canada then the rules will change. I hope this gives you what you need. I have a tile shower with a door on it and when I get out my switches for the light and fan are right there. I also put them on a GFCI circuit which was required where I live at.
Jim
 
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Old 10-15-09, 12:32 PM
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Haven't seen any local addendum about the bathroom lights needing GFCI where I live. they are wired separate from the receptacles, which will be GFCI. but I was planning on putting lights on a AFCI as required by NEC2008 if I am interpreting it correctly.
 
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Old 10-15-09, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by hammerash View Post
Haven't seen any local addendum about the bathroom lights needing GFCI where I live. they are wired separate from the receptacles, which will be GFCI. but I was planning on putting lights on a AFCI as required by NEC2008 if I am interpreting it correctly.
Where I live they require lights over a shower or tub to be on a GFCI circuit. I have recess lights in my shower. As for the rest of the bathroom they don't need to be on a GFCI circuit. Bathrooms don't reqiure AFCI but most of the time they are feed from a bedroom which needs to be on a AFCI circuit. Most of the house needs to AFCI except baths, laundry & kitchen.

Jim
 
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Old 10-15-09, 01:36 PM
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by "the rest of bathroom doesn't need to be on GFCI" I assume you mean the other lights. The receptacles must be on GFCI. I put in two 20 amp circuits for receptacles. I put in separate 15 amp for the lights and fans. the recepacle circuits will each get a GFCI receptacle at the start so that all are protected. I don't think I have any local code saying that the light in shower or above tub need GFCI (Does the NEC require it?) Obviously if needs GFCI then will put in a GFCI breaker. But I didn't think NEC required this circuit to be GFCI (since no receptacles) and thought that it would have to be AFCI like almost everything now? It will feed all the lights in bathroom only, including those in shower and above tub as well as two fans -one in toilet room and one in main bathroom area. so AFCI, GFCI or regular breaker for this circuit?
 
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Old 10-15-09, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by hammerash View Post
I don't think I have any local code saying that the light in shower or above tub need GFCI (Does the NEC require it?)
It is not specifically required per NEC, but is generally based on the manufacturer instructions for the fan, light fixture or recessed shower trim. With the exception of boat lifts, pools and spas, NEC only requires GFCI protection on 120V receptacles in select areas; everything else is either optional or as per manufacturer instructions.
 
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Old 10-15-09, 03:17 PM
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didn't think anything specified GFCI but double checked. the recessed can says suitable for use in wet location when used with shower trim. no mention of GFCI. The trim doesn't say anything about GFCI. The fan says "suitable for use over a tub or shower only when connected to a GFCI protected circuit", otherwise no mention of needing GFCI. So since my fan is NOT above shower or tub (I put a 150cfm between them instead of in shower since the tub is jacuzzi with heater and jets), I guess I do not need the circuit to be GFCI. But should it then be AFCI protected? I thought that it did have to be. Thought almost everything needed to be either GFCI or AFCI except 240volt appliances (heat pump, hot water tank, oven, cooktop, dryer). didn't think the furnace needed any other protection either. If it doesn't need AFCI, great, save me $30 on the breaker!
 
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Old 10-15-09, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by hammerash View Post
didn't think anything specified GFCI but double checked. the recessed can says suitable for use in wet location when used with shower trim. no mention of GFCI. The trim doesn't say anything about GFCI. The fan says "suitable for use over a tub or shower only when connected to a GFCI protected circuit", otherwise no mention of needing GFCI. So since my fan is NOT above shower or tub (I put a 150cfm between them instead of in shower since the tub is jacuzzi with heater and jets), I guess I do not need the circuit to be GFCI. But should it then be AFCI protected? I thought that it did have to be. Thought almost everything needed to be either GFCI or AFCI except 240volt appliances (heat pump, hot water tank, oven, cooktop, dryer). didn't think the furnace needed any other protection either. If it doesn't need AFCI, great, save me $30 on the breaker!
As I said earlier your bathroom, laundry room, kitchen and garage doesn't need to be on a AFCI. Everything else ( Yes )
Furnace( No )
Hope this helps.
Jim
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Old 10-15-09, 04:04 PM
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I know that kitchen (receptacles), laundry room (receptacles), garage (receptacles), and bathroom (receptacles) all do NOT need AFCI since they need GFCI. But the confusion comes when the lights are separated from the receptacles. Doesn't seem to make sense that the bedroom, living room, office, den, etc. all require AFCI for the lighting circuits (even if no receptacles) But the kitchen, bath, laundry, garage do NOT require AFCI for lighting circuits (as long as no receptacles that would then require GFCI). I think that a lot of times the lighting and receptacle circuits are not totally separated the way I have wired them.
 
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