Is this outlet too close to the tub?

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  #1  
Old 08-02-12, 07:05 PM
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Is this outlet too close to the tub?

For a moment, try to look beyond the ugly tile and outdated linoleum in this picture. I know it will be difficult.

Look at the electrical outlet. Is it too close to the tub on the left and/or shower on the right?

I had one electrician come in and tell me it violated code, another said it was fine but it needed to be changed to GFCI. There's one more receptacle to the left that is under/behind the toilet. From everything I've read, as long as the wire running to it is appropriate for the damp location, if it is changed to GFCI it is fine. (That first electrician told me something else having to do with the water heater violated code that the second fella said was perfectly done. Not sure whom to believe when it comes to "what's up to code".)

So who was right?

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  #2  
Old 08-02-12, 07:25 PM
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The NEC does not specify a distance so long as it is outside the foot print of the tub or shower. Local code could vary. It definitely needs to GFCI protected. It may already be protected by a GFCI elsewhere.
 
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Old 08-02-12, 08:24 PM
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The receptacle shown is in an unusual location, but still meets the code requirements of being outside the footprint of the tub and shower like Ray said.

The wire near the toilet would not need to be damp rated. This is how the NEC defines a damp location.

Location, Damp

Locations protected from weather and not subject to saturation with water or other liquids but subject to moderate degrees of moisture. Examples of such locations include partially protected locations under canopies,marquees, roofed open porches, and like locations,and interior locations subject to moderate degrees of moisture,such as some basements, some barns, and some coldstorage
warehouses.
 
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Old 08-03-12, 04:58 AM
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Hmmm, I had suspected that first electrician was trying to get me to pay to have extra things done (taking out the receptacle, "sealing it up", and putting a blank cover plate over it). Thank you for the confirmation! The receptacle behind the toilet, under the tank, does give me some cause for concern however, just because the tank is sweating during this humidity.

With the exception of the breaker panel, it looks like the electrical hasn't been touched since the 70s. I haven't seen anything remotely resembling GFCI anywhere in the house. The home inspector said this as well.

Again, thanks!
 
  #5  
Old 08-03-12, 09:06 AM
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With the exception of the breaker panel, it looks like the electrical hasn't been touched since the 70s. I haven't seen anything remotely resembling GFCI anywhere in the house. The home inspector said this as well.
When was the breaker panel updated? If it was recently, the update may have included adding both GFCI and AFCI protection in the panel.
 
  #6  
Old 08-03-12, 04:30 PM
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GFCI receptacles didn't appear on the market till the very late 1970s or early 1980s. Till that time, GFCI protection was provided for bathroom and outside outlets at the panel with a GFCI circuit breaker as Nashkat mentioned. In the 1970s, GFCI protection wasn't yet required in kitchens, garages or unfinished basements. It is very possible your home's electrical system hasn't been updated since it was built, other than the panel. It is not difficult to add GFCI protection, I would recommend it.
 
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Old 08-06-12, 08:12 AM
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Regardless of the panel and all that, much of the original part of the house is still 2-wire, including the kitchen (a separate wire was run to the newer stove, however). I plan to install a GFCI receptacle in there (with the appropriate signage of course, since there also does not yet appear to be a dedicated ground wire run into it at all) to provide at least some protection while I figure out the rest. The breaker panel is FULL (needlessly, I suspect). I don't have the money to get an electrician in here to install a new panel right away and do all the rewiring, and I'm kind of fond of my first-born... so I'm looking to do it myself, but trying to get the education to be clever about it, without doing something extremely stupid. And so I am here... And about these receptacles in the bathroom, I do intend to change them to GFCI, I just needed to make sure they could actually remain in place, and not have to be removed altogether. Thanks all for your help!
 
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Old 08-06-12, 08:23 AM
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Sounds like we have another pro in the making. You have definitely been learning the ins and outs.
 
  #9  
Old 08-06-12, 08:40 PM
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And about these receptacles in the bathroom, I do intend to change them to GFCI,
Do you know whether they're on the same circuit, so that you can use one GFCI receptacle to protect both of them?

much of the original part of the house is still 2-wire, including the kitchen
And adding GFCI protection to any circuit will allow you to safely install 3-slot receptacles on that circuit, as you may already know.
 
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