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Finishing bathroom, minimal wiring experience, advice needed

Finishing bathroom, minimal wiring experience, advice needed

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  #1  
Old 03-23-13, 01:22 PM
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Finishing bathroom, minimal wiring experience, advice needed

I've started to finish my bathroom and have some questions about the wiring. Our builder provided an outlet in the unfinished bathroom. There is a 12-2 wire connected to the outlet.

Can I run a wire from the existing outlet to two switches that I need to install? One switch for the vanity light, and one switch for the bath fan.

How do I get power to both switches from one wire? Do I just leap frog from one to the next?

Do I need to use 12-2 for everything that originates from the existing outlet?
 
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  #2  
Old 03-23-13, 01:30 PM
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Welcome to the forum Nate, and hello, You're only about 10 miles from me. I think I can see your hose from here!

If the receptacle (outlet) is fed with its own circuit, yes, you can then wire the rest of the bathroom with that circuit using #12 cable.

If it serves other bathrooms, then no. You will then find another source for your lights. Be sure to match the wire gauge of the circuit your taping off of.

To feed the switches, you can either jump from one to the other, or run a short piece of wire called "pigtails" from each switch to the hot wire in the box. Connect the wires using a wirenut.
 
  #3  
Old 03-23-13, 01:43 PM
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Ha, small world. Can I assume that, since there is only one wire connected to the receptacle, that its on a dedicated circuit? Or should I do more to make sure?
 
  #4  
Old 03-23-13, 01:53 PM
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Update: Looks like the existing receptacle is on the same circuit as the garage wiring, does that mean I should add a circuit for the light & fan?
 
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Old 03-23-13, 01:54 PM
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No, that could just mean that it is the last thing on the circuit. To make sure, turn off the circuit breaker that the receptacle in the basement is on, and then go around and see if anything else is off. First place to start is the other bathrooms as is was commonly wired with most/all the bathrooms on the same circuit.
 
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Old 03-23-13, 05:44 PM
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Good call, all of the bathroom receptacles are on the same circuit, the lights and fans in the finished bathrooms are not on the receptacle circuit. So knowing that, can you tell me how I should proceed with wiring the light and fan in the unfinished bathroom?
 
  #7  
Old 03-23-13, 06:40 PM
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Originally Posted by mn_nate View Post
Update: Looks like the existing receptacle is on the same circuit as the garage wiring, does that mean I should add a circuit for the light & fan?
That's illegal. Bathroom receptacles are required to be 20A dedicated circuits that may only serve the lights/fans in the same bathroom or the receptacle (not lights/fan) in another bathroom. It can not be on a circuit serving any other part of the house.

That said, if you move that receptacle to its own dedicated circuit, you CAN feed the lights/fan in THAT bathroom from the same circuit.

Explained another way: a 20A circuit can feed all receptacles/lighting/fans in ONE bathroom

OR a 20A circuit can feed ONLY the receptacles in MULTIPLE bathrooms, with the lights/fans on other lighting circuits

The 20A circuit feeding bathroom receptacles MAY NOT feed any other circuit in any other room in the house.
 
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Old 03-23-13, 06:44 PM
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I was wrong, the circuit I was referring to was for the garage receptacles. The bathroom receptacles are on their own circuit.
 
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Old 03-23-13, 06:47 PM
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Ok thanks for clarifying.. So the receptacle in the unfinished bathroom: does that feed off its own circuit or is it shared with the other bathrooms?
 
  #10  
Old 03-23-13, 06:52 PM
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It is shared with the other bathrooms.
 
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Old 03-23-13, 07:01 PM
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Ok then you have three choices..

If there is another lighting circuit nearby that you can tap into, the lights/fan can be fed off that

-OR-

You can run a new 15A dedicated circuit for the lights/fan

-OR-

You can run a new 20A dedicated circuit and put everything in that bathroom on it, removing the shared receptacle circuit.
 
  #12  
Old 03-23-13, 07:16 PM
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Cool, thanks for the help.

Non related issue - I'm putting a heated floor mat beneath the tile in that same bathroom. That will need its own dedicated 20A circuit, correct?
 
  #13  
Old 03-24-13, 03:14 AM
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If the manufacturer's instructions call for it, then yes. Otherwise the other rules apply. From what I've seen (I'm looking for heat mat to add to my bathroom too) a 25sqft mat runs about 4A.
 
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Old 03-24-13, 05:37 AM
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You may want to check the voltage on the floor heat. Some are 240 volt.

A 15 amp circuit may be fine.
 
  #15  
Old 04-20-13, 10:28 AM
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Thanks for all of everybody's help. Project update: Light, fan, and therm are installed and working great.

Now I'm wondering about the receptacle that was existing, specifically I'm wondering if I need to install a GFCI receptacle in place of the non-GFCI that the builder installed. All of the bathroom receptacles are on the same circuit. Of the two located on my upper level, one is GFCI and one isn't. Can I assume that since there is one on the circuit currently, that only one is needed for the entire circuit?
 
  #16  
Old 04-20-13, 11:48 AM
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All of the bathroom receptacles are on the same circuit. Of the two located on my upper level, one is GFCI and one isn't. Can I assume that since there is one on the circuit currently, that only one is needed for the entire circuit?
No, but you can find out if that is the only one you need on that floor. Plug something into the non-GFCI receptacle in the second bathroom, and turn it on to make sure it has power. Then go push the TEST button on the GFCI in the first bathroom. Go back and try the thing you plugged in in the second bathroom. It should have lost power. Then push the RESET button on the GFCI and see if the power comes back.

If so, then everything is working as it should be and both receptacles have GFCI protection.
 
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