Bathroom circuit question

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  #1  
Old 08-05-14, 12:31 PM
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Bathroom circuit question

Complete re-do of a small bathroom. What I'd like to do is run a 20 amp circuit for the two GFCI outlets that will both be in that bathroom. Simple.

But what I'd then like to do is put the bathroom vent fan (2 amps), the lights (1.6 amps) and 120 volt 30 inch baseboard heater (4.2 amps) on the same circuit as the hallway circuit that only has one light on the entire circuit (0.8 amps) for a total of 8.6 amps on this 15 amp circuit. I'd install a GFCI breaker as well on this circuit due to the heater in the bathroom.

Where (if anywhere) am I going down the road to ruin?

And as a bonus question, any recommendations on using two GFCI outlets as opposed to one GFCI breaker on the first circuit?

Thanks much for any time and assistance.

DGF
 
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  #2  
Old 08-05-14, 12:33 PM
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AFAIK, this is ok. I would go with one GFCI receptacle and run the cable from the load side to the other receptacle.

Pros will chime in shortly.
 
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Old 08-05-14, 12:37 PM
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Welcome.

Your plan sounds fine. I kind of doubt that the hallway light is the only load on the circuit unless you just ran it as part of the plan.


Only the receptacles need GFI protection.

GFI receptacles are way cheaper than the breaker.
 
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Old 08-05-14, 02:40 PM
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Mitch, PCBoss,

Thanks much for the quality advice and feedback. Greatly appreciated.

DGF
 
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Old 08-05-14, 07:04 PM
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GFI receptacles are way cheaper than the breaker.
And way more convenient than running to the basement or garage if one trips.
 
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Old 08-05-14, 07:10 PM
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There is another option. NEC 210.11[c][3]Ex allows you to put the entire bathroom on one 20A circuit, but only that bathroom can be on that circuit, nothing else. Also, no one load can exceed 10A. Look at the graphic. The baseboard heater is configured as a continuous load at 125%- 4.2A x 1.25 = 5.25A which is still less than the 10A cutoff. Notice the 2 different wiring configurations. In the full bath the home run comes into the receptacle box, then power goes to the swtch box and from the switches to control the vanity light and the ceiling fan/light. In the half bath, the home run comes into the switch box. There is a 3 conductor cable [black,white,red] from the switch box to the vanity light. The black conductor goes thru the vanity light box and continues power to the receptacle. The red conductor is landed on the vanity light, and the white is the nuetral. So, the red conductor is a switched leg from one of the switches. In your case, add a 3rd switch to the switch box and run a 2 conductor cable to the baseboard heater. The 3rd switch will control the baseboard heater which hopefully has a thermostat. Then simply run a 2 conductor cable from the load side of GFI 1 to a standard second receptacle and label the second receptacle GFI protected. The labels will come with the GFI receptacle. If the bathroom is gutted, you could even install a light over the tub/shower on another switch. You'll have to check your boxes to ensure that you don't exceed fill capacity. With this configuration you can free up capacity on the hall light circuit for other purposes. The downside is if the bathroom breaker trips, you lose power to the whole bathroom.
 
  #7  
Old 08-06-14, 05:12 AM
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As a general practice when I wire a bathroom I bring at least one 20amp circuit to the bathroom from the panel. I go to the receptacle box and connect to the line side of the gfci. from there to the lights I go from the load side of the gfci which then protects the lights and another receptacle from ground fault. If this is a larger bathroom which may be shared by more than one person getting ready to go to work lets say I would suggest highly that you run more than one circuit to the bathroom. If someone plugs in a hair dryer and a curling iron or even some type of other device like electric razor it is possible to trip the breaker. If this is a rewire and all the studs are open and easy access to the bathroom from the panel why not run more than one circuit. now is the time to do it. if this is simply a small 1/2 bath then maybe you can get away with one circuit. I normally don't like putting a baseboard heater on a circuit with anything else.
 
  #8  
Old 08-06-14, 07:47 AM
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The electric code does not require the lighting to be GFI protected.
 
  #9  
Old 08-07-14, 05:01 AM
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pcboss: I realize code does not require the lights to be gfci protected. I only do it as a practice so that they are protected as a safety concern. Someone coming out of the shower or using the wash basin goes to flip the light switch and water runs off their fingers and into switch for example.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 05:06 AM
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I was just stating what the code requires. It is permitted to go above the minimum.

FWIW, none of my lights are protected and I do not worry about using a switch even while still in the shower.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 06:59 AM
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And if the lights are on the load side your left in the dark if the GFCI trips and that could be a safety hazard.
 
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