Adding an outlet and vent fan to bathroom


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Old 05-04-21, 01:04 AM
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Adding an outlet and vent fan to bathroom

My house was built in 1962 and neither bathroom has a ventilation fan, electrical plugs, or a/c ducts. One bathroom has a plug in the vanity light fixture that is connected to the wall switch. Both bathrooms have a small window to the outside. I'm wanting to put a ventilation fan to circulate the air and to install electrical plugs in the bathrooms so I can use a hair dryer or whatever without having to use an extension cord running from another room. Is any of this possible using existing wiring?
 
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Old 05-04-21, 05:44 AM
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One story home or two? Bathrooms located where? A first floor fan could be a problem only because you want to vent through the roof. Alternatives are available.
Adding an exhaust fan is doable (I just did it in my bathroom). That means adding a vent pipe through the roof. Adding electrical outlets for use with hair dryers and the like is bit more of a challenge. Your biggest challenge is running wire. The exhaust fan can use 14 gauge with a 15 amp breaker (12 is preferable with a 20 amp breaker). If you have an over head light it would be fairly easy. But adding outlets will require 12 gauge with 20 amp breaker. I doubt you have that available without running a new line from your circuit breaker box. This is not a DYI job. You need to hire a qualified electrician.
 
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Old 05-04-21, 10:57 AM
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I would absolutely bring the bathroom up to current electrical code. You're obviously needing more than what's there now, and I wouldn't try to "cheap out" and just make it work.

There are two basic options for this:

1) Run a new 20A circuit (12/2 cable) from your panel to the bathroom. This can run a new GFI receptacle, new light, and new fan.

2) Run a new 20A circuit from your panel to the bathroom just for the receptacle. The light and fan can then be pulled from the existing lighting circuit. The benefit would be to possibly eliminate an extra hole or two for running new wires to the light and switch.

I'd definitely recommend splurging and doing the extra work either yourself (we're happy to help) or with an electrician. As you already know, 1960's wiring is far from sufficient in many rooms of a modern house.
 
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Old 05-04-21, 01:20 PM
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Not only is the electrical an issue, but running a proper vent system from both fans to the outside is a bit of work. You don't want to vent damp bathroom air into your attic.
 
 

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