Electrical panel in bathroom - X post from Bathrooms

aussiepeteDecember 26, 2006

Is probably not a good idea. But in our basement the optimal layout would be to place the bathroom exactly where the main panel is now.

Moving the panel will mean a new main entry etc etc.

One creative solution may be to create a closed off toilet area in the bathroom and have the panel opening into that.

Any comments on this or other ways of making a electrical panel bathroom friendly?

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NEC 2005, Article 230.70(A)(2). Absolutely forbidden in new installations. And I would assume that changing room layouts so that the service disconnect would be in the bathroom would be equally unacceptable. Time for plan B.
In my area, lots of the houses were built before electricity was in the area. Then basic electrical systems were installed as the power lines were constructed. First item purchased was a refrigerator. Later bathrooms and other plumbing were added, by utilizing smaller rooms of the house, enclosing a corner of a formerly-open porch, etc. I know of one that had the electrical panel accessible only by standing in the tub as a result of this modernizing process. The added danger was minimal, in my opinion, if all was installed correctly, but it sure looked odd.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2006 at 9:40PM
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I am in USA- I am not familiar with Canadian electrical regulations. Those outside the USA would help the situation by stating their location.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2006 at 9:43PM
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G'day, Aussiepete- I'm also a Pete who was/is an Aussie -well I was born in Canada but lived in Australia and NZ most of my adult life.

I have a copy of the BC electrical code, simplified - if you went to your local Home Hardware, you may be able to get a version for your own province, or from a student bookshop where they teach electrical trades. I will go out on a limb and say this should be the same for your province, since I believe they're working on a national code for Canada (except, maybe Quebec? - a little separatist humour there)

Rules 6-206 2-308(1) and 26-402 state that "nor should it (the service panel) be in bathrooms, clothes closets, stairwells, kitchen cabinets or similar places.

So I guess you'll have to think of something else - I wonder, though, if constructing a utility closet WITHIN a bathroom would be acceptible, but keep in mind, you want room to work in there.

Maybe you should go to wherever it is you go to book an inspection and ask their advice. I'm sure they would be happy to make suggestions, after all at least initially (but be ready to submit and be inspected when you build it) you won't be doing any wiring work, you just (quite rightly) don't want to violate the code (potentially having to remove or rectify the work later)

    Bookmark   December 26, 2006 at 11:05PM
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As electricians in Dallas, we have seen breaker panels just about every where. In a recent large remodel, we placed a sub panel in an upstairs laundry panel because that was the home owners request. Basically, we place the main panel outside when we are doing a service upgrade with no sub panel in the house. If a sub panel is in the house it can basically be placed in any open location that is not subject to any flammable material.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2006 at 8:47AM
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Thanks guys.

I am in Montreal Quebec so the code is probably in French.

The house is a 1924 cottage, wiring has been mostly updated over the last 30 years including a new panel (although still some knob a ntube still there).

    Bookmark   December 27, 2006 at 8:29PM
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