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Help needed with determining future electrical needs in a remodel

Posted by dspen (My Page) on
Tue, Oct 23, 12 at 9:05


I am planning a basement remodel. I am in the process of adding some outlets and overhead lighting. This will be done prior to the drywaller doing his work. The room will be about 27' x 20'. The breaker box is located in this area. There are several open spaces in the box for future needs.
My question has to do with future needs. In a few years we will be putting in a bathroom in the basement. How do I do electrical planning for this future project? Do I run the wiring to the future space from the box now even though there is no framing in the proposed bathroom? Keeping mind that most of the basement will have drywall when the bathroom phase is started. Or is it acceptable to daisy chain off an exisiting run. I am thinking I would need several outlets and one on and off switch.

Thanks for any help or suggestions.


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Help needed with determining future electrical needs in a rem

The bathroom will require at least one dedicated (20 amp)circuit, so no, you will not be able to come off of another circuit.
I would run a cable from the breaker panel, though not yet connecting to a breaker, to the area of the future bathroom, leaving enough ubbroken length there (coiled and hung up out of the way) to make the necessary connections when doing that phase of the remodel.

RE: Help needed with determining future electrical needs in a rem

Thanks for the quick response randy427. Your suggestion was what I thought should be done, but just wanted to make sure.

Everyone here is always so helpful,


RE: Help needed with determining future electrical needs in a rem

To amplify what Randy says, the receptacles in the bathroom must be on a 20A circuit that either:

1. Serves only that bathroom (but can be shared with non receptacle loads such as the lights in that bathroom).

2. Servers only receptacles in bathrooms.

Obviously it sounds like running a 20A circuit to the bathroom area now is a good idea. If you intend to install a small heater in the space, you might consider two such circuits.

RE: Help needed with determining future electrical needs in a rem

A separate 15 A circuit for bathroom lighting beats standing it the dark when the blow dryer on the 20 A receptacle trips the breaker.

RE: Help needed with determining future electrical needs in a rem

The suggestions seem to assume that the NEC regarding basements and bathrooms won't change before you put a bathroom in the basement in a few years. Build out (in) the stud walls and suspend the ceiling, use no spray-in insulation and be ready to patch some small hand holes in case you are still able to fish flexible cable (if conduit is not required). More than one person was caught planning for a bath with 15A circuits and building when 20A were required.

By the way, what are you going to do about the plumbing inlet and outlet piping when you start the bathroom phase?

RE: Help needed with determining future electrical needs in a rem

The 20 A bathroom receptacle cirsruit is of very long standing from when blow dryers came into vogue.

That is one of the largest general us type circuits required.

Having at least a 20 A for the receptacles is more than adequate 'future electrical'.

'Paralysis by analysis' will get nothing done.

A separate 15 A lighting circuit is a matter of convenience, especially since ambient lighting in basement bathrooms is not all that common.

RE: Help needed with determining future electrical needs in a rem

Thanks Everyone

We had an electrician come in and he ran the 20A, divorced several lights and put them on separate switches, installed additional outlets, and some can lights. Sure glad we did because he had ideas we had not thought of. I think we will be good.

As far as the future bathroom, the builder put in the rough plumbing for the bathroom when the house was built. There are the drains for the shower and sink as well as the toilet.
The water supply is directly overhead and easily accessible when its time to tap in.

Wish us luck..the drywaller will start tomorrow! If anyone thinks of anything before 7am let me know!!


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