Bathroom Electrical Wiring

Bathrooms are damp and have special needs when wiring them. This article will help you install appropriate electrical wiring to cover lighting, air flow, and safety devices in your bathroom. Everything from watertight lighting fixtures in bathing areas to effective ventilation to GFCI outlets for safety should be observed.


We all know that bathrooms tend to be one of ther darker rooms of the house. For that reason, plenty of lights should be postitioned n the home to adequately provide enough light to light the room, but also to enhance areas like mirrors, showers, closets, and bathtub ares.

When we discuss the watery areas like bathtubs, showers jacuzzis, and the like, we need to be concerned with watertight fixtures that have watertight lens covers. These areas often are in the dark and need lighting to allow the user to see and be safe stepping into and out of these areas.

Either a strip light, can lights, or wall sconces should be placed over or around the mirror area to allow ample lighting to shine towards the user for putting on makeup, combing your hair and other personal items. Light switches for these lights may be positioned by the sink itself or near the entry door. Switches for the bathing areas should be held away from the water’s edge by at least six feet.

Ceiling Fans

Bathrooms are notorious for being moist and some don’t have windows to remove the moisture and the less desirable stench from the toilet area of the room. In this case, a bathroom exhaust fan will draw out the moisture from the room. These fan units also sometimes come with a built-in heater to keep you warm while you dry off.


You should position at least one outlet within one foot of the sink, but not over the sink where a cord will have to hang into the sink. This outlet should be a 20-amp ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) that can supply power to hair dryers, curling irons, razors and the like. Keep in mnd that you may need more than one outlet, and in fact, a quad outlet would be a great choice here, giving you four places to plug in whatever you may need.

Proper Circuitry Distribution

The lighting and fan circuit must be seperate from the outlet power. The idea is so as not to overload a circuit and have it trip, only to shut off the power to the devices, but also to the lighting in the room. You can see that on different circuits, the outlet power could trip and the lights would stay on. That is the proper installation technique. You need to check your local codes to see if the lighting circuit can be shared with another area of the house or if GFCI protection is needed for both lighting and power circuits.

Remember, this may sound like a lot of overkill to you, but these safety measures are in place to help save your life from electrocution. Proper lighting helps eleiminate accidents and proper ventilation prevents mold and mildew from forming in your bathroom. Besides, the better the ventilation, the less embarrasing smells there are left behind after using the commode!