Water carries electricity efficiently. When the two mix, the result can kill. Because of this, from an electrical safety point of view, the bathroom is quite possibly the most dangerous room in the home. The consequences of an electric shock are far more severe in a bathroom or shower room as wet skin reduces the body’s resistance. There are special requirements to which we must adhere for electrical installations in bathrooms.
- Sockets are not allowed in bathrooms or shower rooms (apart from electric shaver-supply units), unless they can be fitted at least three metres from the bath or shower.
- Shaver-supply units must be a safe distance from the bath or shower to avoid splashes.
- It is advised to install enclosed ceiling lights. These are preferable to pendant (ones that hang down) light fittings. All light fittings, that are not enclosed, should be out of reach of someone using, or still wet from using, the bath or shower.
- A ceiling-mounted pull-cord switch with the cord made of insulating material is the safest option for a bathroom. Standard wall-mounted light switches are a possible danger because of dampness and wet hands.
Heaters and towel rails
- Central heating is the safest way of keeping a bathroom warm. But, if you do have an electric room heater, it must be fixed at a safe distance from the bath or shower. We can check this for you and advise.
- Electric and gas water heaters in a bathroom must be fixed and permanently wired, unless they are powered by a socket fitted at least three metres from a bath or shower.
- We suggest that electric heaters should be controlled by a pull cord or a switch outside the bathroom.
- An electric shower must be supplied on its own circuit direct from the consumer unit. We can check this for you if you are unsure about it.
Don’t bring mains-powered portable appliances such as hairdryers, heaters or radios into a bathroom. You could be severely injured or die. We can install a fixed hairdryer with hot air delivered through a flexible plastic pipe in bathrooms.
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