(206) 949-5683, Top Rated Plumber, Seattle
Results 1 to 15 of 41

Thread: Recessed light over shower

Hybrid View

  1. #1

    Default Recessed light over shower

    Hello,

    I plan on installing a HALO recessed light and shower trim cover over a corner (neo-angle) shower. A few quick questions....

    Does the light need to be part of a GCFI protected circuit?

    Is it ok to branch from the load side of a GFCI wall outlet to the light?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    IT Consultant / Network Engineer beekerc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    94

    Default recessed shower light

    standard caveat: i am not an electrician, however, i have wired two bathrooms with such lights and they have passed inspection. that being said....

    Quote Originally Posted by Magicrat View Post
    Does the light need to be part of a GCFI protected circuit?
    my understanding is no, unless the switch controlling the light is reachable from the tub/shower. i don't know what the code definition of reachable is, but an electrician did explain it as greater than the distance that you can reach while being able to touch a wet surface in the shower/tub. this roughly equates to 3 to 5 feet. i'm inclined to think that even if it's outside that range, since it's a switch you're likely to hit while still wet (getting out of the shower), it's probably a good idea to GFCI it anyway.

    Quote Originally Posted by Magicrat View Post
    Is it ok to branch from the load side of a GFCI wall outlet to the light?
    yes. however, i would go GFCI (load side) --> switch --> light.

  3. #3

    Default

    GFCI protected? Short answer, No, as long as the fixture and trim is listed for the application and properly secured.

    You can only use the GFCI required receptacle power for this ONLY if the circuit feeds the bathroom in question and no other bathrooms. If it feeds off to another bathroom receptacle as many do then the answer is NO, you cannot use that power at all.
    http://www.inspectpa.com/forum/forum.php
    My answers are based mostly on the ICC codes. Advice given is my personal opinion and every person performing work should acquire a permit from his/her jurisdiction and get the work inspected. My opinions are not directions to follow for DIYs or professionals

  4. #4
    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    2,523

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by beekerc View Post
    my understanding is no, unless the switch controlling the light is reachable from the tub/shower. i don't know what the code definition of reachable is, but an electrician did explain it as greater than the distance that you can reach while being able to touch a wet surface in the shower/tub.
    The location of the switch plays no role at all.

    GFCI protected or not the switch can be right beside the tub/shower it just can't be within the foot print of the tub/shower

  5. #5
    Remodel Contractor GabeS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Brooklyn NY
    Posts
    294

    Default

    If I was all wet and touching anything that had to do with electricity, I wouldn't definitely feel more comfortable with GFI protection regardless if the code requires it or not. Don't forget code is minimum standards.
    Gabe

    Don't follow my advice, I only know a thing or two about a thing or two.

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GabeS View Post
    If I was all wet and touching anything that had to do with electricity, I wouldn't definitely feel more comfortable with GFI protection regardless if the code requires it or not. Don't forget code is minimum standards.

    Exactly, the code is minimum whether electrical or plumbing.
    http://www.inspectpa.com/forum/forum.php
    My answers are based mostly on the ICC codes. Advice given is my personal opinion and every person performing work should acquire a permit from his/her jurisdiction and get the work inspected. My opinions are not directions to follow for DIYs or professionals

  7. #7

    Default

    Here is an electrical problem inside a shower.

    Photo by Mike McClogan, Home Inspector
    http://www.inspectpa.com/forum/forum.php
    My answers are based mostly on the ICC codes. Advice given is my personal opinion and every person performing work should acquire a permit from his/her jurisdiction and get the work inspected. My opinions are not directions to follow for DIYs or professionals

  8. #8
    Electrician Chris75's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Litchfield, CT
    Posts
    608

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GabeS View Post
    If I was all wet and touching anything that had to do with electricity, I wouldn't definitely feel more comfortable with GFI protection regardless if the code requires it or not. Don't forget code is minimum standards.
    And if you can answer WHY to any of your statments I will be impressed.

  9. #9
    Remodel Contractor GabeS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Brooklyn NY
    Posts
    294

    Default

    Chris, I'm not sure I understand exactly what you are asking. Can you please clarify your question.

    If you're asking why I would want GFI protection, it's because the outlet would shut off if electricity starting flowing through my body.
    Gabe

    Don't follow my advice, I only know a thing or two about a thing or two.

  10. #10
    Licensed Electrical Contractor Speedy Petey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    NY State, USA
    Posts
    976

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by chris75 View Post
    and if you can answer why to any of your statments i will be impressed.
    +1 ..........
    Answers based on the 2008 & 2011 NEC. If you're on the '14 already I feel sorry for you.

  11. #11
    Remodel Contractor GabeS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Brooklyn NY
    Posts
    294

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris75 View Post
    And if you can answer WHY to any of your statments I will be impressed.
    Can you elaborate please. I'm still not quite understanding what you are getting at. Just come out and say it, don't be afraid.
    Gabe

    Don't follow my advice, I only know a thing or two about a thing or two.

  12. #12
    IT Consultant / Network Engineer beekerc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    94

    Default Recessed light over shower

    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
    Properly installed lighting does not pose a threat, but people do stupid things with things that are plugged in to a receptacle.
    Thing is people are STUPID!! If they were not we would not need half of the codes and laws we have today.
    a sad truth. i don't know which is more disturbing, that people actually lack common sense, or that they don't actually lack it, but are too lazy to use it.

    Quote Originally Posted by jwelectric View Post
    A switch on the other hand is never used as a light fixture. It never has bulb that could break. A switch is located in a box is for the most part is flush with the wall. There are no exposed live parts that someone could come in contact should the bulb burst.
    agreed, but as is pointed out below, just as GFCI's can malfunction, so can switches, and the point about being went and in contact with a switch is a valid point. this is why i opted feed the shower light, and switch, off the load side of a GFCI outlet that is requred in the bathroom (due to it's proximity to the sink).

    Quote Originally Posted by jar546 View Post
    GFCI protection is not foolproof and there are ways in which a GFCI will not trip and you will be electricuted. If there is not path to ground during the fault and the GFCI senses the exact same current on the feed and neutral then it will never trip.
    In another thread I talk about wanting to have a GFCI that has both green (properly operating and protected) and red (fault/tripped) LED's. I found the Hubbell self-testing GFCI line. I opted for the faceless unit, but i'm sure they sell receptacled ones. the nice thing is the red LED flashes when it end-of-life's and is no longer able to protect. a great feature, and not a cheap one, but if it keeps you and your family safe, are you really going to squawk over a few bucks?

    Quote Originally Posted by GabeS View Post
    The only thing I don't like about the GFCI breaker is that it's more unlikely to get tested every month or two because it's stashed away in the panel and probably gets neglected. Whereas the outlet is right in front of your face everyday and will likely get tested more often than the breaker.
    Even though the receptacle is "in front of your face", it still requires a conscious effort on the owner's part to actually to the testing - see my first response to Speedy's comment. This is why the Hubbell self-testing GFCI is so attractive, even at the additional cost.

    Quote Originally Posted by jwelectric View Post
    Would it be safer if the whole house had GFCI protection?
    sure it would, but then factor in the inconvenience factor of having surge strips and surge protectors tripping the GFCI units and killing power to computers, tv's, home theaters, or anything else worthy of surge protection..

  13. #13
    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    2,523

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by beekerc View Post
    a sad truth. i don't know which is more disturbing, that people actually lack common sense, or that they don't actually lack it, but are too lazy to use it.
    The truth of the matter is that most people use slang such as outlet when referring to a receptacle and this makes the knowledge level drop drastically. With out knowledge then common sense hold no merit.

    If a switch is properly installed and the switch fails to the metal yoke then the equipment grounding conductor will open the overcurrent device. A fault to the yoke is the only way that a switch could be dangerous and if the EGC is not in place then it wouldnít much matter if it was in a bathroom or not.

    Across the big pond whole house protection for Ground Fault and Arc Fault has been in place for the service disconnect for many years. There donít seem to be any problems over there with surge devices as seems to be over here. Then again the surge protector that I am using right now and protected by a GFCI receptacle hasnít tripped as yet either. It has been in place from early 2001.

  14. #14

    Default

    I also want to install a ventilation fan that will run off the same switch as the recessed light above the shower
    Put it on a seperate switch. The light and fan serve very different functions.
    Install a timer/switch. Leviton makes a slick decora syyle that has 5, 10, 15, 20 minute settings.


    And Gabe....if it makes you feel better, if I was standing barefoot on wet tile slab floor and the switches were GFCI protected, I too would feel safer. I have been stung a couple of times via a cover plate screw. It happens.

  15. #15
    IT Consultant / Network Engineer beekerc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    94

    Default recessed shower light

    Quote Originally Posted by 220/221 View Post
    Put it on a seperate switch. The light and fan serve very different functions.
    not completely necessary. if all you have is a 1-gang box. both leviton and broan/nutone make double and triple stacked switches for bathroom light/fan use. broan even makes one that's a triple stack, one for fan, one for heater and the bottom is a double rocker for full light or night-light

    Quote Originally Posted by 220/221 View Post
    Install a timer/switch. Leviton makes a slick decora syyle that has 5, 10, 15, 20 minute settings.
    personally, i like the 10/20/30/60 minute version. i replaced all my spring-loaded turn knob timer switches for ventilation fans and heat lamps with these push button ones.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •