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Thread: Electrical hook up of tub with jets and heater.

  1. #1
    Home Improvement and Repair HandyMac Improvements's Avatar
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    Question Electrical hook up of tub with jets and heater.

    I am installing a walk in tub with a heater and pump. These come with a corded plug for each. My question is do I have to run a new line from my new GFCI to a new breaker in the main box (which will be difficult to get to) or can I connect to the line already coming to the bathroom? Note: existing circuit coming to bathroom is a 20A GFCI breaker and the tub requirements are for a 20A servfice as well.

    Thank you in advance

    HandyMac

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    Electrical Contractor Jim Port's Avatar
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    Your tub most likely requires a dedicated circuit back to the panel.

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    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Adding the heater probably put you over the capacity for your current line, although the tub by itself would usually need a dedicated line. As a practical matter, there would probably NOT be any high capacity usage in the bathroom at the same time the tub was being used, as long as you were not preheating curling irons or such. One thing to consider is accessibility to the GFCI. I usually install it outside the tub with the tub's outlet wired to the "load" side. Then you do not have to go crawling through a hole to reach it.

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    Licensed Electrical Contractor Speedy Petey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandyMac Improvements View Post
    My question is do I have to run a new line from my new GFCI to a new breaker in the main box (which will be difficult to get to) or can I connect to the line already coming to the bathroom? Note: existing circuit coming to bathroom is a 20A GFCI breaker and the tub requirements are for a 20A servfice as well.
    Mac, not to sound like a jerk, but do you really have to ask this?

    If the tub and heater require a 20A circuit why would even consider adding it to the bath receptacle circuit?

    Bottom line is that BOTH the heater and pump likely require their OWN circuits. Meaning you will need TWO new 20A circuits to this tub.
    WHat specifically do the instructions say?
    Answers based on the 2008 & 2011 NEC. If you're on the '14 already I feel sorry for you.

  5. #5

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    Bottom line is that BOTH the heater and pump likely require their OWN circuits. Meaning you will need TWO new 20A circuits to this tub.
    WHat specifically do the instructions say?
    Yeah....that^

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    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Many, if not all, inline heaters plug into the pump circuit so they only work when the pump is running, and are usually a small enough load that 20 amps takes care of both of them.

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    Engineer Furd's Avatar
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    The instructions for my whirlpool tub were very specific that the pump and the heater each required a dedicated 20 ampere circuit. The pump is rated at 10.5 amperes and the heater is rated at 12 amperes.

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    Licensed Electrical Contractor Speedy Petey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hj View Post
    Many, if not all, inline heaters plug into the pump circuit so they only work when the pump is running, and are usually a small enough load that 20 amps takes care of both of them.
    Dude, you are the master plumber, so I don't doubt you at all, but my experience has been as Furd describes. And I have wired a lot of tubs like this.
    Answers based on the 2008 & 2011 NEC. If you're on the '14 already I feel sorry for you.

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    Electrical Contractor Jim Port's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Furd View Post
    The instructions for my whirlpool tub were very specific that the pump and the heater each required a dedicated 20 ampere circuit. The pump is rated at 10.5 amperes and the heater is rated at 12 amperes.
    X2. two new circuits. Either one would put you over the 50% limit of sharing the 20 amp bathroom circuit, assuming that it already wasn't shared with other bathrooms.

  10. #10
    Home Improvement and Repair HandyMac Improvements's Avatar
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    Thanks for the great feedback. To clarify the tub requires one circuit. The bathroom has its own (not shared) GFI breaker in the main box. I am still unclear if I can tie into this existing line or if I must run a new line back to the box. It sounds like a new line is perfered but it would be ok to tie into the line with the only drawback that the GFI could trip if the curlers were plugged in when the tub was running - not a safety issue. Thanks again.

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    Electrical Contractor Jim Port's Avatar
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    At least 3 people told you it needs a dedicated circuit and you are still unclear?

    GFI's don't trip due to too much load either. They trip due to an imbalance of current flowing on the hot and neutral conductors.

  12. #12
    Licensed Electrical Contractor Speedy Petey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HandyMac Improvements View Post
    I am still unclear if I can tie into this existing line or if I must run a new line back to the box.
    HOW can this be???
    Answers based on the 2008 & 2011 NEC. If you're on the '14 already I feel sorry for you.

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