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Wiring electric heater in bathroom

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  • Wiring electric heater in bathroom

    I just bught a 1500 watt, 115 v., 12.5 amp electric wall heater for our 2nd floor bathroom. My wife kept complaining the bathroom was too cold in the morning. I'm now trying to figure out how to bring power to the unit. I have done some wiring in the past but I don't see any way to run a new circuit from the panel in the basement to this 2nd floor bathroom. I see two possible sources but I'm not sure if either will work.
    1. There is a 15 amp lighting circuit available in the bathroom and I don't believe it has much more than a few lights on it. I'll check the load first, and I can easily run a romex from this circuit to the heater.
    2, There is a 20 amp circuit feeding the one outlet in each of the three bathrooms. I couldn't run a hair dryer and the heater at the same time. I could run a romex from this outlet to the heater.
    Will either of these options work? What other options are there for supplying this heater

  • #2
    If you are lucky you have an interior wall that lines up on the first and second floors. You could install outlets on each floor to cover up the access holes needed to drill through the floor plates and assist in running the wire. This will allow you to get to the attic then you can drop down in an interior wall in the bathroom

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    • #3
      Originally posted by wbrooks View Post
      If you are lucky you have an interior wall that lines up on the first and second floors. You could install outlets on each floor to cover up the access holes needed to drill through the floor plates and assist in running the wire. This will allow you to get to the attic then you can drop down in an interior wall in the bathroom
      I like it. A clever use of the unavoidable
      alternatively, how about access through the tub access panel to a drop into the basement?
      Licensed Philadelphia electrician
      Philadelphia emergency lighting certification

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      • #4
        Re: Wiring electric heater in bathroom

        The last time I had to do a job like this I ran it up theinterior wall that lines up on the first and second floors. After that I installed outlets on each floor to cover up the access holes needed to drill through the floor plates and assist in running the wire.


        Home renovations are easy.

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        • #5
          Re: Wiring electric heater in bathroom

          RW has a good idea about looking where vertical pipes run up from your basement to the upstairs bathroom. You should have an access door or wall cover in the bedroom on the interior wall behind the tub or stall. If you can take that off or open the access door, leave some bright lights on in the basement, turn off the lights in the bed room and try to look down near the pipes. If you see light, try sneaking a pull snake down to the basement. 1/4" nylon rope with some weight on the end should work too if you don't have a snake.

          Does the NEC code allow running Romex beside water pipes? I doubt it would cause any harm, but I'm wondering about codes.

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          • #6
            Re: Wiring electric heater in bathroom

            Romex near pipes is fine
            I like a thirty-foot piece of sash chain ... it piles up on things then falls off and keeps going, sorta like a slinky ...
            Licensed Philadelphia electrician
            Philadelphia emergency lighting certification

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            • #7
              Re: Wiring electric heater in bathroom

              There are several ways to get wires around and up in hard to reach places, it takes some creativity sometimes. Many times you must go from basement to attic then from attic back down into the wall you need the wire on. you may have a house where a first floor closet and a second floor closet line up, go into the corner of the closet from the basement, up the inside ot the first floor closet to the inside corner of the second floor closet and then into the attic, then in the attic go to the wall in question from the top down into the wall you need in the bathroom. If it is a long run you might want to upsize the wire to #12 to minimize voltage drop. Many times you have to be creative with this problem. It takes time and some prcatice snaking wires. I will tell you that snaking wires is an art. Lou

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