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Mimimum Outlet Height for Bathroom?

Worters13's picture

I have a small, half-bath in an addition to the house that doesn't have any heat.  I would like to put in an outlet so I can use a plug-in baseboard heater for the winter months & then remove it for the summer.

Does an outlet in a bathroom have to be insalled at a minimum height?  Since it would be a baseboard heater, and as there isn't a shower there is no need for hairdryers, etc. I would just as soon put the outlet close to the floor.  Thanks!

(post #110001, reply #1 of 10)

No minimum height requirement in National code. Just GFI and common sense in terms of water/location.


(post #110001, reply #2 of 10)

What Ed said.

(post #110001, reply #3 of 10)

But a vanity outlet is required for a bathroom, but I am not sure if this qualifies for a bathroom or not.

. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe

(post #110001, reply #4 of 10)

Good point. I had assumed, possibly incorrectly, that this is an existing situation and that there would be a receptacle at normal location, above the vanity, already.

(post #110001, reply #5 of 10)


The NEC specifies that the receptacle outlet must be within 36" of the edge of the basin (sink).  You take it from there.


(post #110001, reply #6 of 10)

There are currently no outlets in this room.  It is very small - about 4' x 8'.  By the time I get the toilet & sink in there will hardly be room to turn around.  I don't forsee a need for any other outlet other than for the plug-in baseboard heater.  There is no vanity - I have a bureau with a mirror that I created a sink basin out of.  I do have wiring for a light fixture for over the bureau/sink.  Does this light have to have an outlet with it?  Thanks everyone for your help.


(post #110001, reply #7 of 10)

Here is what the code says;

"In a dwelling units, at least one wall recptacle shall be installed in bathrooms withing 36" of the outside edge of each basin. The recpetalce outlet shall be located in on a wall that is adjacent to the basin location."

Then the definition of a bathroom; " An ara including a basin with one or more of the following: a toliet, a tub, or a shower."

Outlets on lighting fixtures don't count.

So it looks like this is a "bathroom" and needs the basin outlet. But even if it didn't it would look strange to any buyer in the future.

BTW, both that outlet and the one for the heater need to be GFCI protected, but they can be on the same circuit.

. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe

(post #110001, reply #8 of 10)


Please correct me if I'm wrong, GFI protection is required of any outlet which is placed within 6' of a water source. Thay popped into my head, I'm not even sure where I picked that up.


(post #110001, reply #9 of 10)

2002 NEC 210-8(A)(7) GFCI Protection for Personnel, Dwelling Units,  "Wet bar sinks - where the receptacles are installed to serve the countertop surfaces and are located within 1.8m (6 ft) of the outside edge of the wetbar sink."  This is the only citation I know of that (now) references a distance from the sink or basin, as far as whether or not GFCI protection is required. 

2002 NEC 210-8(A) Dwelling Units says "All 125-volt, single-phase, 15- and 20-ampere receptacles installed in the locations specified in (1) through (8) shall have [GFCI] protection for personnel.", and 210-8(A)(1) simply says "Bathrooms"

Be seeing you...

Edited 2/13/2003 1:44:23 PM ET by Tom Kanzler

Be seeing you...

(post #110001, reply #10 of 10)

As Tom said that 6 ft is for a "wet bar".

Kitchen require all of the counter top outlets to be protected and all bathroom outlets.

But laundry room outlets don't need to be.

. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe