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  1. #1
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    Default Chandelier in bathroom?

    I've read the NEC for damp-rated light fixtures. But what exactly makes a fixture suitable
    for a damp location? Are the wires sealed differently from one only suitable for dry locations?

    I'd like to hang a chandelier within the 8/3 zone in a bathroom (not actually inside the shower itself). Is it conceivable that a chandelier could be rated for damp locations?

    Thanks.

    2018 ASHI InspectionWorld

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    There is no such light rated for that application, in fact, pendant lights (i.e. chandeliers) are specifically prohibited above tubs, etc.
    If you just want the look, use a chandelier using real candles with no electric wiring.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Thank you, Jim.

    I found this chandelier from Livex Lighting:

    "Livex Lighting 6424-60 Chesterfield Mini Chandelier in Antique White
    With Clear Crystals. Suitable for Damp Locations."

    They claim that several of their chandeliers are suitable for damp locations.

    Is this not to be trusted?

    Thanks!


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    Thank you, Jim.

    I found this chandelier from Livex Lighting:

    "Livex Lighting 6424-60 Chesterfield Mini Chandelier in Antique White
    With Clear Crystals. Suitable for Damp Locations."

    They claim that several of their chandeliers are suitable for damp locations.

    Is this not to be trusted?

    Thanks!
    As long as the manufacturer says it is and the fixture has a sticker on it stating such then that is all you need. Just be sure that all other requirement for such a location are followed. One issue see with this fixture is the open or uncovered candelabra light bulbs. You can not have an uncovered light bulb over a tub or shower, damp proof fixture or not.... The open bulbs will be the problem.....

    Last edited by Scott Patterson; 01-06-2014 at 07:39 PM.
    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    I've read the NEC for damp-rated light fixtures. But what exactly makes a fixture suitable
    for a damp location? Are the wires sealed differently from one only suitable for dry locations?

    I'd like to hang a chandelier within the 8/3 zone in a bathroom (not actually inside the shower itself). Is it conceivable that a chandelier could be rated for damp locations?

    Thanks.
    Does not matter if it is damp location rated, if it hangs it is not allowed there.
    From the NEC: (bold and underlining are mine)
    - 410.10 Luminaires in Specific Locations.
    - - (D) Bathtub and Shower Areas. No parts of cord-connected luminaires, chain-, cable-, or cord-suspended luminaires, lighting track, pendants, or ceiling-suspended (paddle) fans shall be located within a zone measured 900 mm (3 ft) horizontally and 2.5 m (8 ft) vertically from the top of the bathtub rim or shower stall threshold. This zone is all encompassing and includes the space directly over the tub or shower stall. Luminaires located within the actual outside dimension of the bathtub or shower to a height of 2.5 m (8 ft) vertically from the top of the bathtub rim or shower threshold shall be marked for damp locations, or marked for wet locations where subject to shower spray.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Hanging fixture are one of the types specifically prohibited in the 8/3 zone as Jerry has posted. It does not matter that it says it is listed for use in damp areas.

    Bare bulbs are not prohibited above a tub or shower. There are recessed style trims that are listed with bare bulbs. Typically they use an exterior rated flood.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post

    Bare bulbs are not prohibited above a tub or shower. There are recessed style trims that are listed with bare bulbs. Typically they use an exterior rated flood.
    They are in my area... I can't look it up right now but I thought the IRC requires a lense over the bulb to keep water from splashing on the bulb and to keep glass from falling if it breaks.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    Thank you, Jim.

    I found this chandelier from Livex Lighting:

    "Livex Lighting 6424-60 Chesterfield Mini Chandelier in Antique White
    With Clear Crystals. Suitable for Damp Locations."

    They claim that several of their chandeliers are suitable for damp locations.

    Is this not to be trusted?

    Thanks!
    Sometimes all it takes is a rubber gasket around the socket protecting the bulb threads to make it suitable for damp location.


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Scott, all my answers are based on the NEC. The IRC is not used here.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    Thank you, Jim.

    I found this chandelier from Livex Lighting:

    "Livex Lighting 6424-60 Chesterfield Mini Chandelier in Antique White
    With Clear Crystals. Suitable for Damp Locations."

    They claim that several of their chandeliers are suitable for damp locations.

    Is this not to be trusted?

    Thanks!
    Sorry, they may make a "damp location" fixture but none that can be used within the excluded zone above a tub. See the rules Jerry posted.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Thanks everyone for your extremely helpful responses!

    So to clarify -- even if it's rated for a damp location,
    it's still not allowed if it doesn't meet the 8/3 rule?


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    Thanks everyone for your extremely helpful responses!

    So to clarify -- even if it's rated for a damp location,
    it's still not allowed if it doesn't meet the 8/3 rule?
    Correct.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Correct.
    I second that motion...


  14. #14
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Thanks so much!


  15. #15

    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    I almost wish I hadn't read this thread. Several years ago we remodeled our first floor bath and I completely rebuilt a vintage chandelier to form some of the illumination. It hangs at least three feet away from the shower, which has it's own combo vent and light, but is still inside the bathroom.

    In the spirit of "The cobbler's children have no shoes." the home inspector's house has some issues. Oh well, now I have to decide the lesser of two evils. The wrath of an incensed wife or the house burning down. The safest thing is probably making sure my fire insurance is up to date.


  16. #16
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Luttrall View Post
    There is no such light rated for that application, in fact, pendant lights (i.e. chandeliers) are specifically prohibited above tubs, etc.
    If you just want the look, use a chandelier using real candles with no electric wiring.
    Trade one hazard (shock) for another (fire).


  17. #17
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    I'd like to hang a chandelier within the 8/3 zone in a bathroom (not actually inside the shower itself). Is it conceivable that a chandelier could be rated for damp locations?

    Thanks.
    What is this 8/3 zone? Thanks.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    I'd like to hang a chandelier within the 8/3 zone in a bathroom (not actually inside the shower itself). Is it conceivable that a chandelier could be rated for damp locations?

    Thanks.
    What is this 8/3 zone? Thanks.


  18. #18
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Is it a danger if it's on its own switch, and
    is never turned on while the shower or tub are being used?


  19. #19
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Jerry Peck has posted the 8/3 rules from 410.10 above.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Marshall Brown View Post
    It hangs at least three feet away from the shower, which has it's own combo vent and light, but is still inside the bathroom.
    Unless your feet are much smaller than my feet, "at least three feet" away from the shower to the chandelier is okay - provided that three feet is from the edge of the shower and not from the center of the shower.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    Is it a danger if it's on its own switch, and
    is never turned on while the shower or tub are being used?
    yes, switches can fail, also may be future unqualified bather


  22. #22
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    Is it a danger if it's on its own switch, and
    is never turned on while the shower or tub are being used?
    Yes.

    However ... if one was to completely remove the circuit which supplies that chandelier and the chandelier was just hanging from a hook into the ceiling framing above ... then the chandelier is not an electrical fixture and there is no more risk than if one had a metal frame hanging planter overhead.

    Notice that I said "completely remove the circuit which supplies that chandelier and the chandelier was just hanging from a hook into the ceiling framing above" and the I DID NOT SAY to just disconnect the wiring of the chandelier from the wiring in the box - you would need to "completely remove the circuit which supplies that chandelier and the chandelier was just hanging from a hook into the ceiling framing above", no 'ifs', 'ands', or 'buts'.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Thank you both for responding.

    What about a multi-light vanity light fixture above the sink? It extends 9.5" from the wall,
    and is within the 8-3 zone. The bulbs aren't completely enclosed, and it's not rated for damp locations.

    Last edited by Lisa Austin; 01-13-2014 at 10:29 PM.

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    What about a multi-light vanity light fixture above the sink? It extends 9.5" from the wall,
    and is within the 8-3 zone. The bulbs aren't completely enclosed, and it's not rated for damp locations.
    Wall mounted lights can be in the zone, the debate would be when is it required to be wet, damp, or not rated at all. Horizontally, outside the shower threshold, or actual shower area, I would say not rated, inside the actual shower area above the shower head (up to the 8 foot zone) damp rated, below the shower head, wet rated.

    Then, there is the judgment call if you think, or there's a good chance, the light will get sprayed on, then wet rated.

    Based on what you describe, I would say it's fine.



  25. #25
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Austin View Post
    What about a multi-light vanity light fixture above the sink? It extends 9.5" from the wall, and is within the 8-3 zone. The bulbs aren't completely enclosed, and it's not rated for damp locations.
    "It extends 9.5" from the wall" that indicates, to me, that the light is "wall mounted", and if wall mounted then it is okay and does not even need to be damp location rated described by the code:
    From the NEC: (bold and underlining are mine - and which is different this time than the previous time)
    - 410.10 Luminaires in Specific Locations.
    - - (D) Bathtub and Shower Areas. No parts of cord-connected luminaires, chain-, cable-, or cord-suspended luminaires, lighting track, pendants, or ceiling-suspended (paddle) fans shall be located within a zone measured 900 mm (3 ft) horizontally and 2.5 m (8 ft) vertically from the top of the bathtub rim or shower stall threshold. This zone is all encompassing and includes the space directly over the tub or shower stall. Luminaires located within the actual outside dimension of the bathtub or shower to a height of 2.5 m (8 ft) vertically from the top of the bathtub rim or shower threshold shall be marked for damp locations, or marked for wet locations where subject to shower spray.

    Another way to say that is that 'luminaires located outside the actual dimensions of the bathtub or shower' are not required to be marked for damp locations or marked for wet locations.

    Your light outside the tub/shower area, if wall mounted (and not chain hung from a wall mount), are not prohibited in that 3/8 area and are thus permitted, nor would it be required to be damp location or wet location rated.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    If you just want the look of a chandelier, then try looking at ones with candles or just with crystal, etc., no power/wiring means no prohibition.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    I thank all of you for your very helpful responses!


  28. #28

    Default Re: Chandelier in bathroom?

    Thanks Jerry, you may have just saved me a beating around the head and shoulders. (Actually SWMBO is one of thee most forgiving on the planet as proved by the fact I'm still around.)


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