The National Electrical Code (NEC) specifically excludes locating an electric panel in a bathroom. NEC 240.24 (D) says: “Not Located in Bathrooms - In dwelling units, dormitories, and guest rooms or guest suites, overcurrent devices, other than supplementary overcurrent protection, shall not be located in bathrooms.” The prohibition took effect with the 1993 edition of the National Electrical Code (NEC).
But we still come across an electric panel in a bathroom occasionally and, for some reason, it is usually behind the toilet. Straddling a toilet to examine or repair an electric panel is definitely both awkward and unsafe. The toilet/panel combination is often the result of a homeowner remodeling a carport or garage into a bedroom and bath.
And, in a 1950s cottage on Islamorada, we located the electrical panel—after considerable searching—behind a hinged mirror over the bathroom sink. Just when a home inspector gets smug enough to think he's seen it all...
For a list of other locations where a panel should not be installed, go to our blog post Where are electrical breaker panels not allowed by code?
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Here’s links to a collection of our other blog posts about ELECTRIC PANELS:
• Why is there a 3-phase breaker in a single phase electric panel with only two bus bars?
• What causes copper wires to turn green or black in an electric panel?
• What is the maximum number of circuit breakers allowed in an electric panel?
• When should a corroded or damaged electric panel cabinet or disconnect box be replaced?
• Why is spray paint on the bus bars of an electric panel a safety defect?
• Why is it unsafe to bond neutral and ground wiring at subpanels?
• When was it first required that neutrals and grounds be separated (not bonded) on any panel past the main service panel?
• What are the code requirements for an old fuse panel/box?
• What is a tandem circuit breaker?
• When did arc fault circuit interrupter (AFCI) breakers first become required?
• Can an electric panel be located in a closet?
• Can you add circuit breakers by different manufacturers to an electric panel if they fit?
• My circuit breaker won't reset. What's wrong?
• What is a split bus electric panel?
• How do I identify a combination AFCI (CAFCI) circuit breaker?
• What is three phase electric service?
• What is a reliable way to tell if the electrical service is 3 phase or single phase?
• Can a doorbell transformer be installed inside an electric panel?
• What does a circuit breaker with a yellow or white test button indicate?
• What is the maximum gap allowed between the front of a recessed electric panel box and the wall surface surrounding it?
• How far away should a sink be from an electric panel?
• What are the requirements for NM-cables entering an electric panel box?
• Can a washer or dryer be located in front of an electric panel?
• Why do some wires in an electric panel have tape wrapped around them near their connections?
• Why is a fuse box/panel an insurance problem for homebuyers?
• Why is bundled wiring in an electric panel a defect?
• What is the difference between GFCI and AFCI circuit breakers?
• When was the "maximum of six switches or breakers" first required for the main disconnect in a house electrical system?
• What is the voltage rating of a house electrical system?
• Why are old electrical components not always "grandfathered" as acceptable by home inspectors?
• What happens when you press the "TEST" button on a circuit breaker in an electric panel?
• What is a Dual Function Circuit Interrupter (DFCI)?
• What is the difference between a Combination Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter (CAFCI) and an Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter (AFCI) circuit breaker?
• What is the difference between "grounded" and "grounding" electrical conductors?
• What does it mean when a wire is "overstripped" at a circuit breaker?
• Why is there a GFCI breaker in the electric panel for the bathroom shower light and exhaust fan?
• Why is an old fuse panel dangerous?
• Why are Zinsco and Sylvania-Zinsco electric panels a problem?
• Who is the manufacturer of those "bad" electric panels?
• Can multiple neutral or ground wires be secured under the same terminal in an electric panel?
• What is a lock device on a circuit breaker for?
• Why is the circuit breaker stuck in the middle?
• What is the gooey stuff on some of the wire connections in the electric panel?
• What is a "missing twistout" at an electric panel?
• Can an electric panel be mounted sideways-horizontally?
• What is a double tap at a circuit breaker?
• What is the right electric wire size for a circuit breaker in an electric panel?
• What is the life expectancy of a circuit breaker?
• My circuit breaker won't reset. What's wrong?
• Why do some breakers in my electric panel have a "TEST" button on them?
• What is the right size electric panel for a house?
• The electric panel is marked "Trilliant" and it's all grey plastic. Is it alright?
Visit our ELECTRICAL page for other related blog posts on this subject, or go to the INDEX for a complete listing of all our articles.