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    Bathroom lighting and heating

    Summary: Planning the lighting and heating in a bathroom, consider the most suitable lighting, electrical regulations, and heating options.

    Maximise the natural light in your bathroom by removing curtains and blinds and fitting frosted glass or a thin muslin blind to let in more light. If you can get planning permission, enlarging windows or adding skylights will make the room brighter in the day.

    Bathroom lighting

    Electric lighting should be carefully considered to complement the mood of your bathroom. If you opt for a natural minimalist look, keep lighting unobtrusive with subtle recessed light fittings or flush spotlights. Large pendant lights and wall fittings with fabric shades will suit a retro design or a more traditional décor. Lighting contrasts will make the room seem bigger so consider backlighting alcoves and recesses.

    Put atmospheric lighting and brighter lights for practical purposes on different switches so you can turn off shaving or mirror lights for a relaxing soak in the bath. For a relaxing soft wash of light use low-voltage spotlights controlled by dimmer switches. Alternatively, you could be creative with uplighters, downlighters and LEDs. Downlighters cast pools of light on surfaces and will need a false ceiling to conceal the wiring. LEDs create a twinkling glow and can be set into the floor, around the bath or mirror, or even in the ceiling like stars. The easiest way to install safe LEDs is to buy LED tiles for tiling any surface. For a spa-like ambiance, add underwater lights to your bath, whirlpool or basin.

    You will also need some bright lighting around the mirror. Mirror-fronted cabinets often have their own integral light. Or you could buy a clip on spotlight to attach to the mirror. Choose top quality lighting to illuminate the mirrors. For an even all-round light on your face, angle several spotlights onto the mirror, including one directly above, or install theatre-style lightbulbs around the mirror. Remember that bright white light, dim light, or soft yellow light will not give you an accurate reflection. You may also need to fit a pressure-mounted waterproof shower light to help you see inside the cubicle.

    Electrical regulations

    Remember that any electric lighting scheme you choose may be restricted by building regulations. Any electrical work in a bathroom will require approval from your local Building Control department and should usually be done by a professional electrician. See our section on electrical regulations for more information.

    Certain areas or ‘zones’ in the bathroom will not be allowed light fittings:

    • No lighting may be installed in zone 1: below 2.25m (7ft6in) above a bath or shower tray or within the width of the bath or shower.
    • You may install one light fitting as well as an extractor fan, shaver unit, space heater, or pump within zone 2. This includes the space above zone 1 and an area of 600mm (1ft11in) from a bath, shower tray, basin, bidet or toilet.
    • You may install one light fitting as well as an extractor fan, shaver unit, space heater, RCD-protected fixed appliances, or pump within zone 3. This includes the space beyond zone 2 - 2.4m (7ft8in) horizontally and up to 2.25m (7ft4in) vertically.
    • All light fittings should be suitable for bathroom use.

    Bathroom Lighting - lets-do-diy.com

    Bathroom heating

    Hot water central heating is the safest way of keeping a bathroom warm, but if you do have an electric room heater it must be permanently fixed at a greater distance than 0.6m from the bath or shower and controlled by a pull-cord or by a switch located outside the bathroom.

    Underfloor heating is often preferred for bathrooms as it is safer, quieter, and distributes heat evenly across a room. On the other hand, it can be slow to heat up and cool down, and requires disruption to the flooring to install. The operation of the heating system can also be affected by certain types of flooring. Water-heated systems run off a central heating system and require professional installation. Electric systems consist of rolls of matting, like an electric blanket, laid under the flooring.

    Heated towel rails are available in a wide range of styles and types, offering heating from hot water or electric sources.

    Hot Spring Radiator - lets-do-diy.com

    Author: C J Mills Google+

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