Bathroom lighting zones explained
Posted by ilker Duymaz on
The right lighting can make a big difference to the look and feel of your bathroom and it's important to select the right type for the tasks being carried out.
For example, you'll need bright task lighting around your sink and your mirror to make shaving, teeth brushing and make-up application easier.
But the bathroom is a place of relaxation too, so you'll probably want some dimmer mood lighting that you can switch on when you're soaking in the tub.
You may also want to add in some additional lighting to illuminate dark corners or the inside of your bathroom storage cabinets, or to draw attention to features such as shelves and pictures.
It's not just the design of your lights you need to think about though, as there are safety aspects to take into consideration too, given that the bathroom is a pretty wet environment.
Lights for use in the bathroom are given IP ratings and each type is suitable for use in certain areas. Here we'll outline the main zones in the bathroom and the lights you should use.
This is the area inside the bath or shower itself. Any lights you install in this zone must be low voltage and rated at least IP67, which means they are completely immersion proof.
This is the area directly above Zone 0 to a height of 2.25 metres from the floor. A minimum rating of IP44 is required here. If the lights are fed by a 240V supply you'll also need a 30ma residual current device to protect the circuit.
This area extends horizontally 0.6 metres outside the perimeter of the bath or shower and vertically 0.6 metres above Zone 1. Again you need to use lights with a minimum IP44 rating. The area around your sink, within a radius of 60cm around the taps, is also considered as Zone 2.
This is no longer considered a bathroom zone as it basically refers to the rest of your bathroom. Anything in this area is therefore un-zoned and does not need a specific IP rating. Some lighting products are however not suitable for use in any part of the bathroom, so check before you buy.