What Are The Bathroom Extractor Fan Zoning Regulations?

bathroom extractor fan on wall

Not sure which regulations to follow for the installation of your first bathroom extractor fan? We’ve got you covered!

A bathroom extractor fan can be installed in Zone 1 of a bathroom. The exact location is different for each home but there are several rules to follow to avoid breaking the law.

Don’t worry if this sounds complicated. It is actually easier than you think. Just read on to meet Zone 0 and Zone 1 and all the hiccups that you need to watch out for!

Understanding Bathroom Extractor Fan Zoning Regulations

Wouldn’t it be great if we could just stick a new appliance into the wall and everything’s fine? Unfortunately, things do not work that way. When electricity enters the picture, rules and regulations must be followed to ensure not only your safety when using the appliance but also to prevent house fires caused by faulty installations.

The installation of a bathroom extractor fan is no different. When you purchase your fan, there are regulations that you need to follow to get the best results – safety-wise and how successfully your fan will work in the future.

Bathroom extractor fan installations are usually done either on the ceiling or the walls of a bathroom. Before this can be done, however, there is a learning curve where you need to familiarize yourself with the installation zones. This part is essential because your fan must comply with the regulations of each zone. These zones are usually numbered from zero to two with each representing a specific section in a bathroom or shower.

Today, we will look at Zone 0 and 1.

Grab your free copy to get all the best tips on how to clean a bathroom extractor fan.

Extractor Fan with Timer

All About Zone 0 In The Bathroom

Once we start explaining what falls under Zone 0, you will very quickly see why it’s prohibited to install a bathroom extractor fan in this area! Let’s dive in.

In a bathroom, Zone 0 includes the space near and inside the bath and also the area inside a shower’s basin. Showers that do not have basins also have their own Zone 0, which is an area roughly 10 cm above the finished floor. It includes the surrounding area of the fixed shower head up to 1.2 m.

It is not hard to see why extractor fans are banned from this zone. The chances that water will get into the appliance is very high. At best, this could lead to the malfunction of the appliance and at worst, you or a family member can get electrocuted.

Do you like big or small? Not sure? Find out more about how to choose the right size bathroom extractor fan.

All About Zone 1 In The Bathroom

You can install your bathroom extractor fan in Zone 1. Let’s have a closer look at what this zone entails in the bathroom.

Zone 1 extends to 2.25 m above the level of the floor. For a shower, this zone covers the width of the shower basin and 2.25m from the floor. However, if the shower lacks a basin, this zone is the area 1.2m around the fixed shower head. It is worth noting that this zone does not include Zone 0 even though it looks like its area overlaps with that of Zone 0. For a bathroom extractor fan to be installed in Zone 1, the appliance must have 12v SELV motors fitted and SELV transformers together with isolators installed outside both zones.

How Are The Zones Determined In A Bathroom Or Shower?

electric shower

To be fair, the zones in your bathroom might not be identical to your neighbour’s. While the basic measurements do apply, other factors also determine the zones in each bathroom.

What we know for sure is that the ceiling, floor and wall all play a role in the placement of these zones. To some extent, the presence of a basin (or the lack thereof) in the shower also contributes to the position of both these zones. Your instruction manual might be able to shed more light on the matter but you can also ask a professional to identify the zones in your bathroom to make sure that you comply with the rules.

In case you need a little help to choose a new fan, we have reviewed the best bathroom extractor fans for top quality, looks, and great offers.

What Do I Need To Know About Electrical Requirements

For any bathroom extractor fan installation to be successful, all the circuits in a bathroom need to have RCDs. Initially, it was a compulsory requirement to have a local supplementary bonding but this requirement has been relaxed providing that you meet the rest of the requirements.

Once again, if the whole thing sounds too complicated do not hesitate to contact a professional electrician to install the appliance for you. At least you’ll know that the bathroom extractor will be installed correctly the first time and meet all the zone and electrical requirements as well. Using a professional will also save you time!

Should you also be interested in an electric shower but don’t know what to budget for, find out how much it cost to install an electric shower.

A Quick Summary On Bathroom Extractor Fan Bathroom Zone Regulations

  • An extractor fan is a great appliance that helps to get rid of excess moisture in a bathroom.
  • Installation requires a good grasp of where the appliance is allowed to be installed in the bathroom.
  • Bathroom extractor fans are prohibited from being installed in Zone 1
  • Bathroom extractor fans are allowed to be installed in Zone 2.
  • Both zones have certain criteria that identify them but you might need the help of a professional to correctly identify Zone 1 in your home.
  • You also need to make sure that the installation follows the correct procedure regarding electrical connections.
  • A professional can also install the fan and save you time when you have a busy life.

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About the Author Harry Thompson

Involved in home renovations throughout his life, Harry is an expert in everything to do with home and garden DIY. In his spare time, he enjoys cooking and tending to his garden.