What Do I Need To Know When Wiring A Bedroom?
Every room in the home is different. For every bit of construction, each room has a unique set of considerations that affect decisions. This is true from floors to paint colors.
It is also true for wiring and electrical. If you are confident enough to do your wiring, you likely know a lot of this already. I am not an electrician and think this kind of work is best left to those with the experience.
Although, I do think it is useful to understand what the professionals are doing in your home. So if you are interested in what considerations are going into wiring a bedroom, I am here to share what I have learned.
How Do You Wire Your Bedroom?
Over time, there have been some regulations and advances in energy efficiency considerations that have changed the way that bedroom electrical systems have been set up. For instances, newer lights are often attached to dimmer switches or sensors that shut the lights off when the room is not occupied.
These considerations are great for saving energy and making your bedroom an up to date area. Dimmer switches allow you to use less light when you don't need to have the lights on full. This is great for mood lighting, or for having lights on and not bothering someone trying to sleep.
The abrupt introduction of bright lights can wake someone, but a slow increase into dim lights can let them sleep while you get up, or get ready for your day.
One thing to watch for when opting for dimmer switches is compatible with fixtures. Not every light fixture works with dimmer switches. If you install a dimmer switch without being careful, you may end up with mitch matched features, and your dimmer will not work properly. This can cause lots of headaches when you have to replace fixtures.
Closets do not have the same requirements that new bedrooms have that call for dimmers and auto shut offs. Large closets can have independent lights as long as the closet is large enough. Usually, you need at least 12 inches of space between where your lights will go and combustible items like clothing. If your closet is too small, it may not be worth it to sacrifice that space to add a light.
Many new requirements call for a permanently hardwired smoke detector. This can be commonly overlooked as many people only think of the old school battery operated smoke detectors. The hardwired models are far more reliable. Although you will still need a battery as these are required to have a battery back up in them.
Most places require a smoke detector in sleeping areas by law and those that don't at least require that they are close or at least in the hallway nearby. It is better to be safe than sorry when it comes to smoke alarms and fire safety.
A hardwired smoke detector with a battery backup is a perfect way to make sure that you are protected and that your protection has a backup. This is not something you want to cut corners installing. Make sure that you know where it should go, and they are properly wired.
Bedrooms also require tamper proof outlets in all bedrooms. These kinds of outlets are designed to keep children out of the electrical components. This is a safety feature that is important to anyone that has children or is looking to start a family. Tamper proof outlets are not hard to install and are not incredibly expensive.
They are becoming the standard outlet for homes because of their high level of safety. Any new outlet should be tamper proof, and you may even want to consider replacing older outlets with these newer kinds.
One thing that is not required in a bedroom is a ceiling fan. Depending on your location and the weather there, you may very well want one. If you do want a ceiling fan, make sure that you have a clearance of at least 7 feet between the floor and the blades of the fan. This distance makes sure that there is a minimum safe distance for most people.
There are rare cases where someone would be taller and be in danger. Remember, seven-foot clearance is a minimum. Having the clearance be higher than this is totally acceptable.
One thing you should be aware of is where you plan on placing furniture and things. If you don't know, you can go for a standard spread of fixtures and plugs, but if you have an idea of how you will design the room you can customize outlets and fixtures to optimize them.
You can have small lighting fixtures that are perfect for late night reading located near the bed. You can make sure each of your end tables is located near an outlet and that your desk or dresser has a nearby outlet for devices and lamps.
The proper spacing and placement of outlets will save you from having to use dangerous and clunky extension cords all around your room to make sure that you get power to all the things that need it.
If you plan on having a television, a computer or a landline telephone in your room, also consider where you are going to place those things. Where you will need to put the plugs in for all of those specialty appliances. Most bedrooms have phone jacks, and at least one cable plugs in, but as technology changes so will your needs.
What can you do without in your bedroom? Try to decide what you will use and what you will not. You don’t want to put the work and money into installing a device or plug that you will not need or use.
Knowledge Is Power
The first thing to know is the laws and regulations of your area and what is required in wiring your room. Make sure that your fixtures and switches are up to date, and up to code.
Saving energy is also always a good thing to keep in mind when planning the wiring of your room. Another smart thing to do is to keep in mind the layout and where you are going to need additional fixtures and outlets.
Did you find this helpful? If you have any questions or comments, leave them below!
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