Connecting the hood in the bathroom to the light switch: analysis of popular schemes and detailed instructions

Alexey Dedyulin
Checked by a specialist: Alexey Dedyulin
Author: Tatyana Zakharova
Last update: December 2019

Ventilation in the bathroom is not only desirable, but also a necessary condition for a comfortable stay. It provides dryness, prevents the growth of mold foci, eliminates unpleasant odors, if we are talking about a combined bathroom.

Intra-house ventilation shafts do not always cope with metabolic processes, so air circulation is difficult. Forced hood can be arranged by installing a fan in the room.

Often it is practiced to connect the hood in the bathroom to the light switch - so you can combine the use of lighting and a fan. Consider the best schemes suitable for self-installation, and dwell in more detail on the process of selection and installation of electrical equipment.

Schemes for connecting the hood to the switch

After the purchase exhaust fan to bathroom the question arises about its installation and connection to the home electrical network. So, there are many ways to turn on a fan, but two schemes are recognized as expedient: connecting an exhaust fan through a single-key switch and pairing it with a two-key device. Each of the schemes can be performed in two versions, which depend on the type of exhaust device - with or without a timer.

As an alternative method, we present an autonomous adjustment performed using a separate switch. It is used less often, since it is much more convenient to use a 2-key controller than two 1-key ones, and installation is easier and faster.

Option # 1 - via single-key switch

First, let's talk about how you can connect an extractor hood in the bathroom at the same time as a switch. We offer two simple solutions suitable for forced ventilation in the bathroom - both in a separate and in the combined bathroom.

In the first case, we will use an ordinary fan, built into the wall opening of the ventilation shaft, in the second - a more advanced model with a timer.

The fan and the light are connected to a common switch

The advantage of this method is in saving space, simpler and faster installation and the same simple use. Before entering the bathroom, one switch is installed, to which wires coming from the lamps and the fan are connected. When a key is pressed, all devices turn on simultaneously, turn off, respectively, also simultaneously.

Wiring diagram for fan and light bulb to single-key switch
Connection diagram for an exhaust device and fixtures to a single-key switch. The ground loop from the bulb is connected to the ground bus. Instead of one lighting fixture, you can use several

If required, a step-down transformer and a power supply are additionally connected to the luminaires. Protective grounding is necessary if the lamp housings are made of metal or have metal elements - this is especially important in a humid environment.

The drawback of the circuit is obvious - the fan will rotate only when the lights are on. If the ventilation needs to be extended, you will have to leave the lighting on, and this is the extra cost of paying for electricity.

Multiple Lighting Scheme
Scheme for a bathroom lighting system with several fixtures. The lighting circuit N in the junction box forks: one wire goes to the N bus, the second to the fan

But for someone, this method will be the most convenient. For example, for summer residents who live in the house only in the warm period and rarely visit the bathroom. If the family is large, the humidity level in the bathroom is always high, so it is better to use a two-key switch.

The fan with a timer and the light are connected to the switch

The difference between this option is that we use not a simple model, but with a timer that controls the on / off time of the hood. More information about the types of fans we have outlined in this article.

Household axial fan
If you do not want to overpay and buy a device with many useless functions, we recommend a simple model with an electronic timer. Design - Classic, Low Noise

The advantage of this solution is that you do not have to leave the lights on to properly ventilate the room. When the key is pressed, both the lighting and the fan are activated, but when pressed again, only the lights are turned off.

The fan will work as long as you program it, and then it will turn off automatically.

Scheme of connecting a fan with a timer to a single-key switch
Connection diagram for an exhaust device with a built-in timer and a lighting system to a single-key switch. The circuit N from the luminaire and the fan is connected in the electrical box and sent to the bus N

The circuit works almost flawlessly, but it also has a slight drawback - the fan starts to rotate even when this is not necessary. For example, if you looked into the bathroom for a moment to turn on the washing machine or use some cosmetics.

For especially demanding users on the market there are models with two modes that can be switched by choosing the jumper setting - a small jumper, an element of the electronic board.

Jumper to switch fan mode
The jumper is a very small part, a jumper made of plastic and metal, which closes the necessary contacts. It is installed in the selected position before mounting the fan in place, to change the mode the device will have to be removed

Due to the small, but important detail, the hood operates in two modes, which can conditionally be called “Toilet” and “Bathroom”.

Jumper positions in two modes
In the "Toilet" mode, the jumper must be fixed on the two upper contacts, in the "Bathroom" mode - on the two lower contacts. The fan operating time is set in advance using the controller, which is also located on the electronic board

Consider the difference between the two modes:

  • "Restroom" - after leaving the bathroom and pressing the switch button, the device will work for a programmed period, for example, 3 or 5 minutes.
  • "Bathroom" - the fan turns on only 90 seconds after the first press of a key. If you are in the room for less than one and a half minutes, it will not turn on. The operating time of the device is programmed in the same way as in the "Toilet" mode.

The second option is convenient if the bathroom is low humidity. When you come in just to rinse your hands and leave quickly, the fan does not react in any way.

As you can see, even when using the 1-key switch, there are several connection options. The use of a hood with a timer significantly increases its capabilities.

Option # 2 - via a two-gang switch

Now let's consider an option that is a little more difficult to connect, but much easier to use - with a 2-key switch. On sale you can find wiring accessories that are made specifically for this purpose - combining ventilation and lighting circuits.

We connect the fan and lighting

The main difference of the circuit is the use of a two-key switch. It is mounted in the gap of the “phase” so that one circuit goes to the lighting, the second to the hood.

Connection diagram of a 2-key switch to a fan
Connection diagram of a 2-key switch to fixtures and a fan. “Zero” from the N bus goes to all lighting fixtures and the hood, “ground” protects the lighting circuit

The advantage of the circuit is the autonomous inclusion of two different functions of the system - ventilation and lighting.

If you do not need to ventilate the room, press one key. If desired, you can use both keys, and then the fan will work while you are in the bathroom.

Shower dryer
There is the possibility of ventilation without the presence of the user - this is very convenient when the bathroom or shower is used as a room for drying clothes, as well as in combined bathrooms

The disadvantages depend only on the forgetfulness of the residents. Some users have the habit of pressing all the keys at once - to probably turn on the right one. In this case, you can do with a single-button model.

If quiet fan, you can just forget to turn it off - and it will work without special need all night. In such a situation, we can advise a hood with a timer, which will limit the work to a reasonable extent.

We connect a fan with a timer and light

This scheme should be considered separately, since it differs from the previous one by one important nuance. If everything remains as before in the lighting circuit - a phase wire from one of the switch keys goes to the lamps, then the fan is connected differently.

Scheme of connecting a fan with a timer to a 2-key switch
Scheme of connecting to the 2-key switch two circuits - lighting and ventilation. The phase phase wire connecting the circuit breaker with the lighting fixtures is highlighted in gray

When connecting a fan, both “zero” and “phase” from the junction box follow the fan terminals without interruption. And the device is connected to the switch by another "phase". It is this phase that needs to be connected to the LT terminal - the “phase" contact of the timer.

If you take a three-wire wire (which is recommended), then as a control "phase" you can use the yellow-green "earth". If the lighting circuit is used for its intended purpose, then it is absolutely free and can be connected to a timer.

The advantages of the circuit are the independent operation of the devices, and the fan will rotate in a clearly defined time period.

Option # 3 - installing an additional switch

What to do if the wires are laid deep in the gates and a beautiful expensive switch is already installed on the lighting circuit, and suddenly forced ventilation is required?

Next to an already mounted switch or to another place you can put another onedesigned specifically for the fan.

Connection diagram for extractor hood to a separate switch
A simple scheme for connecting the hood to a separate switch: 1 - general circuit breaker on the switchboard; 2 - automatic machine on the selected circuit; 3 - "zero" bus; 4 - distribution (decoupling) box; 5 - 1-key switch; 6 - fan

If in other circuits exclusively 3-wire wires are used, then “ground” is not required, since household overhead axial fans are made of plastic. All connections are made by "phase" and "zero" wires.

Instead of a junction box, an in-depth socket box is often used. Depth is required to freely accommodate connecting terminal blocks and the working part of the switch.

General installation instructions

Whichever scheme you prefer, the installation of devices and the connection of wires are the same. For work, you need to pre-select suitable devices, prepare tools, and if necessary, then pave the walls. We offer step-by-step installation instructions.

Stage 1 - execution of "draft" work

The issue of forced ventilation arises when residents notice that it is not coping with its tasks. This is checked in a simple way: if the flame of a match tilts towards the shaft - the hood works, if the top is directed vertically and does not fluctuate - then mine requires cleaning.

Before installing the fan, the ventilation duct must be cleaned. We do not recommend doing this on our own, especially if the management company or the service organization is responsible for the maintenance of the house. It is necessary to call specialists who will carry out the necessary activities.

Bathroom according PUE (Clause 1.1.13), refer to premises of increased danger, since the degree of humidity reaches 60% or more. This means that all electrical appliances must have a special protection, and the wires and contacts must be hidden from direct water splashes.

Switch at the entrance to the bathroom
According to the rules, the switches are installed outside the bathroom - near the door outside. However, in modern apartments there are spacious combined bathrooms, including safe zones for installation

To mask the wires in the walls, even before the finish, lay strobes - channels for electrical wiring. If you plan to do repairs, then it is better to install the fan at the same time as installing other electrical appliances.

So, the "rough" work consists in cleaning the mine and shredding the walls for wiring. In addition, you need to prepare a hole in the wall for installing the fan and make recesses for the socket and junction boxes (if necessary).

Stage 2 - preparation of tools and materials

Electrical work usually does not require the involvement of any special tool - usually everything you need is even for amateurs.

The selection of materials should be taken very seriously - after electrical work, the bathroom is finished, most often expensive, which you will not want to break the next 10-15 years. All wires, wiring accessories, devices and consumables must be of high quality, factory-made, with a guarantee.

The minimum that is required for the exhaust device:

If you decide to compress the cores with sleeves, then prepare both pliers and sleeves in advance. But the soldering of wires is used less and less because of the complexity and duration of the process itself.

Also, a construction vacuum cleaner may be required from equipment, and sealant from materials.

Stage 3 - the implementation of the connection process

Start by installing the fan. We extend the wires in advance through the channels - from the switch to the hood and the installation locations of the lamps. For protection, all cables located in the bathroom space can be enclosed in corrugated insulating pipes.

Seat fan
In order not to experiment with different installation methods, we suggest choosing a fan model that matches the size of the hole in the ventilation shaft or a little more - for overhead models

The fan either "sits" on the self-tapping screws (dowels), or fixed on the sealant. In the first case, it is easier to dismantle, but during installation, the lining can be damaged if it is already done.

Work order:

  1. We unscrew the decorative panel from the device, remove it together with the mosquito net.
  2. We position the cable in the shaft so that it does not impede air circulation, remove the corrugation from the ends of the wires.
  3. We bring the power cable into a specially designed hole.
  4. We install the fan in place, twist the screws.

Before attaching the decorative panel, we make a connection.

Connecting wires to the fan terminals
The option of connecting the cores to the Era fan terminal block. A voltage of 220 V is applied to terminals L and N, and terminal T is necessary for timer control - a “phase” connects it to the switch

Finishing step - mounting the decorative cover by tightening the fixing screw. As a result, all wires must be masked in the device or in the wall.

We connect the cores of the circuit breaker according to the selected scheme, the designations on the schemes are traditional.

In the fan, the layout lived as follows:

  • red - terminal L;
  • blue - terminal N;
  • yellow green - T or LT.

We recommend that you familiarize yourself with color coded wires in electrics.

What do experienced electricians advise against doing?

Firstly, do not connect the fan in the bathroom directly to the light bulb. Then you will deprive yourself of comfort - the fan will always work only when the light is on, including when you take a bath.

Secondly, they do not recommend installing an indoor switch anyway.If the project requires confirmation from the appropriate authority, you simply will not receive it.

Thirdly, they do not recommend the use of complex electrical devices and all kinds of sensors. They often break due to high humidity, occupy a place on the walls and do not look very aesthetically pleasing. The simpler the devices and the connection, the less problems there are with them.

Conclusions and useful video on the topic

Details on installing the hood in plain language:

Tile installation details:

Instructions on the use of Vago terminals:

Recommendations for choosing a fan, testing:

If you planned to make repairs in the bathroom on your own, including updating the lighting system, then installing a fan will seem easy and quick. The main thing is to decide on the operation mode of the hood at the start, choose a reliable model and connect correctly to the one- or two-key switch.

Remember: whichever scheme you prefer, the installation should be carried out in accordance with generally accepted requirements and safety rules.

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