Home>Discussions>ELECTRICAL & LIGHTING>Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch
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queen60
Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch

We have a ceiling-mounted heater in one of our bathrooms, circa 1970, that is controlled by a thermostat. The room is usually warmed by ambient air, so the heater is seldom used. We'd like to have a simple on/off switch for those times when a little extra heat is wanted. Can we switch the thermostat out? Or do we need to replace the unit with something else?

JLMCDANIEL
Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch

I wouldn't do it. If you forget that you turned it on you could burn down the house.

Jack

MtMan54
Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch

Hi, You need to keep the thermostat but you can add a switch or lower the temp when it is not needed. Is this heater on a separate circuit? Thanks

queen60
Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch

It's always on the lowest setting. I don't know if it's on a separate circuit but I think not.

Looks like replacement is the way to go; maybe infrared instead of electric coils.
Thanks.

Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch
queen60 wrote:

It's always on the lowest setting. I don't know if it's on a separate circuit but I think not.

Looks like replacement is the way to go; maybe infrared instead of electric coils.
Thanks.

You say the heater thermostat is on it's lowest setting? Can't you just set it higher?

ed21
Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch

All thermostats I've seen have an off switch built into them. What happens in the summer when the A/C is on?
You should be able to replace the thermostat with a new one.

Condoman
Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch

We use 60 minute spring wound timers on our heaters.

HoustonRemodeler
Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch

Why not add a timer switch rated for such application?

We use them for ceiling vent fans in baths all the time as the new fans are so quiet.

queen60
Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch
HoustonRemodeler wrote:

Why not add a timer switch rated for such application?

We use them for ceiling vent fans in baths all the time as the new fans are so quiet.

That's what I wanted to do, but the more I think about it and from comments here, it doesn't sound like a good idea now.

The heater is an electric coil with an automatic fan. Turn up the thermostat the coil heats and the fan comes on. The bathroom has a separate ventilation fan controlled by a wall switch.

The heater is mounted near the door so you have to heat the whole room to get extra heat when getting out of the shower.

I think I'll replace it with an infrared unit mounted in front of the shower and controlled by a timer. Maybe a combination unit.

Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch
queen60 wrote:

That's what I wanted to do, but the more I think about it and from comments here, it doesn't sound like a good idea now.

The heater is an electric coil with an automatic fan. Turn up the thermostat the coil heats and the fan comes on. The bathroom has a separate ventilation fan controlled by a wall switch.

The heater is mounted near the door so you have to heat the whole room to get extra heat when getting out of the shower.

I think I'll replace it with an infrared unit mounted in front of the shower and controlled by a timer. Maybe a combination unit.

The IR unit sounds like a great idea. You will get radiant heat directed where it will do the most good. And the room will stay relatively cool. :)

Fencepost
Re: Change bathroom heater from thermostat to on/off switch

There should be no problem using a timer. I did that in my own bathroom, and it works great.

You'll probably want to use a 30 minute spring-wound timer -- electronic timers usually aren't rated to handle the load of a heater and may not work correctly on a 240V circuit. The spring-wound timer shouldn't be a problem.

If your exhaust fan isn't on a timer, it should be. Then when you're done showering or stinking up the bathroom, you can let the fan run a while to clear the air without worrying that you'll forget it on.

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