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AssuredElectrical
AssuredElectrical, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 4241
Experience:  Contractor-42+ Years in the ElectricalTrade
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I want to replace my bathroom ceiling fan/light with a fan/light/heater.

This answer was rated:

I want to replace my bathroom ceiling fan/light with a fan/light/heater. Currently the fan and light are run off of 2 different switches alongside a 3rd switch for a can light (nightlite). It appears most fan/light/heater combos will want 3 switches.

My question is is it possible to combine either the fan and light or the light and nightlite into one of the switches freeing up the third for the heater?

AssuredElectrical :

Welcome. My name is XXXXX XXXXX would be glad to assist.

AssuredElectrical :

How many wires and their colors are at the fan location in the ceiling?

AssuredElectrical :

What is the make and model of the unit you want to install?

AssuredElectrical :

Post the information when you return on line and we can continue, thanks

Customer:

I am not sure about the wires at the ceiling since I haven't climbed up there yet. I am trying to find out if it is feasible to do before I order another unit. I am replacing a Broan that is only about 8 years old. Thinking of going with either a Broan or Nutone, but haven't fully researched since I wasn't sure it was going to work without a lot of rewiring.

AssuredElectrical :

Ok, understand.

AssuredElectrical :

If you have 2 independent switches on the wall now, that control the light and fan separately that are in the same housing, you will be able to at least combine the light and fan on the new unit and free up one switch for the heater.

AssuredElectrical :

All that would take place is, at the fan combine the 2 wires for the light and fan and connect to only one of the colored switch wires, Connect all whites together, and then there will one colored wire for the heater to attach.

AssuredElectrical :

Most likely you will have a red,black and white wire at the fan now,

AssuredElectrical :

that is the most common.

AssuredElectrical :

Now, something to research is, find everything on that circuit with the fan and light now. You need to be careful of a unit with a heater, you do not want to overload the circuit

AssuredElectrical :

I would find a unit with a small heater, like 500 watts. If you get a unit with the larger heater 100 or higher, you would definitely need a new circuit to operate it on

AssuredElectrical :

Now, if you find that the bath fan and light now are the only items on the circuit, you will be ok.

AssuredElectrical :

typo earlier sorry, should have said larger than 1000 watts, you need a new circuit

AssuredElectrical :

It will look something like this (as a good example):

Full Size Image

AssuredElectrical :

Let me know if any clarification needed on the explanation.

Customer:

Great. That will give me the information I need to get started on finding the right replacement model. Thanks

AssuredElectrical :

you are most welcome, glad to assist

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