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I would like to intall a bathroom ceiling fan directly over my shower, where there is an existing light that is turned on by an adjacent light switch. I have several questions regarding this project. First, I understand the fan will have to be vented to the outside. I currently have an attic vent that will be used for this purpose, so that is not the issue. My questions are:

1) Can I use the existing wiring for the light to install the fan? If so, what color wires are what? Keep in mind this house was built in 1952. 2) I will be replacing the switch with a GFI switch. Are there GFI switches and not just outlets?

  • If you are ok with fan and light operating simultaneously the existing wire is sufficient – Kris Jul 18 '18 at 15:48
  • It could be that one needs a special fan unit for the shower enclosure. – Jim Stewart Jul 18 '18 at 16:39
  • Thank you for the comments. I have decided to install a fan without the light. I just want it ran off the same switch the current light is running off of. A timer is a great idea in place of the light switch. However, I am a novice at electical work. You need a frame for a house built, I am your man. Anything electrical and I feel stupid. The wiring to the current basic light should be enough to power a basic shower fan, correct? – sbum2008 Jul 18 '18 at 19:40
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What is the fan current rating make sure it doesn't trip the main circuit, use neon tester to identify the switched live feed for the light. Disconnect the supply at the circuit breaker then use the switched life and the neutral to connect to the fan, earth the unit. May be worth having a run on timer on the fan so that steam is removed after the light has been turned off.

  • Timer is a great idea. Drying out the shower as fully and as soon as possible after use should reduce cleaning requirements by retarding mold growth on grout. – Jim Stewart Jul 18 '18 at 16:45
  • Our bathrooms have the vent fan in the middle of the bathroom. I have thought about putting in a small wall mounted circulating fan set to blow into the shower over the shower rod to circulate air into the shower. I'd want it on a timer, but I haven't done it. – Jim Stewart Jul 18 '18 at 16:48
  • Best have fan extraction through to the outside atmosphere out of the bathroom – Thomas Robert Brown Jul 19 '18 at 18:24

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