We're working with a design-build firm, doing a gut reno on our primary bath. We purchased a Watermark TWRD3-24 electric towel rack (it's a set of 3 individual heated bars, specs and instructions here), which they've included in the designs for months (see below).
Just before work started, they told us that because of the distance from the tub to the towel rack is <24", it needed to have an IP rating of at least IPX4. The product has been discontinued, so I contacted the company to see if they had an IP rating, and they called the original manufacturer and said it is rated IP56. However, after weeks of back and forth, they told us they cannot provide any documentation for that rating (Watermark no longer works with the manufacturer so it seems the manufacturer doesn't care).
We passed the electrical rough in inspection while I was trying to get some kind of documentation, but now that I've struck out it seems that we have paid a lot of money for a very nice (yet impractical) paperweight. We're a bit pissed that our contractor didn't either look into the compliance of the towel rack or let us know that it needed to have an IP rating before we selected and ordered it.
So, now the question is, do we just have to give up? I've looked for alternative heated towel racks, and many of them don't say anything about IP rating on their spec sheets, which seems odd for something that is supposed to go in bathrooms. Some models have things like "IP55 cord" (these are hardwired not plug-in models), but don't list an overall IP rating.
If they did get an IP rating, presumably they got it through some certifier or something --- is there any way to look up a rating in some certification database or something? The instructions do say "UL499 certified" and "In compliance with 2014/35/UE DIRECTIVE", but I assume neither of those signify compliance with the IP requirement. What sort of documentation does the inspector need?
Hoping there's a magical solution out there!