I am doing the rough-in electrical in my bathroom gut. I want to put a few receptacles (outlets) above the vanity. Is there a standard height I should be installing the receptacle? I don't have a floor or a vanity yet so I can't just measure from the counter top.


There are no set rules for the height of receptacles on walls or over counters, even in a bathroom. Good practice is to keep them at least 4 inches above a counter top or backsplash and not directly over a sink or under a window. You can install them where ever they look good to you, but try to keep them as far left or right of the faucet as practicable. Of course, all bathroom outlets must be GFCI protected.

  • According to NEC receptacles should be less than 18" (I think) above the counter, but this might only apply in kitchens (I don't remember). So 4" is probably good, just make sure they are in a convenient and safe location. – Tester101 Aug 25 '11 at 13:21

Standard is 48" to the top screw hole of the box. So it looks aesthetically correct with the switches. I am a residential electrician, that's what we set them at.

  • Hello, and welcome to Home Improvement. Thanks for the answer; keep 'em coming. – Daniel Griscom Jun 24 '19 at 1:09

Your counter tops should be no more than 32-38 inches so just put them at about 4 feet that should be good enough. I am making an assumption here. Electrical work is not my specialty. I am sure that there is a standard height; however, if you are doing this yourself, I do not see why you cannot put them where you want.


Dont forget the three and 12 rule... reguardless of how many basins you have, a gfci protected outlet must be within 3 feet... so if you have two vessel sinks in a master bathroom, one outlet between them could work, as long as neither is more than 3 feet away... you are permited to put the receptacle 4 feet.from the wall, on a 3 foot vanity, that has a center sink, because it will be within 3 feet... but it may not be less than 12 inches below the counter (unless there is an already qualified outlet meeting the rules). Other than that, gfci and within 3 feet (be careful, arc fault is also gaining ground, check local authorities, they always answer your questions, its their job), you can place it where ever you like. I aim for the bottom of the gang box to be 2" above the backsplash, unless its 100% tiled, then if wall mount, 2" below faucet, or if counter mount, 2" above faucet, and off set to outer edge of sink to the inside edge of.gang box.

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