French electrical regulations - Part 2 Bathroom Zones

NF C 15-100 French Bathroom Electrics and their zones

A bathroom is made up of several zones where there are specific restrictions on what is allowed. There are now 3 zones to bring in line with European standards.

  • Volume 0 - Submerged in water

  • Volume 1 - Heavily sprayed with water

  • Volume 2 - Lightly sprayed with water

Every item of electrical equipment has a specific protection rating denoted by IPxx (where x relates to the protection level). The first number relates to protection of ingress (solids) and the second number relates to protection of moisture (waterproofing level).


IPX4: water projection from all directions
IPX5: projection against the jets of water with the lance of any direction
IPX7: projection against the effects of temporary immersion.

There is also another classification for electrical equipment, this shown by the following symbols


Class I: household appliances, convectors, wall lights; which must be connected to the earth
Class II: double-insulation electrical appliances that do not have to be earthed.

The following table shows what is allowed in the different zones

Equipment

Electrical Class

Volume 0

IPX7

Volume 1 IPX5

Volume 2

IPX4

No volume

Washing machine, Tumble dryer


✖️

✖️

✖️

✔️

Heating equipment

Class 1

✖️

✖️

✖️

✔️

Class 2

✖️

✖️

✔️

✔️


Lighting

Class 1

✖️

✖️

✖️

✔️

Class 2

✖️

✖️

✔️

✔️

Extra Low Voltage (12V)

✔️

✔️

✔️

✔️

Instant hot water

Class 1

✖️

✔️

✔️

✔️

Hot water cylinder

Class 2

✖️

✔️

✔️

✔️

Light switch


✖️

✖️

✖️

✔️

Extra Low Voltage (12V)

✖️

✔️

✔️

✔️

Power outlet with earth


✖️

✖️

✖️

✔️

Shaver socket

Separated Low Voltage

✖️

✖️

✔️

✔️

Transformer


✖️

✖️

✖️

✔️

Cabling


✖️

✔️

✔️

✔️

Junction box


✖️

✖️

✖️

✔️


There is also another zone, known as the hidden zone. This is below the bath or shower tray. The only thing allowed in this zone is extra low voltage (12V) equipment such as lighting or radios.