Soaking in a bath after a long week is a great way to relax and spend alone time. The warm water, soap, and essential oils calm the muscles and help to clear the mind. However, the bath needs to be earthed, which many homeowners do not know. So, why does a bath need to be earthed?
Bath earthing is essential to prevent electrocution, fire hazards, and damage to other bathroom appliances. The earth cable prevents shocks by picking up leaked electricity current that would otherwise travel through the bathtub to your body, causing electrocution.
Electricity, water, and metals are enemies, but unfortunately, they are all found in the bathroom. For that reason, earthing is a must to prevent dangerous situations that might arise from an electrical fault.
Earthing is a circuit connecting metal components to the earth. The earth cable collects excess electric current and directs it to the ground so that it does not come into contact with your body.
The bath, shower, bathroom radiator, lighting, basin, and toilet in a bathroom should be earthed. If you lift your bathtub, you will notice a thin wire from the bath to the ground.
3 Reasons Why A Bath Should Be Earthed
Choosing a bathtub for first-time installation or renovation can be a daunting task. The bathtub you choose determines the final look of your bathroom and the free space you have.
The best bathtub for your bathroom should match the other fixtures, be of the right size, and MUST be earthed. With that said, below are the reasons why you must earth your bathtub:
1. To Prevent Electrocution
The risk of electrocution in the bathroom is high because we have water, electricity, and metal in the same place. When you are in the bathtub, you are exposed to the risk of electrocution because you are interacting with electricity via cold and hot water.
However, during bathroom wiring, the electricians curb chances of bath electrocution by ensuring that the bathtub is earthed.
2. Prevents Risk Of Fire
After the kitchen, the bathroom is another room at high risk of an electrical fire in your house. And if the bathroom is set ablaze, the whole house is meant to go down.
You might not see the eventuality of fire when you are soaking in the bath, but the lighting, heater, hairdryer, and any other source of electricity in the bathroom can cause fire at any given time.
If the excess current from any of these sources of electricity flows through the metal parts of your bathtub, they act as current transfers because they are good conductors of heat, and fire can spark. But, with an earthed bath, the excess current is directed to the ground preventing fire hazards.
3. Protects Electrical Appliances In The Bathroom
Electrical appliances are prone to electrical power spikes and surges. Suppose the power coming to any appliance in the bathroom is unstable. In that case, it draws excess current, which damages the particular appliance and short circuits any other appliance plugged in at the moment.
If all the electrical installations in the bathroom are earthed, such accidents will never happen because the excess current is directed to the ground.
Methods Of Earthing the Bath
There are various earthing methods used, and they are used depending on the type of building, appliances, and budget, among other factors. Below are some of them:
1. Plate Earthing
For plate earthing, they bury copper or galvanized iron around 10 feet into the ground. The pit is filled with alternate layers of salt and charcoal.
2. Pipe Earthing
Pipe earthing requires a galvanized steel pipe drilled with holes where the earthing wires will be connected. The size of the pipe depends on the type of soil and the type of electrical system.
Pipe earthing is commonly used, and just like plate earthing, the pit is filled with salt and charcoal.
3. Rod Earthing
As the name suggests, a rod made of galvanized iron or copper is buried in the soil. The excess current is transferred to the rod, to the neutral ground.
4. Wire Earthing
For wire earthing, they bury stripe electrodes in horizontal trenches dug in the ground
Earthing is a must-have for all electrical installations to eliminate the dangers of electrocution; as you can see, there are different methods of earthing methods.
The method of earthing installation used depends on the type of soil in the area. To determine the best earthing method, electricians consider the moisture level in the soil, salts, and soil composition. For example, different earthing methods are used for wet and rocky soils.
Frequently Asked Questions (About Earthed Bath)
1. Why Is There An Earth Wire On My Bath?
An earth wire under your bathtub could be a bath earth wire or a supplementary bonding wire. An earth wire prevents electrocution and fire hazards by directing excess electrical current into the ground. On the other hand, supplementary bonding wire connects metal pipework to electrical fittings in the bathroom.
2. Do Steel Baths Need To Be Earthed?
Steel baths and all-metal baths should be earthed because the tub becomes live in case of an electrical fault. If someone were inside the tub, the current would flow through the body to the ground leading to electrocution.
3. Is Earthing A Legal Requirement?
Earthing is a legal requirement for all exposed metal work or conductives in the bathroom. The goal is to prevent electrocution and fire hazards. The bath and metal works can easily become live in an electrical fault.
In Conclusion, Why Does A Bath Need To Be Earthed?
Bathrooms are electrically high risk environments. According to building regulation legislation, all electrical applications in the bathroom must be earthed.
Some manufacturers will indicate that their appliances are double insulated; hence there is no need for earthing. However, you must adhere to the rules because they are designed to keep you safe from electrocution.