Summary: Learn how to fit a mounting box and wire in a shaving plug.
* Notifiable project requiring Building Control approval. A shaver point is the only electric socket outlet permitted in a bathroom.
Although surface-mounted boxes can be purchased, it is safer to install a flush-mounted shaver point. Shaver points can either be connected to a ring main spur via an FCU or run from a spur on a lighting circuit.
An FCU is a socket with an integral fuse used for connecting high-wattage appliances, such as cookers, extractor fans, central heating timers and heaters to a circuit. You can connect an FCU to a circuit in three ways:
- Replacing an existing socket outlet with an FCU.
- Running a spur from a socket outlet on a ring main circuit
- From a radial circuit.
To reduce the risk of overloading the circuit, high-wattage appliances are usually run on their own separate radial circuit.
Planning and preparation
- Cut off the power supply to the relevant circuit from the consumer unit.
- Ensure all metal pipework and objects in the room are properly earthed.
- If your lighting circuit is not connected to a junction box above the bathroom, follow instructions for installing a junction box in the section on Extending Lighting Circuits.
- Prepare the cable route from the junction box to the shaver point.
- Follow the instructions in Extending Lighting Circuits to run a spur from the lighting circuit to the junction box.
Fitting a mounting box
The safest way to install mounting boxes for the FCU and the appliance outlet plate is to flush-mount them:
- Hold the mounting box level against the wall at least 150mm (6in) above the floor and draw around it.
- Place a masonry bit on your drill and set the drill to the depth required by the mounting box.
- Drill holes around and inside the outline to make chopping out the hole easier. If the wall is masonry, cut out the hole using a club hammer and cold chisel or brick bolster.
- Vacuum the hole and surrounding area to remove any dust.
- If the wall is plasterboard, cut out the hole with a padsaw blade.
- Press out the plastic tab in the back of the mounting box to make a hole for the cables.
- Insert an eyelet or grommet into the hole to prevent damage to the cables.
- Feed the original cable(s) and the new cable though the hole in the back of the mounting box and fit the box in the hole.
- If you are fitting a mounting box to a masonry wall, mark the screw holes, then drill and plug the holes to screw the mounting box to the wall.
Wiring in the shaving point
- Prepare the cores of the other end of the cable.
- If the earth cores are bare, cover the exposed end with a green-and-yellow sheath.
- Connect the neutral wire (black or blue) to the N terminal in the face-plate, connect the live core (red or brown) to L, and connect the earth to the earth terminal.
- If you have a metal mounting box, ensure it is earthed: an earth core should run between the mounting box and face-plate. With plastic mounting boxes, the earth cable should be placed in a plastic terminal block.
- Screw the face-plate to the mounting box.
- Switch the power on for the lighting circuit and test that that the shaving unit works.
- If the unit is working satisfactorily, plaster over the chase.
- Insulated screwdriver
- Wire cutters/strippers
- Trimming knife
- Power drill
- Masonry bit
- Club hammer
- Cold chisel OR Brick bolster
- Padsaw (For plasterboard walls)
- Yellow-and-green sheathing
- Mounting box
- Wall plugs (For masonry walls)
- Terminal block (For plastic mounting boxes)