Kids Room Study & tree shaped bookshelf: modern Bedroom by RAVI - NUPUR ARCHITECTS

Where do I put switches and sockets for safety and aesthetics?

Sunita Vellapally Sunita Vellapally
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When you are designing your home’s interiors, electrical wiring and switchboards need to be planned so that they don’t become an eye sore that takes away from the overall look of your home once the project is completed. Positioning the switches in every room needs careful thought. They should be easily accessible, but well-concealed so that they don’t distract from the room’s design style or theme. Additionally, in a home with young children, from a safety aspect, the switches need child-proofing to keep them out of reach of little fingers.

In today’s ideabook, we present 9 design ideas that you can choose for positioning switches in your home.

1. High safety

In a home with small children, it’s ideal to place switches higher up on the wall, where they won’t be played with like they are toys. It’s a safety feature that is essential for child-proofing any home.

2. Splash-free accessibility

In most bathrooms, the plug point is built into the light switch panel, so it needs to be placed at a location that doesn’t get wet easily. For example, in this bathroom, although there’s space for the switches between the mirror and the basin, it is fixed higher up on the wall next to the basin to keep it away from the splash zone. This ensures that the plug point is always dry and safe to use, and it is still conveniently placed for plugging in appliances such as hair dryers and electric shavers, for which one needs the mirror.

3. Close for comfort

4 Bed Apartment Interior: minimalistic Bedroom by Aum Architects
Aum Architects

4 Bed Apartment Interior

Aum Architects

Switches need to be placed conveniently where they can be reached easily without stretching or bending too much. This is especially important in a bedroom where you need the light switch located at a place where you can access it while lying down. Whether it’s for turning out the light before bedtime or switching it on in the middle of the night, placing it within arm’s reach saves you from pulling a muscle by overstretching or crashing into furniture in the dark.

4. Multi-level convenience

The media room or the area near the television needs several plug points for connecting the home theatre, television, DVD player, digital receiver and other accessories. It’s best to have an idea of the exact location of each device so that the switch panel can be fixed near it, like in this home where switches are fixed at different levels near the entertainment unit.

5. Camouflage switch

Kids Room Study & tree shaped bookshelf: modern Bedroom by RAVI - NUPUR ARCHITECTS
RAVI—NUPUR ARCHITECTS

Kids Room Study & tree shaped bookshelf

RAVI - NUPUR ARCHITECTS

When a room is being designed to a theme, it’s a good idea not only to place the switches where they are easy to access, but also to ensure they blend with the design. Notice how the rectangular switch panel in this kids’ room camouflages perfectly into the geometric wall art?

6. Counter top convenience

In a kitchen, it’s convenient to have multiple plug points fitted into the wall behind the work counter so that appliances can be connected easily. Having several plug points ensures that you can run more than one appliance at a time, helping you work efficiently.

7. An eye on aesthetics

In this classic living room, the light switches are placed in a vertical strip in the centre of the wall panel to ensure that they don’t create an eye sore. In fact, the designer has chosen circular white switches that blend with the theme.

8. Entry point access

Project of Rajguru Nagar:  Corridor & hallway by QBIX DESIGNS
QBIX DESIGNS

Project of Rajguru Nagar

QBIX DESIGNS

Whether it’s a light switch at the top or bottom of a staircase, the one near the main door or at the entrance to the dressing area or any other room in the house, it’s always a good idea to have the switch panel placed on the wall at the entry point of the area. Ideally, the switch should be at shoulder height or slightly lower, so that you can easily turn on the lights before you walk into the room.

9. Customized

 Schools by Studio Rémi BOUHANICHE
Studio Rémi BOUHANICHE

Bibliothèque Gérard Pélisson—Institut Paul Bocuse

Studio Rémi BOUHANICHE

Of course, if you like the convenience of having a switch within easy reach in the areas that you use most often, it’s best to consult your designer and customize the placement of panels. For example, a switch built into the table top of a work desk, like in this image, is a great idea as it saves you the trouble of getting up to turn on the light when it gets dark. This is also worth considering for the area near the bath tub, Jacuzzi or even a cosy reading corner in your home.

For more tips on lighting, see this ideabook.

Do you have any other practical tips to share on positioning light switches? Let us know in the comments.
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