[SOLVED] Switch for heated towel bar

Hi guys I just wanted to double check this before I tried it out. I have an amba heated towel rack and I’d like to be able to turn it on and program it. When installed I didnt put a smart switch in and would like to ad one. It’s hardwired and draws 1.6 amps.

As I am looking at switches it occurs to me that I could probably use any programmable/scene capable wall switch is this correct? I was thinking about a weMo (wifi) or homeseer (zwave) switch because that is what I have been using up until this point. Does anyone have any experience with this or just think it will work. I would just like to not waste effort if possible. I see that there is one marketed by a company that sells towel bars and it is a wemo but they want $70 for what looks like a standard switch.

Any input is appreciated.


Hi Jared (@rahimlee54),

I suspect that your heated towel rack is a resistive load, so I do not think you will have any problem using a smart switch (typically a controlled relay) rated for more than 1.6 amps. Most such devices that I am aware of are rated for maximum loads of 8 amps or more, which means you have plenty of choices.

Good luck!

I suspect this will be in a wet room. Choose a device with a good IP rating.
Or you could use a sonoff in a waterproof box:

Hi @scottk the unit is an amba jeeves. It works off of 115 V (US power) and is wired into a breaker like any other electrical here. I think you’re right it’s resistive and filled with mineral oil.

@vzorglub I hadn’t thought about the sonoff but that could work as well. The switch is in a water closet behind the door around 4 ft from the toilet. While technically a “wet” location I think the likely hood of anything happening are very low. The current switch is in the wall in a standard electrical box.

Thanks for the input guys

Beware of condensation

That’s why we have a switch in the ceiling with a little string to turn the light on in the bathroom in the UK. We are not allowed wall switches in wet rooms.

Ih, Jared. We’re currently in the middle of building a new house here in Santa Fe, NM. I am responsible for the details of power control, lighting and switching. We have selected a towel warmer for our main bathroom that is similar to yours – wall mounted, hardwired and mains powered. I have specified a number of different manufacturers for controlling loads, mostly Aeon Labs for Z-Wave devices and Lutron dimmers and keypads for finicky lighting (LEDs mostly). For our towel warmer and the exhaust fan in the main bath, I have specified this dual switch from Aeon Labs:

I also have several Sonoff devices that I have used without any problems for several years now. I would be very tempted to use a Sonoff for switching the towel warmer except for the fact that its package doesn’t fit in a US standard single gang switch box.

What advantage do those nano switches offer over a conventional zwave? We just remodeled the bathroom a year ago, finds were to tight to worry about smart switches and I wasnt ready to tackle the project, I am now ready. I have everything just need to install and have a long vacation coming up :).

Also I was tempted to wire the exhaust fan but was unsure if it would work. So I can do that?


@vzorglub I used to have condensation, no exhaust fan installed. The bathroom was totally remodeled to include a 400 cfm fan. Recycles the air every 2 minutes. Vapor barley sets in the mirrors during the coldest days.

Jared, the exhaust fans we’ve specified are Panasonic WhisperGreeen Select fans, which are rated at < 10 watts maximum power consumption. The second switch channel of the Dual Nano Switch can easily handle that. Check your fan’s power rating. It may be rated in units of HP, in which case you’ll have to consult your switch’s specifications.

I chose the various Aeon Labs devices for their small size, which makes them easy to place in hidden, dedicated single gang switch boxes. The alternative was to go with Lutron switches to match the color and style of switch cover plates we’ve chosen, but they cost about twice as much as a Dual Nano Switch. I’m controlling all Z-Wave devices solely via the OH2 Z-Wave binding, I don’t plan to use these devices’ capability of using existing “dumb” switches for control, but that feature might be a plus in a remodel situation.

Get a sonoff light switch (£10) from aliexpress, flash it with espurna and using mqtt connect it to OH. You could also advertise it for alexa integration.


Thanks for the info I’ll check into the nano switches, I may have a couple of use cases for them. My fan is a light industrial fan so I doubt it can be a slave, but I’ll look. When I designed for the reno I wanted to be sure the fan would clear the bathroom after I saw water running down the wall, cathedral ceilings in a bathroom was an interesting design choice. With all the extra volume from the ceiling I was borderline so I went with 390 CFMs. Loud but effective.

I’ll mark this thread solved but will do some research, I’ll be ready for black Friday.


Look into wall zwave switches and dimmers. Zwaveproducts.com (I am not associated) is a great place to look. You will need a zwave controller too.