What is the ADA maximum height for switches?

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Click here to view larger image

Q:   What are the ADA height requirements for switch mounting? Is it 42 inches max?

A:   As shown in the pictures above, there are varying mounting heights for switches depending on the application.

For unobstructed forward and side reach, the federal minimum height is 15 inches and the maximum is 48 inches. Whenever there is an obstruction, such as reaching over a countertop, the maximum height is reduced up to 4 inches depending on the size of obstruction. It is important to note that a switch could not go above an obstruction that exceeds the maximum size permitted in the picture. These measurements are for adults, if the location is for a dedicated children’s bathroom, then the measurements are required to be reduced.

Project specifications should always be reviewed prior to installation and an RFI created if descrepencies are found between documents and/or existing installation mounting height.

Please refer to the federal ADA regulations (2010ADAStandards) where most of the discussed information can be found in section 308.

For California DSA Accessibility Requirements please refer to the DSA cheklist (ADA check list – California) for more information.

Note: Just as the NEC is adopted and modified by the State of California (CEC), the ADA requirements are adopted by the State of California. The CEC, CBC, must be consulted to ensure that a more stringent modification has not been adopted (such as the CACA amendments).

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