Do you have the proper electrical wiring to support your tanning bed?

11/13/12

The Essence 24 Lamp Tanning BedHave you recently purchased a tanning bed from an individual or private party and are unsure about the electrical requirements? Or maybe you are researching tanning beds for purchase and are curious about everything that goes into owning one? Regardless of the answer, pre-installation planning with a tanning bed is recommended to ensure you have the necessary electrical wiring to support it.

So before you begin to assemble or place your tanning bed, be sure to read the instructions, manuals, booklets and other literature that comes with it. This is essential. Please do not rely solely on this blog to install your tanning bed.

If you already own a tanning bed and are having trouble locating the instruction manual, check the power cord of the tanning bed. Most manufacturers include a tag on the power cord for people curious about which voltage and receptacle are required to operate it.

NEMA 5-15RIt is very important for you to determine if your tanning bed requires either 120 or 240 voltage, along with the receptacle requirements for that particular bed (the typical NEMA 5-15R receptacle is pictured left; receptacle types are explained below). Residential tanning beds require either a 120 Volt or 240 Volt power source, so be sure to find out which is required for your bed.

If one were to guess, they would say the 120 and 240 numbers would have to be exact, but they actually indicate the range of power that particular tanning bed requires. For 120 Volt tanning beds, the proper voltage is only between 100 and 120 Volts, while for 240 Volt tanning beds, proper voltage is only between 200 and 240 Volts.

Tanning bed manufacturers specify that all 120 or 240 Volt tanning bed models require a dedicated circuit breaker. This means the tanning bed is the only electrical device operating on that circuit breaker. If it is not the only equipment on that circuit, it could trip your breaker or cause other problems.

NEMA 5-20RTanning Bed Receptacle Types & Information

All 120 Volt tanning beds with 16 or less lamps require a NEMA 5-15R receptacle (pictured above left) and a dedicated 15 Amp circuit breaker, while all 120 Volt tanning beds with more than 16 lamps require a NEMA 5-20R receptacle (pictured right) and a 20 Amp dedicated circuit breaker. When it comes to all 240 Volt tanning beds, the extra power requires a NEMA 6-20R receptacle (pictured below left) and a dedicated 20 Amp circuit breaker, regardless of the lamp count.

Be sure to contact a qualified electrician if you have any questions or are unsure about the electrical requirements of tanning beds, or if you plug in your new bed and you trip the breaker. Family Leisure does recommend using a surge protector to safeguard your investment.

ESB Enterprises, a leading manufacturer of tanning beds, indicates that all improper voltages must be fixed with the correct buck booster or buck-boost transformer, an autotransformer that is used to adjust the voltage applied to AC (alternating current) equipment such as tanning beds. Currently Family Leisure does not carry a tanning bed that requires a buck booster or buck-boost transformer; be sure to contact your local tanning bed dealer for a buck booster or buck-boost transformer if you discover you need one.

One problem with owning a tanning bed is the internal wiring, electrical components and bulbs or lamps are subject to being damaged if a power surge or power spike occurs in your neighborhood or home, maybe from a lightning strike or other issue. If you are concerned about this, yet do not want to purchase a surge protector, many tanning bed manufacturers recommend simply unplugging the tanning bed when not in use to ensure it isn't damaged in the event of a power surge. Such an easy solution!

If you encounter any problems, trip a breaker or are just unsure about the installation process, contact Family Leisure or a local electrician for help. Family Leisure Tanning Beds are always on sale and always come with free nationwide shipping; view All Family Leisure Tanning Beds here. And Family Leisure always has Tanning Bed Bulbs for sale with free nationwide shipping; view Family Leisure Tanning Bed Bulbs here.

- Conor Lee

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