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Simple things

Posted: January 22nd, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Usability fail | Tags: | 3 Comments »

Let’s take one dead simple thing we all use every day: the bathroom light switch. The majority of the houses (or am I wrong?) have this switch outside the bathroom, and if the door has no glass it’s kind of hard to see if the light is on or off in the bathroom.


Put on that piece of plastic some paint and you’ll have a perfectly usable switch:


3 Comments on “Simple things”

  1. 1 Terry said at 6:09 pm on January 22nd, 2010:

    In Europe it is a little different than the US. In the US, you turn the light switch “on” as you enter the bathroom (because the switch is located right on the wall, INSIDE the door).

    When you exit the bathroom, you turn the switch “off”. That way, the light is only on when someone is using, or inside, the bathroom. At all other times, the bathroom light is off…unless of course, you want to waste electricity!

  2. 2 JC said at 9:08 pm on January 22nd, 2010:

    It isn’t a problem here in the USA. The bathroom switches are inside of the bathroom. If you’re in the bathroom looking at the door, you’ll find that the switch is pretty much always on the wall next to the door knob, but at standard switch height (about 8 – 12 inches higher than the door knob).

    Therefore it is always easy to find, and as Terry noted, you turn the light on as you enter and turn it off as you leave, so there is no problem to be solved here.

    It’s the same sort of setup for pretty much every room, and for the main entry into houses themselves. Switches are always on the inside.

  3. 3 libby said at 7:16 pm on April 8th, 2012:

    i have to disagree with both posts above – the switch for a US bathroom light is _usually_ on the inside of the bathroom for houses built in the 80s or later. anything built in the 60s or earlier the switches are often found *outside* the bathroom.

    1st – yes, on when occupied, off when room is empty
    2ns – location if inside is usually there, but not always.

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