shock from pipes


  #1  
Old 01-05-03, 05:43 PM
T
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shock from pipes

OK, a new one.

While bathing my kids, I have noticed a shock when I touch the water spigot with one hand, and have the other in the water.
Not much of a shock, but still.....

Tonight I measured it with the volt meter, and found 7 v/ac on the 10 scale. Slight waver of the needle, if that helps.

I suspect its some appliance in the house, grounded to the pipes, but I am wondering if its worthwhile to look for it. Is it a hazard, or just par for the course.

The house is 40 years old and has no grounding recepticles, so I know its a ground to the pipes. Or is it?

Thanks for the input,

JT
 
  #2  
Old 01-05-03, 05:46 PM
RayII
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Re: shock from pipes

Originally posted by txfirepro
OK, a new one.

While bathing my kids, I have noticed a shock when I touch the water spigot with one hand, and have the other in the water.
Not much of a shock, but still.....

Tonight I measured it with the volt meter, and found 13 v/ac on the 10 scale. Slight waver of the needle, if that helps.

I suspect its some appliance in the house, grounded to the pipes, but I am wondering if its worthwhile to look for it. Is it a hazard, or just par for the course.

The house is 40 years old and has no grounding recepticles, so I know its a ground to the pipes. Or is it?

Thanks for the input,

JT
Your service is ground to the pipes, and this can become deadly in a surge or a lightening storm. Have your panel ground to a 6' rod malleted into the ground outside near your meter. There is more to this that I am missing. Power seepage maybe?
 
  #3  
Old 01-05-03, 08:10 PM
J
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It isn't where your service is grounded that typically creates this problem, but more likely where your outlets are grounded.

Someone may have grounded a receptacle to a nearby water pipe. It's amazing how many people think this is a safe thing to do. But it can be very dangerous. You may want to check wherever you can. Look first at any three-hole receptacles.
 

Last edited by John Nelson; 01-05-03 at 08:54 PM.
  #4  
Old 01-06-03, 06:34 AM
J
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It sounds like you have a bonding problem. The neutral in the main panel should be bonded to the ground. The ground should be bonded to the water line within 5' of where it enter the house. the water meter and any other fitting that might be plasitic (like whoile house filters) should have a bonding jumper across them. You should have an 8' ground rod or better yet 2 of them conneted to the ground bar in your main panel also.
If the neutral and the ground and the water pipe are all bonded together properly then there should be no voltage present on them.
 
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Old 01-06-03, 07:06 AM
T
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Grounding

OK,

I found two problems right off the bat this morning.

First, the lawn people have cut the grounding strap where it leaves the box and enters the ground. I suspect its been this way for a while.

Also, this last week, the City of Houston hooked up my water line and meter to the plastic main they layed out front last month.

This brings another question. If the city installs a plastic main, does that reduce the effectiveness of the ground? The feed line from the water meter is metal, but at 6" depth.

Txfirepro
 
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Old 01-06-03, 07:28 AM
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Something else to look for when there is electric in the water is ungrounded electric water heater. When the element is failing or fails it causes a problem.
 
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Old 01-06-03, 07:36 AM
T
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grounding

sberry,

I cant find the ground strap on the hot water heater. I think its because the gas line is in the way.

Just joking.

Good thing to look for though, if you have electric.

Txfirepro
 
  #8  
Old 01-06-03, 08:17 AM
RayII
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Re: grounding

Originally posted by txfirepro

I cant find the ground strap on the hot water heater. I think its because the gas line is in the way.

Txfirepro
Haha. Sorry, for some wierd reason I found that extremely funny and had tears in my eyes.
 
 

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