Equipment ground bar / Neutral Bar

Old 08-30-03, 01:50 PM
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Equipment ground bar / Neutral Bar

Looking for some insight into neutral bar and equipment ground bars in a MAIN panel.

- In a main panel, is it code required (2002 NEC) to have a equipment ground bar sepearate from the neutral bars for the equipment ground wires?
- If so what is the differnce when the neutral bar is bonded to the panel itself and the ground wire and the neutral bars are bridged together?

In the past, most main panels I have seen had the equipment grounds and neutrals to the same bars but recently most have had a separate equipment ground bar. Is this a code change?

Thanks for any comments.
Old 08-30-03, 03:58 PM
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Whereever the neutral to ground bond occurs (usually the main panel with the main disconnect), the neatral and ground bar may be the same physical bar.
Old 08-30-03, 05:53 PM
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Main panel does not necessarily mean service disconnecting means.

The only issue that arises is whether the main panel cabinet is also the service disconnecting means enclosure. When there is a separate disconnect switch or breaker ahead of the main panel it is not the service disconnecting means.

The panels are being built with separable EGC and neutral bars as a competitive feature rather than because of a change in the US NEC.
Old 08-30-03, 07:49 PM
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Also an equipment grounding bar is added to a main entrance panel when there isnt enough spaces to add all the ground wires to the neutral bar. That often why you see them in service entrance panels. Sometimes it makes it easier to route all the wires to a more convenient location and makes for a tidier installation, less crowding.

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