GFI, grounding, and a new whirlpool bathtub


Old 02-01-05, 04:02 PM
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GFI, grounding, and a new whirlpool bathtub

Hi – I am an electrical rookie wiring a new whirlpool bathtub. I’ve run a dedicated three wire (12/2) line and wired up a GFI outlet. I connected the bare ground wire to the grounding location on the outlet. The 1.5hp pump install instructions state “grounding is required”, and the pump came wired with a 3-wire plug. There is a green screw on the pump casing. On the other end of my dedicated line, there is a 40 year old Square D breaker box/load station. It is the type that has a high-Amp switch on the upper panel that feeds areas on the lower panel. It appears that the ground and neutral bars are connected, they are separate bars but look connected to me. Most of the existing wiring looks OK, but there are a few cases where neutral (white) wires are connected to the ground bar, and (I think) vice-versa. My questions are:
1) Are the ground and neutral bars really connected, and if so, is this OK?
2) Is the “mixed” existing wiring OK?
3) Is my pump officially “grounded” by using the 3-wire plug in my new GFI outlet (given the breaker box detail), or is something else intended?
4) If additional grounding is needed, how should I do this (upstairs bathroom), and should I disconnect the ground wire on my newly installed line?
Thanks in advance, please chuckle amongst yourselves if these are really stupid questions.
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Old 02-01-05, 04:43 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
At one place in your setup the ground wires and the neutral wires should be connected together. This is usually at the main panel, but it could be earlier at the meter or outside disconnect.

If the two bars (neutral and ground) are connected with wire then this is where they are connected together. This means that you can connect the neutral to the same bar as the ground, or different bars, either bar.

This is sufficient to ground the pump.

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