Another Pool Motor Question


Old 07-08-05, 05:58 PM
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Another Pool Motor Question

Just read the below "adam" thread which had lots of good information in it. I have a pool motor (220V) installation that has been approved by an inspector - in 1998.

I am concerned because of how its done.
Here is how its done working my way out from the Main Panel in my basement:
-2pole 20AMP REGULAR breaker.
-this 2 pole circuit connects to a 2 pole intermatic timer mounted on the ouside wall of the house (this seems ok, wire goes through the back of the timer through basement wall into basement and to panel)
-1 regular flood light mounted on the deck is connected from the timer box (ie branching off 1 of the poles) via PVC conduit.
- Conduit from the intermatic timer also runs to a small weather proof PVC box. In this box is a GFI outlet (off of 1 of the 2 poles) and an on off switch which controls the pool motor.
-The pool motor is connected to this small box via aquatight rubber covered flex conduit.

My concerns are:
1. The pool motor circuit is not dedicated, as 1 floodlight and this outlet branch off of it.
2. No GFI breakers
3. No disconnect on the pool motor. (I remember asking the electrician when it was installed to use a twist lock so I can take the motor out in the winter and he said it was not allowed and would not pass inspection).

So this is different than what I read below in the Adam thread. I am not sure if the rules changed since 1999. I think at a miminim I should put in a 2 pole GFI breaker.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. I would like this done right and safe as my children swim in this pool every day.
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Old 07-08-05, 06:57 PM
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1) Well, there is nothing that actually says a pump motor must be on a dedicated circuit, it is just a good idea.

2) If the pump is hard wired, meaning flex connected to the motor- no plug and receptacle, then no GFI protection is required.
If you will feel better you can add the GFI protection.

3) Yes, some form of disconnect is required. This can be as simple as a switch near the motor. A timer is not a disconnect.
Old 07-08-05, 07:02 PM
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Deleted reply....was redundant with Speedy's reply.

Last edited by Roger; 07-08-05 at 07:41 PM.
Old 07-09-05, 11:42 AM
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More help.

I installed the GFI breakers. work fine. However, I do have 1 GFI outlet outside. If anything gets plugged into it the new GFI breaker that the whole thing is protected by the breaker- I will replace the GFI outlet with just a regular one (which is connected to the GFI breaker).

Is this allowed by code?
Old 07-09-05, 02:16 PM
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As long as the receptacle remains GFCI protected by the breaker, this is fine. You might want to spend $8 on an outlet tester to confirm the protection.
Old 07-10-05, 10:01 AM
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Problems, put everything back...

Thanks for all of your help, but I put it back to the way it was.
Here's what happened, I put in the 2 pole GFI breaker for the pool motor- no problem. Tested fine. However, when I turned on the floodlight (connected to 1 of the 2 poles the pool motor is connected to) or plugged in something to the outside outlet (also connected to one of the 2 poles) the GFI breaker tripped. I thought maybe because the outlet was GFI and the breaker was GFI that might be a problem. So I replaced the GFI with a regular outlet. Still , plug anything into it and the GFI breaker tripped. It was wired right because I checked with a outlet tester. No open grounds, Neutral fine, polarity correct. My guess is that the 2 pole breaker is sensitive to one pole drawing differnt current than another pole , thinks its a ground fault and pops. Since it does not seem like I am violation of any rules I put the old breaker back and everything is fine.

Ideally I should probably have a GGI breaker to the pole motor dedicated.
and then run a separate line for the floodlight and outlets. But I'll leave that to the next homeowner or major renovation....thx
Old 07-12-05, 08:34 AM
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Wrong GFCI Breaker

The GFCI breaker you are using is a 220V motor breaker and I suspect it only has a white pigtail on it, no way to attach the white neutral wire from the motor or light to the breaker.
What is happening is that when you turn on the light, current is being drawn down only one leg of the 220V breaker, this will cause the GFCI to trip. What you need to do is either seperate the circuits or but in a breaker that has three terminals on it and the white pigtail. 2 lines, 1 neutral, and 1 pigtail. Connect the white from the load to the neutral terminal on the breaker, connect the two load lines to the breaker, connect the pigtail to the neutral bar in the panel, insert the breaker and test.
Old 07-15-05, 04:12 AM
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THX- GOT IT- but...

Thanks. The breaker does have 3 wires (2 Load, 1 neutral,) plus the pigtail.
The motor has only 2 load wired and a ground going to it. The motor connection to the outside junction box is lacking a neutral. Thanks for your help. I will probably separate the cicuits anyway...but it makes sense to me now.

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