Ground effected by dielectric union ??

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  #1  
Old 11-14-06, 04:07 PM
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Question Ground effected by dielectric union ??

Not sure if this belongs in the Plumbing forum but I'll give it a shot.

I have an old house with galvanized pipes that also serve as a ground. I am remodeling my kitchen and want to use copper pipes under the sink. I understand that when going from galvanized to copper I need a dielectric union to avoid corrosion via electrolysis. The union will be inserted on a tapped section of galvanized that does not interrupt the run of galvanized that is being used as a ground. In other words, I will be adding copper above the "T" joints that come off the galvanized pipe.

My question is this: Will the ground effect be negated by the dielectric coupler or am I safe because I'm not interrupting the actual pipe used as a ground?

Thanks!
 
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Old 11-14-06, 04:22 PM
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> galvanized pipes that also serve as a ground.

Water pipes are no longer a legal method of equipment grounding in the U.S.; if you are in Canada, please say so as I think pipes are legal grounds there.

> I am remodeling my kitchen and want to use copper pipes
> under the sink.

As part of the kitchen remodel you'll need to bring the kitchen electrical up to code. The kitchen requires at the very minimum (2) 20A GFCI protected, grounded circuits for the small appliance receptacles which cover the countertops, pantry and dining areas.

What is the extent of your remodelling project?
 
  #3  
Old 11-14-06, 05:00 PM
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Thanks for the reply! I am doing cabinets and counters...with new appliances. I noticed that my satellite dish uses the pipe as a ground and that seems to be it.

Also, I will be swapping out 15A, 125V outlets with GFCI ones. Is 20A enough for the appliances? The main is 100A service.

Thanks!
 

Last edited by coachese; 11-14-06 at 08:02 PM.
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Old 11-14-06, 06:06 PM
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The 15A breaker is most likely there because the wiring can't carry 20A...which means that you must not increase the breaker rating unless you can verify that #12 wire is used throughout the circuit. If you wire a 20A circuit with wire smaller than #12, your countertop appliances will almost certainly draw enough current to overheat the wire and possibly cause fires.
 
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Old 11-14-06, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by valderost
The 15A breaker is most likely there because the wiring can't carry 20A...which means that you must not increase the breaker rating unless you can verify that #12 wire is used throughout the circuit. If you wire a 20A circuit with wire smaller than #12, your countertop appliances will almost certainly draw enough current to overheat the wire and possibly cause fires.
Thanks for the reply. ALL my kitchen outlets are rated 15A.
 
  #6  
Old 11-14-06, 11:29 PM
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Don't bother with dielectrics. Use 6" brass or stainless nipples to join galvanized to copper. You may be able to get by with shorter ones, but the 6" will stop most problems and are a lot more reliable than dielectric unions.
 
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Old 11-15-06, 09:45 AM
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Clarification:

In the US it is required that your metal water pipes be connected to the electrical system ground. If the pipe entering the house is metal, this connection provides the primary grounding method for your electrical system. If the pipe entering the house is NOT metal, then this connection is a bond, providing a path for any current that finds it's way tot he metal pipes.

What is no longer allowed in the US is attaching a wire anywhere in the residence to the water pipes and using this wire to provide a legal ground for a receptacle, switch, or appliance.
 
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Old 11-15-06, 06:13 PM
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Jumper the union, for ground.

The water pipe (if metal) is your primary ground.
 
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