new GE waterheater has stranded alluminum pigtails ca

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Old 05-17-10, 09:54 PM
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new GE waterheater has stranded alluminum pigtails ca

I got a new electric water heater, its this one: Hot Water Heater, Heat Pump Water Heater, Water Heater Electric | GE Appliances

I am replacing a propane unit so a had to run a new 220 circuit, I used 10-2 romex inside metal conduit, bought the wire first original not planning on conduit, with a 2 pole switch using an appliance pigtail to connect to the heater, off of a new 30 amp breaker, which brings me to the question.

The water heater has stranded 8ga aluminum wire pigtails inside its built in junction box on top of the heater. How do I connect these to my stranded appliance pigtail.
 
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Old 05-18-10, 03:13 AM
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Welcome to the forums! The pigtails are "tinned", and aren't aluminum. You will connect them to your wires with appropriately sized B-caps. Extend the stranded wires slightly beyond the tip of the solid wire before you start your b-cap on. That will ensure a proper connection. BTW, what is the amperage requirement of the water heater?
 
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Old 05-18-10, 04:57 AM
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Water heaters are not allowed to be wired using an appliance cord. They are hard-wired. Water heaters do not meet the requirements to allow the use of a flexible cord.
 
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Old 05-18-10, 08:55 AM
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I used one of these too wire it from the heater to the switch:

Air Conditioning Electrical Whip 10 Gauge : Air Conditioners | Ductless | HVAC Parts

Except that it was labeled as an appliance whip, and has all 10 ga stranded copper inside, it is hard wired.

Also the draw on the side is listed as 22 amps.

The manual that came with the heater indicates 10 ga wire and a 30 amp breaker.

And the wires are not tinned, I have used stranded aluminum speaker wire and have run into stranded tinned copper wire before, now unless the tinning process has changes in such a way to cause copper to be as soft as aluminum then they are not tinned rather they must be aluminum.
 
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Old 05-18-10, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by who are you View Post
Except that it was labeled as an appliance whip, and has all 10 ga stranded copper inside, it is hard wired.
That type of whip is okay for a water heater.

they are not tinned rather they must be aluminum.
I really doubt they would be aluminum. It is very likely tinned copper or at least some type of copper alloy. Does the wire have any markings on it?
 
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Old 05-18-10, 10:36 AM
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Just looked no markings on the wire, though only the top 6 inches is visible.

here is a picture, I connected them Sunday night with normal wire nuts, you can see how the one which looks like aluminum has turned into a pile of hair.

The visible stranded copper is from the appliance whip.



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Old 05-18-10, 12:33 PM
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so any suggestions on connecting the wires together?
 
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Old 05-18-10, 01:10 PM
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Straighten the wires out, pre-twist to the copper a little bit, and use a wirenut. Ideal red or similar size from another manufacturer.

Pg. 16 of the install manual makes no mention of special splicing, only that copper supply conductors are required.
 
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Old 05-18-10, 06:58 PM
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I used 10-2 romex inside metal conduit, bought the wire first original not planning on conduit,
If conduit was used for the entire length of the branch circuit you must use indidual conductors and not romex. Cable assemblies, such as romex, are not allowed in conduit unless the conduit is merely for protection of a short length of the cable.
 
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Old 05-18-10, 07:01 PM
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I used one of these too wire it from the heater to the switch:
The whip you used is fine, but it is overkill and not necessary. The whip you used is intended for outdoor use. Most electricians use flexible metallic conduit, aka Greenfield, with individual conductors in it. Also, what about the switch you refer to, is it a disconnect switch at or above the water heater?
 
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Old 05-21-10, 09:57 PM
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The switch is fused disconnect switch and its connected 4 feet from the water heater, it connects to the whip.

I original bought the romex to run under the garage through a crawlspace, but as it turns out there was seeming solid concrete wall up to the level of garage floor with the main panel above this so instead I already had some 3/4in EMT so I ran this along inside wall with one 90 degree corner, from a junction box one one side to the disconnect switch on the other (disconnect switch is were it terminates and connects to the water heater).

The feeding junction box is a few feet above the main panel with the romex feeding into the top of the main panel. It is secured there and where it enters the junction box.

I new that stranded individual wires were normally used in conduit by I had already bought the romex.

So are you saying I should take out the romex and re run individual wires?

What is the problem with romex inside a conduit?

BTW there is roughly 20 feet of conduit joined in the middle by a bent 90 degree curve.

Thanks...
 
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Old 05-22-10, 05:12 AM
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Originally Posted by who are you View Post
I new that stranded individual wires were normally used in conduit by I had already bought the romex.

So are you saying I should take out the romex and re run individual wires?

What is the problem with romex inside a conduit?
Joe is just saying that it is easier to pull individual wires in conduit then it is Romex. Your installation is fine. There is no need to redo it.
 
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Old 05-22-10, 08:27 AM
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What is the problem with romex inside a conduit?
It's basically interpretation of code. Some areas interpret the code to say that cable assemblies are not allowed to be run in conduit except for a short section to sleeve for mechanical protection. In my area, and many others, this would be a code violation. Check with your AHJ for the local interpretation. And yes, it is much easier to pull individual conductors in conduit rather than romex.
 
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Old 05-22-10, 08:56 AM
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The switch is fused disconnect switch
A fused disconnect is not required unless specifically required by the manufacturer. An unfused disconnect is generally code compliant.
 
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