Is it possible to remove generator neutral/ground bond?


Old 07-16-12, 03:39 PM
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Is it possible to remove generator neutral/ground bond?

I have a Troy-Bilt Generator 030431 Rev. 02 (Link to manuals and wiring diagrams - Troy-Bilt Generators and Pressure Washers - Generators) that I want to use with a Reliance Controls 3006HDK Transfer Switch ( 3006HDK Pro/Tran | Product Details | Reliance Controls Corporation) to provide back up power to my house. I will be using a 10' cord supplied with switch kit to plug in the generator to the provided receptacle. I am hard wiring the receptacle to the transfer switch. No one told me and I had no idea at the time that I purchased these items that the generator and the switch they sold me are incompatible. Although the generator does not have GFCI's on the 120 volt receptacles it does have breakers and the neutral is bonded to the ground. The transfer switch does not transfer the neutral, only the 2 hots. I understand that creates a hazard. My question now is this, Is it possible for me to completely eliminate (unhook) the 2 - 120 volt receptacles on the generator as I will only be using the 30 amp locking receptacle? If this is possible will this eliminate the neutral/ground bond? If it does not unbond the neutral/ground, is it possible to do that? If I can do this, then what will be my grounding requirements at the generator? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
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Old 07-17-12, 02:18 AM
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In order to use that generator with your switch, technically yes, you should remove the neutral ground bond. I will say however, that many people never bother to remove the bond and suffer no ill effects.

I would not remove the 120v outlets if I were you. There are about 20 wires that go to the two outlets and if you miswire just one you could easily damage the generator or destroy any equiment connected to it, or both. It also would not necessarily remove the bond and IMO would also make the gennerator less useful in other situations.

From the wiring diagram, it looks like the neutral - ground bond is a short jumper wire between the neutral (silver) screw and the gound screw (green) on one of the 120V outlets. Removeing that wire should unbond the neutral from the ground. That of course can be verified with a meter.

The generator, when hooked up to the switch is grounded via the house ground system and shound not be gounded further.
Old 07-17-12, 06:15 AM
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Depends on the make and model of generator. On some generators the ground neutral bond is intended to be removed or replaced depending on where the generator is being used.

If the generator ground neutral bond cannot be removed easily I would use the generator anyway as is. There is no significant hazard, and I believe there is really no hazard. Electricians point out a hazard just because there may be a departure from the National Electric Code or similar set of rules.

I would say do not unhook receptacles or disassemble the generator in ways not stated in the instructions.
Old 07-17-12, 02:06 PM
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There are several reasons why having a neutral-equipment bond at both the service and at the generator is contrary to the National Electrical Code (NEC). Primarily it creates a parallel path for return currents (to the generator) between the neutral and the equipment grounding conductors. You can eliminate this parallel path by not connecting the equipment ground (green wire) in the generator-to-transfer switch interconnect cable.

Doing this WILL remove line-to-ground fault protection for the generator interconnect cable so be certain to keep this interconnect cable in good order and not subject it to any damage.
Old 07-18-12, 03:35 PM
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Thank you for the replies. This generator is also the same as a Briggs $ Stratton model with same number. I emailed B&S asking if it was possible to remove the neutral/ground bond and this was there reply -

Thank you for your inquiry.

There is a neutral-ground bond in the control panel of this unit. However we do not recommend removing this as this being a portable generator it can and may be used without connection to the building’s neutral-ground bond. We instead offer a transfer switch, model 071014, which isolates the building and unit’s neutral connections. We would not void warranty based on this bond being removed as long as no damage is done to the unit. However we will not take responsibility for any potential damage done to appliances due to this modification.

If you have any further questions, feel free to update this e-mail, or call our Briggs & Stratton Branded Power Products Answer Center at 800-743-4115, M-F 8-5PM CST.

Briggs & Stratton Answer Center"

This generator will not be used for anything else so I will probably unbond it since that seems the safest thing to do.
Old 08-25-12, 01:59 PM
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control panel bond location

can you point out where the bond is in the control panel? I couldn't find on my wiring diagram.

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