50A Hot Tub GFCI wiring question

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  #1  
Old 07-17-13, 11:04 AM
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50A Hot Tub GFCI wiring question

Hi, I purchased a home recently with a hot tub that had no GFCI protection. I purchased and installed a 50A GFCI spa breaker (50A breaker was recommended in owners manual I found online). It appeared to be a 3-wire hot tub (two hots, one ground), but the GFCI kept tripping off when I powered it up. I then noticed in the hot tub's electrical controller unit that it was in fact a 4-wire hot tub. I suspect the previous owner upgraded his hot tub but didn't want to do any rewiring. The green ground was connected to the neutral screw in the hot tub controller. And the ground screw had no wire connected to it. I then connected this green ("neutral") wire from the hot tub to the GFCI breaker in the spot normally reserved for the outbound neutral. Now my GFCI works fine, but there's no ground from the hot tub that terminates in the GFCI box. Is it necessary (the additional ground) and is my hot tub still safe? I have grounds from the home panel to the GFCI box, and as far as I can tell, all the equipment is grounded at the hot tub itself. Do I need the additional ground from the hot tub's electrical box to the GFCI (since the GFCI should trip upon any ground fault)? If so, can't I just ground somewhere around the hot tub itself or does the ground wire actually have to be wired into the GFCI box for some reason? If I need the additional wire, I will likely string a new white (neutral) wire, connect it to the proper neutral spots on the hot tub and the GFCI, then properly re-terminate the green ground on both ends.

Thanks.
 
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Old 07-17-13, 11:43 AM
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Welcome to the forums!

Do I need the additional ground from the hot tub's electrical box to the GFCI (since the GFCI should trip upon any ground fault)?
Yes.

If so, can't I just ground somewhere around the hot tub itself or does the ground wire actually have to be wired into the GFCI box for some reason?
No, you need the conductor.

If I need the additional wire, I will likely string a new white (neutral) wire, connect it to the proper neutral spots on the hot tub and the GFCI, then properly re-terminate the green ground on both ends.
Sounds good, so long as the new wire is the appropriate size and is run in the conduit with the other wires.
 
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Old 07-17-13, 11:44 AM
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If I need the additional wire, I will likely string a new white (neutral) wire, connect it to the proper neutral spots on the hot tub and the GFCI, then properly re-terminate the green ground on both ends.
Yes, install the proper white neutral and reconnect the green as a proper ground. It's all about code compliance which = safety. The previous owner was just LUCKY he didn't fry himself or someone else in the tub.
 
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Old 07-17-13, 12:35 PM
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Thanks all. I thought that was the right answer. Just wanted to verify before I let anybody in the hot tub.
 
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