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Grounding question... Ground rods and water pipes? Or just ground rods...

Grounding question... Ground rods and water pipes? Or just ground rods...

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  #1  
Old 07-31-14, 09:11 AM
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Grounding question... Ground rods and water pipes? Or just ground rods...

I'm installing a new main panel and have driven 2 8' ground rods into the ground. I have used continuous #6 solid copper wire between the rods (they are 8' apart) and it goes to the new main panel.

Question: Do I also need to tie in the existing water pipes in the house to the main panel? The old panel has a ground going to galvanized pipes in the crawl space. Those pipes are actually no longer in use as all have been replaced by copper.

Thanks in advance...

YZ
 
  #2  
Old 07-31-14, 09:22 AM
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How is the water getting into the house? Are the lines metallic and in contact with the earth for 10 foot or more?
 
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Old 07-31-14, 09:29 AM
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Yes, the house is on a water association. Most of the galvanized was replaced with copper back in the 90's. The existing ground goes to a piece of galvanized that is no longer in use and no longer connected to the incoming supply. Makes me think I don't have a ground...
 
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Old 07-31-14, 09:37 AM
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I am asking about the pipe coming through the foundation.
 
  #5  
Old 07-31-14, 12:48 PM
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Yes, the water pipe is metallic. It comes from the meter (15' in front of the house), underground, enters through the foundation into the crawl space.
 
  #6  
Old 07-31-14, 01:51 PM
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Yes, the water pipe must be bonded at the main panel.
Geo
 
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Old 07-31-14, 02:06 PM
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NEC 250.104 you must bond the ground system to the old water pipes,new water pipes,hot and cold,any structural metal,metal gas pipe, ANY AND ALL EXPOSED METAL.

NEC 250.66 FOR SIZE #6 FOR 100 AMP SERVICE, #4 FOR 200 AMP SERVICE BARE COPPER WIRE

read the electric code for yourself .ASK THE BUILDING DEPT. WHICH CODE TO USE....

the great state of Florida is still using the 2008 NEC.
GOOGLE NEC pdf 2014

GOOGLE FOR 2014 CODE https://archive.org/details/nfpa.nec.2014

GOOGLE FOR 2011 CODE https://archive.org/stream/gov.law.n...ge/n0/mode/2up

GOOGLE FOR 2008 CODE https://archive.org/stream/gov.al.el...ge/n7/mode/2up
 
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Old 07-31-14, 02:56 PM
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Gas lines are considered bonded by the EGG.

All exposed metal is not required to be bonded by the code. Portions of systems are also not required to be bonded, especially if not likely to become energized. Metal lally columns and ductwork are two examples of things that are not bonded.
 
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Old 07-31-14, 04:47 PM
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Although not required informational note 1 states that bonding duct work and all piping will provide more protection.
Geo
 
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Old 07-31-14, 05:43 PM
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Your ground rod (s) are supplemental. What did the AHJ saw about your missing ground?


May I ask, why did you go as far to drive 2 grounds, but yet have missed the water ground? What did your resistance test show with just one rod driven? Did you pull a permit for this?
 
  #11  
Old 07-31-14, 09:02 PM
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The grounding electrode system normally requires two ground rods, one water pipe exiting the house underground (if metal), and one concrete embedded re-bar (if any). Additional ground rods used for other purposes such as antennas must also be bonded as part of the grounding electrode system.

Metal parts of the plumbing otherwise electrically isolated due to intervening plastic plumbing needs to be bonded to the GES using bonding jumpers to other similarly bonded metal plumbing or to grounding electrode conductors. Bonding jumpers to plumbing up in the house may be the size of the equipment grounding conductor of any nearby branch circuit that might accidentally energize such plumbing as opposed to the #6 or sometimes #4 gauge of GECs

A gas pipe exiting the house does not count as a grounding electrode but the gas plumbing needs to be bonded to the GES using a bonding jumper or via up to date wiring including equipment grounding conductor to an electricity consuimg gas appliance.
 
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Old 08-01-14, 05:58 AM
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A gas pipe exiting the house does not count as a grounding electrode but the gas plumbing needs to be bonded to the GES using a bonding jumper or via up to date wiring including equipment grounding conductor to an electricity consuimg gas appliance.
You do not bond the gas piping in that way! Contact the AHJ or gas supplier and ask what they think of that. :NO NO NO:

If the furnace is wired correctly it is bonded thru the EGC. 250.104(B) Other Metal Piping.

The OP really needs to hire a competent electrician and have this work inspected by the local jurisdiction and not depend on a internet DIY forum for matters such as this.
 
  #13  
Old 08-01-14, 08:05 AM
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Thanks for all the replies...

The house is all electric, no gas, no duct work.

I have a friend who is a licensed commercial electrician who is also advising me but is not always available. He is the one who told me I would need to redo my grounding system when installing the new main panel. Thus the ground rods. He specified #6 solid copper. The licensed electrician at Home Depot said I could use stranded #6 copper, my choice.

The existing system is a bit of a rats next to figure out as there are multiple grounds (I believe). One bonds to the old galvanized pipe that was replaced with copper. Whoever removed the galvanized pipe left the ground attached and the pipe laying in the crawl space attached to nothing! Not cool... No inspector has seen this, I discovered it. There is a water spigot pipe that goes into the ground through the poured concrete pan beneath the house. Zip tied to that water pipe is what appears to be a 2 conductor insulated wire (romex?) that goes into the concrete alongside the pipe. I'm tracing that wire this morning to see if it is another ground.

I'm having the meter pulled this morning and will wire the new SE cable to the new exterior panel. I'll attach the new #6 solid copper via ground rods to the new panels ground. I've been told by both the power company and by L & I that they can inspect the new panel (main breaker) and re-install the meter before all the circuits (home runs) are completed. I hope that's true! Wish me luck!

I'm still trying to figure out how I'm going to get all the circuits through the exterior wall to the new panel. If you look at the other threads I posted, it's explained there...

Thanks again...
 
  #14  
Old 08-01-14, 09:25 AM
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So I chickened out and called off the power company and the disconnect. I realized that I am not an electrician and was not ready to be without power for an unknown period of time.

My new strategy will be to mount the new panel. Power the new panel off the old panel temporarily as I move over circuits and then do a cutover and install the SE cable from the meter to the new panel when I'm ready.

And the wire that I thought might be a ground going into the concrete pan along with the galvanized water pipe... It's actually a hot wire labelled "well" on the panel. We do have a well at the back of the property but it is no longer in use. The pump motor is likely shorted as the breaker trips instantly when you try to turn it on.

I'll be removing the "well" breaker and wiring from the panel as it is not needed. I'll move the old ground clamp from the discarded galvanized pipe to one that is actually still connected to the ground and house plumbing.

Cheers!
 
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Old 08-01-14, 02:01 PM
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I'll move the old ground clamp from the discarded galvanized pipe to one that is actually still connected to the ground and house plumbing.
That water pipe ground clamp needs to be relocated to within 5 feet of where the water service enters the building.
 
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Old 08-01-14, 03:26 PM
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For service upgrades, many times the local jurisdiction will have requirements that go beyond the minimum that is required by the NEC. Sometimes this could also mean portions of the branch circuits must be brought up to current standard.

What does your AHJ say in regards to local requirements?
 
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Old 08-02-14, 06:29 AM
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... Zip tied to that water pipe is what appears to be a 2 conductor insulated wire (romex?) that goes into the concrete alongside the pipe. I'm tracing that wire this morning to see if it is another ground. ...
A 12 or 14 gauge Romex cable does not count as a grounding electrode conductor. But it could have been part of some branch circuit, say to an outdoor receptacle.
 
  #18  
Old 08-06-14, 01:18 PM
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Finally spoke to the Inspector with a list of questions... He mentioned that some of the requirements have changed in the last year since I began my project and I'd have to meet the new requirements.

In short:

My #6 solid copper from ground rods to new main panel is sufficient.

My #4 solid copper from the existing water pipe ground needs to be connected to the new main panel.

My junction box just before the new main panel needs to have the same size ground of the largest circuit being extended there.

Any circuits that I have to extend from the junction box to the new main panel must have AFCI breakers if they go to a bedroom, bathroom, hallway, etc etc etc... pretty much anywhere...

My project just got a lot more expensive depending on how many AFCI breakers I have to buy and how many new home runs I have to pull.

The house was built in 1959 and I've got 2 conductor romex coming into the existing main panel where both white and black go to a hot side of a breaker. What is being used for a ground or neutral on those circuits is anyone's guess. MUCH more research and tracing of cable to follow...

Now it might be easier to relocated my roughed in bathroom so I don't have to touch the existing main panel.
 
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Old 08-06-14, 01:55 PM
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I've got 2 conductor romex coming into the existing main panel where both white and black go to a hot side of a breaker.
Those are 240 volt circuits. No neutral on a 240v circuit. Code requires the white to be remarked on both ends red or black or any color but gray or green using bands of colored tape or felt tip marker but often it isn't done.
 
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Old 08-06-14, 02:11 PM
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Ah! Those 240v circuits are likely the radiant heating elements in the ceiling. (Yep, ceiling... )
 
  #21  
Old 08-06-14, 06:05 PM
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Gas lines are considered bonded by the EGG.
pcboss...........who is the EGG?..............where can you see that is bonded to the grounded service conductor at the service equipment enclosure

gas lines are required to be bonded in 2008 by NEC 250.104 (B)

gas lines are required to be bonded in 2011 by NEC 250.104 (B)

gas lines are required to be bonded in 2014 by NEC 250.104 (B)

My project just got a lot more expensive depending on how many AFCI breakers I have to buy and how many new home runs I have to pull.
LOWES wil lgive you a price break if you buy 6 or more AFCI breakers

My junction box just before the new main panel needs to have the same size ground of the largest circuit being extended there.
run a number 4 to a ground bar in the J BOX and that will cover anything from a 200 amp service


read the electric code for yourself .ASK THE BUILDING DEPT. WHICH CODE TO USE....

the great state of Florida is still using the 2008 NEC.
GOOGLE NEC pdf 2014

GOOGLE FOR 2014 CODE https://archive.org/details/nfpa.nec.2014

GOOGLE FOR 2011 CODE https://archive.org/stream/gov.law.n...ge/n0/mode/2up

GOOGLE FOR 2008 CODE https://archive.org/stream/gov.al.el...ge/n7/mode/2up
 
  #22  
Old 08-06-14, 07:47 PM
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My #6 solid copper from ground rods to new main panel is sufficient.

My #4 solid copper from the existing water pipe ground needs to be connected to the new main panel.
Those both go to the neutral bus in the main panel.
 
  #23  
Old 08-06-14, 08:26 PM
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EGC = equipment grounding conductor. The bare or green conductor run with the circuit conductors or a complete metallic conduit system.
 
  #24  
Old 08-07-14, 12:18 PM
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So I've driven my ground rods into the ground and my plan was to drive them further just below grade after the inspection of my new panel and grounding system.

I saw this requirement in a Redbook by Con Ed:

"The electrode must not be inside or in front of the meter fitting."

I'm not sure how one would go about putting the ground electrode (rod) INSIDE the meter fitting, but mine could be considered "in front" of the meter fitting. The meter is on the exterior wall, 6' up or so. The ground rod is driven in the ground about a foot in front of it in the ground.

Do I have to move that ground rod now????

Thanks in advance,

YZ
 
  #25  
Old 08-07-14, 06:49 PM
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I'm not sure how one would go about putting the ground electrode (rod) INSIDE the meter fitting, but mine could be considered "in front" of the meter fitting. The meter is on the exterior wall, 6' up or so. The ground rod is driven in the ground about a foot in front of it in the ground.

Do I have to move that ground rod now????
That would pass muster with the NEC, but utilities often have their own service rules that you must follow. I wouldn't worry about it unless the utility brings it up as an issue. If they do, just buy another ground rod and install it according to their rules. You'll never get the old one out of the ground.
 
  #26  
Old 08-07-14, 06:56 PM
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I have never seen or heard of no electrode in front of the meter but it does have some merit.

I second just driving another rod and abandon the one. Remember that the GEC must be continuous to the first rod from the panel or meter if allowed by the power company.
 
 

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