How to ground a TV antenna mast?


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Old 03-24-08, 01:58 PM
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Question How to ground a TV antenna mast?

I'm getting conflicting information on how to ground a TV antenna mast I plan on putting up in the next month.

One source says to drive an 8 foot grounding stake into the ground, and run sheathed aluminum grounding wire from the mast to this stake. For the coaxial coming down, install a grounding block and run its ground to the same grounding stake.

Another source says to do all this PLUS tie the grounding stake to the house ground using aluminum grounding wire. (I have AL grounding wire going from the water pipe before the meter to the load center, right near where the grounding stake will be.)

I'm a little hesitant to link the grounding stake to my house ground because: it involves passing another (possibly energized) wire through the house, it could energize things in my house that are connected to this ground, there may be potential between the two grounds.

So what is the correct answer? Is there a NEC article/clause that spells this out? I live on a hill and there are frequently lightning strikes nearby, so I want to take measures to minimize risk to my family, house, and appliances.

Thanks

-joe
 
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Old 03-25-08, 04:15 AM
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Chapter 6 on page 19 of this PDF document details the proper grounding procedure.
 
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Old 03-25-08, 05:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Rick Johnston View Post
Chapter 6 on page 19 of this PDF document details the proper grounding procedure.
Thanks. However, this document mentions "bonding" the ground rod to the service panel's ground. As I mentioned, my service panel gets its ground reference via a thick cable tied onto my water pipe as it enters my house.

So, should my grounding rod be bonded to house ground?
 
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Old 03-25-08, 10:44 AM
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"An interior cold water pipe is acceptable as a ground rod if the connection point is within 5 feet of where the pipe enters the ground."

This is some text from the document you linked to.

I'm no expert, but if you did add a ground rod, I would think you would want to bond it to the water pipe. If there is a voltage potential between the ground rod and water pipe, you wouldn't want that current traveling through your coax and components connected to it.
 
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Old 03-25-08, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Strategery View Post
"An interior cold water pipe is acceptable as a ground rod if the connection point is within 5 feet of where the pipe enters the ground."

This is some text from the document you linked to.

I'm no expert, but if you did add a ground rod, I would think you would want to bond it to the water pipe. If there is a voltage potential between the ground rod and water pipe, you wouldn't want that current traveling through your coax and components connected to it.
I suppose "technically" I have access to the pipe ground by means of the grounding cable attached to the pipe where it enters my basement. So in this case, I'd bond my ground rod to this cable using a #6 grounding wire.
 
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Old 03-25-08, 11:47 AM
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NEC requires the antenna ground be conencted to 'the nearest acccessible location on the following
1. the building or structure ground electrode system as cover by 250.50
2. The grounded interior metal water pipe system within 5 feet of point of entrance to building
3.the power service accessible means external to the building
4.the metalic power service raceway
5.the service entrance encolsure
or
6.the grounding electrode conductor or the ground conductor metal enclosures.


You need to connect your antenna ground the building ground. It can not be a separate system.
 
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Old 03-25-08, 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by joed View Post
NEC requires the antenna ground be conencted to 'the nearest acccessible location on the following
1. the building or structure ground electrode system as cover by 250.50
2. The grounded interior metal water pipe system within 5 feet of point of entrance to building
3.the power service accessible means external to the building
4.the metalic power service raceway
5.the service entrance encolsure
or
6.the grounding electrode conductor or the ground conductor metal enclosures.


You need to connect your antenna ground the building ground. It can not be a separate system.
I don't see "grounding stake" anywhere in that language, but it seems that I should run my antenna ground wire to the Building Ground Electrode System (the ground cable mentioned in my first post).

So how about the grounding stake? Would it be preferable to sink one and bond it to the Building Ground Electrode System using a #6 grounding wire?

(Also, please send me the NEC "chapter and verse" you got this from so I can read it from a copy in the library.)

Thanks.
 
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Old 03-25-08, 07:25 PM
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I would scrap the ground rod and connect your ground to one of the 6 options listed.
 
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Old 03-26-08, 05:55 AM
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NEC 2008 online. Your region might not be on 2008 but grounding code hasn't changed much I don't think. Look around section 810 for antenna grounding and section 250 for general grounding.

http://www.nfpa.org/freecodes/free_a....asp?id=7008SB
 
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Old 02-19-09, 08:40 AM
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Huh??

I am getting ready to install my own antenna, and in researching how to do this, came across this post. The document referenced above (the "Off Air Installation Guide"), I am already quite familiar with, as it was the one most referenced in my preious research. However the posts here are complete baffling to me. That document most definitely DOES recommend a grounding stake...it does NOT discuss using the breaker box house ground (like I could even FIND that!) and I was absolutely NOT planning on doing that.

Can someone here clarify this?
 
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Old 07-01-09, 12:07 PM
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i'm not an electrician, but my father was for 40 years. state and local codes may differ, but he says that coax cable already has ground in it, and grounding it to home ground system should be adequate.
 
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Old 07-02-09, 09:01 PM
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Grounding

*******has the Channel Master Tv Systems installation book At the starkelectronic web site and it's free to read. In the 'installation' book in chapter 6 it gives nice simple and easy to under stand information. A copper ground rod or copper clad steel ground rod should be driven at least three feet in the ground. I recommend #8 or #10 copper wire , As the old saying goes , 'Copper is Proper' . HomeDepot has ground rods and clamps and ground wire. winegard.com has information on grounding Tv antennas. In the search box at the winegard web site type in 'grounding' and look for the words , Home antenna installation , mast mounting and grounding. Shows nice pictures and every thing.
 

Last edited by Shadeladie; 07-05-09 at 05:35 AM. Reason: Link removed
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Old 07-03-09, 04:29 AM
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grounding

At ********, scroll down to MANUALS ON LINE , click on the words , INSTALLATION BOOK , and then scroll down to Chapter 6.
 

Last edited by Shadeladie; 07-05-09 at 05:36 AM.
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Old 07-04-09, 05:01 PM
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Antenna grounding

The ' Antenna Discharge Unit' is also known as a 'Grounding Block' , commonly used by but not limited to , cable company and satellite system installers. In my other posts please find places to buy them and you can go to places like home depot.
 

Last edited by televisor; 07-04-09 at 06:06 PM.
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Old 07-05-09, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by televisor View Post
*******has the Channel Master Tv Systems installation book At the starkelectronic web site and it's free to read. In the 'installation' book in chapter 6 it gives nice simple and easy to under stand information. A copper ground rod or copper clad steel ground rod should be driven at least three feet in the ground. I recommend #8 or #10 copper wire , As the old saying goes , 'Copper is Proper' . HomeDepot has ground rods and clamps and ground wire. winegard.com has information on grounding Tv antennas. In the search box at the winegard web site type in 'grounding' and look for the words , Home antenna installation , mast mounting and grounding. Shows nice pictures and every thing.
Actually, driving a secondary ground rod is against NEC code!!!!

fred
 
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Old 07-07-09, 06:10 PM
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grounding

More information on grounding of television antennas can be found at Antenna Basics At this hdtvprimer.com/antennas/basics , web site move the page down to the nice clear information and diagram on grounding. For more information on subject of television please read my other posts. Thanks
 
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Old 01-23-10, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by joed View Post
NEC requires the antenna ground be conencted to 'the nearest acccessible location on the following
1. the building or structure ground electrode system as cover by 250.50
2. The grounded interior metal water pipe system within 5 feet of point of entrance to building
3.the power service accessible means external to the building
4.the metalic power service raceway
5.the service entrance encolsure
or
6.the grounding electrode conductor or the ground conductor metal enclosures.


You need to connect your antenna ground the building ground. It can not be a separate system.

Borrowing an old thread for a moment...

I'm planning an antenna install on my roof, and I was looking at these requirements. Would running the ground into a subpanel and terminating on the ground bar suffice? That's "almost" #5, but I'm wondering if the "service entrance" must be the main panel, and thus disqualifies a sub panel. The sub panel, if it qualifies is definitely the "nearest" accessible location, and by far the simplest point to connect the ground.

Thanks!
 
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Old 01-23-10, 04:02 PM
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The terms Service, Service Entrance and Service Panel have very specific definitions in the National Electrical Code. There is no definition for "main" panel.

The Service is the point of first disconnect between the utility's conductors and the premise's conductors. That makes it quite clear that the equipment grounding conductor in a sub panel is NOT an acceptable point to ground an antenna system.

Sorry.
 
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Old 01-23-10, 07:20 PM
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Thanks Furd...that confirms what I thought. It would have been easier to go to the sub panel, but I can route it through the attic over towards the service entrance. I'll actually have to run it down the service entrance mast to get to the main panel, so I suppose I could just clamp it to the mast itself per #4 in joed's post.
 
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Old 02-22-12, 01:35 PM
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I know this thread is old, but thought I would add my take, and ask a couple of related questions.

Seems to me, one of the major situations we are trying to avoid with grounding an antenna mast is for defensive action against lightning strikes. So, it seems illogical to route that electrical impulse from a strike back into the home to a grounding source under any circumstance. Yes?

I too intend to mount an FM antenna on an outside mast, and ground it to a 3' stake directly below the mast. Shortest route to ground should it be struck, and everything (theoretically) stays outside the house. Doesn't it also make sense to have the tip of the mast as the highest point too? (Assuming the highest point and a solid path to ground is where the lightning will strike.) So mounting my antenna a few inches from the top (of the mast) makes logical sense. Is that a correct assumption?

In addition, if there is a ground differential between the earth ground and the cable ground sheath itself there should be no impact to the signal, or put anything inside the house at risk - under normal operating conditions. Is that a correct statement? Thoughts?

redjr16
 
 

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