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Old 06-20-2008, 02:02 PM   #16
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Bizarre Electrical Problems - Grounding?


Well the electrician came by today, even bringing an assistant. He spent about an hour running tests and initially thought that the problem could be solved by installed 2 ground rods to replace the old one. After running some tests he concluded that this would not solve the problem.

He ran a couple more tests and concluded that the electricity is actually coming from my shower drain and not from my shower head at all.

My plumping is supposed to be copper, however there is pvc on all of my drains when I look under the sink. Time to call a plumper .

Keep bringing the suggestions.

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Old 06-20-2008, 02:48 PM   #17
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Bizarre Electrical Problems - Grounding?


I'm not a plumber but I believe "copper plumbing" typically referes to the supply lines. Drain and vent stacks are often plastic (ABS). When you look under the sink do you see copper stubs sticking out of the wall where the supply lines to the sink connect?
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Old 06-20-2008, 03:23 PM   #18
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Bizarre Electrical Problems - Grounding?


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Originally Posted by CaptHanky View Post
He spent about an hour running tests and initially thought that the problem could be solved by installed 2 ground rods

Keep bringing the suggestions.

Hire someone that knows what ground rods are really for and that they will never solve your problem...
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Old 06-20-2008, 04:04 PM   #19
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Bizarre Electrical Problems - Grounding?


That is not a very helpful comment. Please be more specific.

The last electrician tested the current ground rod and the two he was considering installing before isolating the problem to the shower drain. This is the only drain in the whole house that has this problem. The drain system in this house is supposed to be composed of PVC. The incoming water flow is copper.

Using a multimeter he put the red on cord the inner pipe of the drain and the black on the drain cover itself and this show around 3 volts.

Last edited by CaptHanky; 06-20-2008 at 04:06 PM.
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Old 06-20-2008, 04:07 PM   #20
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Bizarre Electrical Problems - Grounding?


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That is not a very helpful comment.

The last electrician tested the current ground rod and the two he was considering installing before isolating the problem to the shower drain. This is the only drain in the whole house that has this problem. The drain system in this house is supposed to be composed of PVC. The incoming water flow is copper.
The problem is not the drain, but it is showing you have a problem. You need to hire a real electrician to find that problem, this is not something that can just be fixed over the internet.

I wish I could just tell you exactly what the problem is, but its just not possible.
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Old 06-20-2008, 04:12 PM   #21
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Bizarre Electrical Problems - Grounding?


If you are reading voltage, the problem does not belong to a plumber.
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Old 06-20-2008, 04:17 PM   #22
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Sorry, I didn't mean for that to come out snappy. I have a plumber coming out now. There is an electrical current in the drain regardless if the shower is on or off. The electricity is coming from the drain.

The drain pipes (PVC) and water pipes (Copper) are separate circuits.

I did hire a real electrician both times. The most recent was from Incredible Electric here in Houston, a good company. They sent out a "Master Electrician" and an assistant. My point in posting on here is to see if someone has experienced this type of issue before and what they have done to solve it because it is not that common. When I google I can only find 3 or 4 other posts on the web with similar issues, but no answers.
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Old 06-20-2008, 04:22 PM   #23
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Bizarre Electrical Problems - Grounding?


Is absolutely is not something that a plumber can fix for you. There is something energizing that drain and/or supply line(s), and it is not plumbing related.

If an electrician suggests fixing this problem with ground rods or grounding electrode conductors to the water line, they lack a fundamental knowledge of what is going on. They need to find the source of the current and eliminate it at its source, not try to convince it to go to ground.
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Old 06-20-2008, 04:33 PM   #24
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Well three of you are telling me now that it is not a plumbing issue. I guess I will do some research and try to find another well established company.

Why is it so damn hard to get an electrician that is good ?!

He did flip all my breakers off and there was still electrical current in the shower drain.
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Old 06-20-2008, 06:34 PM   #25
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So this is been eating me up. I grabbed my multimeter and went around my house to all the water faucets. It turns out the the hot water lines under every sink have a couple volts in them, it goes up when the water is on. I went up to the attic and looked at the water heater...

The hot water "OUT" line has a considerable amount of corrosion. So I tested that line against the gas line going into the water heater. Here are some pictures...

Here is a line of me testing the base of the hot water OUT line below the corrosion...



Here is a picture of me testing the house leaving the water heater...


There is a plastic separator between the house itself and its female connector. This is a gas heater.

Could the grounded problem be fixed by replacing the hose maybe?
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Old 06-20-2008, 07:08 PM   #26
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You need to understand how that voltage is getting on the plumbing to begin with, try this, shut the main off in the house and see if your voltage problem goes away.
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Old 06-20-2008, 07:58 PM   #27
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Its my understanding that there is voltage in all water lines, thats why they are grounded right? If that is true then the hot water line is no longer grounded due to corrosion?

Obviously I am no electrician...

Quote:
shut the main off in the house and see if your voltage problem goes away.
You are referring to the water main?

Last edited by CaptHanky; 06-20-2008 at 08:06 PM.
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Old 06-20-2008, 08:30 PM   #28
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Bizarre Electrical Problems - Grounding?


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Its my understanding that there is voltage in all water lines, thats why they are grounded right? If that is true then the hot water line is no longer grounded due to corrosion?

Obviously I am no electrician...



You are referring to the water main?
No, turn your main breaker off... if the voltage goes away, then you know the problem is coming from the inside of your house.

Your problem could simply be a bootleg ground.
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Old 06-20-2008, 08:36 PM   #29
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Alright, I will give this a shot tomorrow afternoon and let you know how it goes.
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Old 06-20-2008, 09:52 PM   #30
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Bizarre Electrical Problems - Grounding?


I agree with the others. This is not a plumbing problem. And the PVC drains are not the problem. Your electrician let you down. This is not a problem with the ground rods. You need a better electrician. I would call that company back and tell them just that. The electrician needs to find the source of the voltage.

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