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Old 01-25-2009, 11:36 AM   #1
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Bonding Gas, Water and Electrical Systems


I'm looking at me gas system and I don't see anywhere where it's bonded to my electrical system. My gas system feeds a dryer and a hot water heater, but I'm not sure I want to / should rely on either of those two devices to provide the proper bonding. Since my water and electrical systems are bonded, can I simple run a cable between my gas pipe and water pipe? Where should this cable be? Can I just jumper the two systems right above my water heater where it's obvious? And how do I size the cable for that jump?

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Old 01-25-2009, 12:11 PM   #2
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Bonding Gas, Water and Electrical Systems


You do not bond to a gas line ever! NEVER, NEVER, NEVER!

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Old 01-25-2009, 01:04 PM   #3
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Greg...I know for a fact that it used to be code in my area to bond the gas line to the cold water line, and I believe it still is. You might want to double check before posting "NEVER, NEVER, NEVER"
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Old 01-25-2009, 01:25 PM   #4
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Bonding Gas, Water and Electrical Systems


2005 NEC, 250.104 (B) Other metal piping. "Where installed in or attached to a building or structure, metal piping system(s), including gas piping, that is likely to become energized shall be bonded to the service equipment enclosure, the grounded conductor at the service, the grounding electrode conductor where of sufficient size, or to one or more grounding electrodes used."

There isn't an absolute definition of 'likely to become energized', but the general idea is anything that has electricity to it is likely to become energized. This would include a gas furnace, thus the gas piping system in any building would need to be bonded.

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Old 01-25-2009, 01:27 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Greg C View Post
You do not bond to a gas line ever! NEVER, NEVER, NEVER!
Are you sure about that? Do you have any references?
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Old 01-25-2009, 02:34 PM   #6
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Just so you know....the NFPA-54 (National Fuel Gas Code) Committee has issued a Formal Interpretation of the NFPA-54, 3.14(a) which pertains to NEC 250-104 and electrical bonding of gas pipe. I attended the NFPA-54 Meeting in San Antonio, Texas (end of February) and was asked to speak on this issue. I did so and so did Ted Limoff of NFPA Staff.

The statement of issue and question asked were:

NEC 250-104(b) states: "Each aboveground portion of a gas piping system upstream of the equipment shutoff valve shall be electrically continuous and bonded to the grounding electrode system."

"Is it the intent of NFPA-54, 3.14 (a) and NEC 250-140(b) (metal gas piping), to consider this bonding requirement to be satisfied where a grounded gas appliance is attached to the metal gas piping system?"

The answer was: "Yes"

The intent expressed by the Committee is that when connected to grounded equipment (e.g. equipment connected to an equipment grounding conductor) the pipe is considered bonded.

I was asked to keep the NFPA-54 Committee appraised of this issue, informed if further clarifications were considered needed, and asked to kept them informed of Panel 5 Actions pending on Proposals 5-64 & 5-65 (removal of the phrase "likely to be energized") or which I intend to send in a Comment to Reject. I believe in the zeal of grounding and bonding, Panel 5 is, unfortunately, and unwittingly creating safety issues and concerns for systems regarding which they have limited exposure and knowledge.

John Beck
Pacific Gas and Electric Co.
Chairman CMP-4

Your gas hot water heater has no electrical circuit, and your blower motor etc. for your gas furnace and your gas dryer are already grounded, so no you do not bond your gas line.
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Old 01-25-2009, 03:11 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg C View Post
You do not bond to a gas line ever! NEVER, NEVER, NEVER!
It's not that you don't bond the gas line, because you certainly must. It's that you never use a gas line as a grounding electrode like you do a water line. Most consider the gas line bonded by the fact they are connected to electrical equipment, but will not hurt to install a ground wire just for the gas line either.
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Old 01-25-2009, 03:20 PM   #8
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Bonding Gas, Water and Electrical Systems


Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg C View Post
Just so you know....the NFPA-54 (National Fuel Gas Code) Committee has issued a Formal Interpretation of the NFPA-54, 3.14(a) which pertains to NEC 250-104 and electrical bonding of gas pipe. I attended the NFPA-54 Meeting in San Antonio, Texas (end of February) and was asked to speak on this issue. I did so and so did Ted Limoff of NFPA Staff.

The statement of issue and question asked were:

NEC 250-104(b) states: "Each aboveground portion of a gas piping system upstream of the equipment shutoff valve shall be electrically continuous and bonded to the grounding electrode system."

"Is it the intent of NFPA-54, 3.14 (a) and NEC 250-140(b) (metal gas piping), to consider this bonding requirement to be satisfied where a grounded gas appliance is attached to the metal gas piping system?"

The answer was: "Yes"

The intent expressed by the Committee is that when connected to grounded equipment (e.g. equipment connected to an equipment grounding conductor) the pipe is considered bonded.

I was asked to keep the NFPA-54 Committee appraised of this issue, informed if further clarifications were considered needed, and asked to kept them informed of Panel 5 Actions pending on Proposals 5-64 & 5-65 (removal of the phrase "likely to be energized") or which I intend to send in a Comment to Reject. I believe in the zeal of grounding and bonding, Panel 5 is, unfortunately, and unwittingly creating safety issues and concerns for systems regarding which they have limited exposure and knowledge.

John Beck
Pacific Gas and Electric Co.
Chairman CMP-4

Your gas hot water heater has no electrical circuit, and your blower motor etc. for your gas furnace and your gas dryer are already grounded, so no you do not bond your gas line.
So, according to this, you do bond the gas line, right? All this states is that it's acceptable to use the circuit's grounding conductor as the bonding means.
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Old 01-25-2009, 03:41 PM   #9
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Bonding Gas, Water and Electrical Systems


OK, so given that you _do_ bond the gas line (I think we've established that) it is, in theory, acceptable to use the internal connections of a gas appliance as the bonding means. However, if you like the belt-and-suspenders approach, then you would simply jumper the gas line to the water line at some point in the house, right. Seems an obvious point would be near the gas hot water heater (or furnace), yes? I'm assuming that since the electrical system is bonded to the water system, and the gas system would (now) be bonded to the water system, there'd be no reason to bond the gas system to the electrical system, right. It would be likely to raise too many eyebrows to have a cable running from the electrical box to the gas system. Make sense to everyone?
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Old 01-25-2009, 04:34 PM   #10
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My gas pipe is bonded to my water pipe. When I had a visit from my Exelon (PECO) service for a gas leak a few years ago, he informed me I was getting tagged since my gas line wasn't bonded to copper water pipes. I have since added the 6" bond between the two nearby pipes. PECO supplies both gas and electric in my area. Because of this, what they say goes in my house.
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Old 01-25-2009, 05:13 PM   #11
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Since my water and electrical systems are bonded, can I simple run a cable between my gas pipe and water pipe?
Yes. It's called a bonding jumper. The size depends on a couple variables. If you stay with the water pipe bond size you will be good.


And.....always always always bond the gas piping system.
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Old 01-26-2009, 08:12 AM   #12
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Basically things malfunction, wires come loose and touch metal objects, older insulation has been known to melt away and expose bare wires in high heat things like ranges, etc.

So it is possible and has happened in the past that metal appliance cases and metal piping connected to appliances, furnaces, water heaters, etc. *can* become electrified.

And someone using a water faucet connected to metal pipes, or someone servicing a furnace, or a kid touching a metal gas meter, or someone touching metal piping *could* be electrocuted in certain situations.

So good idea to electrically connect these metal pipes and objects to your electrical system ground (bonding).

And this is what the plug 3rd prong or ground prong on an appliance with a metal case does. It connects the metal case to ground.
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Old 01-26-2009, 10:07 AM   #13
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This thread caught my eye because I recently became involved with the issue of bonding Corrugated Stainless Steel Tubing (CSST) used to supply natural gas to a standby generator at my home. Gas piping in this thread has been used as a generic term and while most may take this to mean black iron pipe, that is not always the case. CSST has become popular in recent years as a gas distribution system in some areas.

CSST may not be identified and treated differently by the National Electric Code or the National Fuel Gas Code but all CSST manufacturers now recommend Equipotential bonding of CSST to the electrical system and not just grounding through a gas appliance. This is to lessen the chance of lightning, which may get in the system, from arcing to or from other building mechanical systems that may have different ground potentials. This arcing can burn a hole in the pipe and cause a fire. This can also happen with iron pipe but due to its thickness is less likely to be an issue.

I had several discussions on this issue with my electrician and the gas and electrical inspectors. My CSST is now bonded to my electrical system. A good explanation of this issue can be found here. http://www.toolbase.org/pdf/techinv/...ngconcerns.pdf
The article also gives some information and background on bonding “gas piping” as covered by the NEC and Fuel Gas Codes.
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Old 01-26-2009, 10:12 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WaldenL View Post
I'm looking at me gas system and I don't see anywhere where it's bonded to my electrical system. My gas system feeds a dryer and a hot water heater, but I'm not sure I want to / should rely on either of those two devices to provide the proper bonding. Since my water and electrical systems are bonded, can I simple run a cable between my gas pipe and water pipe? Where should this cable be? Can I just jumper the two systems right above my water heater where it's obvious? And how do I size the cable for that jump?
Yes you do need to bond your gas line. Use the same size wire as the bonding conductor to your water line. The size is determined by the size of your service. Yes you can bond the gas pipe to the water pipe as you suggested. No, do not rely on the grounding conductors of the appliances for your bonding of the gas pipe.
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Old 01-26-2009, 10:39 AM   #15
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Most will agree that a black iron gas line running to a furnace is effectively bonded via the furnace. If a gasline were ran only to a grill or water heater for instance, it must be conventionally and independently bonded.

CSST gasline systems (the flexible yellow stuff) lose the bond at the fittings, and not taking steps to bond them can be catastrophic if lightning strikes.

Here's GasTite's requirements: http://gastite.com/include/languages.../TB2007_01.pdf
Here's TracPipe's requirements...See page 69:
http://www.omegaflex.com/trac/techni...x_DI_Guide.pdf
And WardFlex's:
http://www.wardflex.com/bonding_faq.htm

So, to say that gaslines should NEVER NEVER NEVER be bonded is entirely false.

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