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-   -   Can I add a second grounding bar to a GE box? (http://www.diychatroom.com/f18/can-i-add-second-grounding-bar-ge-box-16542/)

Rodsnreels 02-03-2008 09:46 AM

Can I add a second grounding bar to a GE box?
 
Hi,
I'm finishing my basement and am adding 8 new circuits to a GE box (installed about 7 years ago). There are plenty of slots for new circuit breakers and plenty of room on the neutral bar, but the ground bar is full. I bought a 12-post ground bar and want to know if I can just screw it into the back of the box and connect it to the other (full ground bar) with a 10 gauge piece of copper wire (or something like that)? There are two threaded holes in the back of the box but it looks like I'll only be able to hit (use) one of them for the new bar. Can I just drill a second hole and bolt the other end of the bar to the back of the box? I have access to the back side of the box where I can put on a nut. Thanks very much.

Kingsmurf 02-03-2008 10:41 AM

most certaqinly...add a secoond ground bar...run the largest solid copper wire between the original and the second ground bar..add new circuits...please do solder ANY AND ALL starnded wire ends as to make proper lugs that will not come loose in a short time

Speedy Petey 02-03-2008 10:56 AM

A jumper is not necessary. The new bar is screwed right to the box, and the original bar should have a bond screw or strap, so they are inherently bonded.
The proper bar for the panel should hit both threaded holes.

Solder??? Really? This is not at all necessary either.

NO neutrals should be put on the ground bar in this case.

You can also double (and sometimes triple) up on GROUNDS of the same size, if this helps.

Rodsnreels 02-03-2008 05:10 PM

Thanks!
 
The other ground bar is already doubled up so I'll need another ground bar. I figured I might not need to tie the two ground bars together since they are already "linked" by virtue of the fact that they're attached to the metal box in essence making the whole metal box a ground. Am I looking at this correctly? I will check Home Depot to see if they have a GE ground bar that matches up to the two threaded holes, but it would be a shorter bar and might not give me enough holes for single wires. But if I doubled them up too, I should be OK. Thanks again. By the way, to hook up 240v for baseboard heat, I'm using 12-2 wire on a double pole 20 amp breaker and putting both wires (white and black) into the breaker and then connecting the bare ground wire to the ground bar. Am I correct on that? Thanks.

Speedy Petey 02-03-2008 05:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rodsnreels (Post 94614)
By the way, to hook up 240v for baseboard heat, I'm using 12-2 wire on a double pole 20 amp breaker and putting both wires (white and black) into the breaker and then connecting the bare ground wire to the ground bar. Am I correct on that? Thanks.

Yes. This is typical.
No problem. :thumbsup:

Pudge565 02-03-2008 05:54 PM

first off are we talking about a main panel if we are talking about a main panel you can just put the grounds on the same BAR as the neutrals but DON'T PUT NEUTRALS AND GROUNDS IN THE SAME HOLE. But you can put 2 grounds in the same hole.

Rodsnreels 02-03-2008 06:44 PM

Ground Wires in the Neutral Bar?
 
I'm new to this, but do I understand you correctly that I can put ground wires on the neutral bar on a main panel? If that's the case, why would I have to add another ground bar if there is plenty of room on the neutral bar? Actually, there are two neutral bars in the box, one on each side. Thanks for your help.

jbfan 02-03-2008 06:56 PM

If your panel has seperate ground and netural bars, continue to wire them that way.

Pudge565 02-03-2008 06:59 PM

you are welcome for the help if you wanted to you could put the second bar in but if it were me i wouldn't i would just use the neutral bar.

Andy in ATL 02-05-2008 01:07 AM

This is a great question


Make sure that your second means of ground is grounded securely....I think the code says more than a couple of threads???


Common sense here. It is all about a good connection. That is key.

Randell Tarin 02-19-2008 05:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pudge565 (Post 94626)
DON'T PUT NEUTRALS AND GROUNDS IN THE SAME HOLE.

I would never do this, but can someone explain why neutrals and grounds in theory can't go in the same hole? This seems counter-intuitive.

In a MAIN panel they are already bonded, so in essence they're already in the same hole.

InPhase277 02-19-2008 07:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Randell Tarin (Post 99414)
I would never do this, but can someone explain why neutrals and grounds in theory can't go in the same hole? This seems counter-intuitive.

In a MAIN panel they are already bonded, so in essence they're already in the same hole.

If the screw becomes loose, then you may get neutral current back fed onto the ground and energizing whatever is connected to that ground. It is still allowed to double or even triple up grounds of the same size, but not neutrals, and certainly not neutrals and grounds together.

InPhase277

Speedy Petey 02-19-2008 08:11 PM

Folks need to get out of the mindset that the neutrals and grounds start at the same place. This is a source of MUCH confusion and misinformation.

FORGET where they start. Think about where they go and what they do once they leave the panel.

Randell Tarin 02-19-2008 09:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by InPhase277 (Post 99443)
If the screw becomes loose, then you may get neutral current back fed onto the ground and energizing whatever is connected to that ground. It is still allowed to double or even triple up grounds of the same size, but not neutrals, and certainly not neutrals and grounds together.

InPhase277

I see your point, but wouldn't the same thing happen even if the neutral and ground were in separate holes and the neutral, for whatever reason, became loose?

InPhase277 02-19-2008 09:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Randell Tarin (Post 99503)
I see your point, but wouldn't the same thing happen even if the neutral and ground were in separate holes and the neutral, for whatever reason, became loose?

No, because there is no wire next to it. The only place the current can go to is the bar next to it.

InPhase277


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