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Old 11-01-2011, 07:04 PM   #16
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Does my ceiling light HAVE to be grounded?


Plain English...

The basic thing with NEC is that people get electrocuted. People have been electrocuted in the past. Fires have been caused by electrical wiring. There have been fires in night clubs and hotels caused by electrical wiring and there has been great loss of life.

All they do is look at these accidents and say "How can we make things safer?"

Then come up with new improved wiring methods which hopefully will prevent these accidents in the future.

BTW the NEC is by the "National Fire Protection Association".

Anyway as to why light fixtures should be grounded... In the past bare hot electrical wires have touched metal objects. Like the metal around a light fixture. Then someone touched this and was electrocuted.

So the idea is to ground these metal objects, then should a hot electrical wire touch that metal, the breaker will trip and turn off the electricity. Or it will be kept at ground potential. In either case someone touching it will not be electrocuted.

Basically newer electrical wiring is "safer" than older wiring.

And keep in mind these rules cover absolutely every situation under the sun! So maybe your particular light fixture is high up and installed properly and the hot may never touch the metal, but somewhere else there is a low down light fixture that some child can reach.

Or maybe 50 years from now someone else will own your home and will be changing light bulbs in bare feet and a metal ladder. And might touch that metal plate. And maybe someone in the mean time has used too high a wattage of bulbs and the insulation has broken off the wiring... Hot then touching metal...

Safer to follow the rules and connect grounds. The rules are for you and your family's safety (and whoever might buy your home in the future).

As for appliances, lamps, etc. and grounding. Read the following...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appliance_classes

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Last edited by Billy_Bob; 11-01-2011 at 07:07 PM.
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Old 11-01-2011, 09:01 PM   #17
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Does my ceiling light HAVE to be grounded?


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Originally Posted by Bluwolf View Post
Hey Code 05, basically from what you quoted from NEC, 110.3 (B) if my wiring is "NM-B or AC" I would have to, by code, completely rewire my new light fixture, I did notice that it said something about 90C.
Also, I guess the answer to my main question, what is more likely to electrocute me, a table or floor lamp or standing on a latter or chair and touching my ceiling light, percentage wise that is, in other words, turning on lights daily, with circuit breaker on or, every three years, replacing the circular fluorescent light bulbs with the wall switch turned off , comes under the common sense rule that you mentioned. Just wondering, Bluwolf
Not every fixture requires a ground or 90C connections. If the wires are in good shape, find one and stick it up.
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Old 11-01-2011, 09:30 PM   #18
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Does my ceiling light HAVE to be grounded?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy_Bob View Post
Plain English...

The basic thing with NEC is that people get electrocuted. People have been electrocuted in the past. Fires have been caused by electrical wiring. There have been fires in night clubs and hotels caused by electrical wiring and there has been great loss of life.

All they do is look at these accidents and say "How can we make things safer?"

Then come up with new improved wiring methods which hopefully will prevent these accidents in the future.

BTW the NEC is by the "National Fire Protection Association".

Anyway as to why light fixtures should be grounded... In the past bare hot electrical wires have touched metal objects. Like the metal around a light fixture. Then someone touched this and was electrocuted.

So the idea is to ground these metal objects, then should a hot electrical wire touch that metal, the breaker will trip and turn off the electricity. Or it will be kept at ground potential. In either case someone touching it will not be electrocuted.

Basically newer electrical wiring is "safer" than older wiring.

And keep in mind these rules cover absolutely every situation under the sun! So maybe your particular light fixture is high up and installed properly and the hot may never touch the metal, but somewhere else there is a low down light fixture that some child can reach.

Or maybe 50 years from now someone else will own your home and will be changing light bulbs in bare feet and a metal ladder. And might touch that metal plate. And maybe someone in the mean time has used too high a wattage of bulbs and the insulation has broken off the wiring... Hot then touching metal...

Safer to follow the rules and connect grounds. The rules are for you and your family's safety (and whoever might buy your home in the future).

As for appliances, lamps, etc. and grounding. Read the following...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appliance_classes
Billy Bob, Thanks for the responce, that makes sense. Can I run a ground wire from a near-by, grounded electrical box ? The wikipedia page didn't mention specifically Code 0 pertaining to lamps, does it? I'll ask you, isn't it much more likely that someone can be electrocuted by an non-grounded floor or table lamp? They are not double insulated, are they?
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Old 11-01-2011, 10:42 PM   #19
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Does my ceiling light HAVE to be grounded?


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Originally Posted by Bluwolf View Post
Billy Bob, Thanks for the responce, that makes sense. Can I run a ground wire from a near-by, grounded electrical box ? The wikipedia page didn't mention specifically Code 0 pertaining to lamps, does it? I'll ask you, isn't it much more likely that someone can be electrocuted by an non-grounded floor or table lamp? They are not double insulated, are they?
If I was doing this, I would run an entirely new wire which has a ground. Also new wire is "higher heat" rated than older wiring. It can get very hot above a light fixture! The insulation on older wiring can get brittle and crumble off, sometimes leaving an inch or more of bare wire.

The wikipedia page gives you the general idea of appliances and grounding. The authority on this would be U.L., but so far as I know, you have to pay for these standards. So that leaves us do-it-yourselfers out of reading such things.

So far as it being "more likely" that someone would be electrocuted by a table lamp, I must say I have seen some very dangerous old table and floor lamps. I was even shocked by an old lamp once. However the new table lamps are safer in that they have "polarized plugs". These connect the bulb and socket ring to "neutral" which is not "hot".

I don't think they are double insulated like plastic kitchen appliances and power tools are. But anyway I consider the new table lamps I have to be safe. I don't see how the metal on the lamp could become energized with normal use and professional servicing.

But just off the top of my head, I think it would be a good idea for table lamps to be grounded as well (if metal). But that is a U.L. thing... And U.L. stands for Underwriters Laboratories... An underwriter is an insurance company... And they insure lamp manufacturers from things like wrongful death lawsuits because someone was electrocuted by a lamp!...

So if U.L. does not think it is necessary for lamps to be grounded, then I think one could conclude that electrocutions from touching the metal on lamps is not a problem. Otherwise they would require grounding with a quickness! (As insurance companies like to receive money and not pay it out!)

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