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Old 02-01-2009, 08:34 PM   #1
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Multiple cables, mixed up grounds OK?


Hi;
I just got finished installing a double gang box with two GFCI's on two separate branches.
Each GFCI feeds at least ond downstream receptacle.

At one point during the installation, I had the ground conductors swapped between feeds, so that the ground from branch 1 was pigtailed to the GFCI receptacle and downstream receptacles on branch 2 and visa-versa.
Both ground conductors were connected to the metallic box using the green screws. I used one screw for each ground.
Each ground wire is terminated to the ground/neutral bus in the main panel.

My being so anal caused me to undo the ground pigtails and correct my mistake, especially since I had not yet completed the install.
My question is: If I had left the ground conductors swapped, would this be a violation of code?
I really don't think it would have caused any trouble, especially since both circuits have their grounds bonded to the metallic box.

Thanks for your opinion/advice.

FW

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Old 02-01-2009, 09:03 PM   #2
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Multiple cables, mixed up grounds OK?


I'm not for sure, but I don't think it matters as long as there is an effective fault current path back to the panel.

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Old 02-01-2009, 09:11 PM   #3
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Multiple cables, mixed up grounds OK?


For bare ground conductors you will have to tie it all together anyway so that is not a issue.

I done that all the time even with two gang switch box have complety two diffrent circuits the bare grounding conductor always tie together netural { white } conductor no , no .

Merci,Marc
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Old 02-01-2009, 10:14 PM   #4
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Multiple cables, mixed up grounds OK?


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Originally Posted by frenchelectrican View Post
For bare ground conductors you will have to tie it all together anyway so that is not a issue.

I done that all the time even with two gang switch box have complety two diffrent circuits the bare grounding conductor always tie together netural { white } conductor no , no .

Merci,Marc
Originally, this was a MWBC. It had 14/3 coming into the double-gang box with two GFCI's installed. The GFCI's were used mainly for downstream protection.

I installed some new receptacles in the basement (finished, tile on concrete) and one outside and needed to GFCI them, so I ran them into one of the GFCI in that dual-gang box.

All was fine, but I got to thinking that 15A branch might not be sufficient. I had already used 12/2 for my additions, and the only section of #14 was that 14/3 going about 6ft from the panel to the GFCI's.
So, I ran two 12/2 instead. Now I have 20A capacity.

The two breakers are on opposite legs, so MWBC was OK. I just don't have any 12/3 around<g>

FW
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Old 02-02-2009, 09:08 AM   #5
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Multiple cables, mixed up grounds OK?


Now that you replaced the 14-3 multi-wire branch circuit cable with two (12-2) cables, you need to be sure that the neutrals are not tied to each other down the line for example where both circuits might enter the same junction box. From the various loads and outlets the neutrals may only connect to the neutral that accompanies the respective hot feed.

Also with the separate cables you may not have any 240 volt loads fed by them.

(Yes, all ground conductors are tied together wherever they come together in junction boxes etc. If they don't all fit in one wire nut, have pigtails connecting different wire nutted clusters of grounds.)
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Last edited by AllanJ; 02-02-2009 at 09:20 AM.
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Old 02-02-2009, 08:03 PM   #6
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Multiple cables, mixed up grounds OK?


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Originally Posted by AllanJ View Post
Now that you replaced the 14-3 multi-wire branch circuit cable with two (12-2) cables, you need to be sure that the neutrals are not tied to each other down the line for example where both circuits might enter the same junction box. From the various loads and outlets the neutrals may only connect to the neutral that accompanies the respective hot feed.

Also with the separate cables you may not have any 240 volt loads fed by them.

(Yes, all ground conductors are tied together wherever they come together in junction boxes etc. If they don't all fit in one wire nut, have pigtails connecting different wire nutted clusters of grounds.)
Thanks for the advice. Since I wired the circuits myself (except for the original double-gang box and GFCI's), I am confident that there is no connection further downstream.

FW

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