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Old 01-17-2012, 10:47 PM   #1
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panel grounding - new pex/well plumbing


i have read a few posts but can't seem to find the answer for my situation.

situation- new construction (no old metal pipes), well-water, plastic pipe entering basement. plumbing is-- a few feet of PEX, branching to copper (for water heater and boiler) and pex distribution throughout the house.

i thought the "main panel" has to be grounded "twice" (as in my old house)-- 1) to the copper water pipe and 2) with a ground-round outside the house.

question is...with plastic pipe entering basement, where is the second ground?

...is one ground rod Ok for the code?

thanks

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Old 01-17-2012, 10:51 PM   #2
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Grounds to water pipes has not been used for a while.
Depending on your local codes on how many ground rods you need.
In VA it's two grounds 6 ft. apart.

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Old 01-17-2012, 11:42 PM   #3
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We still use ground from panel to street side of water meter if a copper water line is installed to house and a ground rod bonded to meter socket with grd wire.
If a copper water service isnt available we use the double ground rods
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Old 01-18-2012, 07:28 AM   #4
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The connection to the water line is not a ground. It is a bond. It makes sure the water lines are at ground potential so a short to the water line will not make the pipes live.
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Old 01-18-2012, 08:03 AM   #5
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Well the reason we hook the ground to the street side of meter/water service is to ensure there is still a path to ground even if somebody removes the meter to work on something.
And if you attach a ground wire to street side of the water service on a copper or steel or lead water service you still have a ground even if the house/building is plumbed with plastic water lines on the house side of meter
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Old 01-18-2012, 09:22 AM   #6
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If the water pipe qualifies as a grounding electrode (metal going out 20' underground) it must be part of the grounding electrode system. If not then something else (e.g. ground rods) must be provided as a grounding electrode.

Gas pipes do not qualify as grounding electrodes but the gas plumbing must be bonded to the grounding electrode system (to ground). A gas appliance that uses electricity and that has an equipment grounding conductor (ground wire) will establish the bond from gas plumbing to ground.
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Old 01-20-2012, 09:31 PM   #7
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thanks all for your the responses...this is the gist of what i am reading--

1. since there is no water meter and the pipes service-side as well as inside the house are plastic, neither bonding or grounding the plumbing at any point applies here.

2. re ground rods- the local code may require a second rod since there is no water-pipe grounding- so what i need to confirm is : one or two rods?
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:37 AM   #8
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If the water pipe qualifies as a grounding electrode (metal going out 20' underground) it must be part of the grounding electrode system. If not then something else (e.g. ground rods) must be provided as a grounding electrode.

Gas pipes do not qualify as grounding electrodes but the gas plumbing must be bonded to the grounding electrode system (to ground). A gas appliance that uses electricity and that has an equipment grounding conductor (ground wire) will establish the bond from gas plumbing to ground.
The NEC only requires 10' in contact with the earth, not 20'.

The water line must also be supplemented with another electrode.
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:40 AM   #9
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Unless you can prove 25 ohms of resistance or less you will require 2 rods. The test equipment is expensive. It is easier to drive two rods and be done with it.
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Old 01-21-2012, 07:08 AM   #10
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Well the reason we hook the ground to the street side of meter/water service is to ensure there is still a path to ground even if somebody removes the meter to work on something.
Yes, but this is ONLY if the pipe is metallic and in contact with the earth for 10' or more. This makes the pipe it self a grounding electrode.

May I ask what you think this "path to ground" is for?
I see this term misused so much I am curious what people think it does.
What do you think the consequences of not having it are?
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Old 01-21-2012, 07:43 AM   #11
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What do you think the consequences of not having it are?
Ummmm....water will gush everywhere?
Sorry, my odd sense of humor couldn't let this one go.
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Old 01-21-2012, 07:47 AM   #12
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If the house takes a big hit of voltage or a major dead short I want to make it as simple as possible for it to find its way home/to ground!
I consider it a redundent path to ground for the electric service incase the outside ground rod is missing.
Some people think of it as a way of bonding the metal parts of plumbing system,which it also does but if that was the only reason I wouldnt see the need to run it all the way to the street side of service which weve been required to do in these parts for last 30 years ive been doing it
*Around town anyway the majority of our water services are copper or steel/lead,we dont have many plastic water services to deal with except when you get out to some of the farms

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Old 01-21-2012, 08:05 AM   #13
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If the house takes a big hit of voltage or a major dead short I want to make it as simple as possible for it to find its way home/to ground!
I consider it a redundent path to ground for the electric service incase the outside ground rod is missing.
This is my point about misconceptions. Voltage is absolutely NOT seeking "ground" like so many people think.
"Home" for the voltage is NOT the dirt outside or anything like it. Home is the utility transformer. The earth is NOT a path for fault current, nor does it have ANYTHING to do with line voltage fault current. The earth or a ground rod will have NO part in clearing that "major dead short" you referred to.
Grounding electrodes are for lightning and high voltage surges, nothing more. This includes a water pipe electrode.




Quote:
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Some people think of it as a way of bonding the metal parts of plumbing system,which it also does but if that was the only reason I wouldnt see the need to run it all the way to the street side of service which weve been required to do in these parts for last 30 years ive been doing it
That is exactly the major role. The water pipe BOND. THIS is much more important. That is to clear any faults that might occur on a metallic water line. The fact that the piping system is bonded to the service equipment puts it at the same potential as the service neutral, which is intern bonded to the service equipment via the main boning jumper. Which in turn is a path for fault current to the circuit breaker.
The reason for running it to the street side of the meter is so that the metallic underground pipe can also be used as an electrode, which if it exists MUST be used.
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Old 01-21-2012, 08:14 AM   #14
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So is the copper or other metal water line leaving the house through the ground not a path to ground just like the ground rod pounded into the ground outside next to meter socket?
Maybe I should use a term other than way back home,such as more convenient location to dispose of a short or fault other than somebodys body?
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Old 01-21-2012, 08:22 AM   #15
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So is the copper or other metal water line leaving the house through the ground not a path to ground just like the ground rod pounded into the ground outside next to meter socket?
Exactly.


Quote:
Originally Posted by plummen View Post
Maybe I should use a term other than way back home,such as more convenient location to dispose of a short or fault other than somebodys body?
Fine, if you think a ground rod is helping you trip breaker or clear faults fine. I'll stick to knowing whats correct.
You've been doing this HOW long?

Here is some good reading: http://ecmweb.com/mag/electric_groun...ing/index.html
From the article:

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