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Old 11-15-2011, 10:28 AM   #1
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Adding ground bar


I have a 100-amp cutler-hammer CH panel. I want to add a subpanel, but the current panel is full. I plan to install 2 tandem breakers to make room for the new 60A breaker.

The share ground/neutral bar is full. It is on the right side.I'd like to add another to the left. How do I bond the two together? Can I just get 2 lugs and run a #6 bare copper from one to the other? Do I just install it with sheet metal screws to the back of the panel?

Thanks.
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Old 11-15-2011, 10:34 AM   #2
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If it’s the main panel you’re adding the ground bar to, the current ground bar should be bonded to the panel already. Adding a grnd bar and screwing it directly to the panel, with the supplied screws, will bond it to the existing bar.
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Old 11-15-2011, 10:35 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SD515 View Post
If itís the main panel youíre adding the ground bar to, the current ground bar should be bonded to the panel already. Adding a grnd bar and screwing it directly to the panel, with the supplied screws, will bond it to the existing bar.
Thanks, yes it is the main panel. I can verify this with a continuity tester after installing, right?
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Old 11-15-2011, 10:41 AM   #4
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You can if you want. If you cont test the existing bar, you should find it’s bonded to the panel tub. FYI, the supplied screws will be machine screws…you don’t want to use sheet metal screws.
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Old 11-15-2011, 03:29 PM   #5
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Instead of adding a ground bar, remove a number of ground wires, pigtail together and run the pigtail to a single hole. This will free up space on the existing bar.
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Old 11-15-2011, 03:32 PM   #6
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Instead of adding a ground bar, remove a number of ground wires, pigtail together and run the pigtail to a single hole. This will free up space on the existing bar.
Didn't know that was allowed. I guess as long as I use whatever the highest gauge wire in the pigtail is to connect to the bar.
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Old 11-15-2011, 04:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjniles
Instead of adding a ground bar, remove a number of ground wires, pigtail together and run the pigtail to a single hole. This will free up space on the existing bar.
This is fine to do so long as the largest size conductor is the size you use as a pigtail.
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Old 11-15-2011, 10:04 PM   #8
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Didn't know that was allowed. I guess as long as I use whatever the highest gauge wire in the pigtail is to connect to the bar.
That is correct. I only pigtail same size grounds with same size pigtail. But you can chose to mix #12 and #14 with a #12 pigtail.
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:01 PM   #9
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I just installed the ground bar on my new square-d homeline sub panel - it's a main breaker panel. i removed the bonding screw, so the factory installed neutral bbars are NOT grounded to the panel. THe new ground bar I installed does not show continuity between it and the panel (nor does the main bar). the two bars (factory-installed and the one I installed) do not show coninuity to each other.

Why does the ground bar i installed not show continuity to the panel? Is it because the metal frame of the panel is painted? I did verify the tester was working, which it is.
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by secutanudu
I just installed the ground bar on my new square-d homeline sub panel - it's a main breaker panel. i removed the bonding screw, so the factory installed neutral bbars are NOT grounded to the panel. THe new ground bar I installed does not show continuity between it and the panel (nor does the main bar). the two bars (factory-installed and the one I installed) do not show coninuity to each other.

Why does the ground bar i installed not show continuity to the panel? Is it because the metal frame of the panel is painted? I did verify the tester was working, which it is.
Is it your main panel or a sub panel? You've stated it as both. If its your main panel you must bond it. It also sounds like it is the paint insulating you from having your bus grounded.
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:26 PM   #11
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You removed the bonding screw there should be no continuity.
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:30 PM   #12
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Paint?
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:31 PM   #13
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There may be some paint in the threads of the new bar’s mounting hole causing the ‘no continuity’, but more likely you’d have to scratch the paint a bit to make contact with the tub itself with your meter probe. You can try this: Shut the sub-panels ‘main’ breaker off (de-energizing the main bus-bars), put one probe on the new bar and the other on the screw that retains the main breaker…it’s just below the main brkr but above the branch circuit brks 1 & 2, in the center. It’s also screwed into the tub. You should show continuity.
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:33 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brric View Post
You removed the bonding screw there should be no continuity.
I believe he's looking for continuity between the new grnd bar and the tub.
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:42 PM   #15
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scratch the paint a bit with your tester
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