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Old 12-15-2010, 11:23 AM   #1
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Ground rod


Okay, I know that for a sub a ground rod is not required, but since I plan to later convert the sub I'm putting in, I know it will be required at that time and as such I will be installing a ground rod at the sub-panel.

So I had a 1/2" diameter copper rod and a 5/8" diameter copper rod to choose from, I bought the 5/8" rod because there was a $0.50 difference and I figured even if 1/2" is adequate for 200A then it doesn't hurt to go up to 5/8"

My question is just what is the length that needs to go into the ground. This is an 8' rod. Does the whole 8' have to get pounded into the ground, or is it some shorter length with the excess being cut off?
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Old 12-15-2010, 11:34 AM   #2
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The code requires that 8' be in direct earth contact. The top of the rod will be flush or driven below the surface. Do not cut any of the rod off and be sure to install the acorn clamp before driving the rod. If the rod mushrooms you will not get the clamp on.

For inspection you can leave the top of the rod accessible and fill the hole later.
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Answers based on the National Electrical Code. Local amendments may apply. Check with your local building officials.
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:23 PM   #3
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Until this is a main panel you should not connect the ground rod. It should be grounded to the current main panel.
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:47 PM   #4
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Quote:
My question is just what is the length that needs to go into the ground. This is an 8' rod. Does the whole 8' have to get pounded into the ground, or
Ayuh,... Use an electric Demohammer, instead of a BFHammer....
The rod will Disappear before yer eyes,.... All of it....
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Old 12-15-2010, 06:54 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WillK View Post
Okay, I know that for a sub a ground rod is not required, but since I plan to later convert the sub I'm putting in, I know it will be required at that time and as such I will be installing a ground rod at the sub-panel.
I don't get this. What will you be "converting"?
Are you going to make this sub-panel into the main panel at some point?
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Old 12-15-2010, 08:00 PM   #6
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Yes. I'm working on our house, built in 1917. The second floor was entirely on knob and tube which had cellulose insulation blown in around it. The wire insulation was cracked and breaking off, the cellulose was blackenned probably from moisture due to inadequate ventilation, there were extensive birds nests in the attic. Beyond that, various splices to wires (mostly lamp cord) had been made outside junction boxes and held together with electrical tape. This wiring is removed, the kids are in a bedroom with no electricity.

The kitchen has its polarity reversed because where the outlets were spiced into knob and tube, they were spliced apparently wrong. The splice is, again, outside a junction box.

The house came with one upstairs battery smoke detector.

All of these conditions I am remedying because they are major problems that can't wait for me to have funds for a complete rewire, I am adding 11 circuits. Because there is only space for 5 in my existing 100 amp panel, I need a subpanel anyway. Since I am planning to upgrade and move the entrance, I'm using the panel I want to use later at the location I want to use later as my sub panel.

Later, I also want to run 100 amps to a new subpanel in the detatched garage. Currently, the only thing I know works in the garage is the garage door. Inoperative flourescent lighting is hanging. Anything else, I think I'd rather not try to use. The visible part of the wiring for the outlet to which the extension cord for the garage door - if you said lamp cord, you guessed correctly. I would not be suprised at all to find the garage is fed by buryed lamp cord. The garage is connected to a switch inside the house on the main circuit for the knob and tube. But this part of the project can wait since I can basicly not use electric in the garage, and digging the trench will be a bit easier to manage when the ground isn't frozen.
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