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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've seen some conduit runs with a ground wire ran with the hot and neutral and I've seen some without where they just run a hot and neutral and they use a pigtail from a ground screw in the box to the outlet. So when do you have to run a ground wire in conduit? And do you always have to use a pigtail to ground the box? And always have to run a ground wire to the outlet or switch? Hopefully this makes sense.
 

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I beleive that in the early days of electricity when they were using metal conduits
It was considered ok to use the metal conduit as a earth/ground.
Electrical systems in houses were much smaller then,
A few lights and a radio was the norm.
How ever now days electrical systems in houses are MUCH bigger
And using metal conduit would probably not cut it,
under a full fault current situation.
And the chances of the metal conduits path being compromised is higher.
Therefore it is no longer best practice and also NOT code in some area's.
Probably a good thing too.
if you look at it from a safety stand point.
 

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So when do you have to run a ground wire in conduit?
Properly installed metal conduit is a better equipment ground than any wire will ever be.

With that being said, the quick answer is 'you don't', with exceptions.

Those exceptions include, but aren't limited to:
Pools, spas, hot tubs, fountains, etc;
Marinas and boatyards;
Healthcare facilities (specifically patient care areas require metal conduit and and insulated EGC).

You also need to check with your municipality. My county, for example requires an insulated EGC in any metal conduit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Makes sense. Any reason not to(other then cost) pull one along with the hot and neutral if you are pulling wires in conduit? Can't hurt besides cost and an extra wire in the conduit right?
 

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Can't hurt and is allowed. It also compensates for any possible loose conduit connection.
 

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Can't hurt and is allowed. It also compensates for any possible loose conduit connection.
Absolutely. Since this is a DIY forum, I will say you should pull a ground as it is very possible most of the folks in here will not have good conduit skills.
If you don't pull a ground and your conduit were to come loose, then you have no ground.
I still pull one, even though its not required. And they are not required as far as the NEC. Local codes may differ.
 

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Absolutely. Since this is a DIY forum, I will say you should pull a ground as it is very possible most of the folks in here will not have good conduit skills.
If you don't pull a ground and your conduit were to come loose, then you have no ground.
I still pull one, even though its not required. And they are not required as far as the NEC. Local codes may differ.


If you were discussing conduit bending I'd understand your comment BUT
If you cannot tighten a connector or coupling set screw or use channel locks to tighten a compression fitting and accompanying lock nuts you probably should not be doing ANY DIY projects.

Test have shown that even with a copper conductor in the conduit during a ground fault the majority of current is carried by the conduit.
 

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If you were discussing conduit bending I'd understand your comment BUT
If you cannot tighten a connector or coupling set screw or use channel locks to tighten a compression fitting and accompanying lock nuts you probably should not be doing ANY DIY projects.

Test have shown that even with a copper conductor in the conduit during a ground fault the majority of current is carried by the conduit.
Lets get one thing straight. I am in total agreement that the conduit is the better EGC.
I only suggested we tell people that are not conduit benders (DIY forum that we are both on right now) to use the grounding wire as their conduit skills may not be sufficient enough to rely on.
Even professionals sometimes overlook a loose connector or coupling.
In this forum I try to think of the DIY safety.
 

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Lets get one thing straight. I am in total agreement that the conduit is the better EGC.
I only suggested we tell people that are not conduit benders (DIY forum that we are both on right now) to use the grounding wire as their conduit skills may not be sufficient enough to rely on.
Even professionals sometimes overlook a loose connector or coupling.
In this forum I try to think of the DIY safety.
I hear this all the time and in the whole realm of work we do in commercial and industrial facilities there are way more important connections we make than tightening EMT connectors (NOT DOWN PLAYING THIS). IN A COMMERCIAL facility, with metal studs, metal ducts, rebar, steel joist, EMT, metal piping for water there are multiple ground path in fact test show (test we make regularly) it is IMPOSSIBLE not to have multiple ground paths. I am more concerned that my guys make that 34.5 KV termination right, or bolt 4000 amp bus properly if they cannot get an EMT connector tight I DO NOT WANT OR NEED THEM IN MY EMPLOYMENT.

As for a DIYer, I feel as I stated if they cannot properly tighten a connector, coupling or locknut they should not be doing DIY projects. In fact I would bet being a DIY'er they will over tighten the connector, coupling...........

And as Jim stated NO IT CAN'T hurt, I just feel the arguments utilized to defend this practice are bogus. Much like the arguments for ground up/down, tape wire nuts don't tape wire nuts and a slew of others electricians make with no hard data to back their argument.

Having said all this 99% of the jobs we do spec EGC's in conduit, you pay me I'll install it.
 

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I hear this all the time and in the whole realm of work we do in commercial and industrial facilities there are way more important connections we make than tightening EMT connectors (NOT DOWN PLAYING THIS). IN A COMMERCIAL facility, with metal studs, metal ducts, rebar, steel joist, EMT, metal piping for water there are multiple ground path in fact test show (test we make regularly) it is IMPOSSIBLE not to have multiple ground paths. I am more concerned that my guys make that 34.5 KV termination right, or bolt 4000 amp bus properly if they cannot get an EMT connector tight I DO NOT WANT OR NEED THEM IN MY EMPLOYMENT.

As for a DIYer, I feel as I stated if they cannot properly tighten a connector, coupling or locknut they should not be doing DIY projects. In fact I would bet being a DIY'er they will over tighten the connector, coupling...........

And as Jim stated NO IT CAN'T hurt, I just feel the arguments utilized to defend this practice are bogus. Much like the arguments for ground up/down, tape wire nuts don't tape wire nuts and a slew of others electricians make with no hard data to back their argument.

Having said all this 99% of the jobs we do spec EGC's in conduit, you pay me I'll install it.
As a contractor its easy to see why you would not use the EGC. I understand its not cost effective for you.

But like you say. Its like the ground up, ground down debate. So which way do you put yours? Up or Down.
If you have an answer, your post above is pointless.
Because it may not be required does not make it wrong to use a EGC.
I have seen as many specs calling for the EGC as those that did not.
And of course if the specs require it, you do get paid for the added expense.

I don't understand why you want to debate something like this. Its compliant regardless.
Around here I would push the EGC. Just because this is a DIY forum
 
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