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Thread: Ground rod driven for pool pump

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    6

    Ground rod driven for pool pump

    I had an inspector say "he'd like to see" a ground rod driven and the solid #8 run to the pool pump motor connected to it. This seems like an exceptionally bad idea to me. Can someone please give me feed back on this because I haven't responded to his request yet.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Seattle, WA
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    I don’t see any danger in his suggestion, nor do I think his suggested installation is itself a violation. But it is also not a requirement. Nor does it add to the safety of the installation. What this tells me is that this inspector has no idea of how grounding works.

    My response would be, “Thanks for telling me what you would like to see. I have decided not to do it, because the code does not require it, because it will have no impact on the safety of the installation, and because I do not believe in wasting my customer’s money."

    Of course, I would not have to live with the consequences of being rude to this inspector, and you would. So be nice, but be firm.
    Charles E. Beck, P.E., Seattle
    Comments based on 2014 NEC unless otherwise noted.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    Florida
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    7,264
    I completely agree with Charlie. Positively reject this "suggestion". I personally feel the exact response Charlie gave is completely appropriate...
    Bryan P. Holland, MCP

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
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    New Jersey
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    I would see a potential for danger if he wanted this in lieu of an equipotential bonding system
    Rob

    Chief Moderator

    All responses based on the 2011 NEC unless otherwise noted

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Maryland
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    Is this an inground pool? If so it is already installed in the earth, with an equipotential bonding grid. How much more "grounded" can you get? Ask the inspector what additional safety will be provided by the ground rod? Will it assist in tripping an overcurrent device? If he thinks it will, you will know that you are dealing with someone that does not understand grounding.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    195
    If you installed the ground rod, you would then be obliged to tie it in to the house GEC. This would mean more trenching, etc. This inspector appears to be in need of some code classes.
    He's wrong, everybody who responded has a handle on this. Hey, that's the hard part about combo inspectors, they can't know everything, but I'm sure that if you have a short conversation about it you should be OK. Just be sure to be tactful and respectful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    6
    It is above ground. The message on got on my voice mail was that he would like to see one driven to help the ground fault to open up. Also he is a new inspector and I'd rather not pick a fight with him if I don't have to

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Bremerton, Washington
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    There is no code requirement for a ground rod at a pool pump motor.
    Point out that, per section 90.3, the rules in 690 modify the rules in 250.
    While 250 allows this type of ground rod, basically anywhere you want, per 250.54, its a waste of time money and effort.
    Ask the inspector what the objective is...
    Moderator-Washington State
    Ancora Imparo

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    N.C.
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    15,156
    Quote Originally Posted by MKinnes
    It is above ground. The message on got on my voice mail was that he would like to see one driven to help the ground fault to open up. Also he is a new inspector and I'd rather not pick a fight with him if I don't have to
    Well, with that statement, he shows that he needs some grounding classes, the ground rod will play no part of operating or opening (at our voltages) an OCPD in a fault.

    Roger
    Moderator

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    16,895
    Quote Originally Posted by roger
    Well, with that statement, he shows that he needs some grounding classes, the ground rod will play no part of operating or opening (at our voltages) an OCPD in a fault.

    Absolutely true. Consider this: Take a 120 volt source, and use it to push current through a ground rod that has a ground resistance of 25 ohms. What current do you get? 120/25 is 4.8 amps. Ask the inspector how that is going to help trip whatever size breaker is feeding the pool’s electrical equipment. To trip a breaker fast enough to prevent an injury to a person, you need a current many times the rating of the breaker. That is the function of the Equipment Grounding Conductor. It has a resistance well under a tenth of an ohm, and will result in a fault current over 1000 amps. An extra 4.8 amps going through a ground rod will not have any influence at all.
    Charles E. Beck, P.E., Seattle
    Comments based on 2014 NEC unless otherwise noted.

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