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    Bonding cpvc outside copper hose bib

    I had a call today where a guy was shocked when he removed his hose from his hose bib. The house was built in 2015 with all cpvc water line. Copper water service coming through the foundation to the brass shutoff valves, pressure reducer, and then cpvc from there. 200 amp service, #4 aluminum bonded to the water service where it enters the building, has a footer bond at the basement panel.

    I removed the water bond at the clamp and tested it to see if it was broke - not broke. Test the other copper in the house with an extension cord and a meter - at the water heater - other hose bibs - the water service - all of them at zero volts. Unfinished basement - I can see the water line to the hose bib with the 100 volts - its about 10 feet from the main water service and runs parallel to two romex wires about a foot away from the 1/2 inch water line. Too far to pick up a field?? It does not matter if the water service bond is connected or not I get the same reading - 100 volts at the hose bib and zero everywhere else.

    I bonded the hose bib to the main water service and that fix it but I still do not know why just that hose bib was reading 100 volts. It went through a 2x10 and was mounted to some fake stone on the outside. I did touch the fake stone to ground outside and was getting 24 volts. Why did I do that you say. I don't know.

    I thought maybe he was just saying he got shocked so I held on end of the bond wire before I attached it to the the new water service clamp. My conclusion was, he did get shocked... Anybody have this problem??

    #2
    If the water service to the main in the street is metal, you may have an open neutral. Or a neighbor has an open neutral.
    Could start with a call to the POCO, look at the connections in the meter can, and service drop. Overhead services are known for loose connections or never were crimped.
    There is some current in the water line trying to get to its source.
    Moderator-Washington State
    Ancora Imparo

    Comment


      #3
      The two by 10... The band board? Since you have CPVC pipe running to an energized metal fitting, I would have looked for possibly a pinched or chafed cable at the fitting, or running behind the stone work. Could even be coax or a telephone line as ring voltage is right at 100 volts.

      Did you shut off branch circuit breakers or main to test for the presence of voltage?

      If the spigot was in contact with a chafed or severed neutral of a branch circuit conductor supplying a small load, it would be sitting at roughly the same voltage as your measurements. I say neutral as that since you bonded it back to the service, if it was the ungrounded conductor that was cut, it would probably trip a breaker.

      PEX and white plumbing pipe are not conductive.

      Edited to add... Could even be a metal strap behind the stone work that is nailed up into a piece of Romex that is causing it to be energized
      Electricians do it until it Hertz!

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by delfadelfa View Post
        I had a call today where a guy was shocked when he removed his hose from his hose bib. The house was built in 2015 with all cpvc water line. Copper water service coming through the foundation to the brass shutoff valves, pressure reducer, and then cpvc from there. 200 amp service, #4 aluminum bonded to the water service where it enters the building, has a footer bond at the basement panel.

        I removed the water bond at the clamp and tested it to see if it was broke - not broke. Test the other copper in the house with an extension cord and a meter - at the water heater - other hose bibs - the water service - all of them at zero volts. Unfinished basement - I can see the water line to the hose bib with the 100 volts - its about 10 feet from the main water service and runs parallel to two romex wires about a foot away from the 1/2 inch water line. Too far to pick up a field?? It does not matter if the water service bond is connected or not I get the same reading - 100 volts at the hose bib and zero everywhere else.

        I bonded the hose bib to the main water service and that fix it but I still do not know why just that hose bib was reading 100 volts. It went through a 2x10 and was mounted to some fake stone on the outside. I did touch the fake stone to ground outside and was getting 24 volts. Why did I do that you say. I don't know.

        I thought maybe he was just saying he got shocked so I held on end of the bond wire before I attached it to the the new water service clamp. My conclusion was, he did get shocked... Anybody have this problem??
        I think you have masked the problem but not fixed it.

        I would ask a couple of questions.

        1. What kind of meter did you use to measure the voltages?

        2. Did you measure the current through the bond wire you installed? If so, what was it?
        Bob

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by tom baker View Post
          If the water service to the main in the street is metal, you may have an open neutral. Or a neighbor has an open neutral.
          Could start with a call to the POCO, look at the connections in the meter can, and service drop. Overhead services are known for loose connections or never were crimped.
          There is some current in the water line trying to get to its source.
          It's an underground service - three year old house - the owner had POCO out the day before I got there and they checked for an open neutral and told them there was no problem with the service. I checked the voltage at the panel 122 volts from each leg to ground. When ever I had a problem with an open neutral I would not get the same voltage from each leg to ground, it would be like 105v and 145v. They may not have a problem with an open neutral but you are right it may be a neighbor.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by JFletcher View Post
            The two by 10... The band board? Since you have CPVC pipe running to an energized metal fitting, I would have looked for possibly a pinched or chafed cable at the fitting, or running behind the stone work. Could even be coax or a telephone line as ring voltage is right at 100 volts.

            Did you shut off branch circuit breakers or main to test for the presence of voltage?

            If the spigot was in contact with a chafed or severed neutral of a branch circuit conductor supplying a small load, it would be sitting at roughly the same voltage as your measurements. I say neutral as that since you bonded it back to the service, if it was the ungrounded conductor that was cut, it would probably trip a breaker.

            PEX and white plumbing pipe are not conductive.

            Edited to add... Could even be a metal strap behind the stone work that is nailed up into a piece of Romex that is causing it to be energized
            There is not anything near this hose bib. It is drilled through the band board and through about 2 inches of fake stone. I don't know if they use wire mesh when they installed the fake stone and the mesh is touching the hose bib, that may explain it.
            I did not turn off the main and check it, I wish I did.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by petersonra View Post
              I think you have masked the problem but not fixed it.

              I would ask a couple of questions.

              1. What kind of meter did you use to measure the voltages?

              2. Did you measure the current through the bond wire you installed? If so, what was it?
              I used a Fluke 325 meter. Did not measure the current. When I did touch the bond wire before I hooked it up it was not a real shock but more of a tingle. I touched the bond wire to the ground clamp first and did not see any spark that's the only reason I tried it out.

              Comment


                #8
                well, if they uses metal mesh then you could look for other screws that could touch it and see if you pick up voltage elsewhere..kinda hit and miss but...

                Otherwise, there was a wire where they hit it and it is now connected to the outlet... with your bond, you should be able to find the circuit by disconnecting everything and going one line at a time until you see what starts having voltage...
                Student of electrical codes. Please Take others advice first.

                Comment


                  #9
                  UPDATE UPDATE!!!

                  I was called back to the house I was at last year for the home owner getting shocked on his hosebib that was supplied with cpvc.

                  Now the home owner said he is getting shocked when he touches the fake stone on the house with wet hands. I'm getting 65 volts from the stone to ground. There is a gfci mounted on the stone so I started there and removed the box and found wire mesh behind the box and one of the screws holding the box was burnt in the center on the threads. I thought I found it but now I tested the wire mesh to ground and i'm getting 120v.

                  I flipped breakers until the mesh voltage drops and the receptacles on that same inside wall are on that circuit. Remove the receps and disconnect the hots. The wire mesh goes to zero. Ran a cord between the two and bypassed the wire between them. Every things working and mesh is at zero.

                  So all I have to do is refeed between them from the basement. I cut the nails off the plastic spike-on and pull it out so I can easily refeed it and right there, like a gift from heaven, I find the wire, about 2 inches from the the box, with a mesh nail right through it. The afci breaker did not detect any problems.Click image for larger version

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                  Comment


                    #10
                    Good find!

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Good find!
                      Is the panel a GE perhaps? Where their arc fault breakers do not have ground fault detection which may explain why breaker did not trip. It looks as though the wire shows signs of arcing at some point, maybe at the initial penetration the arc fault tripped.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Mark this down in those data and statistics records that this is a documented case where an AFCI failed to protect the building occupants from possible fire and loss of life.

                        -Hal

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by mopowr steve View Post
                          Good find!
                          Is the panel a GE perhaps? Where their arc fault breakers do not have ground fault detection which may explain why breaker did not trip. It looks as though the wire shows signs of arcing at some point, maybe at the initial penetration the arc fault tripped.
                          Yes it was a GE panel.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by delfadelfa View Post
                            I was called back to the house I was at last year for the home owner getting shocked on his hosebib that was supplied with cpvc.

                            Now the home owner said he is getting shocked when he touches the fake stone on the house with wet hands. I'm getting 65 volts from the stone to ground. There is a gfci mounted on the stone so I started there and removed the box and found wire mesh behind the box and one of the screws holding the box was burnt in the center on the threads. I thought I found it but now I tested the wire mesh to ground and i'm getting 120v.

                            I flipped breakers until the mesh voltage drops and the receptacles on that same inside wall are on that circuit. Remove the receps and disconnect the hots. The wire mesh goes to zero. Ran a cord between the two and bypassed the wire between them. Every things working and mesh is at zero.

                            So all I have to do is refeed between them from the basement. I cut the nails off the plastic spike-on and pull it out so I can easily refeed it and right there, like a gift from heaven, I find the wire, about 2 inches from the the box, with a mesh nail right through it. The afci breaker did not detect any problems.[ATTACH=CONFIG]23239[/ATTACH]
                            good job! I know it feels good to solve that mystery.

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