AHJ's mandating two ground rods or testing - how STOP them?

grasfulls

Senior Member
This is like digging up the bones of a dead horse and beating them, but here goes.

There are now two jurisdictions in No Calif. mandating we install two ground rods in lieu of having a testing agency prove less than 25 ohms resistance to actual earth. I hate doing it when the EGC is right and everything is bonded properly and there really is no way a fault will be forced through the earth. But it is like smashing my head with two brick walls when I ask why and I get the boiler-plate answer "to make sure of low resistance to earth" and I ask, "why do you want that?" and they say.... you know exactly what they say, and then I ask, "well, where does the electricity want to go?" and yes, it is always "the earth".

The intro to this area of the forum should be enough but people just cannot get it through their heads where all those electrons want to go and the earth is really some remote fall-back. So, hats off to San Francisco and Palo Alto Calif. forcing homeowners to spend more money on a pointless installation. And a bow to your hard-headedness in sticking to it.

How do we stop it? I think I am posting more out of frustration than anything else.
 
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pete m.

Senior Member
Location
Ohio
Not sure what code cycle is being enforced there but the 2011 NEC section 250.53(A)(2) does require a single rod, pipe or plate electrode to be supplemented by an additional electrode unless you meet the exception which allows for the resistance testing.

Pete
 

infinity

Moderator
Staff member
Location
New Jersey
Occupation
Journeyman Electrician
There are now two jurisdictions in No Calif. mandating we install two ground rods in lieu of having a testing agency prove less than 25 ohms resistance to actual earth.

How do we stop it? I think I am posting more out of frustration than anything else.
Hiring a testing agency is cheaper than installing a $10 ground rod?
 

mwm1752

Senior Member
Location
Aspen, Colo
New construction should require a UFUR if there is rebar in the footer as it is an available electrode. UFUR is a stand alone electrode not needing a supplement. The rod is basically a supplemental to specific electrodes that are present. If the rod is the only electrode you option to use then it must meet the required 25 ohms. 2 rods are reqiured to comply for an electrode system not having a resistance of 25 ohms & no other electrodes involved. Generally in my area it cannot be achieved with 1 rod. 120v @ 25ohms = 4.8 amps. Never tried it but theory would suggest a 20 amp breaker would not trip.
 
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Location
Ny
U mad bro?


Why? I don't see what there is to complain about. You already have your demo-hammer or rotary-hammer out, just drive a second ground rod. It only costs $20 more for material and you can charge more money via markup and added labor.
 

GoldDigger

Moderator
Staff member
U mad bro?


Why? I don't see what there is to complain about. You already have your demo-hammer or rotary-hammer out, just drive a second ground rod. It only costs $20 more for material and you can charge more money via markup and added labor.
You also have to find another spot for a ground rod, outside the zone of influence of the first one, which may be a problem.
 
Location
Ny
You also have to find another spot for a ground rod, outside the zone of influence of the first one, which may be a problem.
Then charge more :thumbsup:


It's required, we all gotta do it.


The nice thing about service upfrades are that they are the one thing that is almost always inspected. You aren't competing against contractors and handimen who aren't getting an inspection and won't install to code. So it's a level playing field.
 
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Location
Ny
And if you have one little hole in the concrete walkway where the underground electric and gas come up, there may not be anywhere to go 6' away without drilling or crossing the walkway.
You drive ground rods in a small opening where the underground electric and gas are? :jawdrop:
 

grasfulls

Senior Member
testing a moot point

testing a moot point

Not sure what code cycle is being enforced there but the 2011 NEC section 250.53(A)(2) does require a single rod, pipe or plate electrode to be supplemented by an additional electrode unless you meet the exception which allows for the resistance testing.

Pete
yup, much cheaper a 2nd rod, but since the earth does not carry the fault current in a properly grounded and bonded system.....I merely want to know hwy there is this need? And, if it truly accomplishes something positive, why is it not required everywhere?
 

grasfulls

Senior Member
no way cheaper, but quesiton is what does it accomplish?

no way cheaper, but quesiton is what does it accomplish?

Hiring a testing agency is cheaper than installing a $10 ground rod?
Ha! no way. If you have a properly grounded and bonded system, what does a ground rod do other than create a landing point? The earth is not meant to clear a fault. No? yes?
 
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