The dishwasher's junction box needs a ground, and I currently only have white and black.

Can the flexible conduit be used as a ground? If I can securely rejoin the flex to the solid conduit (using the clamp seen in the photo), I would still need a wire at the other end, from the flex to the screw. Maybe I just wrap a solid wire around the outside, sort of like this?

Or, could I run a new ground wire from the solid conduit, and into the flex? Not sure how that would work...

The junction box is the same as the one in this question. It's plastic, and has 3 screw-down connectors.

dishwasher electrical conduit

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    No, that "ground wire wrapped around the BX cable" belongs in the "code violations that make you LOL" file :) There are several right ways to use nonflexible EMT for ground, though. – Harper - Reinstate Monica Jul 11 '19 at 23:44
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    such as? (a link or googleable term would be great) – Michael Lewis Jul 12 '19 at 0:03
  • Is there a paper separator between the cable armor and the conductors inside? – ThreePhaseEel Jul 12 '19 at 2:29
  • Also, is it feasible to move that hose out of the way enough to cram a handy-box or the likes in here? That from-to between the flex/BX and the EMT looks to have been set at an awful angle, which lead to its subsequent disintegration... – ThreePhaseEel Jul 12 '19 at 2:31

The printing on the wires indicates THHN style wire, and suggests pretty strongly that this is using the EMT conduit wiring method. As such, the EMT is the ground, and we have several ways to tap it.

First, if the geometry lines up, you can install a junction box at that point. You use a standard EMT connector (e.g. this) to enter the junction box. On the other side you enter with the standard "BX into junction box" connector. For the ground wire, you land that on the ground screw on the junction box. The box itself carries ground via the EMT connector to the EMT.

Another way is to put a ground clamp around the EMT. That will remove the necessity of a junction box. I would run this ground wire outside the BX, because I don't see a way to exit the BX without a junction box.

Now I agree with ThreePhaseEel that it's a mistake to go "straight-in" to the EMT. You should probably make a 90 degree turn into the BX. A junction box can cover that, but another option is a 90 degree EMT elbow. They come either with side access or top-bevel access. Use ones with female threads on both sides, so you can screw in both of the above adapter types.

I am not familiar enough with the question of whether you can use the BX flexible metal conduit as the grounding path, so I will leave that question to others.

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  • It could be FMC, not BX (and likely is FMC from the way the wires are run). Also, I think the angle of the "from-to" is about 45deg, not 90deg... – ThreePhaseEel Jul 12 '19 at 11:37
  • Well, be careful: Use of EMT conduit as ground path is allowed, but you do need to make sure it gets to proper ground. The previous electrician in this case may not have done so. – Carl Witthoft Jul 12 '19 at 13:32
  • What's the reason for the angle? For strain relief? – Michael Lewis Jul 14 '19 at 18:32
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    @MichaelLewis because from what I can see in the photo, if the BX or FMC went straight out of that connector, it would bonk right into that sheet of particle board. And it was already wired that way and I'm under the impression that was problematic. – Harper - Reinstate Monica Jul 14 '19 at 19:43

I'll add this answer to show what I did. On a scale of 1-10, how dangerous is this? I'll let the community decide.

  1. I was able to reuse the clamp as shown in the original image, to securely reconnect the EMC (solid Electrical Metal Conduit, coming from the wall) to the FMC (spiral/helical Flexible Metal Conduit).
  2. I was able to verify that the EMC was grounded (using my tester on the black (hot) and EMC (ground), I was able to get 120V).
  3. I was able to verify the grounding from the EMC was present in the FMC (using my tester on the black (hot) and FMC (ground), I was able to get 120V).
  4. I found a green grounding pigtail at the hardware store, and was able to securely clamp it to the end of the FMC (see below).
  5. I had no way of running the ground into the FMC, so I drilled a small hole in the plastic box.
  6. I was able to verify that the pigtail was grounded.

I'm not sure if this guarantees it is grounded "properly", but assuming the EMC was originally grounded properly, it sounds legit to me.

In terms of the pigtail-through-the-hole connection, elsewhere I've seen bare ground wires exposed. And the EMC is exposed. There's no electrocution risk? It's slightly more susceptible to physical damage, I suppose. And the hole makes the plastic box a little less water tight, but I'm not sure if the clamp is water tight to begin with.

So, what do you think? Throw the book at me.

ground pigtail

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    Uh, that box does not look to be of a type intended for North American mains wiring service, and your photo shows very little of what's going on with that all-important EMT-FMC "from-to"... – ThreePhaseEel Jul 14 '19 at 22:20

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