I'm running a few outlets to my basement from the main panel on the first floor. Since it is a garage, sealed 3/4" pvc conduit runs through the concrete into the basement. This connects to a metal junction box and 3/4 emt, with metal junction and outlet boxes the rest of the way. There are two 20 amp circuits and one 15 amp circuit for the lights. I know that I can use the emt itself as the ground path as long as it is connected to the main panel. My question is: Would it be code compliant to run one ground wire from the main panel, through the pvc, to the first metal junction box, and then ground all of my outlets to their outlet boxes further down the line? Thanks for the input! -Matt

2 Answers 2


Yes, that's fine. It needs to be of adequate size and properly connected. IIRC 12Ga should be adequate if that matches the largest wires you are running power on.

  • Thanks! Yes I’m running 12awg thhn. Already prepared myself to re-pull everything.
    – Matt Kemp
    Commented Aug 8, 2020 at 1:02

Yes, you can do that. The hard part is getting the ground wire in the conduit. You've already got 6 wires in the conduit so you'll probably have to pull them out and add the ground wire, #12 THHN stranded, and re pull the whole bunch. Use an eye terminal and a 10-32 grounding screw to attach to the first metal box and that will ground the rest of the EMT.

  • 2
    No need to upsize the grounding wire - just has to be big enough for the largest circuit, and there's no 30A circuit in the question. See diy.stackexchange.com/a/175044/18078 for the code cite. And it's not actually clear that ANY wire is present in the conduit, yet. Planning circuits ahead of time and checking ahead of time about the grounding is not unthinkable.
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Aug 7, 2020 at 23:11
  • @Ecnerwal Good catch on the ground. The OP did say that " there are two 20 amp circuits and one 15 amp circuit..." so that's what I based it on. Not only is planning not unthinkable, it's advisable
    – JACK
    Commented Aug 8, 2020 at 11:08

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