My bobile home has a disconnect at meter and three 6 AWG wires leaving the outside disconnect. There are 3 wires coming up under the house into a 50amp cataleptic box and the panel in the home plugs in to that by a 6/4 cord.

What happened is the main sewer line backed up and the clean out flooded the under side of home and the box and plug got corrosion and I have lost one leg I have already examined the box it and the cord need replaced.

I don't see a ground wire any where in box or in my panel and the grounds and neutrals are mixed and bonded in the main panel in side. The is no ground to the water main as the rest of the lines are plastic after the main incoming line. The panel inside is a sec Panel with ground and neutrals mixed and bonded to the panel, this doesn't look right or sound good to me.

Should the box underneath be done away with as my home and outside disconnect are 100amp can that be spliced and ran directly to the panel inside.

Shouldn't the panel inside be treated as a sub panel having a disconnect 30ft away at the meter pole?

I don't know if somehow this mess got grandfather's in or what but it's doesn't sound up to code.

This has been that way long before I bought the home 9 years ago and was fine until the sewer backed up last year and the corrosion built up and I lost that leg.

I guess what I'm asking is:

Should the panel inside be changed to a sub panel and be grounded to a water pipe and that 50amp receptacle box done away with or just replaced?

  • The green wire that is supposed to be a ground on the cord is not connected to anything that I can tell and there are only 3 wires hooked to the 50amp receptical so that goes nowhere.
    – John Minks
    Dec 22, 2020 at 19:33
  • 1
    You know, grounds don't need to be wires. Metal conduit pipes count too, I have a whole site full of metal conduit with not a ground wire anywhere. I'm not a big fan when the pipes are underground because they rot out, but it's legal as long as everything's bonded. I'd be OK with metal conduit from disconnect to "box underneath" then the green wire bonded to the box. Dec 22, 2020 at 20:07
  • Can you post photos of the 50A box the cord plugs into please? Dec 22, 2020 at 23:46
  • Can't add photo it's a standard rv receptacle box no wires have been disconnected yet
    – John Minks
    Dec 23, 2020 at 0:05
  • @JohnMinks -- you should be able to hit "edit" in "share edit ..." at the bottom left of your post and then use the button that looks like a stylized "mountain and sun" painting in the toolbar to add photos. If you can't get that to work, try posting them to imgur then posting a link to them here in the comments Dec 24, 2020 at 21:42

2 Answers 2


The Main Panel is where the neutrals and grounds are bonded to each other, and where the grounding electrodes come in.

Today, that would need to be at the pole disconnect, with 4 wires to the subpanel in the house.

But back 30 years ago, running 3 wires to a Main Panel in the house was perfectly fine. Meet "Grandfathering": if it was OK when it was installed, you don't need to redo it simply because Code changed. You are allowed to repair it "as it is".

Honestly outdoor rated wires are pretty tough, and if you can stand touching the moogie, the under-house splice can simply be cleaned up and the connections all re-done, maybe with new splices if the old ones are too hard to clean. That's a repair, and it doesn't void the grandfathering.

However, it sounds like you need to re-do the Grounding Electrode System. Clearly you can't use water pipes anymore. I recommend driving 2 grounding rods 8' long, preferably opposite corners of the building, and the wires from them go into the legacy main panel, which is inside the structure obviously.

As long as the Grounding Electrode wiring is proper, and comes into the same panel where neutral is bonded to ground, it's not a huge risk.

  • 4
    What IS UP with some of these edits? Have you guys been hitting the adult beverages (or the wacky tabacci) a little early. IE: What the heck is "cataleptic box"? A google search led me to a medical condition. Also, somebody changed "Mobile home" to "bobile home" ....same question: What the heck is that? Dec 22, 2020 at 21:19
  • Should I leave everything as is except those two
    – John Minks
    Dec 22, 2020 at 23:26
  • There are 3feeder wires coming into the 50amp receptical box and a 4 wire plug there is no metal conduit except for the 3 ft though the floor so what's every thing grounded to as far as I can tell the power co. Requires the grounding be done at the meter and main disconnect. Wouldn't I have 4 wires coming in if that were the case it's been here 40 years so I don't know should I make the necessary repairs and leave the rest of it alone or should I do away with the box and cord altogether
    – John Minks
    Dec 22, 2020 at 23:44
  • 2
    @GeorgeAnderson Yeah, we may need to rescind some of these "when person unhooked all the wires before taking photo you must take a shot" drinking rules :) Dec 22, 2020 at 23:55
  • @Harper-ReinstateMonica OMG, That's too funny. I looked at the edits and thought WTF? How did these improve the OP? I think the OPs have often taken a shot or two as well and the next morning looked at what they did the night before and think, how the F do I fix this? I KNOW: Post on SE, they're the Ghost Busters. Dec 23, 2020 at 0:01

You do not need to isolate your neutral and ground if installed prior to 1999 , (I just read something that said 2008 was the date subs had to have the neutral isolated). In 99 4 wire feeders were required prior to that date 3 wire was legal so if your home is 99 or older the intermixed neutrals and grounds were legal on a sub back then.

Although internet electricians say you can not use water pipes rod pipe and plate electrodes are still in the 2020 code so if someone inadvertently cut your ground it can be reconnected using a crimp splice. Irreversible splices are allowed on the grounding conductor. And water pipes are still legal today current code requires a supplemental method and this can also be a rod pipe or plate electrode but with an older place you may only required 1 and there will normally be 1 at the main panel with a Mobil just splice that wire and you are good again.

Mobile are 50 amp feeders less than 20’ but all the relevant code is located in article 550 of the NEC since you are aware of some code , that section is only about 10 pages long, feeder 550.10, branch circuits 550.12 grounding 550.16

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