Apologies for the dual question, but it's within the same topic, so hopefully it won't be too out of bounds.

Situation: Upgrading to a 200amp panel requires ground upgrades at the residence in question. There is one ground rod on the outside of the wall where the main panel is, which serves as its main ground (at least 8ft in the ground, with 10" sticking out, 4ga copper wire going to the panel), and a second grounding wire (8 or 6ga solid copper) going from the panel to the waterpipe in the basement.

  1. Another ground rod has to be added per local requirements for 200amp service. Is it ok to continue using the existing rod as the first rod? It doesn't look to be in too bad a shape, but just wanted to make sure there isn't a significant difference between using it instead of pounding in a new rod next to it. A second rod with 4ga grounding wire going to the first rod will be added, 8-10 ft away from the original or new one.

    1. Am I understanding correctly that the grounding wire from the panel to the 1st and 2nd ground rods is supposed to be uninterrupted, i.e.: one long piece connecting the panel and the rods?
  2. The water pipe bonding wire (currently 8ga or 6ga solid copper) will be replaced with 4ga green wire, but I don't want to mess with the existing water pipe clamp (red circle), instead wanted to cut the old ground wire right at the old clamp, and put a new clamp here (yellow circle) or here (blue circle) and of course jump the meter with another piece going to the (green circle). I know the water pipe grounding location is supposed to be within 5ft of that pipes entry into the building, so either yellow or blue location is fine, right?

Plumbing and ground wire

  • 2
    What gauge is the existing water pipe bonding wire? May 8, 2022 at 3:25
  • 1
    It looks like 8ga solid copper metalclad wire. 6ga if one were to be really generous but its fairly thin. I have solid 4ga to compare to and its 1/2 of that thickness at best.
    – sil80
    May 8, 2022 at 13:45
  • Should I just leave the old bonding wire as is, and add the 4ga green wire from the panel going to the yellow/green bonding spots?
    – sil80
    May 8, 2022 at 13:56
  • I was required to place the ground connection on the source side of the meter so the fault current would not pass through it. I also have several grounding rods, I installed an Array. Everything had to be one piece of cable or eutectic bonding.
    – Gil
    May 10, 2022 at 0:37

1 Answer 1


Panel to first electrode needs to be uninterrupted, but from there you can use connectors

Since the existing grounding electrode conductor is large enough and in good enough condition, you can go ahead and reuse it and its attached electrode. Attaching the second grounding rod and its bonding jumper to the existing system can be done using a lay-in type tap connector (Ilsco GTT-2-2 or equivalent) to tap the existing grounding electrode conductor, though, as inter-electrode bonding jumpers are not required to be unbroken lengths to the panel. This is because NEC 250.53(C) on inter-electrode bonding jumpers does not cite NEC 250.64(C), instead substituting the connector requirements in NEC 250.70.

The plan for the upgraded water pipe bond looks sound as well, as either location you propose will work.

  • As always, ThreePhaseEel, thank you very much!
    – sil80
    May 10, 2022 at 3:18

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