Hot answers tagged

19 votes
Accepted

How do I check if my outlet's ground and neutral are connected correctly?

Neutral is not Earth They are completely different wires with completely different jobs. Neutral is the normal everyday path for return current. Earth is a fault catcher, it only flows current when a ...
user avatar
17 votes

Plastic shed base - How to level soil?

Set stakes around the proposed site for the shed, attach string lines/wires, and make sure they are level. Then measure the distance between the string line and the ground periodically, and make sure ...
user avatar
  • 3,261
14 votes
Accepted

Using 10/2 and/or 8/2 for a 240 only 3-prong

No, that's illegal and has always been illegal. You are confusing neutral and ground, which is understandable since they go to the same place in the main panel. However they are actually different ...
user avatar
9 votes
Accepted

Hand tool for packing dirt

I use a plate tamper. Most of the hardware stores, garden centers, and big box home improvement places around here carry them. Image from http://www.naturalbuildingblog.com/tampers-from-building-...
user avatar
  • 6,825
8 votes

Can a Ground Wire be attatched to a nail in wood stud?

Install equipment in real junction boxes I've done a lot of wiring and I cannot imagine how you would get a ground wire anywhere near a 2x4. Your wires (including ground) are doing one of two things:...
user avatar
8 votes

Old construction, replacing light switch, bundled ground

Yes. Modern code requires switches to be grounded. If you are not using self grounding switches and metal boxes (and you are not), you need to run a wire from the switch ground screw to the bundle. ...
user avatar
  • 33.1k
7 votes
Accepted

8/2 wire for 240v EV charger

Yes, a 10 AWG ground wire is fine for up to a 60A circuit. The 8/2 Romex (NM) cable is good for amperage up to 40 amps. However, the breaker must match the socket / EV charger spec. If the socket ...
user avatar
7 votes

How to I add new light switch with ground wire/screw if old switch had no ground screw?

There are a lot of problems there. The left of the three cables has two unterminated wires in the box. What’s with that? At LEAST they should be capped off, but what are they, and why is their ...
user avatar
  • 17.7k
6 votes

Use of ground wire on split phase 120V house that was converted to 240v

Do NOT do this. It is wrong in so many ways: Completely illegal from the electrical code standpoint. Using a 120V outlet for 220V application is incorrect and confusing. Mixing 120V and 240V on the ...
user avatar
  • 61.5k
6 votes

Can I combine ground and neutral wires before they connect to their bus bars?

No, you can't do that because a single fault would make it deadly. Consider what would happen if the combined neutral+ground wire came loose in your panel -- all the current that was trying to return ...
user avatar
  • 6,259
6 votes

Is there an alternative to buying a tamper to compact the ground?

You can rent a power compactor which would do a much better job than a hand operated tamper.
user avatar
  • 101
5 votes

Adding second Ground Bus to Square D Sub Panel - Grounded via wire or just the screws?

Follow the instructions. You are obliged (NEC 110.3) to follow the extra grounding bar's instructions. That's because those instructions are the basis for UL granting it a listing as safe. As long ...
user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

What happens if you don't bond neutral and ground in a main service panel?

Maybe if you owned the transformer Imagine you had total control of the transformer. (which you probably don't). You would be able to assure that the neutral-ground bond did not exist anywhere. If ...
user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

200amps service - ground rods instead of pipe connection

Your inspector is wrong. You can always use a larger ground. NEC article 250.66 covers this in depth. In fact, the code handbook (an expanded code book good with explanations of what the code is ...
user avatar
  • 97.3k
5 votes

Do metal outlet boxes act as grounds?

Switches (only) can ground through the mounting screws No need to run a ground wire to the switch. Presuming the switch has a metal yoke, it will ground via the grounding screws to the metal box (...
user avatar
5 votes

4 prong wire outlet, 3 wire dryer - can’t find ground screw

The dryer's instruction book will have instructions on how to change the cord. The most important thing is that right now (with 3-prong), there is a "ground strap" connecting neutral and ground on ...
user avatar
4 votes

Hand tool for packing dirt

Search for a tool called a "dirt tamper" It's basically a flat retangular metal plate with a slot for a handle.
user avatar
  • 304
4 votes
Accepted

How to reattach the "head" of a ground wire?

A crimp on eyelet or forked spade connector should do. There's nothing particular about a turntable ground wire like there might be for an antenna wire. I'd probably cut off the damaged end, re-strip ...
user avatar
  • 106k
4 votes
Accepted

Adding second Ground Bus to Square D Sub Panel - Grounded via wire or just the screws?

Given a metallic panelboard cabinet, ground (equipment grounding) bars all bond to the panel enclosure, which is itself grounded either through the system bond point (for service equipment) or the ...
user avatar
4 votes

New Eaton AFCI/GFCI breaker signals (5 blinks) ground fault, but doesn't trip. How to track it down?

You may not have a ground-fault at all. The diagnostic LED displays the last recorded trip code, not any current conditions. Reading through the Eaton documentation, it turns out that it may be ...
user avatar
  • 128k
4 votes
Accepted

Properly grounding equipment with a ground screw

Grounding of metal cased equipment is most often done for safety reasons, rather than ESD protection. If a fault occurs inside the equipment that places line voltage on the chassis, the voltage is ...
user avatar
  • 246
4 votes

New style ground attachment

That particular switch is made for construction installers to do very fast work so they can get 2 houses done in 1 day. "Time is money, friend". I imagine the source of your inquiry is that you ...
user avatar
4 votes

Is it possible to charge a battery from a live with without creating a second ground?

No. Electricity travels in loops. If you don't have a loop, it will just sit there. In mains electricity (which I assumed we're talking about here since that's what we do in a home improvement ...
user avatar
4 votes

Neutral and ground connected to one bus bar in subpanel; should I change?

You are correct in your assumption that your neutral and grounding conductor must be separated in subpanels per the NEC which only allows neutrals and grounds to be attached on the same bus in the ...
user avatar
4 votes

Neutral and ground connected to one bus bar in subpanel; should I change?

Get a PK7GTA and clean this mess up Your panel appears to be a Square-D QO612L100RB (of unknown series, though). The correct grounding bar for your panel is a Square-D PK7GTA; this should be pretty ...
user avatar
4 votes

Mysterious ground wire

The cure for this is a surface conduit starter box. This box will sit on top of the existing box about 1-1/4" proud of the wall. It will provide both the statutory cubic inches you need for all ...
user avatar
4 votes

Can I combine ground and neutral wires before they connect to their bus bars?

Coming up a little short You can always splice wires, but only inside junction boxes.* What I would do is put a large steel junction box located so you have ample wire length for your splice (given ...
user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Is there an alternative to buying a tamper to compact the ground?

The first question is why you think "you need to compact the ground first" - even without frost as a consideration (not knowing where you live or if it freezes there) the first step in ...
user avatar
  • 136k
4 votes
Accepted

Is this metal box grounded already?

Chicago doesn't have ground wires. Everything in Chicago is in metal conduit with metal boxes. Those, together, provide the grounding system for everything. I mean, you're allowed to add ground ...
user avatar
4 votes

How to properly ground new three way switches being installed?

The proper way is indeed to pigtail ground wires from that bundle to each switch. They should be wired in such a way that detaching ground from one switch (to replace it, for example) doesn't impact ...
user avatar

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible