# Thread: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

1. ## bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

hey everyone, so yesterday I had the Fam down and of course everyone is enjoying the pool.. at the end of the day I was in bare feet and talking and stuck my hand in the pool while standing in sand surrounding the pool... on a cut on my hand I noticed a "sting/tingle" and thought it was weird and looked at my hand, did it again and knew immediately it was voltage, not much but enough.. (everyone was already out of the pool)

So i started testing "everything"

pool water to earth 0.550 V AC and 0.300 V DC, 0.0 Amps

pool water to metal poles on pool 0.003 V AC

bonding to ground, same

earth to earth 0.102 V AC and 0.052 V DC, 0.0 Amps (5 feet between probes)

bond to earth continuity > intermittent, not high pitch like normal, almost like muddled low grumble sound

I did all the above tests with power to pump/ pad everything, then turned all breakers off at pad and same results, turned off power from main breaker in garage and same results..

hmmmmm, tested ground (from 120V ground plug)

ground to sink water 0.357 V AC and 0.168 V DC, 0.0 Amps

ground to earth outdoor socket 0.600 V AC 0.0 Amps

I have read and understand more than most on bonding and I think I can stop all voltage difference by bonding directly to earth..

My question is how much is too much, is 0.600 V AC with 0 amps to much, is it not safe..

I am contacting the power company on Wednesday but I wanted to have some knowledge behind it, is this something they are going to say is normal or nominal and not do anything?

are there any other tests I should do? Anything thing I should know?

Thanks

2. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Confused - why would the earth surrounding the pool be bonded to it? There's no bonding grid buried in the soil, correct?

From your voltage measurements it looks like your bonding wire is picking up stray AC noise. Do buried power lines run anywhere near the pool?

3. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Hey Matt, Kind of, I have a Zinc anode buried about 12 inches under ground and the bonding wire runs through the ground about 4 feet and exits and runs along the top of the soil and then connects to my bundy water bond...

This is a new thing, I believe since the last flood/9 inches of water in 12 hours... but I can not confirm when this happened since 98% of the time I test with shoes on..

stray voltage would make sense, it has been messing with my PE653 intermatic timer and I have been troubleshooting what has been happening and it has been getting worse within the last month...

our whole neighborhood is underground buried power..

I understand it is below 0.6 volts but that is still high..

Can I use ground rods as bonding to equalize the stray voltage, I know it is bonding and not grounding but that would work, right.. I know the problem will still be present but my family will be safe until they find the issue...

4. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Hmmmm....I need a picture (hand drawn on a damp beer napkin is ok...). I remember you had zinc anode....we can talk about that later. I am certainly no expert here so we will have to get into our "patiently waiting dog" yoga pose and wait for Gordon to show up and tell you what to do....don't forget to make peaceful chanting noises....

5. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

I'm following this thread as I've had my own issues with improper bonding and more importantly stray voltage.

6. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Yoga pose, Check

ohhh, about that anode, I think about the only thing it is protecting is the copper wire its connected to

7. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

called it in to the local power company.. with my whole house power off (main circuit breaker off) still getting 0.300 V AC from ground to earth

we will see... she seemed confused how I knew there was stray voltage, bonding and grounding and how I tested

8. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

When we had the power company involved the end answer from them was basically "we agree" there is stray voltage but they couldn't tell me why. They had an engineer out here and all......6 trucks finally showed up.

I think they finally wanted to blame it on the buried phone line. But phone company denied that too.

9. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Can you get a good true rms multimeter that measures frequency?

That might provide some insight.

An oscilloscope might be a better choice so that the waveform and frequency can be seen.

10. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Casey,

Have you watched the Mike Holt series on bonding & stray voltages?

Swimming Pool Equipotential Bonding 1 of 3 Stray Voltage, (1hr:34min:27sec) - YouTube

Lots of great learning there if you have a couple of hours to watch all three.

11. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise
Casey,

Have you watched the Mike Holt series on bonding & stray voltages?

Swimming Pool Equipotential Bonding 1 of 3 Stray Voltage, (1hr:34min:27sec) - YouTube

Lots of great learning there if you have a couple of hours to watch all three.
I will check this out

12. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Originally Posted by cowboycasey
I will check this out
I use it as a sleep-aid...does wonders for insomnia.

13. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Actually I thought my college geology textbook was better at putting me to sleep but that might be the beer.

So the fact that you get the same readings with the main off and on means your house is not the source. The PC will have to find the source if they can.

I would skip to the third Mike Holt video in that series where Holt describes in detail a process for. Testing your bonding. It uses IG pools but it will work for you. Swimming Pool Equipotential Bonding [Part 3 of 3, Testing], (28min:39sec) - YouTube

As to repairing your bonding if you have the cash go to an electrical supply house and purchase copper mesh and bury it 4 inches deep around the pool. If you are not that rich then 3 no 8 wires 4 inches deep 6 inches apart. Also make sure the water bond is in the pool or right next to the pool. Two would be better. And directly connect the water bond to the ground bond. That should change something.

The anode really isn't doing any thing here.

14. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Casey,

We can talk about making your sac anode better but right now your stray voltage is more important.

15. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

So I just made it through the 1.5 hour video, I thought I knew a lot about this but man, I knew some..

So basically I created the problem by bonding my pool, I have introduced the voltage into the pool with the bundy water bond and the SWG and the pool is now the same voltage as the common (the premise of bonding) make everything the same voltage so you (the person or thing) do not become the conductor...

if the power company does not find the stray voltage (up to 1.2 V now and will continue to raise as summer goes along) the only way to fix this is to make the earth around the pool the same voltage as the common YAY....

************ it is nice to learn something new ********** just finished watching the second testing video and it ties it all together

this really is not stray voltage, this is normal neutral to earth voltage (NEV) its just the first time I have really noticed it because I had a cut on my hand and was standing in wet sand with bare feet... I have half of the safety feature (bonding) but because I do not have a concrete pad it is not complete and therefore is/could be dangerous,, In the last video basically above 2 volts... with the summer getting hotter and more power being used the NEV will continue to rise and may very well raise above 2 volts..

very interesting.....

Thank you all for the help

16. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Yea that is probably correct. I would still have the PC out to make sure that is what it is.

This also illustrates some of the compromises that make up the NEC.

17. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

So what's the fix?

18. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

There may not be a fix to the electrical issue. If the local transformer is performing within specs.

19. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

the only "fix" I can do is bury copper wire and "bond" the earth within 3 feet of the pool.. I can hope for a resolution but as they say... "hope in one hand and (well you know the rest)"

20. ## Re: bonding, ground, electrical knowledge needed

Originally Posted by cowboycasey
the only "fix" I can do is bury copper wire and "bond" the earth within 3 feet of the pool.. I can hope for a resolution but as they say... "hope in one hand and (well you know the rest)"
Build a raised (inch or two) wooden deck all around the pool perimeter. It'll give you something to post in the build thread.

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