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Thread: Light Junction Box Grounding / Bonding Confusion

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    chumbley's Avatar
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    Light Junction Box Grounding / Bonding Confusion

    I have 2 pool lights and 1 spa light in my in ground pool. The conduits run in series from the farthest light back to the pool pad. The conduit to one of the junction boxes was broken, so I removed the Hayward SP0681 junction box and replaced the conduits. No problem there.

    It is the bonding and grounding that is confusing me. In the junction box that I fixed, I found both the #8 bonding wires AND the light fixture ground wires were connected to the grounding terminals in the junction box. Back at the power panel, both the #8 bond wire and the #12 ground wire are connected to the grounding block (as is the bond wire from the pump / heater / pool bond wire).

    I had thought that the ground and bond are supposed to be separate, so I was surprised to see them connected together in the junction box. So I checked the other two boxes. One of them had the ground and bond secured to the ground terminals, the other did not.

    So, which is correct? Should the niche bond wire (that secures to the inside of the niche) and the light fixture ground wire be separate, or should they be connected together inside the junction box?

    Thanks!
    28K free form IG pool, pebble finish, spillover spa, Pentair IntelliFlo VS, IntelliChlor IC40, Easy Touch 8 PS, Quad 60 DE, Aquabot Supreme, Hayward LP heater

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Light Junction Box Grounding / Bonding Confusion

    They are intended to be separate (in the US). They CAN be connected at the panel ground rod. Multiple connections the way yours is could cause electrical problems by creating ground loops, but should still be safe.
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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Light Junction Box Grounding / Bonding Confusion

    Junction boxes for line voltage underwater lights are separately required to be both grounded and bonded, forcing ground and bond to be connected there. The rules for low voltage lights are different and don't normally result in a ground-bonding connection. The same thing is true of most pool pumps, you are usually required to both bond and ground them (unless they are double insulated).
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    chumbley's Avatar
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    Re: Light Junction Box Grounding / Bonding Confusion

    Thanks guys for the quick response. They are line voltage lights.

    I will remove the light fixture ground wire from the junction box bonding lugs, leaving only the #8's on the lugs in the junction box.

    Back at the power panel, I will connect both the #12 ground from the light fixture and the #8 bond from the light niche to the ground bar.

    The other bond wires (pool, heater, pump) are connected to lugs on the outside of the power panel box. The power panel ground bus is also connected to the main supply ground, and to a ground rod near the pool equipment (because the power panel is detached from the structure).
    28K free form IG pool, pebble finish, spillover spa, Pentair IntelliFlo VS, IntelliChlor IC40, Easy Touch 8 PS, Quad 60 DE, Aquabot Supreme, Hayward LP heater

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Light Junction Box Grounding / Bonding Confusion

    Leave them connected.

    NEC 680-23 (B)(2)(b) requires nonmetallic conduit to have a bonding wire connected to the ground terminal in the junction box.
    NEC 680-24 (F) requires that all metal parts, including grounding terminals, of a wet niche junction box must be connected to panel ground.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
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    chumbley's Avatar
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    Re: Light Junction Box Grounding / Bonding Confusion

    Will do!
    28K free form IG pool, pebble finish, spillover spa, Pentair IntelliFlo VS, IntelliChlor IC40, Easy Touch 8 PS, Quad 60 DE, Aquabot Supreme, Hayward LP heater

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