Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 25

Thread: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    17

    Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Hi. Just yesterday, I noticed a definite electric 'tingle' when grabbing the rail at the steps to climb out of the pool. Just to ensure I wasn't imagining things, I had my wife touch it...she felt the same. Needless to say, we got the heck out I tested between the water and the rail with a voltmeter...I got one volt momentarily, then nothing since. To experiment, I turned off the breaker to the pump, SWG, and pool light...no difference...still the 'tingle'. I turned off the 'main' breaker to the house...still the tingle. I only feel the tingle on the hand rail at the steps...nothing at the ladder in the deep end (both stainless...see photo). Just as an experiment, I tried grounding the water back to the earth ground using an aluminum plate and copper wire (see the other photo). No help...still the 'tingle' at the rail at the steps.

    Fearing that I had a nick in the underground service to the house, I called the utility company...they sent two guys. They disconnected the line power at my transformer...still the tingle. They then disconnected the power to my neighbor's transformer (150ft away)...still the tingle. He checked all of the service grounds, as well as the bonding for the pump motor, SWG, the pool (we think...6 gauge wire coming from under the pool deck)...still the tingle. They really went above and beyond. Still they couldn't find the source. Tomorrow, they are sending out their 'stray voltage' expert with more sensitive equipment, probes, etc. We'll see what happens.

    This is the third summer we've swam in this pool. Last night is the first time we've noticed anything strange. The only thing different this year I switched from puck chlorination to SWG (Intellichlor IC60) in the spring.

    My question is this...could the chemistry of the salt water pool be creating a battery, supplying enough current to give us a tingle at the rail?
    Attached Images Attached Images
    20' x 40' inground vinyl 33k gallons
    Hayward 1hp Super Pump
    Hayward 30 inch Sand filter
    Polaris 360
    Intellichlor IC60 SWG

  2. Back To Top    #2
    MBG75's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Long Island
    Posts
    184

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Was it only tested for AC voltage? Or AC and DC?

    A piece of wire, with one end on the rail and other in the water, can be used with a clamp on amp meter to measure amperage.

    I would verify that both the handrail and pool are bonded together.
    25k IG vinyl SWG Haywood 4830de 1.5hp TF-100

  3. Back To Top    #3
    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    SouthWest Alabama
    Posts
    22,337

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Is the new swg connected to the bonding loop?

    When running the "grounding" experiment, did you connect the wire to the bond grid or to a ground?

    Did you try connecting a wire from the handrail to the bond loop and see what happens?
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    17

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Hi, MBG. My meter only refers to 'Voltage'...no mention of AC or DC. As i mentioned...I got one volt momentarily, but nothing since. Hopefully the 'stray voltage expert' from the utility will have some fancy meters so he can actually find something.

    I've only found one ground wire coming out from under the pool deck, near the deep end. I'm assuming that's the bond for the pool, but there's a lot of concrete between there and the hand rail...not sure how to tell if they are connected.

    Thanks for the tip on the amperage check. I will try that in a bit.
    20' x 40' inground vinyl 33k gallons
    Hayward 1hp Super Pump
    Hayward 30 inch Sand filter
    Polaris 360
    Intellichlor IC60 SWG

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    17

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Hi, Rambler. The bonding wire from the SWG, pump, and the wire coming out from under the concrete at the deep end are all connected to the same rod (8ft copper plated grounding rod, pounded in inch by painful inch by yours truly When putting in some drain pipe a few months back, I happened to find the 6ga wire coming from under the pool deck. It was connected (rather loosely) to a rod of unknown length. Rather than trust it, cleaned this wire and tied it to the rod I buried. When doing my experiment, i connected the aluminum plate, via 14ga copper wire to this same rod.

    I have not tried connecting the hand rail to this ground. I will try that this afternoon and report back.
    20' x 40' inground vinyl 33k gallons
    Hayward 1hp Super Pump
    Hayward 30 inch Sand filter
    Polaris 360
    Intellichlor IC60 SWG

  6. Back To Top    #6
    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    SouthWest Alabama
    Posts
    22,337

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    The bonding grid doesn't require a ground rod, BUT it is allowed. By connecting everything to that rod you did the right thing.

    However, if the handrail was connected separately to the original rod you could have inadvertently disconnected it from the bonding grid when you moved the bond wire to the new rod.

    If hooking a wire from the handrail to the new rod eliminates the voltage gradient, I'd try hooking the old rod to the new one and see if that also eliminates the voltage.


    P.S. While the addition of salt wouldn't do anything to create voltage (i.e. make a battery) it does increase the conductivity of the water, so if a voltage gradient was present before adding the salt you may not have been able to feel it, but after the addition of the salt, you can.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

  7. Back To Top    #7

    In the Industry

    ps0303's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    FL
    Posts
    3,435

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Well if you never had this before you installed the SWG, then that would be your cause. I believe that since the SWG has metal plates inside that are electrically charged to activate the process to convert salt to chlorine, I would guess then that there could be a small amount of stray current that is being transferred into the pool water. For whatever reason, the metal in the handrail is interacting with it. Maybe the handrail is a different type of coated metal. Since you aren't feeling the "tingle" when you touch the ladder on the deep end, I wonder how close the handrail is to your equipment vs the ladder.
    Paul
    http://www.gastekservices.com A word of caution: When working with gas and electrical you might want to consider a licensed contractor. Consider the value of your life and others around you. If you would like to provide a review of the help I provided, please use the following link to leave a review. gastek - Google Search,

  8. Back To Top    #8
    SkyKid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Upstate South Carolina
    Posts
    137

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Have you been getting a lot of rain lately?
    Last year (15 inches of rain)I was getting a shock in my pool from the Electric fencer we have for our farm animals
    The shock I was getting was enough to make my arm jerk each time the charger pulsed
    It's about a hundred feet away from the pool
    So getting an electric pulse from a neighbor is plausible
    14600gal, In-Ground Fiberglass, Haywood s244t Sand Filter, Jandy Apure35 SWG,
    Haywood 2 speed 1hp pump, Haywood Pool Shark, TF-100 Test Kit http://tftestkits.net/
    Pool School http://www.troublefreepool.com/categ...etting_started
    Never been Pool Stored Thanks to TFP

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    17

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Hi, Rambler. As you suggested, I connected the old rod to the one I buried. No change...still the tingle at the step rail.

    An update on the Utility...two of their senior guys came out today (I have to tell you, I never expected this kind of service...wow!). Both of these gentlemen could feel the 'tingle' at the hand rail. I feel relieved...the two linemen who came out yesterday didn't feel it...maybe thought I was nuts. One of the fellows grabbed some copper wire and clamps, and connected the hand rail to the service ground back at the meter (as you also suggested). Guess what? No more 'tingle'! So, I suppose we know now that the rail has lost it's connection to the bond (if it ever had it).

    Before I start busting up concrete, I'm having an electrician come out and have a look. As kind as the guys from the power company were, they were pretty clear that they would only give friendly, non-binding opinions on anything on the other side of their meter. As luck would have it, I found a licensed/bonded electrician who also does pool installations I'll post again if he gets to the bottom of it.
    20' x 40' inground vinyl 33k gallons
    Hayward 1hp Super Pump
    Hayward 30 inch Sand filter
    Polaris 360
    Intellichlor IC60 SWG

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    SouthWest Alabama
    Posts
    22,337

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Both glad and sad that you found it.
    The least destructive way of fixing it will probably be to saw a cut from the handrail to the edge of the deck and run a new bond wire in the cut. Then fill the cut with epoxy.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

  11. Back To Top    #11
    MBG75's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Long Island
    Posts
    184

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bama Rambler View Post
    Both glad and sad that you found it.
    The least destructive way of fixing it will probably be to saw a cut from the handrail to the edge of the deck and run a new bond wire in the cut. Then fill the cut with epoxy.
    I was thinking the same thing! Saw cut and some bare #8 copper.
    25k IG vinyl SWG Haywood 4830de 1.5hp TF-100

  12. Back To Top    #12

    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    17

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Just a quick update...the electrician was a no show...story of my life. Did give me time to play around with it a little bit. I borrowed a 'real' meter from a neighbor. I disconnected all wiring leading to the pool area (light, deck lights, pump, SWG, well pump), hot, neutral, and ground...all connections hanging in the air. Only then did I take measurements.

    Turns out, my little tingle is between 1 and 1.5 volts, as measured from the water to the hand rail (see photo). AMPs was .4 miliamps, if i'm reading the meter correctly. Another interesting finding, I get continuity between the water, and the grounding rod for the SWG, pump, and the wire coming from under the concrete (maybe connected to the light niche?). Just curious, does this mean that the 'water' and the ground rod are 'bonded' by some connection?

    As a side note, with all wiring disconnected at the panel, we got back in the pool. It is the 4th, after all
    Attached Images Attached Images
    20' x 40' inground vinyl 33k gallons
    Hayward 1hp Super Pump
    Hayward 30 inch Sand filter
    Polaris 360
    Intellichlor IC60 SWG

  13. Back To Top    #13
    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    SouthWest Alabama
    Posts
    22,337

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    What you found is what was expected. The water and everything else is bonded but not the handrail. The increased conductivity of the salt water allows you to feel the voltage difference that you couldn't feel before.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

  14. Back To Top    #14
    MBG75's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Long Island
    Posts
    184

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Like Bama stated. Continuity on all that equipment is what was expected.
    If it was properly connected, you should of had continuity on the handrail also.
    25k IG vinyl SWG Haywood 4830de 1.5hp TF-100

  15. Back To Top    #15
    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    SouthWest Alabama
    Posts
    22,337

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Quote Originally Posted by MBG75 View Post
    Like Bama stated. Continuity on all that equipment is what was expected.
    If it was properly connected, you should of had continuity on the handrail also.
    Thanks, I should have closed the loop. It's imperative that the handrail is connected to the bond grid so that the tingle you feel doesn't turn into something a lot more serious.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

  16. Back To Top    #16

    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    17

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Thanks, guys. Obviously, I had to drag a meter and copper wire around in the hot sun for an hour or two before I could wrap my head around what you've been telling me, pretty much, from the start. Thank you for your patience.

    I'll be going with the wet saw to pull some 8ga copper from the rail anchors, back filling with epoxy. I will do the ladder in the deep end as well, just to be safe.
    20' x 40' inground vinyl 33k gallons
    Hayward 1hp Super Pump
    Hayward 30 inch Sand filter
    Polaris 360
    Intellichlor IC60 SWG

  17. Back To Top    #17
    MBG75's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Long Island
    Posts
    184

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Did the ladder show continuity?
    25k IG vinyl SWG Haywood 4830de 1.5hp TF-100

  18. Back To Top    #18
    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    SouthWest Alabama
    Posts
    22,337

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    Since the ladder is in contact with the water it is bonded in a round about way. It will show continuity if you test it.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    17

    Re: Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    No...i didn't check for continuity at the ladder...task for tomorrow. I was puzzled that I had the tingle at the rail, but not at the ladder. Should have been obvious that there would be no potential difference, since two feet of the stainless ladder is poking into the water. I'm learning...slowly
    20' x 40' inground vinyl 33k gallons
    Hayward 1hp Super Pump
    Hayward 30 inch Sand filter
    Polaris 360
    Intellichlor IC60 SWG

  20. Back To Top    #20
    MBG75's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Long Island
    Posts
    184

    Electric Tingle When touching the hand rail - Could I have created a battery?

    True. If it's in the water, it's at the same potential. Brain fart on my part.

    You could pull the ladder and see if at least one of the cups are bonded.
    25k IG vinyl SWG Haywood 4830de 1.5hp TF-100

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •