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Thread: Wet Niche Bonding/wiring

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    Wet Niche Bonding/wiring

    I think the underground power lines to me light have collapsed/been compromised. After heavy rain saturates ground, GFCI trips after a bit when pool light turns on. Yeah, run all the wiring underground to hide...seemed like a good idea 18 years ago...now, not so much.

    Anyway, just gonna run new conduit from control/switch to pool light junction box. No big deal, black, white, green to light junction box, connect as they were before. What to do, however with the wet-niche insulated #10 AWG bonding wire coming out of conduit into the pool light junction box? Previous config had it pigtailed in with green wire from light cord, run to outlet box next to light junction box, terminated at lug in outlet box. Since i'm eliminating the outlets in the run from GFCI to light junction box, the outlet box with the terminating lug will no longer be there to terminate niche bonding wire. Pool light junction box has never been true 'pool light junction box' but rather a 4x4 PVC junction box with no internal grounding lugs.

    It all passed county electrical inspection back in 1998 so it musta been 'OK' back then...

    Thoughts?
    20K gal, vinyl, 1 HP Challenger 2-spd pump, 300 lb sand filter, Raypak 266K BTU, 45M stenner pumpin' bleach

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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Wet Niche Bonding/wiring

    not quite understanding exactly how your bonding is done.

    First of all though, the bonding wire should not be insulated. Code calls for a number 8 AWG bare solid wire

    Are you saying this wire is in a conduit? It should not be.

    If its in a conduit, and insulated, and its not connected to the rest of the bonding system, then its not doing much good as part of the bonding system.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
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    Re: Wet Niche Bonding/wiring

    Heck, I dunno...there was a 10AWG wire coming from the light conduit in addition to the black (encasing 3 wires, white, black and green) cord from the pool light. This wire was attached to the internal 'grounding connector' in the niche and encapsulated in potting compound. Perhaps I confuse 'bonding' and 'grounding'.

    FWIW, it's a Hayward Astrolite in a Hayward SP0607U Wet Niche.

    From the niche documentation:

    All DuraNiche˘ underwater lighting fixture housings are provided with a combination bonding/grounding connector. The outside
    connection is the bonding connector as required by Article 680-22 of the NEC. The NEC requires that the bonding wire be AWG 8
    or larger. Local codes may require a continuous loop and may require that the bonding point on the fixture housing (niche) be
    encapsulated. The inside connection is the grounding connector as required by Article 680-20 (b) of the NEC. The NEC requires
    that where a nonmetallic conduit is used, an AWG 10 insulated copper conductor be installed in this conduit. This conductor is to be
    connected to the niche grounding connector. The connector and wire termination must be encapsulated in 3M Inc. Scotch Cast
    Wet Niche Potting Compound No. 2135 (UL File E130394) or equivalent to protect such connection from the possible deteriorating
    effect of pool water.


    I guess the big green insulated wire coming through the conduit and into the junction box is actually the 'grounding connector' and not bonding. Sometimes documentation/directions can be helpful, eh? So I guess the question is "where to terminate the niche GROUNDING WIRE"?

    Maybe I need to replace the dedicated light junction box (just a plastic box) with a box that has a terminating grounding lug and connect it to that, which is essentially how it was done before, but pigtailed and run to the grounding screw in the outlet box next to it as opposed to the specific light junction box which had no grounding point.
    20K gal, vinyl, 1 HP Challenger 2-spd pump, 300 lb sand filter, Raypak 266K BTU, 45M stenner pumpin' bleach

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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Wet Niche Bonding/wiring

    ahhh ok.
    That green wire IS a ground wire. On the inside of the light niche, should be a grounding lug. Connect it to that.
    I can see that if something happened to the light, and the greeen wire in the cord would protect from the bulb, and the other green wire would protect voltage from the niche, should it get electrified.

    The bonding lug, is on the backside of the niche.

    And yeah, sometimes the instructions leave a little to be desired.

    Now that we got that sorted out, happy 4th of July!
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    Re: Wet Niche Bonding/wiring

    Quote Originally Posted by Divin Dave View Post
    ahhh ok.
    That green wire IS a ground wire. On the inside of the light niche, should be a grounding lug. Connect it to that.

    Now that we got that sorted out, happy 4th of July!
    Almost there...the grounding wire is connected in the niche; it's the other end (that comes thru the niche conduit with the light cord) that I'm wondering what best to connect/ground to. That end used to be pigtailed and run into the outlet box next to it and was connected to the green grounding screw of the outlet box but I'm eliminating that outlet box so grounding wire from niche 'lost' it's previous termination point.

    I guess I could run it all the way back to the GFCI receptacle for this circuit and pigtail to that boxes grounding screw....but that's 30 feet of pricey wire. Ouch!

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    TFP Guide

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    Re: Wet Niche Bonding/wiring

    There should be two bond wires connected to a wet niche. One connected outside the niche tied directly to the bonding grid (bare #8 wire) The second is connected inside the niche and travels back up the conduit to the junction box. This is an insulated #8 wire. Not to be confused with the ground wire in the cable assembly.

    Here is a link to a good diagram of the current code requirements.

    http://ecmweb.com/site-files/ecmweb....1ecmCBfig2.jpg
    Unknown make 18' above ground (bought used in 1999) Sparco sand filter. Hayward 100,000 BTu heater. 2 speed pump

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    Re: Wet Niche Bonding/wiring

    I'm going to second everything Divin Dave has said and ask you to disregard Danpik's post.

    No bonding wire goes in the conduit EVER. A light niche has a 8 gauge bonding wire terminating in the niche - often to a plate that bonds the pool water. It never enters the conduit. It should be connected to the bonding grid ( the 8 gauge copper wire that connects the pump, shell and deck). It should be connected with listed copper screw connectors.

    Danpik's diagram is correct but it shows a low voltage system not what you have described to us. What he calls a bonding wire is an insulated ground.

    A light niche has two GROUND wires one in the power cord and one outside the power cord. The ground outside the power cord is insulated and terminated outside the light fixture and should be covered with listed putty.

    The code requires that the ground wires connect in the Jbox and that the Jbox be listed as a Jbox for pools. You just can't pick one up at the electrical aisle at Lowes. Example of a listed J Box: Pentair Junction Box Parts - INYOPools.com


    One should be able to trace the grounds coming from the light niche to the light j box then back to a pool sub panel.

    You can't eliminate the j box the code requires it.
    22k gallon IG pebblefina, Jandy 1.5 HP VS, Jandy CV Cartridge filter, Fafco solar panels, Polaris 360 supply side cleaner, waterfall

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    Re: Wet Niche Bonding/wiring

    Thanks to all, I now understand exactly what is going on and what I need to do.

    Get an approved J-Box for one, apparently. Wonder how long that has been requirement? This all passed inspection in Lake County Ohio back in 1998 when pool was built.

    I sure would like to do the whole pool-building thing again, knowing what I've learned over past 18 years.

    Thanks to all for the help; have learned much through this exchange!

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