Pool bonding

iam4iam

LifeTime Supporter
May 5, 2012
246
Johnson City, TN
We are having our deck redone. The original concrete had no reinforcement (mesh or rebar) and there was no bonding wire. Should this be a shock, or is this common? To my knowledge, no one has ever experienced any feeling of electrical current anywhere in or near the pool. I am wonding if since we have never had any issues before with what bonding is supposed to avoid, it might be reasonable to not bother with bonding wire in the new deck. Could the bonding wire simply create more to "worry about," like proper grounding? The new concrete will have rebar reinforcement. Does that add another variable to the formerly "0 potential" equation and therefore necessitate bonding?

I feel like this may be a foolish question, since bonding is the norm, but I tend to be a "leave-well-enough-alone" kind of guy who doesn't like to complicate things unnecessarily. On the other hand, the queston may be moot, since the guys doing the repair might be required to do it by code, and the original job was just very unprofessionally done.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
18,918
Northern NJ
As a "leave-well-enough-alone" kind of guy I would guess you don’t have smoke detectors in your house since your house never had a fire, and you don’t use seat belts in your car since you don’t crash into anything, if that is the philosophy you live by for the safety of those using your pool I guess you can ignore the safety of bonding in the NEC. It is there for other people, not you.
 

DB-Cooper

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2019
298
Austin, TX
Since you're ripping it all up, it makes no sense to skip it. It's not an expensive or difficult task. You can google on why it's important. I'd be surprised if any permitted deck work would pass without it. Bonding has specific line items all throughout my permits.
 
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iam4iam

LifeTime Supporter
May 5, 2012
246
Johnson City, TN
Thanks. I can't imagine myself asking the contractor not to do it anyway, but I was simply wondering "so far so good" applied and whether the rebar would negate the "so far so good" idea by adding a new variable. From what I have read it seems like the electric potential between, for example, the ladder in the deep end and the step rail in the shallow end, is always present or never present. Since no one has ever experienced what bonding is installed to prevent, the pool has seemingly been safe without bonding. I guess my understanding of the purpose of bonding is not complete. I will do more research.
 

DB-Cooper

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2019
298
Austin, TX
Thanks. I can't imagine myself asking the contractor not to do it anyway, but I was simply wondering "so far so good" applied and whether the rebar would negate the "so far so good" idea by adding a new variable. From what I have read it seems like the electric potential between, for example, the ladder in the deep end and the step rail in the shallow end, is always present or never present. Since no one has ever experienced what bonding is installed to prevent, the pool has seemingly been safe without bonding. I guess my understanding of the purpose of bonding is not complete. I will do more research.
Been safe could be luck. We get better as we learn more. We used to not have GFCI, grounding, we used to use aluminum wire because it was cheaper than copper. Lead paint was once a thing, cars without seat belts and air bags. The previous stuff worked, but we are safer now. There are still homes without this stuff, does that mean they’re going to light on fire, absolutely not, but they’re definitely more likely to. You can drive a 1960s car and not die, but you’re more likely to.
 

iam4iam

LifeTime Supporter
May 5, 2012
246
Johnson City, TN
So apparently I am working with 2 contractors, one for concrete, and one for pool stuff. Now that the old concrete has been removed, the concrete guy has to wait for the pool guy to do his thing. The pool guy came out Saturday and said i could go without bonding if I replaced the metal ladder and rail with polymer ones. The new ladder and rail would cost less than $550, whereas the bonding will cost around $800-1000 according to the pool guy, and he (or likely anyone else for that matter at this time of year) will not be able to do it for 3 weeks, leaving the deck replacement process in limbo until then. Moreover, the polymer would probably look better for longer than the stainless.

Thoughts?
 
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