Pool Equipment Bonding

dianedebuda

Gold Supporter
Jan 2, 2018
242
Austin TX
Original equipment on my pool was not bonded - that wasn't done back then. So see that a #8 is used between all of the equipment now, but what is the end connected to? A grounding rod?
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
18,172
Northern NJ
Bonding does not connect to a grounding rod. Bonding creates an electrical grid of equi-potential that stands alone and electrically floats for safety to prevent shocks.

The bonding grid needs to be designed to cover the pool water, deck, equipment, and anything metal within 5 feet of the water.

 

dianedebuda

Gold Supporter
Jan 2, 2018
242
Austin TX
So since my pad area is further away than 5 feet from the pool water, it doesn't need to be bonded except to each other? Saw something about that fiberglass pools were different. Do understand about the general concept of a floating ground and using a grounding rod didn't seem right.
 
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ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
18,172
Northern NJ
So since my pad area is further away than 5 feet from the pool water, it doesn't need to be bonded?
I suggest you read


All electrical equipment that can come in contact with the water needs to be part of the bonding grid.

The concept is the bonding grid, not if a single piece of equipment is bonded or not. If the proper bonding grid is not created then the electrical safety of the bonding is not achieved.
 

dianedebuda

Gold Supporter
Jan 2, 2018
242
Austin TX
I edited my response to say "bonded except to each other" and some other stuff while you were posting. Thanks for the link & will read. Read some other Mike Holt stuff when we were teaming with an electrician to upgrade our service and he's (Mike's) great.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
18,172
Northern NJ
The devil is in the details. What type of pool? What type of deck? What equipment?

Without specifics and a design there are only general answers of it depends.
 

dianedebuda

Gold Supporter
Jan 2, 2018
242
Austin TX
Read Mike's stuff and got snowed, as expected. ?

Pool is fiberglass with concrete deck. Only metal touching pool is ladder and niche for 12V pool light. AFAIK, being more than 40 years old, there's no bonding grid there. There is currently a fiberglass diving board anchored on the deck, but that may or may not be removed.

Pad is more than 6 ft away, think more than 10 ft actually. Pool equipment will be IntelliCenter, pump, SWG, blower, and transformer for 12V pool light. Additionally there will be non-pool items such as lights, irrigation controllers and the original breaker box. Know all outlets must be GFCI.

Trying now to determine what would be proper here for bonding and also type of wire from original breaker box to IntelliCenter and then to each piece of equipment. If I'm understanding correctly, the wire must be within conduit. I believe between the breaker box and the IntelliCenter that THHN is to be used; unsure if UF or UF-B can be used to equipment. Also know wire must be 12 AWG minimum.
 

borjis

LifeTime Supporter
Aug 19, 2014
3,193
Pacific NW
Bond wiring I have never seen in conduit. It's usually exposed, except for where it is buried.

You might look around your diving board, those need bonding. If you can locate a bare copper wire (likely oxidized green from exposure) attached to it, you might be in luck
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
18,172
Northern NJ
Bonding wire is always bare #8 copper wiring in or on the ground.

Fiberglass pool needs a water bond in the skimmer or pipe, bonding wire under the deck connected to the rebar in the concrete, and connected to the pool equipment regardless of how far away the pad is from the pool.
 

dianedebuda

Gold Supporter
Jan 2, 2018
242
Austin TX
Bond wiring I have never seen in conduit. It's usually exposed, except for where it is buried.
I meant current-carrying electrical wire in conduit. Know bonding wire is plain, exposed copper.

You might look around your diving board, those need bonding. If you can locate a bare copper wire (likely oxidized green from exposure) attached to it, you might be in luck
Highly doubt there is any since this was all built more than 40 years ago. If we keep the board and want to be "legal", guessing it would be a major project to bond it now.
 

dianedebuda

Gold Supporter
Jan 2, 2018
242
Austin TX
So the bonding would just be between the IntelliCenter and each piece (pump, SWG, etc) - in effect, a pad-only bonding grid? Without an existing grid at the pool, there'd be nothing to connect to wrt the pool water. Truthfully, don't really see the point, but hope to be enlightened.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
18,172
Northern NJ
We are going around the same question. I think I made it clear in post #9.

Fiberglass pool needs a water bond in the skimmer or pipe, bonding wire under the deck connected to the rebar in the concrete, and connected to the pool equipment regardless of how far away the pad is from the pool.

I don’t know why you keep on going back to a “pad only bonding grid”. That does not meet code to protect people in and around the water.
 

dianedebuda

Gold Supporter
Jan 2, 2018
242
Austin TX
I truly do understand what you're saying about what's needed for code. What I'm trying to say is that bringing the pool part up to current code is probably not going to happen here because it sounds like I'd basically have to tear up my entire pool. In this case, is there really anything to be gained by running the bonding wire only in the pad? This can't be a unique situation for vintage pools.

Where can I send Excedrine for the headache that I'm surely giving you? :)
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
18,172
Northern NJ
Vintage pools that are grandfathered with older or no codes present risks not in newer construction. As the home owner it is your judgement what risks are acceptable on your property.
 

1Sammy

In The Industry
Jul 20, 2017
294
Windsor, Ontario. Canada
How many people have been electrocuted in the past 40 years ? Should be the same for the next 40 ! Bonding each item on your pad is a good idea as then you will not get a buzz if you touch metal on one and metal on another. IF in the perfect world you should not but if something leaks to ground in one of them you possibly could feel a shock, so bond everything on your pad just to be safe. There are many many a pool with no bonding.
 

dianedebuda

Gold Supporter
Jan 2, 2018
242
Austin TX
So 1Sammy, in your opinion I should go ahead a run the bond wire between the IntelliCenter and the equipment on the pad even though I cannot connect it to a pool grid? I really do want to do as much towards following code as I can with what I have, but there are limits. Most codes are there for a reason. If I don't/can't follow it, I want it to be for what I think is good justification.
 
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dianedebuda

Gold Supporter
Jan 2, 2018
242
Austin TX
One last stab at this:

As I understand, the reason for the code was to prevent a swimmer from being zapped if there was a fault in the pool equipment or something near the pool. Need a grid around the pool so that charge would easily find a better path to ground instead of the swimmer. With vintage pools like mine, there's no such grid and it would pretty much require a major demo to create one. So not going to be code compliant.

My question has always been non-code: would a bonding wire between equipment on the pool pad (pump, automation, etc) prevent a zap on the pad if there's a fault? Seems to me that a path to ground (ground rod?) would be necessary. When the pros are replacing equipment on a vintage pool, do they add a bonding wire or just leave if off like it was originally?
 
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