Question on Water Bonding

Cluckr7

Well-known member
Jun 19, 2020
89
Texas
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
Hi all,

I am trying to figure out if my water is bonded correctly. I noticed at my equipment pad, that there is a PB-2008 bonding lug but has no copper wire attached to it.
As background, my pool is an IG gunite with plaster. During the build, I saw them attach a single 8 gauge wire at four places around the pool in a pool. That wire is buried under my travertine paver deck, and that wire is connected to the bonding lugs of my two pumps and my water heater. My deck is travertine pavers over sand (no rebar). I have nicheless LED lights so those do not provide water bonding. And as I mentioned I noticed a pb2008 at my equipment pad that is not connected to anything which is confusing to me (why install it and not connect it?).

My PB has said that with a gunite pool the rebar provides the water bond. I have heard that same thing here on TFP as well, but I have also heard here on TFP that you must have a PB 2008, skimmer plate, or wet niche to properly bond the water. I have also heard that a bonded heater will bond the water too. So I am a bit confused on what is actually the proper way to bond water.

I actually tested the bonding loop with a multimeter set to measure resistance. I got a 100 ft wire and measured resistance along the bonding loop at accessible points:
- I measured no resistance between the pump and heater lugs.
- I measured no resistance to my pool power panel and the pump lugs.
- On one of the four rebar connections with my bonding wire, the rebar is buried in a flower bed (I think the electrician thought the flower bed was going to be decking). I dug to this rebar and measured no resistance from this rebar to my pumps 100 ft away.
- However, I can’t figure out if my water is bonded. My ohmmeter doesn’t read anything (ie no bond?) when I stick one lead in the water with the other lead at the pump lug.
- Also what is puzzling to me is when I measure the resistance from my pump lugs to the PB2008, I also don’t get a reading. So that would imply to me that the water isn’t bonded? It is puzzling because as I mentioned I have read here on TFP that a gunite / plaster shell is porous and thus connections to the rebar are sufficient for water bonding, as is a heater.

Any thoughts on what I am seeing? Ultimately, I think I probably need to just connect the PB2008 to the bonding loop which is very simple but I just want to understand my measurements too.

A separate question - does anyone know how a Jandy Aquapure is supposed to be bonded? I don’t see a bonding lug on the cell.

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cowboycasey

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 3, 2013
5,954
Southern OK
the pump will have to be on and water running to test your PB2008 and then you should get a reading.. it should be connected to the bonding grid... :)

I use the in the skimmer bonding because it is always bonded and the pump does not need to be running to be bonded... (that would have had to be done before the deck)
 

Cluckr7

Well-known member
Jun 19, 2020
89
Texas
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
Good point. I didn’t mentioned it but I did test with the pump running.
 

cowboycasey

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 3, 2013
5,954
Southern OK
so did it get a reading with the pump running? once connected to the bonding grid and the pump running all water should test the same..
 

Cluckr7

Well-known member
Jun 19, 2020
89
Texas
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
No it still looked like an open connection (didn’t register any resistance).
 

Cluckr7

Well-known member
Jun 19, 2020
89
Texas
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
Update - I played around with my multimeter a bit.
1. Even when putting the leads near each other in the water, the resistance function still registered "0L", seeming like an open circuit.
2. I instead tried the diode function. I believe in this case it generates a small voltage between leads to test for an open connection or shorted connection.

Using the diode function, I saw that the water was indeed bonded to the other equipment. I even allowed my circulation system to lose prime completely, and the water was still bonded.

Interestingly, I was only able verify the deck bonding intermittently. In fact, even when I splash water on the deck and put the two leads in same wet spot, the multimeter only intermittently measures a low-impedance circuit. I get the same behavior when one lead is in the water and the other lead is on the wet deck - only intermittently does the multimeter not read open.

I'm not sure if this is a function of measuring, or if it's truly difficult to bond the deck. It does seem like that you'd need a lot of water to soak through the pavers and subgrade to make a conductive path to the bonding wire buried beneath the pavers. I suppose perhaps the thinking is if the deck wasn't wet enough to conduct to the buried bonding wire, then a person becoming the connection between the deck and the pool isn't really a risk.

Anyway, sorry for the long-winded thread - my conclusion is my pool seems to be bonded fine. I’m still not sure why the PB put a PB2008 if he didn’t use it but it seems either the heater or rebar in the shell seems to bond the water.
 
Last edited:

cowboycasey

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 3, 2013
5,954
Southern OK
I think you have hit the nail on the head... You say they installed 1 copper wire under the pavers... that is why you are not getting a good or intermittent reading because the sand and pavers are not making a good contact with the cable... That is exactly why I have been telling everyone installing pavers to use the bonding grid kit, it is 3 foot wide by 100 foot long and installed under the sand and pavers.. They cost more and companies do not want to spend more...


 
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Cluckr7

Well-known member
Jun 19, 2020
89
Texas
Pool Size
20000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Jandy Aquapure 1400
It’s interesting, I agree the bonding grid would intuitively be better but I recall the NEC actually says a single wire. I wonder why they don’t say to use a grid.

For now I’m satisfied with my bonding. If I ever redo the deck I’ll upgrade to a grid.

Interestingly, I actually did ask the PB for a grid but it was one of several “we’ve never done it that way” situations where I had to decide on insisting to do something “the best way” vs the risk of being the first time the PB tried to do it that way. I’m super happy with my pool but the whole build process was stressful. If I ever build a pool again (please no), I think I may do an own build, or at least I’d have the experience of 100 more detailed questions to ask the PB before signing the contract.
 
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