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Thread: Wiring & Electrical Design & Safety!

  1. #16
    electrolyte addict
    aquariumdebacle's Avatar
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    What about ground loops? It seems that two grounds open up the opportunity for a difference in potential, making the possibility of a "live" ground. It would be better to just put in another drop to the new building.
    Dan McGuire

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    Butterflyfish
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    If you are still going to be in the aquarium hobby that won't be the last time you'll get shocked
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    Originally posted by aquariumdebacle
    What about ground loops? It seems that two grounds open up the opportunity for a difference in potential, making the possibility of a "live" ground. It would be better to just put in another drop to the new building.
    Local codes do vary but typically from a main to a separate building it would be done as pictured but Local codes can over-ride & these procedures do change, Nikki's case is within the same building so it would be grounded at one common point at the main.
    Ultimately two separate drops with separate meters would be nice but can be costly at installation, also the hassle of having two bills.
    NEC has had some major problems with stray voltages with swimming pools and grounds having a potential to shock someone. In my experience with this, that would be even better but even so, there is always danger when dealing distances, grounding is one of the most discussed issues with electricity, and to think years ago they thought of a ground was almost funny, if not a waste!

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    Great White Shark
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    If you are still going to be in the aquarium hobby that won't be the last time you'll get shocked
    LOL - I hope not! I did manage to scare my daughter, and she informed her toddler friend today "Never pull a cord - my mommy got shocked". I do get shocked every time I place an order for tank stuff.....so does the budget committee.

    Well, here is a pic of the sub panel. It's a boring pic, but after the shock I had yesterday....I wasn't too keen on trying to open that thing up for a pic. You'll have to use your imagination
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    Looks well protected! It is nice to have your own power for your fish tank, they can be such power hogs!

  6. #21
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    Thumbs up Great Information Scott

    I'm going to be replacing my old service panel with a new larger one this summer. A friend of mine (retired electrician) is going to do the final connections for me, But I will be running most of the new wiring & boxes myself. I like the idea of a sub panel! I’ll have to double check with my friend & see if that will work for me also? Anyway I’m sure I will have some more questions before I get everything wired!

    Thanks again for all the links!

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    I leave all the chemistry to Mike, Witt & the others but I try & help in the areas I do know

  8. #23
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    In refenece to "aquariumdebacle"


    The reason the electrical code requires you to have two ground rods 6 feet apart is that one usaully is not enough to get the correct ohms to ground that your looking for which is 25 ohms or less.if you actually had someone test it you would probably find that two does not even reach 25ohms, but that is considered legal.To address the difference in potential' you wouldnt have difference in potential because they are both bonded together and then attached to the main panel. A difference in potential would come from e.g. putting in a circiut with a two wire system and driving a ground rod and considering that circiut to be grounded that would be a mistake because the ground does not go back to the panel creating a difference in potential .

    As for you sub panel questions be careful on how you do the final connections. In your main panel the ground and neutral(white)should be tied together this might be done with a green screw or
    a wire going from the neut to the ground bus.
    In a sub panel this is not the case the ground and the neutral bus are separated this is called (floating the Neutral).Hopefully I didn't confuse anyone .

    When it comes to breaker sizing try not to exceed 80% of your breaker rating e.g 15amp breaker try not to put any more than 12 amps on it. 20amp breaker no more than 16amps. there's a reasonn for this not to get to techy when a motor/pump starts
    it can draw huge amounts of current .One last thing if you have equipment going for more than 3 hours in a day, which we all do pumps, lights etc this is considered a continuos load therefor add 125% to your total load of that circiut e.g (my lights and pumps draw 12amps on this circ. so 12x1.25=15amps so you need to put that circ. on #12wire.

    If anyone has any other questions regarding my post feel free to pm me or stay tuned for future comments
    Last edited by budgeon; 07-01-2004 at 10:28 PM.
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    Welcome to Reef Frontires budgeon!

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    Budgeon - Welcome to Reef Frontiers!!
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  11. #26
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    Great info Scott, you are a gentle"person" and a scholar. To let you know with my breaker tripping issues (no it was not taking drugs), I tested the Amp draw on all of the items on my tank and I had two issues. The first was a pump that was on the way out drawing up to 10A at times. Throwing a tremendous amount of heat into my tank. The second was a grounding issue with the new lites, that appeared to be tripping the GFCI. Thank you for all of the help.

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    I know this thread is about GFI's and what not, but I figured I would add this little tid-bit in. Whenever I splice a wire, I always solder them back together and add long lengths of heat shrink. Especially if the splice is in the hood, where it is exposed to water evaporation.
    Bobby

  13. #28
    electrolyte addict
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    There is also a type of heat shrink wrap designed to work in wet situations. It has gooey stuff inside it to seal it better than normal shrink wrap.
    Dan McGuire

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    Yes, the gooey type of heat shrink will seal out moisture, but not water proof, good information, I'll see if I can find some pictures of properly soldiering wires together, most people have a tendency to do it way wrong.

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