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#62199 - 02/10/06 07:45 PM enforcment
vlad_tepish Offline

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 39
Loc: Delavan,Wis,USA
who keeps track of inspectors?to see if the are falowing the code.the reasone I ask is becouse in a small area off ill. we were putting in an service and we used the water pipe for the ground in addition to two 8 foot ground rods on a 100 amp service.the insector made us remove the bonding from the water pipe"he thinks the electrons are going to get into the water and make people sick!!!!!!!!!!!"what the #$%%

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#62200 - 02/10/06 08:07 PM Re: enforcment
LoneGunman Offline

Registered: 10/02/05
Posts: 141
Loc: Florida
Sounds like he forgot to take his meds.

#62201 - 02/10/06 08:53 PM Re: enforcment
RobbieD Offline

Registered: 02/23/03
Posts: 238
Loc: Canada
If its copper waterpipe, I wouldn't leave the job without bonding it. Imagine reading in a newspaper years from now about some person getting fried because it wasn't bonded.

How well will you sleep at night?

Oh Yeah, I almost forgot, the inspector is smoking crack!

[This message has been edited by RobbieD (edited 02-10-2006).]

#62202 - 02/10/06 10:12 PM Re: enforcment
wa2ise Offline

Registered: 11/29/02
Posts: 769
Loc: Oradell NJ USA
Isn't there an issue where several adjacent houses with bonded copper water pipes and bad neutrals to the POCO being a shock hazard to plumbers working on the pipes in the area of the bonds? Cut the pipe and that interrupts the neutral current because of a bad neutral connection in the service drop, and then get a shocking amount of voltage at the pipe cut? The neutral current had been going thru the pipe to find its way to a neighbor house's bonded neutral and there heads to the POCO? Maybe that's what the inspctor was worried about?

[This message has been edited by wa2ise (edited 02-11-2006).]

#62203 - 02/11/06 04:44 AM Re: enforcment
winnie Offline

Registered: 09/15/03
Posts: 652
Loc: boston, ma
Vlad, the electrical code has absolutely no legal force unless and until some legal entity 'adopts' the code. That legal entity (town, county, state, etc.; usually the town) generally decides who the inspector is and what sort of supervision/review process is to be followed. You need to figure out which government gave that inspector jurisdiction.

Depending upon how sane/professional/reasonable the inspector is, you may simply need to politely tell the inspector that you believe that the judgement was wrong, and ask what the review process is, or you may need to bypass the inspector and go directly to the town government or state review board.

For what it's worth, using underground piping as an electrode can cause problems, including the parallel path issue that wa2ise mentions, or causing electrolysis. If there is some local condition that makes using underground water pipes as electrodes particularly unsafe or problematic, then I could understand prohibiting such use, and the local authority is legally capable of changing the code to suit local conditions.

However using the water pipe as a grounding electrode also has the effect of bonding the interior metal water piping, and leaving the interior water pipes un-bonded is a recipe for getting someone killed. If the inspector provided a means for bonding the interior water piping but not using the service pipe as an electrode, then there is probably some good local reason for that. But doing this would require corresponding requirements in the plumbing code, not just the electrical code. If the inspector is prohibiting _bonding_ the interior metal water piping, then the inspector is nuts.


#62204 - 02/11/06 06:41 AM Re: enforcment
vlad_tepish Offline

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 39
Loc: Delavan,Wis,USA
thanks,,we did discuss the problem with the homeowner and decided that after the final and before move in,we would be back to bond the water as it is suposed the be."turns out the HO is an elec enginer,and thinks the inspector should get some help." next thing is how do we deal with the subject of getting the inspector some help,removed ,replaced.who knows how many homes in his area are without proper bonding.this could be a very big problem!!

#62205 - 02/11/06 08:36 AM Re: enforcment
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5305
Loc: Blue Collar Country
Vlad, as I see it there are two basic approaches to dealing with a "weak" inspector.

"The Stick" is where you raise a fuss with his boss, take the citation to court, and so on. Or, have a trade association do it for you. The problem with this method is that is does nothing to prevent the guy from having another "stupid attack" in the future.

"The Carrot" is where you introduce him to the internet, to this site, as well as a few others. You make sure he gets word of IAEI meetings. You make it require a dedicated effort on his part to remain ignorant.

As far as the water pipe goes, tell him "that's not a ground wire, that's a bond wire to remove any electrons that might enter the plumbing if some fool uses a hair dryer in the shower!" If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with BS.

#62206 - 02/11/06 08:55 AM Re: enforcment
Active 1 Offline

Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 684
Loc: Grayslake IL, USA
I would try to find in writing what code they addopted and all the ammendments. Unless they passed an ammendment banning the cold water bond he can't fail you. If they adopted the NEC then you would be required to install it. After you did your homework talk to the inspector and ask how this requirement can be enforced are where does it say what he wants. After that try to speak to his boss.

It could be possable the passed an amendment banning the cold water bond. If that's the case I would keep a copy of it and do what they require. I once had a place that banned ground rods. I questioned it. Had no good reason except it's a rule from the last inspector. Then just followed their law.

Think who the liability on if you follow the local law or if you don't.


#62207 - 02/11/06 11:07 AM Re: enforcment
Alan Nadon Offline

Registered: 03/10/05
Posts: 398
Loc: Elkhart, IN. USA
As an inspector I am embarassed that someone would call himself an inspector and not understand the Code or basic electrical pratices.
Appeal his ruling.
Don't plan on working there again but, you may save another electrician from having this same problem.
It might also save someones life.
Most inspectors are political appointees. Talk to the politicians.
If it was easy, anyone could do it.

#62208 - 02/11/06 01:55 PM Re: enforcment
LK Offline


Registered: 01/21/03
Posts: 1721
Loc: New Jersey
"Most inspectors are political appointees"

Not here in Jersey, most inspectors here, are very professional, intresting to hear that some states, are still in the dark ages with inspections.

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