Hello All, I'm planning on installing a new 200 Amp service to my house in the near future, unfutunately I need to add a new concrete walk on the service side of the house before the service, If I drive down 2 rods 6-7 ft apart, #4 between them and to the panel ,can I cover them with the walk?(no visual inspection possible). leaving them above would become a tripping hazard. Any Ideas?
250.68 Grounding Electrode Conductor and Bonding Jumper Connection to Grounding Electrodes. (A) Accessibility. The connection of a grounding electrode conductor or bonding jumper to a grounding electrode shall be accessible. Exception: An encased or buried connection to a concrete-encased, driven, or buried grounding electrode shall not be required to be accessible.
That is always going to be the case with a buried or concrete encased electrode if it was existing when you do the upgrade. Call the AHJ and see if they will be happy with pictures or pull your permit now and have the GEC inspected on a partial rough. How long will it be before you do the upgrade?
The sidewalk would need to have a "footer" for a Ufer to be effective. With only a few inches of concrete above it would tend to be in a dry area. Pull the permit early have the grounding rods and interconnect inspected and approved, then cover with the sidewalk. Make sure to have it noted on the permit or get a copy of the inspection report in case the inspector can't remember or you get a different inspector. Just a point to remember: If you can make them fit, the ground rods can be installed INSIDE the building. This also elliminates the copper theives from cutting your wire.
I'm not sure about the sequence of events in your area. If I pull a permit to change a service. I must have in hand the SER # from the utility, to put on the permit. This is the utilities authorization # to break the seal on the meter. The catch 22 is you have to complete the upgrade within 90 days of pulling the number from utility. upon inspection by local inspector they will reseal meter, and put their crimp on connectors. In your case I'd suggest you pull a permit, and have it inspected for what it is a grounding electrode, leave the service change permit for when you actually do that. make sure you explain to the inspector your intentions. That would be the best course of action in my neck of the woods.