I have been doing some mock inspections on a few houses and these are some questions I have come up with.
Question 1: Main panel on the exterior of the house sub on the interior. Ground comes out of the main panel and is cut about 6" under and never makes it to ground rod. I know this is a fault and will be called out for fix my question lies in the other ways the system is grounded. Since the primary ground is cut the ground wire goes from the main panel to the black iron gas pipe then to the water pipe with a continuous wire that now makes the gas pipe the primary ground right? That is incorrect from what I have read but I am still fuzzy on all the ways to ground the system. If I am not mistaken the gas should have an independent ground from the electrical system and this setup should also be called out. Home is a 2005
Question 2: I know you can double tap ground wires but can you double tap a neutral and ground under the same lug in the main panel? Also what would be a good narrative for a ground wire that is not grounded within 5’ of the main water entrance into the house for grounding a service to copper pipe? Home is a 1988
Question 3: A Zinsco sub panel don’t know the manufacture year but it is a older one all of the neutrals and grounds share a bus bar and there are numerous double taps. I was wondering if there are any exceptions where this is acceptable. This house has recently gone under another home inspection within the last year and was okay’d by an FHA inspector a regular home inspector and 2 different electricians and they where specifically asked about the panel and said all was good. Home is late 1950 early 1960
Question 4: Is it ok to make a GFCI outlet work by just running a ground for that outlet to a copper pipe. I would tend to think not because it really seems like an easy way out and those usually are not the best idea and would you have a good narrative for a non grounded house with 2 prong outlets?
If I didn’t explain anything well just let me know and I will try to clarify for you.
Question to question #1, is there a uffer ground?
Answer to question #2, grounds and neutrals can share the same bus bar. This an only happen at the main panel, must be separated at any sub panel.
Should recommend replacing Zinsco panel. The circuit breakers are commonly called fire starters. GFCI’s can be used with or without an equipment ground. Grounding to a grounded water pipe, while not preferred is acceptablein a remodel.
There is no such thing as a primary ground. There are grounding electrodes that make up the grounding electrode system. (GES) All electrodes that are present in the structure must become part of the GES. That would include a metallic water pipe buried for a minimum length of 10’. The water pipe eletrode must be supplemented by an additional electrode, this is typically 2-8’ ground rods unless there is a CEE in the footing.
Although not required, a separate bonding connection from the GES to a gas pipe is not prohibited by the NEC.
I am not sure if there is a ufer ground if there is it is not obvious or not bonded to the system. I am going to lean to not. I am including a picture that I forgot to upload in the original post. This is the only ground on the system. The ground wire goes from here straight outside to the main panel and from there the ground is cut on its way down to the ground rod. I only loose sight of it for about a foot in the ceiling.
And I know the grounds and neutrals can share the same bus and the ground are allowed to be double tapped but not the neutrals. There is no double tapped neutrals but there are neutrals and grounds double tapped together is this acceptable?
And with the Zinsco panel should the narrative be something like this – Home had Zinsco electrical sub panel at time of inspection. The electrical panel had multiple double tapped neutrals aswell as the neutrals and grounds were sharing the same bus bar and should be separated. These panels also have been known to be fire hazards and would recommend that a qualified electrical contractor evaluate and repair/replace the electrical panel.