Just after a bit of input on how others word grounding and bonding when they are writing their reports.
Obviously it is not possible to confirm if it has been correctly connected to a grounding rod as a lot of this is not visible. This means there is just the ground wire we can see running from the main panel (unless the surround is finished and then we may not be able to see anything) with which to go by.
How best to word our findings to make us compliant with the standards of practice but still protect ourselves liability wise?
Any advice gratefully received
Your post is incomplete. Grounding and bonding are two different things. To answer your questions on grounding just state that a ground rod was visible, but you cannot determine the depth. I always kick or pull on them to see if they are loose. If they can be pulled up, then they are not the right length. Also check the connection to see that it is tight.
Hello Simon -
In terms of a GES using ground rods, if the conductor (typically 6 AWG CU) is present in the panel and you make an attempt to locate the ground rods (typically at the meter location on a back to back installation) that is all you are technically required to do. In most cases you are able to find the ground rods (if installed) but by the NEC they should be below grade, but you may see the Grounding Electrode Conductor [GEC] running down the outside wall (not always however). At that point you are better to always state the facts as you can only attest to.
" This dwelling and it’s associated electrical service appears to have a grounding electrode system [GES] to the best of my knowledge at the time of this inspection and upon limited visual observation only. For additional verification beyond this limited visual observation, consult a licensed electrical contractor for a more comprehensive evaluation."
Just one way of always deferring what you can’t see…but appears to be there.
Paul, thank you very much for your reply- just what I was looking for.
It does not sound like the rods in your area are properly installed. The top of the rod should be flush or below the surface. If part of the rod is above ground there is not 8’ in contact with the earth.
Jim, I see them around 2-6" up.
I’ve thought this was OK.
Do you think that is not proper?
WHAT…now you know everyone uses 10’ ground rods these days;-)
Proper is objective…Code Compliant it is NOT. Just to avoid any confusion the last line is there to say…you can install a ground rod longer than 8’ if you want…but if so…this applies.
250.53(G) Rod and Pipe Electrodes.
[/size][/FONT] [FONT=Times-Roman][size=2]The electrode shall be installed[/size][/FONT]
[FONT=Times-Roman][size=2] such that at least 2.44 m (8 ft) of length is in contact
with the soil. It shall be driven to a depth of not less than
2.44 m (8 ft) except that, where rock bottom is encountered,
the electrode shall be driven at an oblique angle not
to exceed 45 degrees from the vertical or, where rock bottom
is encountered at an angle up to 45 degrees, the electrode
shall be permitted to be buried in a trench that is at least
750 mm (30 in.) deep. The upper end of the electrode shall be
flush with or below ground level unless the aboveground end
and the grounding electrode conductor attachment are protected
against physical damage as specified in 250.10.
Older homes I usually don’t see protection.
Newer homes (2001 forward) I see a PVC pipe for protection.