Swamp Gas

While inspecting a home I found the exposed copper wires in main sub to be all black. 1st thought CD. Then inspecting rest of home, AC coils, outlet copper even outlet beneath sub panel to be clean and bright copper. Home next to pond. I just Heard of swamp gasses may be causing this. Coming in from the service entry?? Swamp gas…what the hell, NEVER heard of this! Anyone have any input? Home built in 03. The start of CD. THANKS!

Sulfur in water will cause copper to turn black.

On the outside?

This is inside the electrical panel only. So far info on so called swamp gas is from organic matter which releases sulfur and methane gas. No smells noted inside panel either.

When there is high slufur water it usually burns an air handler quick if they don’t have an aeriator. Irrigation systems carry the same high sulfer all around the house. Copper on the outside turns black as well as inside home. Grew up with it and it stinks.

So this is being cause by high sulfur content in the sprinkler water? So there must be an openning in the service conduit for the water to enter right? I have no clue as to what to tell my client on how to remedy this other than have the water tested and a electrician. Thanks for all your help!

If they don’t have an aeriator or it’s not working right all that sulfer is coming straight from the inside faucets and circulated by the A/C. Hope this helps

Is the panel in the laundry room, right over the washing machine?

Nope. The panel is by itself. On exterior wall. Drop is coming in from ground. No clue on this. No scientific meaning on swamp gas that I could find. Some very informative articles only. Thanks!

Hydrogen suflide gas from the ground will cause this. It’s entering from the ground through the riser. The fact that copper outside of the panel is not black confirms that it’s from the ground water.

I’ve seen this many times.

Thanks Mark! 1st time seeing this. The neighbors panel was clean across the street. Does this damage the wiring or make the wires weak? Or will this just be a normal condition with no worries? Thaks for your help!

Corrosion of wiring is always a problem you should refer to an electrician. Let him say it’s no problem if he want’s to guarantee if for life. I don’t. . . .