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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i don't know where the short is and don't really care. i just want to know if i can drive a piece of pipe into the ground, ground the trap and keep on working on it without getting shocked again. it works fine, otherwise. i'm assuming it's just as simple as a reloader with static, just on a larger scale. thanks
 

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be careful, you could die ! better get a pro out there to assess the problem. electricity can take all paths to ground, you & the pipe simultaneously.
 

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I am no electrician just a Finnish Genius. Stay away from it til a electrician checks it out. Make sure it is ok before you work on it. I can't afford to send flowers or a card. Ken
 

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Driving a ground rod & ground the trap might save you or someone else's life, especially if it is raining. That may trip the breaker if it has a dead short.
I would do that & find the short.
 

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Turn "OFF" the breaker (pull the fuse)and check with a continuity tester. Don't take chances, 110--120v can and will kill. You probably have a "hot" wire somewhere with cracked insulation that is making a weak contact to ground. Maybe not enough to trip the breaker, but it will only get worse and more dangerous. Be CAREFUL. Call a qualified electrician if in doubt, much safer and cheaper in the long run. Ross Puls
 

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Code says below grade receptacles have to be GFI.

Better do it right instead of preparing for a funeral.

You can get in a situation where you can't let go. That could be hazardous to your health.

You can only shake hands with the Lord a few times before he wants a closer look at you.

HM
 

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could it be a condensation problem from having aheater in your trap house. A dead short would trip a breaker gfi or blow a fuse. Get some qualified help beni
 

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If you put on a GFCI recept. or breaker it will probably trip if thnere is any leakage betwee the neutral and ground. Please get someone qualified to indentify the problem.
Sonny Daniels
Master Electrican
 

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What you have done is reffered to as "peg grounding". It is dangerous and a violation on the National Electrical Code. All grounds on a common electrical system must be bonded together. Jimmy Borum
 

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quartering:

I assume your trap house is equipped with three wire, 120v, electrical outlets. That means one each hot, neutral and ground conductor. If that isn't an accurate assumption, your first step is to make it so. Here's why...

Note: in the following explanation, an "appliance" is any piece of equipment (including your trap) powered by 120v alternating current.

In a perfect world one would only need a hot and neutral wire to operate an appliance. However, in the real world various defects (damaged connections, mouse chewed insulation, etc.) cause the metal parts of appliances to become energized. I'm referring to metal parts that are AREN'T EVER intended to be energized. For simplicity, I'll call these parts the "frame".

When the frame of an appliance becomes energized, one of two things happen.

1. The current has a safe path to ground. This usually causes a circuit breaker to trip or in an old system - a fuse to blow. Nobody gets hurt.

2. The current doesn't have a safe path to ground and you have a potential death trap.

In the second situation, sooner or later some unsuspecting soul touches the energized frame. There's a good chance his body becomes the path to ground. Under the best circumstances, this is damned unpleasant - something you already discovered. The alternative is that it could have been fatal and may be next time.

Enter the modern three wire grounded system. In a three wire grounded system, the hot leg and neutral are the normal circuit path. The ground wire provides an alternate path to ground if the neutral fails for any reason.

Appliance frames are also bonded to the ground which connects to the grounding prong of the appliance's power cord. If the frame becomes energized, the current is taken directly and safely to ground. This gets us back to that "nobody gets hurt" concept.

The bottom line?

1. You should install a three wire system if you don't have one already. If you have a three wire system, get it repaired. The fact you got shocked confirms it's damaged or defective.

2. Get competent help to identify the exact cause of the short and correct it. You don't want the coroner telling your wife she's a widow. You
REALLY don't want the coroner calling some kid's parents...



sissy
 

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To all:

On a separate but related subject...

In a perfect world there would be no such thing as an "adapter plug". These convenient little devices allow three wire grounded appliances to be used in antiquated two wire outlets. Three wire grounded appliances AREN'T designed for safe use in two wire outlets and shouldn't be.

A variation on the theme is when someone twists the ground plug off of an extension cord. This conventiently allows the cord (and some three wire grounded appliance attached to it) to be plugged in to a two wire outlet.

In this situation correction is a three step process.

1. Cut the ruined plug off the cord and throw it away.

2. Replace it with a new three prong plug from your local hardware store.

3. Beat the offending "handy Dan" about his head and shoulders until he promises not to do stupid sh!t like that ever again.

sissy
 

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I’m sure there are some well intended posts here trying to help this gentleman out. I caution you about offering solutions though. Based on his original post, it appears the poster's electrical knowledge is very limited, and several of the solutions offered suggest fixing the problem himself.


Many of you have already given the best solution: “Get an electrician to trouble shoot it and correct the problem.”


Recoil Sissy hit on the head: “You would hate to have the Coroner make that phone call…”


I not trying to offend anyone here, this site is a get resource of knowledge and experience. I just don't want to see someone get hurt trying to save a couple of bucks.


It only takes 1/10 of an ampere (amp) of electricity going through the body for just 2 seconds to cause death.


Thanks,


Pat Maurice
 

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I agree, just step away and call a professional. When it comes to something like electrical, if you don't know it just stay away and safe.

John MI
 

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From here, it sounds like your trap machine and metal frame are getting a potential that's looking for a return path to the source. Get a qualified electrician out there to properly troubleshoot and repair it. If the circuit is not ground fault protected, now is a good time to do it.
 

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Use a volt meter and read from the frame of the trap to ground, should be no reading, if there is you have a wiring problem and need a electrician to check it out. Some traps have capacitors on the motors and they leak and split and cause a problem that is the reason for a GFI needed circuit. Ground rod is a good thing, they are about 7 ft long w/pointed tip so they can be driven in the ground easily. with ground strap and # 10 bare copper wire or larger from rod to trap housing, metal bracket. And a 3 or 4 wire power feed from source to trap. 4 wire is best. remember the white wire is the neutral, green is ground and black is the power source, bare copper is the ground on 4 wire system.

GB
DLS
 
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