DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum > DIY Home Improvement > Electrical and Wiring > why does my ground have current




Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 10-12-2008, 06:07 PM  
gavimobile
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 16
Default why does my ground have current

ground cable is passing current,

my diagnostics,

i have one of these screwdrivers which lights up from a electrical current. I have an empty fuse open on my fuse box, so i took a new cable (about 2 feet long). positive goes on the top of the fuse and negative goes on the bottom where a strip of metal where all the other negatives are going, ground is not connected on either side just for my test. when i test both sides of ground my screwdriver lights up. i turned off all the other fuses in the house and same thing. is this normal? i am positive both sides of the ground are not in tact with anything.
to prevent me from getting shocked from my refridgerator, i have currently disconnected all grounds till i solve this problem. negative is not showing any current.

brown = positive
blue = negetive
yellow/green = ground

tia
gavimobile



__________________

Last edited by gavimobile; 10-12-2008 at 06:35 PM.
gavimobile is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-12-2008, 10:16 PM  
glennjanie
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 2,990
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts

Send a message via AIM to glennjanie
Default

Welcome Gavimobile:

We speak of 'hot' wires, 'common' wires and 'ground' wires. Yet the power companies only run hot wires and a ground to our houses and businesses. Yet we know that electric current for these uses is called AC or alternating current; that means the power goes both ways or alternates direction.
Therefore, when power is traveling through the hot wire it is also traveling through the 'common' wire and the ground wire is typically connected to the same place as the common, so power also flows through the ground.
I can think of one exception. In hospitals we are required to have 'dedicated grounds' in some instances. These wires are not interconnected with any others but go directly to a seperate ground. Since they have nothing to do with the power or common wires we would not expect to find any active current in the dedicated ground.
I hope this hasn't added to your confusion but it is a lengthy subject and many still say we can't even prove the existence of electricity.
Glenn



__________________

Last edited by Square Eye; 10-12-2008 at 10:44 PM.
glennjanie is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-12-2008, 10:59 PM  
Square Eye
Senior Member
 
Square Eye's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,273
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts

Default

I have no confidence in those screwdrivers that show voltage.


90% of the time, when I find a hot ground, someone has made a mistake while wiring an appliance or a receptacle for an appliance. One mistake on a 240v circuit can cause a hot ground. You need to get a good voltage meter with 2 wires and find the ground wire that's causing the problem.

If your only evidence of a hot ground is a light on a screwdriver voltage tester, it could actually be inductance caused by the flow of current in the close proximity of the ground wires. It's entirely normal to get a very low voltage reading from Earth ground to the household grounding system. Another cause for low voltage readings on ground is the difference in potential on the ground system caused by static electrical charges, improper grounding of household items.

Bottom line, ditch the screwdriver tester, get a real meter. Find the problem, if there is a problem, through the process of elimination. One ground wire at a time, then trace the source of the offender.

__________________

[URL="http://www.houserepairtalk.com/announcement.php?f=39&a=6"][size=3]The Ten Commandments of House Repair Talk[/size][/URL]



[URL="http://home.bellsouth.net/p/s/community.dll?ep=16&groupid=289528&ck="]Square Eye's home page[/URL]

Square Eye is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-13-2008, 06:44 AM  
gavimobile
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 16
Default

thanks guys for the reply,

maybe this will change your thinking.. There is 1 ground which is connected which does not have current. its pluged in to the outlet behind my refridgerator.

heres the whole story... when i moved in i had this problem, so as one of you said, when one wrong wire is in place it can cause this. this is why i redid ALL the electric in my house from scratch. the cables were well over 50 years old AT LEAST. i found tuna cans in my walls for central electric meeting points. anyways i added new cable insulation and new central boxes (meeting points). I dont think this is static electric which is running through my ground, because i get shocked when i dont have shoes on if i touch metal in my house. Also, I have tried turning off all fuses except for the test cable i pluged in for my test. even if all the fuses were off, my ground still passed current. even if it was some sort of static, then why doesnt the blue (negative) pass current on test? im thinking the plastic of the yellow/green cable is made differently from the blue cable.

anyone willing to go over my setup with my 1 by one?
I have about 5 outlets and about 3 lightswitches, i have a 1 br house!

thanks
gavi

update: i got a multimeter, how do i do this?

correct me if im wrong
black wire to com
red wire to V

the highest voltage is 600 so i set it to this volt (found out to set highest ac volt from google)
" Set the meter for the highest range provided for AC Volts"

when i put black cable to negative (com)
and
red wire to positive (V)
it returns approx 235 for each fuse,
what am i supose to test?

gavi

__________________

Last edited by gavimobile; 10-13-2008 at 08:25 AM.
gavimobile is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-13-2008, 08:42 AM  
gavimobile
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 16
Default

i decided to attach a photo so you guys can see

__________________
gavimobile is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-13-2008, 09:57 AM  
Square Eye
Senior Member
 
Square Eye's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,273
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts

Default

If you have a metal water pipe in your working plumbing system, run a wire to that, scrape it clean and clamp wire to pipe. Water pipes will give you a true Earth ground. From there, one ground at a time, test for voltage between the pipe and the ground wires in your panel. The readings should be zero volts.

When you find the offending ground wire (voltage), trace it back to the source and correct the problem.

I have to admit, I have no idea what the electrical code in your country is like. I'm not sure what your voltage should be or what colors are standard for hot, neutral and ground. I can only help with basic ground and voltage testing. Anyway, find the bad ground, Make sure the ground from the electrical service is good, There should be no voltage between the water pipes and the ground wires.

Do you have a ground rod outside, actually buried in the ground with the home grounding system attached to it?

__________________

[URL="http://www.houserepairtalk.com/announcement.php?f=39&a=6"][size=3]The Ten Commandments of House Repair Talk[/size][/URL]



[URL="http://home.bellsouth.net/p/s/community.dll?ep=16&groupid=289528&ck="]Square Eye's home page[/URL]

Square Eye is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-13-2008, 10:31 AM  
gavimobile
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 16
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye View Post
If you have a metal water pipe in your working plumbing system, run a wire to that, scrape it clean and clamp wire to pipe. Water pipes will give you a true Earth ground. From there, one ground at a time, test for voltage between the pipe and the ground wires in your panel. The readings should be zero volts.

When you find the offending ground wire (voltage), trace it back to the source and correct the problem.

I have to admit, I have no idea what the electrical code in your country is like. I'm not sure what your voltage should be or what colors are standard for hot, neutral and ground. I can only help with basic ground and voltage testing. Anyway, find the bad ground, Make sure the ground from the electrical service is good, There should be no voltage between the water pipes and the ground wires.

Do you have a ground rod outside, actually buried in the ground with the home grounding system attached to it?
squareeye, thanks for the fast reply.... does this mean there is no point in testing without my ground to the waterpipe... I was already told to do this, but have not done so yet... That was my next step after i solved this, but maybe i just dug a big hole cause this was supose to be done first!
also if all my grounds are connected and all my electrical appliances are unpluged and my ground is returning 2 volts on my ground section is that normal? and will this go away once i do the main ground connection to my main water pipe outside?

thanks gavi
__________________

Last edited by gavimobile; 10-13-2008 at 10:33 AM.
gavimobile is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-13-2008, 03:25 PM  
speedy petey
Lic.Electrical Contractor
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 447
Liked 39 Times on 27 Posts
Likes Given: 17

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Square Eye View Post
If you have a metal water pipe in your working plumbing system, run a wire to that, scrape it clean and clamp wire to pipe. Water pipes will give you a true Earth ground.
This is NOT true in many cases. In some cases this advice is extremely dangerous.
A "true earth ground" is also NOT what he needs. He needs a ground bonded to the grounded conductor of the electrical system.
Voltage does NOT seek <earth> ground! It is seeking it's source.

Just because a water pipe is metallic does NOT mean it is a reliable ground source.
In the US there are strong restrictions as to whether a water pipe can even be used as a ground. The main ones are that the water pipe MUST be in contact with the earth for at least 10' and it MUST already be used as a grounding electrode and that any "ground" wires connected to it are done so within 5' of where the pipe enters the house.

I also do not know the codes over there, but I know the above advice is not safe.
__________________
speedy petey is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-13-2008, 04:36 PM  
gavimobile
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 16
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by speedy petey View Post
This is NOT true in many cases. In some cases this advice is extremely dangerous.
A "true earth ground" is also NOT what he needs. He needs a ground bonded to the grounded conductor of the electrical system.
Voltage does NOT seek <earth> ground! It is seeking it's source.

Just because a water pipe is metallic does NOT mean it is a reliable ground source.
In the US there are strong restrictions as to whether a water pipe can even be used as a ground. The main ones are that the water pipe MUST be in contact with the earth for at least 10' and it MUST already be used as a grounding electrode and that any "ground" wires connected to it are done so within 5' of where the pipe enters the house.

I also do not know the codes over there, but I know the above advice is not safe.
speedy, i appreciate your concern, but i couldnt really care less if this is to code or not. this isny my house, i am just renting... i would just like to not get a shock when i touch electical appliances when i am barefoot in my own home! my water pipe is much more than 10 feet long, and its underground!
will this 2 volts disappear once i ground the ground to the waterpipe?
thanks
gavi
__________________
gavimobile is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-13-2008, 04:55 PM  
speedy petey
Lic.Electrical Contractor
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 447
Liked 39 Times on 27 Posts
Likes Given: 17

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by gavimobile View Post
speedy, i appreciate your concern, but i couldnt really care less if this is to code or not. this isny my house, i am just renting...
WOW! OK, real nice.
It's a good thing you are not in the US then. Messing with the electric in a place you are renting would not be legal.

Do they not have landlords in Israel???


__________________
speedy petey is offline  
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter DIY Home Repair Forum Replies Last Post
4 wires (plus ground) running to 3-way kpster Electrical and Wiring 8 11-26-2012 06:38 PM
120v on ground wire Milwaukean Electrical and Wiring 1 12-31-2008 03:58 PM
Open Ground Outlets xiolo Electrical and Wiring 5 10-13-2008 12:06 AM
Wiring w/no ground shan2themax Electrical and Wiring 12 05-15-2008 02:29 PM
interesting ground wire hawkestone Electrical and Wiring 10 07-23-2006 03:26 PM

Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS