Article 800 -- Communications
Circuits, Part IV. Grounding Methods,
800.100 Cable and Primary
Case of the Mysterious Switch
Seattle Adopts 2005 NEC
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Top 2005 Code Changes
Article 800 --
Communications Circuits, Part IV. Grounding Methods 800.100
and Primary Protector Grounding
By Mike Holt
New FPN alerts the Code user that limiting the length
the grounding conductor for the primary protector should reduce
that may develop between the building's power and communications
during a lightning event. (Note: Code text has been
What the Code says:
Conductor. The grounding conductor must be:
(4) Length. The grounding conductor must be as short as practicable. In
one- and two-family dwellings, the grounding conductor cannot exceed 20
FPN: Limiting the length of the grounding conductors reduce
differences in potential between the building's power and
systems during lightning events.
Exception: Where it isn't practicable to limit the grounding
conductor to 20 ft for one- and two-family dwellings, a separate
ground rod not less than 5 ft long [800.100(B)(2)(2)] with fittings
suitable for the application [800.100(C)] must be installed. The
additional ground rod must be bonded to the power grounding electrode
system with a minimum 6 AWG conductor [800.100(D)].
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The Case of the
A customer contacted us for a seemingly simple trouble
call. Having some difficulty after replacing his electric water heater,
he told us he had switched the breaker off, checked to make sure the
power was off, and then removed the old heater. After installing the
heater, he turned the breaker back on -- but now there was no voltage
My helper and I decided to drive out to the house and check things
out. The breaker was good, but when we rang it out we discovered there
was no continuity from the panel to the new heater. There were no
junction boxes in the path! So what happened?
A trip into the attic revealed that the home run traveled down a
by the kitchen sink. The hot water heater was on the floor below. A
signal from the toner found the culprit. For some reason, there was a
2-pole switch by the sink. Why, we don't know. The owner never knew
that switch was for -- until now (when someone in the house
inadvertently turned it off).
Kihei, Maui, Hawaii
Send your 200-word story to us, and it may
appear in a future issue of CodeWatch. Authors of stories chosen will
Cool Electronic Cabinets
Stop electronic control downtime due to heat, dirt and moisture. UL
Listed Cabinet Coolers produce 20ºF air from an
supply of compressed air to cool electrical controls. Thermostat
minimizes air usage. Maintains the NEMA 4, 4X (stainless steel) and 12
rating of the enclosure. Web site offers detailed information,
downloadable drawings and PDF literature.
By Joe Tedesco
Think you know how this installation violates the NEC?
Visit EC&M's Web
site to see the answer.
Hint: Knot this time — or anytime for that matter.
By Mike Holt
Q. How far away must a 120/208V, 3-phase
panelboard be located from a janitorial closet sink?
Web site to see the answer.
By Steven Owen
Q. When grounding a large bridge crane in an
industrial facility, such as a paper mill or steel mill (or any other
location), which of the following statements is correct?
A) The trolley frame and bridge frame are considered
be electrically grounded through the bridge and trolley wheels and its
B) The trolley frame and bridge frame are not considered
to be electrically grounded through the bridge and trolley wheels and
its respective track.
C) All moving parts, including the trolley and bridge frame that
have a metal-to-metal bearing surface are considered to be effectively
D) An equipment grounding conductor shall be installed along the
entire length of the crane rails, bridge, and trolley. This conductor
may be placed anywhere on the metal frame of the crane assembly.
Web site for the answer and explanation.
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current with important industry issues.
Code News Update
Seattle Adopts 2005
Effective Oct. 22, 2005, the city of Seattle has
the 2005 edition of the National Electrical Code, according to the
November issue of electroindustry. The 2005 Seattle Electrical
Code consists of the 2005 National Electrical Code, the Washington
Electrical Code (WAC 96-46B), and Seattle amendments.
Approved in September by the Seattle City Council, the 2005 Seattle
Electrical Code was developed by the Electrical Code Review Committee
throughout meetings during the spring and early summer.
According to the article, a few significant amendments to the 2005
- A new requirement for two sets of plans with applications for
equipment rated 400A or more; and for services, feeders, and power
supplies for emergency, standby and fire pump systems.
- An amendment that adds utility raceways that are metallically
connected to other service equipment to the list of equipment required
to be bonded.
- A provision allowing MC cable for branch circuits, with prior
approval of the city.
- A requirement for a standby power source kept independent of other
wiring and equipment, and separate from the same raceway, cable box, or
cabinet with wiring for low-rise shaft pressurization systems, or
elevators that are used as accessible means of egress.
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