National Electrical Installation Standards

Standards as High as Your Own

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Question:

What is the correct way to bond the neutral in a residential main circuit breaker panel. I have always ran the ground wire to the street side of the water meter & jumpered across the meter & connected to the neutral bar. I have also seen the ground connected to the closest cold water pipe & the water meter jumpered .the code isn't very clear on this, which way is correct. Is it also necessary to jumper the hot & cold water piping at the water heater? Keep up the good work, thanks

Jim Jablonski

A

Answer:

Hey Jim thanks for your question and the kind words. The grounding electrode connection to a water pipe must generally be made with the first 5 feet of where the water pipe enters a building as stated in 250.68 (C)(1) but it is not limited to the street side of a water meter. A bonding jumper must be installed around any insulated joints and around any equipment likely to be disconnected as stated in 250.53(D) (1) and 250.68(B). Metal Water Piping Systems must be bonded as stated in 250.104(A). It does not specifically state that both the cold and hot water piping systems be bonded but each would likely be considered a separate piping system if they are not electrically connected together such as by the use of dielectric fittings at a water heater. Many plumbing fixtures are made of nonmetallic materials so usually do not provide continuity.

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