GringoPost | Ecuador: What is grounding?

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What is grounding?

Ground provides added safety to your house, apartment, and even yourself, etc. Ever since the US NEC adopted the grounding code to enforce grounding in new electrical installations, it has created numerous improvements, too many to mention here. This means that any new installation/s that do(es) not follow the grounding rules will not pass any electrical inspection thus rendering the installation illegal. So what is grounding? What does it do? Grounding provides an added option for excess electricity to go to ground instead of through you therefore saving your life, avoiding fires in your house, etc. I have witnessed many homes old and new without grounding with families, small children residing in them making these homes unsafe to live in. Though there may be many competent electrical engineers in Ecuador, very few of them do hands-on installations instead leaving those installations to electrician technicians many of them very capable, but not all.

Some of the installations that I've seen are so poorly done I would question the installer's knowledge ex: a whole house with only one 40 amp breaker and # 16 and 18 wire gauge for outlet installed in the same circuit making this house a fire hazard. Because the breaker will only trip after the house has caught fire if at all. In addition, the house has no ground which at this point will not make a difference.

Another common practice I've seen is the bridging from neutral wire to ground wire for the sake of saving wire or to avoid having to bury a copper rod in the ground outside the house so when you use an outlet tester it will read ground but won't detect this problem which is deadly. This practice should be penalized with some kind of prison term. Note I am not talking about bonding here which is done at the main panel and a necessary practice for the proper breaker operation.

I've been an electrician and a contractor for 30 years graduated in the US in Electrical Technology worked in Simplex Grinnell in NY for over 17 years as an electrician, a year ago took a 6 month course for current NEC codes.

I feel it is my duty to offer free of charge to come over to your house to check for grounding and to advise what you need to do if a problem is found.

Lino Ramirez: 099 908 1990. Call after: 9 AM.

City: Cuenca