Emergency power transfer switch wiring question

Hi,
I had an electrician tell me today that the installation of my emergency power transfer switch is not to code. This was done by a different electrician about 4 years ago, it is for a generator.
The model is on this PDF page (the last one). It is basically a throw switch between the service entrance and the panel box
www.geindustrial.com/catalog/buylog/02_BL.pdf
He told me the service entrance wire has had its ground cut however the ground from the panel box is attached. He said it is "safe" but not up to code and maybe an inspector might see it one day if I sell the house. Can someone please shed some light on what problems this might make in terms of safety (is the outside wire not grounded, fire risk ect).
Thanks much
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On 10/17/2011 8:56 AM, SMF wrote:

I can't answer but around here, mine, installed about 5 years ago, had to be inspected by the state after installation.
I would probably go back to the original electrician if he caused the problem.
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In typed:

That's not actually a "transfer switch" by definition: http://www.arlingtonelectric.com/pdf/Elc07_06.pdf http://www.google.com/search ?
q=transfer+switch+wiring&sourceid=ie7&rls=com.microsoft:en-us:IE-SearchBox&ie=&oe=&rlz=1I7ADRA_en
http://www.arcadvisor.com/pdf/instrume.pdf
and
http://www.generatorjoe.net/html/FAQtransfersws.html shouls get you started. What you hace CAN be used but noy ethout being properly indtalled and is only recommended in certain situatons. Your local code office can give you more direct, accurate info beyond the NEC rules.
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Great answer. Tell the guy what he already knows.
If the service does not have a proper ground, then it needs to be fixed. Exactly where it's cut and what the other ground paths are is not clear from the info provided. But the bottom line is even if the switch/panel are grounded via an earth ground, that alone is not allowed as the main ground path back to the transformer. An earth ground has a much higher resistance than a direct wire connection.
Suprising the electrician did not suggest fixing it and surprising that a licensed electrician would install it that way to begin with. I would get it fixed.
and is

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On 10/17/2011 8:56 AM, SMF wrote:

to the panel or only when the switch is thrown? And, there are many switches, etc. on the pdf .... not sure which is the one on your house.
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wrote:

If I understand your question correctly your current electrician <no pun intended> is wrong.
There are two ways to set up a generator on a transfer switch.
If it is set up as a separately derived system (what your electrician seems to want) you bond the neutral to the ground in the generator AND the service. The transfer switch then has to switch over the neutral along with the phase legs.
You can also set it up as a non-SDS where the only neutral to ground bond is in the service panel, the neutral is NOT bonded to the ground in the generator and you DO NOT switch the neutral in the transfer equipment.
Both are perfectly legal but you can't mix and match.
The objective is to have one and only one place where the neutral and ground connect in any configuration. It can be either place.
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wrote:

The grounding electrode conductors cannot be spliced (that's not totally true, but close.) So if that's what you mean by "its ground cut", you have a problem but it's pretty easily remedied by running a new GEC or welding-by-an-approved-process the old one. That really ought to be fixed, but maybe I'm interpreting your post wrong.
I wouldn't worry about the "separately derived system" part until it actually becomes an issue.
-Bob
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On Oct 18, 9:40am, "Stormin Mormon"

What makes you think a generator connected via a transfer switch to a house electrical system would not be grounded? I would think it's required by code.
From the info provided, it's not clear to me what switch he has, what exactly is and is not grounded, etc. Before he does anything, I'd suggest he get someone competent to dtermine exactly how it's wired.

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Thanks everyone. I didn't describe it well because I am not too knowledgable on this but will try again. I can send a picture if you tell me a good group. So here goes:
I have a throw switch that is 100amp made by GE which I plan to run a portable honda generator that has a L14-30 plug.
This would be connected to the throw switch which is in between the service entrance and the panel and then the switch (handle) would be switched to the generator when needed.
Here is how the wiring goes:
There are three rows of mounts in the box that I think carry the loads and a strip of mounts on the bottom that are for the grounds. The top two rows are for the primary wire from the street and the wire going to the panel box. The third is for the generator and the forth is shared.
The wire from the street has two black wires that go to the two sets of mounts on the top and a gray wire that goes to the forth set on the bottom. The silver wires are cut and therefore do not connect to anything except maybe the meter outside.
The wire from the throw switch to the panel has two black wires that go to the second set of mounts and a silver wire that goes to the forth set. There is no gray wire like the service one.
Then the 4 wires from the generator cord hookup go like this. Black and red go to the third strip and gray and green to the forth strip where the gray service entrance wire goes as well as the silver wires from the panel box.
I hope that was more helpful!!
This was installed by a licensed electrician 4 years ago but I've had trouble getting him to return to finish the work since I just bought a generator. I just had a second licensed electrician come to look at finishing up the hookups who saw this and mentioned it and said it was "safe" but an inspector might notice it if I went to sell the house.
Below is a different site which pictures what the box looks like. If you zoom in you will see the different rows I tried to describe. Sorry for the previous messed up PDF file.
http://www.aplussupply.com/gent/midwest/dttrans.htm
Any light you can shed on the situation would be very helpful.
Thanks much again
On Tue, 18 Oct 2011 16:58:17 -0400, "Stormin Mormon"

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wrote:

I am still not sure I understand exactly what you have, a picture would help
I am not sure why you have SER (4 wires) coming from the "street" but you only need 3 and that is all that is hooked up
It sounds like your transfer switch is also the service equipment.
Where does the ground electrode conductor land? (the wire to the ground rod or the water pipe)
It should be there.
If all of this is true, the ground bus in your transfer equipment is the main bonding jumper and you should have 4 wires from there to the generator (which you have) and 4 wires to the house panel, where the neutral and ground bus should be separated
There are some interpretations that say that if all of the equipment is grouped together (the transfer and main panel in your case) , it can be all called service equipment and you do not need 4 wires between them.
The electrical inspector in your jurisdiction makes that call.
This is a crude picture of what you should have.
http://gfretwell.com/electrical/NonSDS%20transfer%20sw.jpg
My guess is your main panel does not have a separate ground bus. If you can get away with the "grouped" thing, it will be OK.
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It sounds like a lot of overkill for a generator that is only capable of proving 30 amps through the plug you are going to hook it up to ? Why use a 100 amp transfer switch when you are only supplying 30 amps of power through your generator ?
Sounds like you are doing it the wrong way based on the amperage involved, you would do better to use a sub panel fed from your main panel as if you try to feed too many circuits from the 30 amps available in your generator you will burn it out dead...
~~ Evan
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On Thu, 20 Oct 2011 11:47:16 -0700 (PDT), Evan

Because the 100amps passes through the unit to the panel box.

Yes, but I had work done four years ago and don't want to start again.

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Bingo, talk about clueless. The transfer switch has to handle the service current too.

Almost everyone that has a standby generator does load management because it can't run everything you might want to use at once. Either you do that through a sub-panel or you do it through the main panel. I'd prefer it through the main myself. A lot less rewiring.
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