I was putting up some new lights at my house. The first couple were
wired so that the bare metal ground on the light and in the house wiring
were connected together using a wire nut. There were also a couple where
these two wires were connected to a screw on the mounting bracket. I
went ahead and just wirenutted the two together as above. Now I get to
thinking any particularly important reason I shouldn't do that and use
the screw on the mounting instead?
Were these metal boxes? If so, I believe the ground should be attached to
the box but don't quote me on that. Hopefully an Electrician
will come along soon! I have always tied the wire to the box with a
grounding screw, unless the box is plastic, then I just wire them together
about 15 times and cap it off with a wire nut.
If its a metal box or metal fixture you want the ground wire connected
to the box or fixture also...this way you wont get the crap knocked out
of you if a hot wire comes into contact with the box or fixture.
I do it this way: I leave the ground long, wrap the _incoming_
power feed ground a turn around _one_ box screw (wire is direct from
the cable entrance/box clamp to the screw and hard against the
back of the box), use the loose end to wirenut to any "outgoing"
grounds (cables to other boxes, fixtures mounted on the box etc),
and push all of the grounds against the back of the box before
doing any more wiring. Takes up virtually zero room.
Some inspectors (and Knight for example), consider using the box
_itself_ as a grounding conductor is a sign of poor workmanship - eg:
implying that you only use _one_ screw per box, and all grounding
circuitry is copper-to-copper connections. Further, Knight wants
all boxes in a gang grounded, not using the box-to-box clips
as the conductor.
With gang boxes, I leave the feed ground _very_ long. It goes
in a line from one screw in each box to the next, with a loop
around each. The free end is then used to wire nut to all
other grounds. That, plus the way I do hots, mean that the boxes
containing gangs of switches look virtually empty - eg: only
This is more or less what you do for your first inspection - layout
and connect all the grounds, leaving a loose end of the ground
exposed where you're going to install box devices (outlets, fixtures).
Thus, your first inspection permits the inspector to see your grounding
workmanship without the rest of the stuff in the way.
Once you pass your first inspection, except for loose ends in boxes
where you now have to install outlets/devices, you don't have to
touch the grounds again.
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It\'s not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
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