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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone,

New to posting here, but read the board quite a bit. This question has been asked on some posts that I've read through but I wanted some clarity just to be safe.

Setup:
  • New Westinghouse 3600v:
    • Have not powered on (reading through the various break in methods to get longest life)
    • Floating Neutral System (per manual and front panel)
  • No more than 2400 Watts load expected today:
    • Connected via extension cords to 120V/20A Outlets
    • Possible items:
      • Lights.
      • Portable Fans.
      • Larger electronics (unlikely due to my understanding of harmonic distortion).
      • Fridge (if extended outage to prevent food loss).
Question:

For normal emergency use, whats the expectation for grounding? Do I need to drive a ground rod and connect to the floating neutral terminal? Ive seen others purchase a Neutral-Ground Bonding Plug and also drive a ground rod. Ive seen videos of people who do a ground rod on a floating neutral system and it does nothing. So, I want a little advice.

What the heck do I need to do to keep from accidentally injuring myself via improper grounding when I need to hook up some lights, etc during an extended power outage? Should I return and get a bonded gen?

Side Notes:

Long term I plan on having an electrician wire a large portable gen to my new home build via the generator transfer an utilize the home ground with a floating neutral generator.


Appreciate any help (and patience)!

Jason
 

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I’m not an expert but my understanding is.

In the case of powering appliances through a direct power cord, a ground rod plus a neutral bond will provide the best protection from electricution due to a short circuit (hot to chassis on the appliance) and lightning strike.

A neutral bond without a ground rod provides short circuit electricution protection. (hot to chassis) Not bonding the ground and neutral has the potential to electrify the chassis and you become the ground source resulting in a shock. The bond creates a path to neutral which would result in tripping the circuit breaker on the generator.

A bonding plug cant hurt, if the generator is the point of use source. If you are connecting to the home through a transfer switch the neutral should be floating as to not be a return path for transient currents on the neutral wire. The homes ground system takes the place of a ground rod.

Im sure someone will call me out if I’m wrong or elaborate further.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I’m not an expert but my understanding is.

In the case of powering appliances through a direct power cord, a ground rod plus a neutral bond will provide the best protection from electricution due to a short circuit (hot to chassis on the appliance) and lightning strike.

A neutral bond without a ground rod provides short circuit electricution protection. (hot to chassis) Not bonding the ground and neutral has the potential to electrify the chassis and you become the ground source resulting in a shock. The bond creates a path to neutral which would result in tripping the circuit breaker on the generator.

A bonding plug cant hurt, if the generator is the point of use source. If you are connecting to the home through a transfer switch the neutral should be floating as to not be a return path for transient currents on the neutral wire. The homes ground system takes the place of a ground rod.

Im sure someone will call me out if I’m wrong or elaborate further.
Thanks drmerdp. That lines up with what Ive been reading today as well, appreciate the additional clarity on the function of the neutral bond. My current intention is to get a bonding plug and ground rod while in standalone use for emergencies. Not much effort to do so for the peace of mind it can bring.

Jason
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
I do have a follow up question regarding the ground rod. I've read that I can connect the ground on the generator to my home existing ground rod and it is not advised to run a separate ground rod. Is this accurate? It would seem difficult given its a driven into the ground :)
 

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I do have a follow up question regarding the ground rod. I've read that I can connect the ground on the generator to my home existing ground rod and it is not advised to run a separate ground rod. Is this accurate? It would seem difficult given its a driven into the ground :)
On many electrical entrances, there will be a ground wire running down from the meter base to the ground rod. You can clamp onto that for a ground if you're not otherwise connecting to the building ground through a transfer switch or interlock arrangement.
 

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Current code requires a bonding bridge on the outside of the home for bo ding communication cable, it would also work for you.

A bonding bridge can be added to an existing exposed ground wire like in taboras picture.

Musical instrument Door Wood Gas Cylinder
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you drmerdp and tabora! I did locate it on the side of the home. I recently powered up the unit and after some breakin, did some load testing (with the neutral bond plug). All is well thus far, thank you for all the help!
 
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