Most of us have over the years simply pounded the ground rods we use directly into the ground and then made our connections. I have learned that this is not the best way to install a good ground rod. In fact, pounding the ground rod all the way in damages the ground rod and will redu......
Most of us have over the years simply pounded the ground rods we use directly into the ground and then made our connections. I have learned that this is not the best way to install a good ground rod. In fact, pounding the ground rod all the way in damages the ground rod and will reduce the life of the rod. When you pound in the rod, the rocks in the ground scratch off the copper plating exposing the underlying steel. The steel corrodes and thus your rod starts to deteriorate.
Location considerations: Choose a location as close to the controller as possible. Also look for routes for your ground wire which will be as straight as possible. Keep in mind that electricity, like water, will travel through the path of least resistance. Bends, curves, and distance change conductive charactoristics. If using a multiple rod configuration, and if you have the real estate to accomodate, install the rods 2 times their lenth from each other. The geometric shape is not as important as the space between the rods. If the rod is 10 feet long, space the rods 20 feet apart either in a straight line or in a triangle.
Step 1. With post hole diggers or if you’re fortunate enough to have a powered post hole drill, dig a hole as deep as you can or as long as the ground rod. The rod need only stick out of the ground enough to make a wire connection. If your rod is longer than your hole is deep, pound the rod in to accommodate the size differences.
Step 2. Back fill the hole with a) bentonite if the rod is installed in an environment which will not freeze, or b) an 80/20 mixture of concrete and charcoal of which the charcoal is pulverized to a powder. If you prefere a premixed compound, contact us to order it.
Note: For those applications where a ground plate is used or the ground is such that you can not dig a hole; dig a trench or excavate for the plate. Surround and cover the grounding devise before covering with soil. Also direct buring bare copper wire 2 feet under ground is viable. The goal is to get as much grounding devise surface area in contact with the surrounding soil.
Step 3. This step will greatly increase the performance of your ground rod. From the nearest valve, run a drip emitter line to the base of the ground rod so that the soil surrounding the ground stays moist. If so desired, you could dedicate a drip zone for the ground rod.
Step 4. Make your wire connections using 6 to no less than 10 gage solid copper wire. Make the wire run as straight as possible. If you need to make turns, use wide sweeping bends. Do not put sharp bends in the wire. Use a good quality copper clamp to attach the wire to the rod using at the minimum a sturdy ground clamp. The prefered methoud would be to weld the wire to the rod utilizing a flash type welding kit. Do not just wrap the wire around the rod!
Step 5. Use a meger, megometer, or ground resistance meter to determine the resistance of the ground system. (If you do not have such a meter you can purchase one from control tech) you should shoot for a reading of 5 ohms or less, especially if you are protecting a very expensive piece of equipment. It may be you’ll have to use a multiple rod design to get the desired ohm reading.
Balic is a professional ground rods manufacturer in China, we offer a complete line of ground rods and accessories to meet the needs of every user.
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