Warning: Stray voltage

B. Fishy

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Hi all,
I just installed a GFCI outlet for LeslieS's and my tank, and was thinking the tank needed grounding since GFCI only works hot-to-ground shorts. Curious whether the GFCI kicked in when you felt the shock? Also, where does one get a grounding probe? (ahem, seriously folks....) Any suggestions good vs. bad? Is grounding the sump enough, since saltwater's pretty conductive, or do you ground sump and tank?
Thanks,
B. Fishy & LeslieS
 

TimberTDI

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OK, I know I'm gonna jinx myself but here goes. I am currently using; and have for the past 10 years; three visitherm heaters. One of them is 10 years old 300w, one is a five year old 300w, and one is a one year old 150w. Knock on wood, I have never had one explode, nor had any stray voltage. They've been banged around and ran a few minutes out of water.

Steven
 

masterswimmer

www.saltwatercritters.com
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Hi all,
I just installed a GFCI outlet for LeslieS's and my tank, and was thinking the tank needed grounding since GFCI only works hot-to-ground shorts. Curious whether the GFCI kicked in when you felt the shock? Also, where does one get a grounding probe? (ahem, seriously folks....) Any suggestions good vs. bad? Is grounding the sump enough, since saltwater's pretty conductive, or do you ground sump and tank?
Thanks,
B. Fishy & LeslieS
B., the heater in my mixing tub was not plugged into a GFCI outlet. :sad2:

Premium Aquatics sells grounding probes.

The sump isn't getting grounded, technically. The probe sits in the water in the sump/fuge/display (where ever you decide to put it). The plug end of the cord has two rubber (non conductive) prongs that fit in your hot and neutral receptacle. The ground on the other hand is a live ground wire that runs to the probe, submerged in your system.

There should be no need for more than one grounding probe on a system.

R
 

masterswimmer

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reef, not sure how old Finnex is. Won Bros. is old and unreliable, both in product and customer service. I called them when my Won Bros. Pro II failed and they were nothing short of obnoxious and unwilling to hear my plight. Never again for them!

swimmer
 

FRY

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russ
the only thing i whould put on gfic outlet is heater and lights also a alarm so it whould go off when gfic is trip

fry
(save that bad heater russ might want to use it to test gfic outlet to make sure that a voltage leak whould trip the gfic,looks like time to make a leakage circuit for the tank with a alarm)
 
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masterswimmer

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russ
the only thing i whould put on gfic outlet is heater and lights also a alarm so it whould go off when gfic is trip

fry
(save that bad heater russ might want to use it to test gfic outlet to make sure that a voltage leak whould trip the gfic,looks like time to make a leakage circuit for the tank with a alarm)
Frank, good points. Thanks for the experts' opinion.
I would never put my returns or pumps on the gfci. My understanding of the electrical code (at least up in my neck of the woods) is that no life support systems are to be wired into gfci circuits. I know this was intended for life support such as dialysis machines for instance, but our ecosystems are life support also. GFCI's are known to fail and I've seen them fail. If we are to leave our homes for 8 hrs and the gfci fails 5 minutes after we leave..........well you know the rest :sad2:

swimmer
 
S

steveo32

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So when I wire up the new tank panel to the circut breaker the panel that i make should have gfci outlets for the heaters and lights only ?
waht what about the pumps and stuff > if they had stray voltage what do you do about that ? Oh and while on electric are there timers that I can hard wire in ?

BTW sorry to go off topic Russ :)
 

Reefer420

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just bought a Finnex heater w/ controller the other week to replace my WON Bros Pro Heat II POS...it had fizzeled out on me- and the controller stopped working, when I realized it was making a strange sound my tank was around 88!!!!! Nothing happened to my tank as far as I can tell- but I was lucky I was home...
 

ming

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IMO, everything should be wired into the gfci, including the return because the return pump could theoretically be the one leaking the stray voltage. If the tank is grounded and the return pump is leaking voltage, then you're essentially electrocuting the whole tank because you're completing a circuit. 8 hours without circulation shouldn't do any irrepairable damage. They're in confined bags longer then that when being shipped to the LFS.
 
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