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  1. #1
    Scott Lynch's Avatar
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    Default Telephone bonding clamp

    Last edited by Scott Lynch; 12-20-2007 at 03:38 PM.
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Scott,

    I can't answer your question. Since you appear to comment on the phone system's grounding I will assume that you inspect phone systems - surely your client would assume that. Anyway, I expect that you'd have to go by the phone companies guidelines.

    I for one have nothing to do with telecommunication systems.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Barker View Post
    Since you appear to comment on the phone system's grounding I will assume that you inspect phone systems - surely your client would assume that.
    Inaccurate assumption.

    That's like saying that because you comment on "one" bad, visible, nail in the roof that you are commenting on all of the nails you cannot see.

    Makes no sense.

    That's like the Home Inspector MYTH that is you mention "code" you are doing a "code inspection", which would also mean that if you mentioned ONE "safety item" you would be expected to be performing a "safety inspection", or that because you mention "some" insulation missing that you are doing a "thermal energy loss inspection".

    HIM - Home Inspector Myth.

    I can't answer your question because I don't know that's in that EMT or where it goes ... it "could be" okay, but probably "is not".

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Hey Jerry,

    I am having a little trouble figuring out what you are saying. Help me out here please. Why would you comment on low voltage anything?? I thought we very inspecting electrical and thats it. I for one do not comment on anything other than what is required by the standards. I always read your stuff so I want to understand how you look at this type of situation.

    Thanks
    Bill B


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by William Brady View Post
    Why would you comment on low voltage anything?? I thought we very inspecting electrical and thats it.
    Isn't "low voltage" "electrical"?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    sorry I hit the enter key and did not finish. I am not trying to make a argument out of this I just understand this thing differently.

    Bill B


  7. #7
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Jerry it has always been my understanding that as HI we inspect the service, outlets and signs of problems with the 120/240 or whatever is in the house but not the low voltage including phone, alarms or speaker wire etc. Please tell me that I heard it all wrong that I have to attest for the phone company wire now or some alarm company. And by the way I know low voltage is electrical.

    Bill B


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by William Brady View Post
    Jerry it has always been my understanding that as HI we inspect the service, outlets and signs of problems with the 120/240 or whatever is in the house but not the low voltage including phone, alarms or speaker wire etc.
    Correct ... but ...

    Please tell me that I heard it all wrong that I have to attest for the phone company wire now or some alarm company.
    You don't ... but ...

    And by the way I know low voltage is electrical.
    I figured that, but you did make that statement, so I answered it.

    Now, though, for the "but" ...

    BUT ... you also have to check for "grounding" as in "equipment grounding", right?

    Appliances, TVs, receptacle outlets, lights, ceiling fans, etc., right (yes, right), so ... let's get back to TVs ... antennas, satellite dishes, et al are required to be grounded, to ground the antenna lead in, otherwise, you could have a potential (voltage) difference between the TV set and the antenna (happens all the time) and blow the TV or, worse yet, cause an electrical shock off the antenna lead in - same with the phone, the phone line is supposed to be grounded.

    So it's not the "phone line" or the "cable lead" you are inspecting, it's the "grounding" of them. And the grounding of them is back to the grounding electrode system to which the service grounding is tied to.

    Got it?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  9. #9
    William Brady's Avatar
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Thanks for your input. My Inspection Aggrement states that I do not inspect those items and a lot more. I understand what you are telling me but if I am inspecting the grounding of those items am I not really inspecting them. Is it that I should be stating I will look at the grounding but not the phone wiring etc. Having done some court testimoy I would not want to try to explain to a jury that I did something but not the whole job. Don't you think it might be opening up a can. So far you and I and one other HI has taken on the subject I hope that I hear form some others to see their take on this issue.

    Bill B


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by William Brady View Post
    I understand what you are telling me but if I am inspecting the grounding of those items am I not really inspecting them.
    Nope. You are inspecting the "grounding" only.

    Is it that I should be stating I will look at the grounding but not the phone wiring etc. Having done some court testimony I would not want to try to explain to a jury that I did something but not the whole job. Don't you think it might be opening up a can.
    Nope.

    Are you telling me that you do *EXACTLY* what is in your SoP and *ABSOLUTELY* ... *NOTHING MORE* ... ?

    Of course not.

    Do you inspect sprinkler systems? Pools and spas? Including the underground piping?

    Again, of course not.

    So why try to apply that standard here.

    I would say that if you went to court (and you said you've done some court testimony) that 'failure' to note the lack of grounding would get in you trouble, not 'noting the lack of grounding'.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  11. #11
    William Brady's Avatar
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    I did not say that failure to note the lack of grounding. I ment to say if it did not come accross is that I do not inspect certain items according to my agreement. Now after saying that i go ahead and inspect a part of what I said I do not inspect. My experience tells me that a good lawyer will have field day with that inconsistancy. he will ask questions in every shape and form to try to show that I am not doing what I say I do. This is very hard to give the flavor of a situation like this in this format. If I say I do not inspect phone but then inspect a part of the phone system ie grounding then its mine. Question: "Oh by the way inspector didn't you notice the phone wire connected to the circuit breaker". I am just trying to get the point across please don't quote me here Jerry. Or did you look under the bed for the drugs. Then why didn't you look under the ask tray and on and on. He will begin with the grounding and find his way all the way to the toilet. Five minutes of testimony will turn into two hours and doubt in a jurors mind as to just what you do. I don't think you can play a loose game with the HI agreement.

    Bill B


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by William Brady View Post
    If I say I do not inspect phone but then inspect a part of the phone system ie grounding then its mine.
    Nope. HI myth.

    No different than saying you saw one unsafe item and you are now expected to do a "safety inspection". Nope, does not work that way.

    I don't think you can play a loose game with the HI agreement.
    You have but two choices:

    1) follow your instincts and inspect and report what you feel you need to (playing loose with the HI agreement as you worded it)

    2) follow your HI agreement without exceeding it (which is impossible to do)

    So, which choice do you really have? 1)

    Any time you go to court, the opposing shark will try to eat you alive. It's up to you to be able to answer with a hook which lands the shark in shallower water than it's comfortable in, then they back off for their more comfortable deeper water.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Smile Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Scott,

    Good that you are asking. Question: was the box grounded? A continuity test will confirm whether or not this is properly grounded. Chances are, if it is snug, it is. If it wasn't, the telephone company likely would have received a call from the customer eventually, due to static on the line. I don't generally evaluate communications wiring. But since you asked, there you go. Home Inspector Hint [HIH]: never let the lawyer be your guide. Every question they ask, and every statement they make, has two edges. Always remember that.

    Randall Aldering GHI BAOM MSM
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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    It's not about the lawyer it's how you are precieved by the jury. DOn' get me wrong I am not at all concerned by the lawyer I just do not want to open the door for them to make points at my expense. It's not what is in court it is what it appears to be. I have seen cases interped by well meaning people totally wrong just because some good lawyer twisted the fact so far out of shape that they had no reason to think he might be trying to foool them. I try to stick with the HI agreement as best i can and not go beyond.

    Bill B


  15. #15
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    Cool Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    I call out missing or incorrect ground to the satellite dish. Am I alone in reporting this condition?

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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Me too.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by William Brady View Post
    It's not about the lawyer it's how you are precieved by the jury.
    I don't know about other areas, but down in South Florida, nothing like that would go to a "jury trial", it would be both parties, their attorneys, their witnesses ... and the Judge.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Nernberg View Post
    I call out missing or incorrect ground to the satellite dish. Am I alone in reporting this condition?
    I HOPE NOT, but then, I also HOPE that you (and everyone else) *is also* calling out missing grounds from antennas too.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Hi Scott..Having worked for phone and cable I can tell you not to worry about that in the inspection as it should be responsibility of the phone company.
    That said ,it should be clamped to the mast or use a ground rod.
    I will however also state that from the photo it is presently grounded.
    The reason it is incorrect though is due to the fact that the coupling can come loose which will break the bond which is for now present.
    Clamping to the meter casing is not allowed anymore either.
    Some systems may allow this method however so you would just be fighting windmills if you give more than a verbal.


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    as it should be responsibility of the phone company.
    I agree - *IT SHOULD BE* their responsibility, however, I've seldom seen them take it and do it right.

    That said ,it should be clamped to the mast or use a ground rod.
    What kind of ground rod, where, and tied to what?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  21. #21
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    So Jerry that is very nice of you to take on the responsibility for the local Utility Company and Cable Company. I hope they appreciate the service you offer! For me however I think I will let them be responsible for their installation. I like my pre inspections agreement and I tell my clients what is outside the scope of the inspection.


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by William Brady View Post
    So Jerry that is very nice of you to take on the responsibility for the local Utility Company and Cable Company. I hope they appreciate the service you offer!
    Do you look for the ground rod and grounding of the electrical system?

    Wait, I would guess not.

    Why not?

    Oh, you do?

    Why?

    What's the difference between the grounding of all those systems required to be grounded?

    Talk about playing free and loose with everything.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Jerry a ground rod is thrown in for cable or telephone (pot) plain old telephone when the route to the ground clamp is longer than the route to the nearest devise.
    So this would occur when the line attaches to the oppisite side of the house.
    For instance if the meter is in back and the phone box is in front.
    It is important as I have seen TV sets blown out by lightning.
    Just not part of a regular inspection as the companies or utilities are responsible.


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    Jerry a ground rod is thrown in for cable or telephone (pot) plain old telephone when the route to the ground clamp is longer than the route to the nearest devise.
    So this would occur when the line attaches to the oppisite side of the house.
    That's what I was waiting for someone to say (I suspect some others knew I was waiting for that).

    Totally wrong.

    NEVER, and I repeat, *NEVER*, should you do what you said.

    The ONLY TIME you would drive another ground rod would be when you then bonded that ground rod back to the grounding electrode system with a grounding electrode conductor (suitable sized, of course), and, if you are bonding that ground rod back to the grounding electrode system (the main ground rod, etc.), then why drive the other rod?

    All that other ground rod is going to do is create the potential for ground plane differences between the two ground rods, even with the grounding electrode conductor creating a voltage drop across it, which creates a voltage difference in the ground plane.

    It is important as I have seen TV sets blown out by lightning.
    Correct, lightning is the reason.

    Just not part of a regular inspection as the companies or utilities are responsible.
    You mean you do not, as part of your regular home inspection, check to make sure the grounding electrode system is grounded to the service, or, stated differently, that the service is grounded to the grounding electrode system? After all, the power company should be responsible for that, right? (Yeah, just like the phone and cable companies are for the phone and cable grounds.)

    Satellite dishes, antennas, phone, cable, etc., "grounding" SHOULD all be checked and written up when missing or done incorrectly. Just like one SHOULD check and write up missing or incorrect grounding of the electrical service.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Hi Jerry I have heard that argument before and sure there is always controversy which you may wish to bring up with the major utility companies.
    Let me put it this way Jerry.
    If I insert a ground rod 90 feet away at the opposite corner of a residence for cable and the neighbor has a ground rod at the back of their house only 40 feet from my electric service ground, which is more of a problem in your mind.
    If telephone or cable comes in at the front and electric is in the back I would like to know what your alternate soulution would be.Not trying to be argumentive here ,as I would like the forum members to have a definitive answer.

    Last edited by Bob Elliott; 09-19-2007 at 04:35 PM.

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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    Let me put it this way Jerry.
    If I insert a ground rod 90 feet away at the opposite corner of a residence for cable and the neighbor has a ground rod at the back of their house only 40 feet from my electric service ground, which is more of a problem in your mind.
    Bob,

    You are forgetting one very important aspect of what you just posted: the neighbors cable and phone *are not* grounded to the first house, they are grounded to the neighbors house, thus, it matters not if *THE NEIGHBORS* ground rod was even only 6 feet from the first houses ground rod, or 40 feet away, or down the block, or in the back forty.

    What matters, in your stated case, is that there *are two* ground rods, 90 feet apart, connected to the same grounding system, and that they are not tied together with a grounding electrode conductor. And, when you run that conductor, why bother with the ground rod? Besides, that grounding electrode conductor run to the second ground rod 90 feet away would need to be much larger than the grounding wire needed for the cable or phone (because it serves a different purpose, it serves to bond the grounding electrode system together, whereas the equipment ground for the cable or phone only serves to ground them 'to the grounding electrode system').

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    OK...what I am getting on web searches is the second ground rod needs to be bonded with a 6 gauge conductor to the first.
    As far as the Cable company goes, the rule is that the ground wire can't be longer than the distance to the first devise.(for instance a TV).
    As far as present NEC rules go I stand corrected .
    The rule seven years ago with AT&T was that the grounding wire could not be longer than 15 feet.


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    As far as present NEC rules go
    Bob,

    It's not just the "present" NEC, those requirements go way back, they've just been stated more clearly over the past decade or so with each change in wording because of all the mis-interpretations which occurred.

    The rule seven years ago with AT&T was that the grounding wire could not be longer than 15 feet.
    Which was their way of saying they wanted the phone cable run to the house within 15 feet of the service (that would allow the maximum length of the ground to be 15 feet).

    The days of running them to the other side of the house are gone.

    An example is the house we had in South Florida, which was built in 1975. The cable was run to the back of the house the shortest distance possible from the cable pedestal at the back corner, but which was not near the service at all. We bought the house in 1994, and over they years they repaired sections of the cable a few times, one of those times they drove what they considered to be a "ground rod", but, at about 1/4" diameter and about 3 feet long, that in no way met the minimum requirements for a "ground rod" - that of being a minimum of 1/2" in diameter and minimum 8 feet long. I advised them of this and they ignored me. Oh well.

    Then, about a year before we sold the house in June 2006, they had to replace the entire run of cable (because of all the repairs they'd done before were failing). This time, however, the told me they "were required" to run the cable *all the way around the house to the service*, and, *to ground to the ground rod*. They even added a new clamp to the ground rod just for their ground. Of course, though, the clamp was the wrong type of clamp, so I replaced it myself with the correct type of clamp.

    I'm just showing that progress and communication throughout all phases of the industry *take time*. But it eventually happens.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    They just dis-allowed meter clamps last year as an example.
    In example of what you spoke, the cable for a single TV in the back would need to be run to the front and then back again, if that was the only devise.


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Elliott View Post
    In example of what you spoke, the cable for a single TV in the back would need to be run to the front and then back again, if that was the only devise.
    Bob,

    If installing cable after-the-fact to a single TV, i.e., the house was not pre-wired for cable or phone, that would be correct.

    All of the newer houses I've been around during construction, say from the 1960s on, have always been pre-wired for phone and cable. In those, the main phone and cable lines on the older ones ran to the house at the 'closest point'. up into the attic near the attic access, then throughout the house; and on newer ones, the phone and cable are being run to the electrical service area, to the attic near an attic access or to a communication panel (the newer newer ones have a communication panel everything is run to, typically in a closet, laundry room, etc.), then throughout the house.

    How many areas pre-wire for phone?

    How many areas pre-wire for cable?

    I'd like to sample as many areas as I can get replies from. Looking for as many replies as possible.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Mr. Peck,

    Memphis TN. area pre-wired phone and cable.

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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Jerry in the Chicago area it is only more recently .
    When they pre-wire homes they normaly are not grounded as of yet till installed from the tap.
    Often times the electricians will do this and run phone also with a double wall plate.The proper way to install is with a home run rather than daisy chain ..


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Directv says DIRECTV


    Last edited by Don Emerson; 09-23-2007 at 03:54 PM. Reason: Too much info

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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Most builders in the Nashville area are prewiring cable and phone/internet. On most high end homes and many regular size, I am seeing High Tech boxes in central locations: ie closets, utility rooms and media rooms.


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Most builders in the Nashville area are prewiring cable and phone/internet. On most high end homes and many regular size, I am seeing High Tech boxes in central locations: ie closets, utility rooms and media rooms.


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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Eastman View Post
    Would you agree that this bond is wrong at the panel.
    If that is the "service equipment", that would be okay ... *IF* ... *IF* it were done correctly, and it is not.

    I would rather see it bonded to the ground rod itself, but, the grounding electrode conductor (GEC) runs from the service equipment to the grounding electrode system - i.e., the GEC and that phone ground would be connected 'together', if that had been done properly.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Telephone bonding clamp

    Scott in the picture , that does not appear to be ground wire.
    The meter clamp may be considered acceptable in your system however.
    When I agreed with Jerry it was based on NEC.
    NEC may not be the law in your area, and of course we are not code inspectors.Hope I did not open a can of worms.


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