Outdoor sub-panel for pool

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by ddennis, Jun 2, 2009.

  1. ddennis

    ddennis New Member

    Messages:
    4
    I have to travel to the in-laws this weekend to install a sub-panel for their new above ground pool in the state of Louisiana. Here is my assumptions please tell me if I am wrong or off-base.

    Plan is to install a 50 amp sub-panel (outdoors) on a 4' high post near pool.
    Water-tight flex containing 4 runs of 4# copper, 2 hot, 1g 1N. 50amp breaker in main, 50 amp main breaker in sub-panel and smaller breakers (gfci) to the loads.

    Will a ground rod be needed or do I tie the ground back to the house panel?
  2. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    689
    #4 is overkill unless it's 3oo' from the source.

    Three #8's and a #10 ground will suffice for a 50 amp pool sub. A lot of in ground pools here use a 30 amp feed to a pool sub which covers a filter pump motor, a cleaner pump motor and the pool light(s).

    No G rod necessary here. Local ordinances may vary.
  3. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    988
    Location:
    NY State, USA
    What type of "water tight flex" are you considering? I assume this will be underground.
    How close to the pool were you considering? The panel CANNOT be closer than 10' to the pool.

    A ground rod is required since this is a detached remote feeder and panel. If the panel were in the same structure as the main no ground rod would be required.
    You are also required to run an insulated ground with the feeder conductors in conduit completely back to the main panel.

    I REALLY think you need to read up on the codes involved with wiring and bonding for pool equipment.
  4. Chris75

    Chris75 Electrician

    Messages:
    608
    Location:
    Litchfield, CT


    yes a ground rod is required. read article 250.32 :)
  5. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    689
    I was assuming a rod wasn't requires because I have never seen one and I have never installed one.

    We have lots of pools here. I have seen a hundred pool panels and installed maybe a dozen.

    No exceptions anywhere???

    Here's my pool. It's about 5 years old and the landscape is starting to really take shape.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 2, 2009
  6. ddennis

    ddennis New Member

    Messages:
    4
    This is an above ground pool, all 120v equipment. roughly 110 feet to the main panel on the house. I do intend to bury the line minimum of 18 inches deep. NEC calls for the subpanel to be 10 feet from the pool?
  7. Apostile

    Apostile Guest

    I have a 60 amp breaker on my main panel connected by 120' of #4/2 with a ground wire. The black and white wires are connected to the load lugs of the sub panel and the ground wire is attached to the neutral block. The outdoor panel box has 2 - 30 amp GFI breakers. One goes to an outlet for the chlorinator; one to the pump motor. The neutral bar is not bonded to the panel. Do I need to add a bonded grounding bar and a grounding rod at the sub panel? Is there any way to correct the grounding of the box without digging up the wire and adding a fourth (common) wire from the main?
  8. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    988
    Location:
    NY State, USA
    No, not at all! What you have is extremely unsafe. You need an insulated neutral run with this feeder. The bare wire in the 4/2 cable should NOT be carrying all the current imbalance.

    You need to re-run that cable. If this panel is in a detached structure then you should have already had a ground rod there.

    PS- Next time start a new thread with your question instead of tacking it on to an existing thread.
  9. ddennis

    ddennis New Member

    Messages:
    4
    OK Speedy.. 3 8's and a 10#... 2 8's to the load bars, 1 8 to the neutral in the main panel .. #10 to the ground rod at the sub-panel..?
  10. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    988
    Location:
    NY State, USA
    You need a ground from the main panel to the sub-panel. Yes, in this case also #10.

    You then also need a #6 (if you can believe it) from the ground bar in the sub-panel to a ground rod. You can use a #8 to the ground rod if you can keep it completely out of harms way.
  11. ddennis

    ddennis New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Got it Thanks! Will post photos when done!
  12. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    689
    This isn't a seperate building or structure.

    Does 250.32 still apply?
  13. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    988
    Location:
    NY State, USA
    You could claim interpretation of this section, but I think most inspectors would require a ground rod even if the panel were simply mounted to a post.
  14. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    689


    That's what I'm going with. Like I said, in my area they are not requiring rods.

    I didn't read the whole section but saw "building or structure" and figured pool panels were exempt unless the equipment was in a pool house of some kind. The pool electrician guys generally mount them on a small rack made from a couple pieces of 1/2 rigid, the same type of conduit they use to feed it.
  15. Ana72

    Ana72 New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    USA
    I’ve just used the Square D outdoor sub panel that suits my swimming pool. I used a 2 pole breaker because it’s suitable for service entrance equipment as I’ve work with. It also provides me a highly visible red indicator flag that’s why I easily identify tripped breakers. I just found this one that’s best for me. I do respect the sub panel that you used with and glad to know the information too. I’ve chosen this panel because I’ve experienced how it works for me as well. See you again!

    Thanks a lot and keep safe!:)

    "Online Source for Hot Tub Chemicals"
  16. Jim Port

    Jim Port Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    156
    Location:
    Maryland
    You will also need to install all the proper bonding for the pool and the surrounding walk surface.

    Like Petey said, there is a lot to a pool or hot tub install. This really isn't the place to screw up.
  17. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,245
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; You are also required to run an insulated ground with the feeder conductors in conduit completely back to the main panel.

    That would only be true if there were ANY 120v. circuits. If they are all 240v, such as motors, there will not be ANY imbalance.
  18. Jim Port

    Jim Port Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    156
    Location:
    Maryland
    I believe Petey was talking about a grounding conductor, not a grounded conductor. Pools and hot tubs installed outside require the grounding conductor to be insulated. 680.21.
  19. codeone

    codeone Code Enforcement

    Messages:
    160
    Location:
    North Carolina
    680.25 Feeders. These provisions shall apply to any feeder
    on the supply side of panelboards supplying branch circuits
    for pool equipment covered in Part II of this article and on
    the load side of the service equipment or the source of a
    separately derived system.
    (B) Grounding. An equipment grounding conductor shall
    be installed with the feeder conductors between the grounding
    terminal of the pool equipment panelboard and the
    grounding terminal of the applicable service equipment
    or
    source of a separately derived system. For other than (1)
    existing feeders covered in 680.25(A), Exception, or (2)
    feeders to separate buildings that do not utilize an insulated
    equipment grounding conductor in accordance with
    680.25(B)(2), this equipment grounding conductor shall be
    insulated.
    (1) Size. This conductor shall be sized in accordance with
    250.122 but not smaller than 12 AWG. On separately derived
    systems, this conductor shall be sized in accordance
    with Table 250.66 but not smaller than 8 AWG.
  20. codeone

    codeone Code Enforcement

    Messages:
    160
    Location:
    North Carolina
    How deep is this above ground pool?
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