Service Pole to Well House Underground Line Specs

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by CHOLLA BOB, Dec 18, 2011.

  1. CHOLLA BOB

    CHOLLA BOB New Member

    Messages:
    64
    Location:
    New Mexico
    I am going to start digging a trench to run underground cable from a service pole breaker box to a well house; the distance is 60 feet. The breaker is a 240 V 2-pole 20-20 which will run to the well house water pump pressure switch. The present UF 2-10 AVG with ground cable runs two inches under the ground in the wrong direction and splices somewhere to a yellow TW-INS 10 three wire where it comes out in the well house. As the cable, disconnected and capped, throws the breaker, this seems why we can't keep the breaker on. At night, the breaker stays on for an hour or two with the ground frozen, and then with midday thaw, I can't keep the breaker on. An electrician came out and did not find a short with a multi-meter, but did not use a megger. Even if it is the control box capacitor or relay, I want to upgrade this old cable situation and have a straight, protected run. Hiring a electrician to come out with a megger will be the cost of the job.

    How deep should the trench be? 12 inches? What plastic conduit is best? Is gluing enough for the seal? I read that the yellow submersible 600V TW-INS 10 AWG line is good for conduit. I would like to run additional wire for a socket; should that be 12 gauge black and white with ground?

    Thanks for any advise! The full story is in the well section. I am moving over here for the underground line. Thanks!

    http://www.terrylove.com/forums/sho...ll-Pump-Electric&p=324745&posted=1#post324745
  2. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,534
    Location:
    North Carolina
    It needs to be 24 inches deep if using a UF cable and 18 inches if using PVC conduit.

    The conductors must have a “W” in the type of conductor such as THW.

    It is a very wise choice to include a 120 volt circuit to somewhere close if not in the well house.

    Your size should be large enough depending on the type of pump. You will get a better answer for this question on the well forum
  3. CHOLLA BOB

    CHOLLA BOB New Member

    Messages:
    64
    Location:
    New Mexico
    18 inches deep with PVC conduit is what I am going with. Dug down 14 inches today and snow coming tomorrow. I will go with the 10 gauge wire to maintain what was originally there: I will confirm pump amp draw from the well people who originally installed tomorrow. Will go with W conductor rated wire.

    On the 120V line with the 70 foot run of wire, and running a light, twelve feet of heat tape, and possibly a livestock tank water heater (which is about a 7 amp draw when activated), should I run a larger gauge wire to the well outlet? 12 gauge is normal; should I run 10 gauge for this outlet?

    Thanks for the help! I was glad it was not 3 feet as I am digging through hardpan caliche.
  4. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,248
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    60 feet of 12 AWG will give you a 3% voltage drop, so you will be fine with that on the 120v circuit.
  5. CHOLLA BOB

    CHOLLA BOB New Member

    Messages:
    64
    Location:
    New Mexico
    Sounds like 12 gauge will work for the outlet on 60 foot run. It was suggested to me to put in a 60 amp sub-panel in the well house containing a 20 amp 240v breaker for the pump and a 20a 120v breaker for the other circuits. This would upgrade the 20amp 240 breaker on the pole to a 30 amp 240 breaker to cover the well sub-panel. Sounds like a good way to go and I do have a spare sub-panel.

    I hope I didn't get anything wrong on the above. If you see me straying, please advise! Thanks and as I am working in mud up to my boot tops, snow, rain, and no running water; I appreciate the help as it has been pretty hopeless for the last week!
  6. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,248
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    The cost of the larger wire and ground rods alone would make most stop short of adding a subpanel where it is not needed.
  7. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,248
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    I think you are jumping into your boots too soon Don. All JW was saying is that it might be better to get pump wiring recommendations from the pump guys. There are some grey areas where the motor manufacturers make recommendations that are not in line with the NEC.
  8. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,534
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Don

    If you don’t have anything constructive to say please don’t say anything and please stop all the vulgarity. I would like to think that you are above this type of language but one never knows for sure.

    I gave him all the information he ask for but with the specs on the pump motor no one can give him any more information.

    Besides what are you cursing so about, don’t you know the answers to his questions?
  9. BobL43

    BobL43 DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,792
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Time to smoke peace pipe. Time of year comes for peace and happiness.
  10. DonL

    DonL Jack of all trades Master of one

    Messages:
    4,161
    Location:
    Houston, TX

    I agree , Have a Happy Holiday.
  11. CHOLLA BOB

    CHOLLA BOB New Member

    Messages:
    64
    Location:
    New Mexico
    It was pointed out that I can't run separate feeds in the same conduit for the pump (H, H, N, G) and the 120 V outlet (H, N, G) so the sub-panel was the solution with 10ga wire. I will finish the trench today in this NM blizzard and run the 10ga through, hook up the well again, and still have the option to put in a sub-panel latter as I need an outlet someday to keep the well house from freezing.

    Two feet is the furthest I can dig by hand out here as hardpan caliche gets impossible to dig past that. I have heard 18" by a local, and here. There is no road over the trench.

    And I am not going anywhere as this is the best forum around and have had a good time even with the mud wading and blizzards! Thanks everyone for helping out.
  12. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,534
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Don’t know where you heard that separate circuits cannot occupy the same raceway as it is common practice.

    It is not proper to supply a building with more than one circuit and this I agree with so the remote panel is the proper way to make the installation. If this is the method which you choose then you will need to install four conductors, 2-hot, 1-neutral, and 1-equipment grounding conductor. You will also need to drive two ground rods at the pump house and keep the neutral and equipment grounding separate with the neutral isolated from all metal. The grounding electrode conductor will land on the equipment grounding terminal bar.

    Remember to keep warm and dry to the best of your ability. Drink plenty of chicken broth. Don’t know why drinking chicken broth is so important but Mommy always made me do it so there must be some reason.
  13. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    As to the cable size for the pump, at 60' franklin would allow much smaller than the 10g. So he is good for the subpanel for lights and heaters.

    Whats up with 2 ground rods, when he only has one at his main panel? Also, he has a mighty ground rod already installed if its steel well casing. There isnt a pump house in a 500 mile radius of here with any ground rods. Well..... this is California, I forgot.
  14. DonL

    DonL Jack of all trades Master of one

    Messages:
    4,161
    Location:
    Houston, TX

    I do want to apologize for my use of words that are used on TV on a daily basis. (And in the Bible)

    I did not mean it to be disrespectful to You or Anyone on this Forum.

    And NO, I did not think that I could give the best answer to ALL of the questions, That is why I suggested moving to this Forum too ask the experts. I do not know all of the correct answers and never claimed to know it all.

    If I have hurt anyone's feelings because of my wording, I am Sorry.

    I thought that most of the Persons on this Forum were Adults.

    Thank You for providing the answers that the Poster was looking for.

    Have a Happy and Safe Holiday.


    DonL
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2011
  15. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,534
    Location:
    North Carolina
    And I wish you a very Merry Christmas also
  16. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    Merry Christmas, but what about the 2 ground rods?
  17. DonL

    DonL Jack of all trades Master of one

    Messages:
    4,161
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Don't You mean Merry Holiday ? lol

    I would like to know about the 2 Ground Rod requirement also.
  18. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,534
    Location:
    North Carolina
    If it is an artificial tree it had to be constructed.
    It would now depend if the tree is inside or outside. If it is outside then 225 part II comes into play.

    We also have 250.32 that sticks its head into the equation,
    Now everyone knows why I got one of those trees that the Dollar General had on sell for $1

    EDITED TO ADD;
    This is a joke.
    I have received a couple of phone calls from students asking if I was for real.
    Now everybody laugh.
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2011
  19. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,248
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    IMO, it is easier to install the second rod than it is to prove that one rod is providing ample continuity to the soil. You have to do one or the other to satisfy code.
  20. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,534
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Drive two and go home. I used to have a three point tester but I am not smart enough to use it so someone came along that like that meter a lot better than I did so the ownership changed quickly. Yes I made a profit and no longer have to worry if the sheriff is coming by to confiscate it. I bought it second hand.
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