A grounding system will protect you and your home from fire and deadly shocks but only if it is wired properly by a professional. You must also utilize grounding wires of the right size. The size has to match your electrical service. The size of a 125A grounding wire is not necessarily the same as the size of 150A or even 200A grounding wires.
What Size Grounding Wire is Required for a 200 Amp Service?
A grounding wire ranging from 2AWG to 8 AWG is recommended for a 200-amp service.
200 Amp Ground Wire Size
- You can use 8AWG (Copper) or 6 AWG (Aluminum) grounding wires for a 200-amp service.
- You can also use copper conductors of 4AWG and aluminum conductors of 2AWG.
- You can also use 6AWG copper wire or 4AWG aluminum wire.
- You can also select 4AWG aluminum wires or 2AWG copper wires.
Things To Consider Before Buying A Grounding Wire
1). Hot & Neutral Wires Have To Be Unifrom
First of all, you have to note that the hot and neutral wires have to be the same gauge because they have to carry the same amount of current. That is to say, the hot wire takes the current to the appliance and the neutral wire brings that current back.
Therefore, it makes sense to use wires of the same size for the hot and neutral.
However, the grounding wire doesn’t have to be the same size as the hot and neutral.
2). Bigger Wires Are Recommended
The grounding wire can be larger than the recommended size. At the end of the day, a larger ground wire cannot harm your electrical system. It will raise your expenses because wires with a higher gauge are more expensive than wires with a smaller gauge. But you can still trust the wire to play its role efficiently and effectively. Smaller wires are tricky.
The smaller the wire, the greater the resistance.
If a grounding wire is too small to hold the current it is transmitting to the grounding rod, it could melt or start a fire.
Therefore, if you have a choice in the matter, try to select the right size for your grounding wire.
A larger wire isn’t dangerous but it is more expensive. A smaller wire is dangerous.
What Kind of Wire Do I Need for A 200-Amp Service?
If you’re trying to buy the best grounding wire for your home’s 200-Amp Service, you have to keep the following in mind:
1). Copper Is the Best Option
When it comes to the material, you have two options to consider, namely:
Of all the available options, copper is the most popular because it has amazing electrical conductivity.
Even with a lower gauge, copper conductors can carry more electricity despite using less insulation. They also have greater resistance to heat and corrosion.
The fact that the stands are thinner means that copper wiring is more malleable.
If copper has greater electrical conductivity and resistance to heat and corrosion, why would anyone use aluminum?
Aluminum is cheaper. It is also flexible, lightweight, and easier to work with, which is why you can install it at a much faster rate.
People with a limited budget tend to flock to aluminum. But if you have the money, copper is the best option.
2). Use Copper-Clad Aluminum Wire
The distance matters because it will affect the type of wire and the gauge. An increase in length typically leads to an increase in resistance. This, in turn, raises the voltage drop.
To compensate for the increase in resistance, you must increase the gauge. The longer the ground wire, the greater the gauge needed. The type of wire matters because aluminum interferes with the flow of electricity over long distances.
You can solve this problem by using copper-clad aluminum. But a copper-clad aluminum wire is more expensive than aluminum. If you have a limited budget, copper-clad aluminum might not be an option.
How Many Wires Do I Need for a 200-Amp Service?
A 200 Amp Service has ground, hot, and neutral wires.
How Do You Ground A 200-Amp Service?
1). Stack Grounding Rod
A grounding rod is exactly what it sounds like. It is a rod that connects the grounding system to the earth. It is normally made from copper, which is a very good conductor of electricity. Most grounding rods are 8 to 10 feet long.
You can stack grounding rods in an area with dry ground to allow them to reach greater depths. Otherwise, your contractor will encourage you to place them in moist soil.
2). Use Grounding Wire To Connect Ground Connection & The Rod
A grounding wire connects the service ground connection and the rod.
If you look at the instructions that Grover Electric has published, it encourages consumers to connect the neutral wire to a larger lug on the neutral buss bar before running a bonding wire between the ground bushing and the ground bar.
You must also run the ground wire from the ground buss to various locations. In most cases, you are discouraged from installing a 200-Amp Service or grounding it on your own.
Leave this task in the hands of a licensed professional. In many places, you need a permit to perform any tasks that involve a 200-Amp Service.
A section in NEC 2008 says that contractors must use 3/0 copper conductors for a 200A feeder.
Can You Run A 200 Amp Sub Panel Off 200 Amp Main?
You can run a 200 amp sub panel off 200 amp main but it is better of using a 400 amp panel because it prevents incessant breaker tripping and burning wires
Can You Overload A 200 Amp Panel?
You can overload a 200A panel. The size of the panel tells you the amount of electricity it can safely handle. A 200A panel can handle as much as 48,000 watts. If you exceed the capacity of the panel, it will overload, damaging the breakers and wires and potentially starting a fire.