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Old 10-02-2012, 07:45 PM   #101
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I'll have a look at the breaker box and see if i see copper wires going anywhere.

Also just tested my meter on my laptop charger (says output 18.5V) and my meter reads about 48.. so yeah think it's the meter.
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:12 AM   #102
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Well that meter was good. I bought another meter, this one a little bit more expensive and auto ranging.

Reads 16.02 volts.

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Old 10-03-2012, 08:35 AM   #103
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What are you landing your return on? You need to land it on a good ground that is tied to earth ground. From the picture it looks like a screw sitting on the floor.
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Old 10-03-2012, 06:18 PM   #104
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It is. But it reads the same if I stick it on my thumb or in the grounding prong of an outlet.
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Old 10-03-2012, 06:57 PM   #105
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Actually if I put it in the grounding hole it reads all kinds of different numbers depending on how i angle the lead.
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:14 PM   #106
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Try the screw that holds the cover plate on, it is grounded to the outlet and might be easier to get a good contact. Sounds like there might be a bit of voltage, but almost no current.
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:26 PM   #107
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I finally brought my Extech meter home. Put it on AC volts, autoranging. Showed 0.07 volts unhooked to anything. Grounded the black probe to the wall outlet ground and touched the red lead to the water at several different places, sump, skimmer, frag tanks, etc. Got a constant reading of 34 volts AC. That surprises me a bit. No tingling from touching the water on a concrete floor with wet bare feet, so there must be almost zero current. I am wondering now if a ground probe wouldn't be a good idea to bleed off this small charge I am seeing.
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:39 PM   #108
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Found this:

Stray voltage is an induced voltage caused by a spinning magnet (impeller for example) that is submerged in saltwater. To put it simply, a submerged pump with a spinning impeller acts as a small generator. Stray (induced) voltage has low to no current behind it and is easily handled by a ground probe. Many pumps with two prong plugs will cause stray voltage due to the lack of a grounding shield like the 3 prong pumps have.

Leaking or shorting voltage is caused by a failing item like a heater or pump. This voltage has A/C current that is being supplied by the wall socket. This type of voltage is dangerous and cannot be fixed by a ground probe. In this case, a ground probe completes the circuit and causes a bigger problem.



And this:


http://angel-strike.com/aquarium/GroundingProbes.html

It seems that there is little current involved and most of the voltage is induced by the pump impeller actions and from any two wire immersed devices you might have.
But it also seems to me a probe isn't a bad idea, as a GFCI will detect and trip any significant current, the probe will keep the seawater at the same ground potential (voltage) as the house wiring has. But in the end, no one thinks even my 34 volts is a big deal on all the posts I have studied so far.
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:49 PM   #109
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Oh, wow. So you read 34VAC.

What you're saying is this is voltage with low current potential? I definitely do not feel any tingling anymore after taking out the one heater that was reading almost 10V by itself.

What are you going to do about your 34v?
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:08 PM   #110
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I think I read the same post as you just now. This guy sounds like he knows what he's talking about.

This guy says that stray voltage is expected from magnetic pumps, but a failing piece of equipment would leak stray current, measured in amps.

I'm about to check for amps and if I have no reading I'm going to get a ground probe for my 20V induced stray voltage.
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