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Ground Rods in Rocky Areas

May 11th Fact-of-the-Day

It is practically impossible to drive a ground rod in some mountainous areas of the western United States and in certain other parts of the world without rock drilling equipment or dynamite. In some areas it is not just a matter of breaking or pushing a few rocks to the side as a ground rod is driven, because there is a thick, solid layer of rock below a thin layer of top soil. Even if a rod was driven by some means, the result would be a 'rock rod' rather than a 'ground rod.' A better alternative is to bury a similar (or preferably longer) length of copper pipe horizontally below the top soil. A ground rod can be buried horizontally instead, but a ground rod costs more than copper pipe, the mechanical strength of a ground rod isn't needed, and the wall thickness of copper pipe is greater than the thickness of copper plating on a ground rod. ©2005 Martek International All rights reserved.

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