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Short in my tank heater


 
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Larry NEIL
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Joined: 20 Aug 2011
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Location: Schaumburg, Illinois

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:24 pm    Post subject: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Think it brought some bad luck my way....not too long ago was a post about water heaters shorting out and electrifing the water. I replied that in 40 years, I never ever had one do that. Mine always just died a slow death.
Well, while doing morning chores a few days ago, I saw that the water was full and assumed that my Grandaughter had filled it the night before.
I kinda forgot about it that night and the next morning it was full again and the horses were all down at the pond pawing the ice. Sure thing, I nuplugged the heater and as they came up I stuck my hand in the water and splashed it around. After the leader stuck her nose in and drank, tey all (6) about drank over half that tank. First one in over 40 years!!!
Larry NEIL (don't thin k I'll ever brag again about "never having that problem)
Larry NEIL
 
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PJH
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I went to check on my neighbor a few weeks ago. He'd just gotten home from knee surgery. When I was walking out to my truck to leave, I noticed his cattle all gathered around the water tank, and I figured it was empty, and that I'd fill it up for him. Wasn't empty, so I went on home. A few days later, his son came over and asked me why his dad's cattle wouldn't drink out of the tank. I told him it had to be electrical leakage, and he looked kinda puzzled. There wasn't any electricity to the tank. No heater, but a foot away was the electric fence - but not touching, and besides - it was a rubbermaid tank. To shorten the story - he moved the tank about ten feet, and all is OK now. I can't explain what was going on, but I still think it somehow had to do with electrical shock. But how?

A few years ago I caught a glimpse of one of my cows reaching for a drink, and she musta had her tongue stuck out a foot, then she kinda jumped when her tongue touched the water. I unplugged the heater, and all was well. Tank is an old bathtub, with an 8' ground rod by it, #6 copper conductor, star washer, stainless steel bolt, and the circuit is fed through a GFI. I thought I had it covered, but I was wrong. Didn't kill anything or anybody. The Lord looks out for us!

I hope this was all of your bad luck for the 2013, Larry.

Paul
 
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JD Seller
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:51 pm    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I had a electric heater short out in the bottom of a gravity hog waterer. It killed ten sows about a week from pigging. I never used electric heaters in the gravity waterers again. I bought propane ones. The Kerosene ones where a real pain to use.
 
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Straw Boss
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 2:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

If its tolerable voltage they may still drink when desperate enough. First clue is they will lap at the water like a dog and not put their nose in.
 
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old
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 3:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

That is why I will not use one. If you ever stick you hand in a tube of water and the heater has shorted out believe me it is not a nice feeling and some people might even get a warm wet feeling if they did it also. Bad enough to have your hand in the tank and bump the electric fence wire that goes across and close to the tank. BTDT and got knocked on my butt. Me I leave the electricity and water apart and never together
 
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fixerupper
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Location: Albert City Iowa

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 5:11 pm    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Animals on hooves can feel a fraction of a volt. I had one heck of a time finding a stray voltage trickle in a new hog water one time. I had it well grounded and the hogs still wouldn't touch it. Finally found out it was coming in through the neutral from the pole across the yard. I never could feel it but the hogs would flinch back when they touched it. Jim
 
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JayinNY
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 7:13 pm    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I was just thinking about that old! I was bending over scrubbing the water tank and hit my head on the hot wire, I saw black for a split second! I can't believe I did that, but never did it again! Lol
 
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Greg K
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 7:14 pm    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Sometimes it is the metal tank with the steel water lines providing a return path to the, for example, water heater in the house that is grounded. In the code book they talk about an Equipotential Plane for bonding. Simply put it means you need to bond the rebar or mesh in the concrete to a ground rod and to anything else that you can. The reason is so if the animal steps from the concrete to the ground and is a better path it can electrocute the animal. Horses are more susceptable since the inside of the hoof is just skin and not all hoof like a cow or pig. You just never know, that electricity can do some strange things sometimes.
 
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Larry NEIL
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Location: Schaumburg, Illinois

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Me too. I bought another of the same brand...at 70, I ain't too worried weather It'll be another 40 years!
 
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Stephen Newell
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:24 am    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Shush. Talk like that and there will be a federal law saying you have to install a 8'copper ground rod to your stock tank.
 
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buickanddeere
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:51 am    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Not a bad idea actually.
 
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buickanddeere
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:57 am    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Another example for the unbelievers who thing the ground and neutral are the same .
Overhead triplex supply lines are a hangover from the bad old days and cause many problems.
Make certain the ground and neutral are isolated anywhere past the 1st power panel or the central metering pole.
At least two 10ft ground rods at every building or sub service .
The ground system if allowed to carry neutral current will raise anything "grounded" above true earth potential.
 
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old
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Location: Lake of the Ozarks area of MO

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:01 am    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Ya funny how water and electricity do not mix well and when you get between the 2 of them then the mix can cause a guy to do odd thing
 
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buickanddeere
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:18 am    Post subject: Re: Short in my tank heater Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Think, not thing. Little bitty keypad and and automatic spell check that I should watch closer.
 
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