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Old 06-25-2018, 11:52 AM
digits10 digits10 is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 32
Test #1

I finally got around to hooking up my setup. I have ~30 ground rods connected per Clarence's advice. The tests I just ran are based on the design he shows in this image.

I put the kill-a-watt meter on the A/C input side, and my amp meter on the ground wire. I had a 300 watt A/C load on the output. When running the load, the KAW never changed - it stayed at like 3 watts, while the ground line amp meter showed 3-4 amps. HOWEVER, when I moved the amp meter to the incoming A/C line, it showed the same 3-4 amps. I also disconnected the toroid to see if there was any difference. With this layout in the attached photo, there was no change if it was connected or disconnected.

Also, I used a power backup (120v APC UPS) to see what would happen if I connected the setup to it as the power source (off-grid). I got the same behavior. HOWEVER, the 3-4 amp still showed on the ground line, even when only on the power backup. I'm no expect, but I would have assumed that it would need to loop back to the APC unit. One flaw in my test is that I was using a surge strip to turn on/off power to the APC unit. I should have physically disconnected since the building ground would have still been connected.

Regardless, this setup does fool the KAW (not sure why), but an amp meter shows current flowing through the same A/C source line. Basically utility hot to physical ground and the KAW can't see it.

I don't think this is the same result as Clarence since at least in my understanding, such a setup would still trip a breaker if amperage is exceeded.
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