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The Difference Between Grounding and Bonding in a Pool

Cleaning and maintaining your pool comes part and parcel to being a pool owner. Certainly, the importance of pool cleaning in Duluth isn’t news to most people. As you know, if left unattended, pools can become contaminated and difficult to clean or upkeep. Regular care and attention are key. While people already know about pH balance and chlorine, they’re often less familiar with grounding and bonding.

Pool safety is a must. Everyone knows to keep electrical equipment away from water, but do you know how bonding and grounding help? They’re both needed if you want to prevent a nasty shock, or even death. Pool safety isn’t truly complete without bonding and grounding.


For a swimming pool, bonding is also known as equipotential bonding. The short description of this is fairly straightforward. Ideally, the pool water and everything around the pool needs to be at the same potential or voltage. This prevents an electrical current from traveling and possibly harming people.

If the difference is under 4 volts, anyone swimming in the pool will feel a slight tingle. This tingle might be somewhat uncomfortable or worrisome, but it shouldn’t cause any serious harm. In terms of health, the swimmer will normally be fine. You’ll feel a more noticeable or severe shock if the difference is more than 4 volts. This may scare you or make you jump. Your hair could get a bit fuzzy, but there still shouldn’t be any severe harm to your health if it’s only slightly above 4 volts. There’s no mortal danger, yet.

However, greater differences could lead to serious health concerns, and even death in some cases. The elderly, children, or people with certain health conditions are at greater risk. Proper bonding prevents this. For bonding, anything metal in or around the pool must be connected with a #8 wire. The wire itself leads back to a common ground. The National Electric Code applies here. The code requires that anything made of metal in, around, or within 5 feet of the pool must be properly bonded. This  is a safety precaution, and it literally saves lives.


Grounding helps prevent accidents. For a swimming pool, grounding is achieved by running a grounding wire from the pool’s motor back to the home’s breaker panel. Other equipment should be grounded as well. Instead of shocking someone, the electrical current runs back to the breaker panel and trips a breaker. The grounding wire serves as the conductor. This is a well-established practice that’s has proven to be effective for many years.


Pool safety is something that everyone ought to take seriously. You already know not to run near the pool or dive in from the edge. Electrical safety is also important. While accidents or rare, they can be harmful or even fatal. Fortunately, they’re also preventable if you take proper safety precautions.


From a legal perspective, proper grounding and bonding can help protect you from legal issues. If an accident were to happen, you could argue that you took all appropriate safety measures. If you are found to be at fault because you didn’t have safety precautions in place, you could certainly be held liable and face serious legal action.

While pool cleaning services in Duluth are certainly helpful and necessary, they don’t satisfy every need. Contact the experienced professionals at Sunrise Pool Services to learn more about pool safety and what you can do to protect yourself, your family, and your guests.

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Sunrise Pool Services is a company offering a wide range of pool services. From pool cleaning to pool renovation, our expert staff of pool professionals can do it all. To get started or to learn more, get in touch with us today.