What Happens If a Pool is Not Grounded?

Are you thinking about building a pool and wondering what will happen if it is not grounded? Let us talk about the importance of bonding and grounding the electrical system of your pool. To help you get started, we will discuss the difference between bonding and grounding, and also look at how they work together to provide safety for your pool’s electrical system. Let us discuss more this topic below.

What happens if a pool is not grounded? If the pool is not grounded, there is a high risk of electrocution since those who are swimming in the pool or the pool equipment may become the conductor. Furthermore, since the electrical system is not bounded, dangerous electrical current can move toward people, equipment, or pets instead of moving away and to the earth. Grounding is vital because it connects the electrical network of the pool to the electrical panel and then to the earth in order to direct and dissipate excess electricity.

As a pool owner, you need to take extra precautions and follow the necessary guidelines when building a pool. See to it that the pool equipment is properly grounded and bonded to keep everyone safe. A lot of people are curious about binding and grounding when it comes to pool construction. In this article, we will discuss the basics of bonding and grounding as well as the different reasons why it is essential to properly bond and ground your pool.

Does a Pool Need to Be Grounded?

A pool needs to be grounded. Grounded is necessary to direct and dissipate harmful electrical current to the ground so that it stays away from pool equipment, people, and pets. Furthermore, grounding connects the electrical network of the pool to the electrical panel and then to the earth. This effectively directs and dissipates excess electricity and prevents electrocution.

How Do I Know if My Pool is Grounded?

To check if your pool is properly grounded, there should be an equipment-grounding conductor installed with the feeder conductors. It should be located between the grounding terminal of the pool equipment panel board and the grounding terminal of the applicable service equipment. Furthermore, all electrical equipment that is associated with the circulation system, all electrical equipment located within five feet of the inside wall of the pool water, and panelboards that supply electricity to the equipment that is associated with the pools should be properly grounded. When doing a visual inspection, make sure not to touch or open anything that does not need to be opened.

Swimming Pool Bonding and Grounding

It is important that a pool is properly bonded and grounded. These are vital electrical safety tasks that all pool owners should do.  Take note that if a pool does not have bonding and grounding, there is the risk of electric shock when using the pool or other equipment. Your pool also needs electricity to function and the equipment that is used in cleaning and operating the pool needs the power to operate.

Electrical safety is essential especially if water is involved. This is why bonding and grounding are necessary when having a pool. While the terms bonding and grounding are usually used together, the two have different processes.

What is Bonding?

Bonding refers to the process of reducing the possibility of electrical shock by connecting all of the metal parts of a swimming pool with the use of a copper wire. The pool walls, rails and posts, filtration system, the water pump, and any other metal parts like ladders should be bonded properly. By connecting all of these parts together with the use of a copper wire, it creates a bonding grid. Having a bonding grid is required to stop the flow of electricity that is the result of different voltage potentials. Bear in mind that when there is a differential in voltage, electrical current can flow and lead to electrical shock. To avoid this from happening, the copper wire equalizes any voltage differential and effectively prevents the flow of electrical current.

✅ Video – Pool Bonding 101: Why Handrails, Coping, and Water Could Shock You

River Pools shared the video below on YouTube about pool bonding. In the video, the different reasons why coping, handrails, and water could shock you are discussed. The importance of pool binding is also explained. Watch the video for more information.

What is Grounding?

Grounding is necessary to direct the flow of electrical current to the earth rather than through the users of the pool. This can be done with the use of a GFCI or a ground fault circuit interrupter breaker. The breaker will monitor the electrical current and will shut down once it detects a fault in the current. An electrical fault happens when there is an abnormal electrical current. When it comes to swimming pools, an electrical current that is higher than normal can lead to dangerous situations for swimmers. By grounding your pool, you can rest assured that swimmers are safe from being shocked or electrocuted in case there is a fault in the electrical system.

What Parts of the Pool Need to be Grounded?

Many parts and components of the pool should be grounded which includes all electrical equipment that is associated with the circulation system of the pool. Aside from that, all electrical equipment that is located within five feet of the inside wall of the pool water should also be properly grounded.

How Does Bonding and Grounding Works?

Bonding and grounding work to prevent electrical shocks or electrocution while swimming. By grounding your pool, it will effectively shut down the electrical equipment in case there is a fault in the electrical system. Moreover, having a bonding grid will equalize the voltage differential between the different metal components of the pool. As a result, it will prevent electrical shocks from happening. You can also check out this article that talks about how to test pool water for electricity. Read the article for helpful tips and information on how to detect electricity in pool water.

Does an Above Ground Pool Need to Grounded?

It is important to ground your above-ground pool to prevent accidentally getting electrocuted or getting injured from electric shocks. Bear in mind that you need to create a field around your pool by connected its different parts together. This is necessary to prevent those who are swimming in the pool from being electrocuted.

Common Grounding and Bonding Mistakes

A common mistake when it comes to grounding and bounding a pool is not knowing the difference between the grounding and bonding wires. Make sure that you know the difference when constructing a pool so that you can ensure the safety and durability of the equipment. Another common mistake is not properly grounding and bonding the pool. See to it that anything that contains metal within five feet of the pool water should be bonded. On the other hand, all metallic equipment that is associated with the pool needs to be grounded.

It is also a common mistake to ground and bond to the earth. Bear in mind that sticking a ground rod into the earth and hooking the ground wire to it is wrong. When you do this technique, it will still allow faulty equipment to remain energized. Do not use the earth as part of the bonding conductor because this does not bond everything together. Another common mistake is using the wrong connectors and wires. When it comes to hooking up the bonding and grounding wires, the best connection should be done so that the current has a clear path to move through.

What Parts of a Swimming Pool Must be Bonded?

It is vital that all fixed metal parts of the pool must be bonded. These parts include metal-sheathed cables and raceways, metal piping and awnings, metal fences and doors, and metal window frames. It is also important to bond to the conductive pool shells. We have also shared this article titled; can a pool light electrocute you? Check out the article for more information about the topic.

Can I Bond and Ground My Own Pool?

Bonding and grounding your pool is okay as longs as you know what you are doing. Take note that both bonding and grounding need to be done properly and thoroughly for it to work effectively. Otherwise, there is still the danger of electrocution. If you are not familiar with the task or do not have enough knowledge or skills about binding and grounding, it is best to hire the services of a professional to do the task for you.

Take note that any work that concerns electricity is dangerous, especially around pools. If you do not have experience working with electricity, you will only put your life at risk. Aside from that, there is the possibility that you will not do the work properly, which can put the lives of those who are swimming in your pool at risk as well.

Furthermore, most jurisdictions require that bonding and grounding should only be done by a licensed electrician. Doing the task by yourself without a license can result in a code violation and you will only end up redoing everything according to local and national electrical code. Having an experienced electrician do the task is a lot cheaper and also easier since you can guarantee that they are doing the right job. We have also written this article titled, can you see electricity in water? Check out the article for an in-depth discussion about the topic.


You have reached the end of this article that discusses what happens if a pool is not grounded. We have discussed the dangers and risks of a pool that is not bonded and grounded. If you want to make sure your pool is safe from electric shocks and electrocution, make sure that it is properly bonded and grounded by a licensed and experienced electrician. Thank you for reading!

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