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  1. #1
    Veteran Member tungularafishcamp's Avatar
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    Default Advice on electrical/water underground

    Hi Folks,
    As you all know one thing leads to 10 others. When I had to dig up 50' of my 24volt electical line to find the short in a splice I figured I might as well dig all of it up and bury it again in put inside some free 4" pvc pipe I salvaged. While I have it all dug up I am replacing my water that runs in the same ditch with some 3/4 pex. Question is should I put the pex inside the 4" with the elec. or just bury it on it's own as it might cause condensation in the 4" pvc. My elec. is 1/2"aluminum wire which I got 20 yrs out of before a splice gave way. As I am not a plumber/electrician/ditch digger/builder I would appreciate any input.

    Thanks,
    Rick

  2. #2
    Super Member kenmac's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice on electrical/water underground

    Quote Originally Posted by tungularafishcamp View Post
    Hi Folks,
    Question is should I put the pex inside the 4" with the elec. or just bury it on it's own as it might causeThanks,
    Rick

    Here, were not allowed to run water in the same ditch as electrical.I sure wouldn't put it in the same condiut
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  3. #3
    Elite Member whistlepig's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice on electrical/water underground

    Codes are different for different places. Some will allow electric and water in the same ditch and some won't. I have done the electric and water in the same ditch. The water line was plastic. The wire was aluminum. The conduit was sand. The ditch was a $500.00 back hoe run. It wasn't worth an additional $500.00 to me for an extra ditch to separate the electric from the water line. This worked for the 25 years before we moved.
    I used to do the Hokey Pokey but I turned myself around.

  4. #4
    Gold Member
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    Default Re: Advice on electrical/water underground

    I certainly don't see anything wrong with burying it in the same ditch, but I would not put the water in the conduit with the electric. Good luck.

  5. #5
    Elite Member whistlepig's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice on electrical/water underground

    My father-in-law was a contractor in Ohio and dealt with codes all the time. The city that had the strictest codes of all that he dealt with would allow water and electric in the same ditch. Use your own judgement. Were we live now if a building is to be used for agricultural no permit of any kind is required. I wouldn't hesitate to do the water and electric in the same ditch with sand as the conduit if I had to do it over again.
    I used to do the Hokey Pokey but I turned myself around.

  6. #6
    Veteran Member tungularafishcamp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice on electrical/water underground

    I got 20 years before the splice leaked in the wire and failed, but if it goes another 20 I have to dig it up in my mid 70's so I am hoping to get enuff time I wont have to dig it up. I am putting in an access point at the splice which just happens to be where I am putting in a 3rd greenhouse next summer and will T the water line off there.

    I have the luxury out here of asking what is a code? Truthfully I never even considered digging a seperate ditch for the water, although with having the bh it is not like the old days of hand digging.

    I am leaning towards not putting the pex water line in the conduit with the wire mainly because of condensation, are there other reasons that it might cause a problem that I am not aware of?
    Thanks Guys!
    Rick

  7. #7
    Elite Member whistlepig's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice on electrical/water underground

    If its underground and it rains a lot it is going to get wet. The sand protects the water line and electric line from sharp rocks when the ground heaves. Also, if you ever have to dig it up, you know when you hit sand its time to stop the back hoe and get out the shovel. I think some reason that if the electric wire gets nicked and is in the same ditch as the water line the water line will become hot. Most of the better water lines are made of plastic now.
    I used to do the Hokey Pokey but I turned myself around.

  8. #8
    Gold Member
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    Default Re: Advice on electrical/water underground

    [QUOTE=tungularafishcamp;2510789]I got 20 years before the splice leaked in the wire and failed, but if it goes another 20 I have to dig it up in my mid 70's so I am hoping to get enuff time I wont have to dig it up. I am putting in an access point at the splice which just happens to be where I am putting in a 3rd greenhouse next summer and will T the water line off there.

    I have the luxury out here of asking what is a code? Truthfully I never even considered digging a seperate ditch for the water, although with having the bh it is not like the old days of hand digging.

    I am leaning towards not putting the pex water line in the conduit with the wire mainly because of condensation, are there other reasons that it might cause a problem that I am not aware of?
    Thanks Guys!
    Rick[/QU[ If your pex pipe ever does leak it's gonna fill up your conduit and run water out of both ends, one being your breaker panel in your house or barn, that would not be good.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member tungularafishcamp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice on electrical/water underground

    [QUOTE=Lineman North Florida;2511518]
    Quote Originally Posted by tungularafishcamp View Post
    I got 20 years before the splice leaked in the wire and failed, but if it goes another 20 I have to dig it up in my mid 70's so I am hoping to get enuff time I wont have to dig it up. I am putting in an access point at the splice which just happens to be where I am putting in a 3rd greenhouse next summer and will T the water line off there.

    I have the luxury out here of asking what is a code? Truthfully I never even considered digging a seperate ditch for the water, although with having the bh it is not like the old days of hand digging.

    I am leaning towards not putting the pex water line in the conduit with the wire mainly because of condensation, are there other reasons that it might cause a problem that I am not aware of?
    Thanks Guys!
    Rick[/QU[ If your pex pipe ever does leak it's gonna fill up your conduit and run water out of both ends, one being your breaker panel in your house or barn, that would not be good.
    Now if I could just time the leak for the 4th of July we might have some nice fireworks

    finished the ditch yesterday before the weather hit and put the pex and backfilled enuff to hold the pex down, will put in the pipe and wire whenever it stops raining. Thanks for the advice!

    Rick

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Advice on electrical/water underground

    Sounds like you have got it under control Rick, good luck with the remainder of your project. If you don't mind though I am curious why you went with Pex instead of PVC, I don't know anything about Pex so I was wondering if it had some advantages.

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