Grounding
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Thread: Grounding

  1. #1
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    Grounding

    Hi,

    How do I ground my PC properly/how do I know my PC is properly grounded?
    How can I make sure my PC is properly grounded using a multitester?

    Thanks in advance.

    Peace always,
    <jdenny>
    Always listen to experts. They\'ll tell you what can\'t be done and why. Then go and do it. -- Robert Heinlein
    I\'m basically a very lazy person who likes to get credit for things other people actually do. -- Linus Torvalds


  2. #2
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    Using a multimeter would involve either sticking the leads into an electrical socket or placing them on the end of a live extension cord. DON'T try that at home. Trust me. I know.

    *flashbacks of electrocution pass through my brain giving me the shivers*

    The best way is to buy a good surge bar which has one of those LED's on it that tell you it's not properly grounded. There are a lot of them around. I don't know of anything else to do this. There must be something for it, but considering the fact that you're protecting your computer with it anyway, you might as well splurge and buy a $50 surge bar with all the bells and whistles. Properly grounding your computer isn't worh s**t anyway unless there's a good surge bar there.

    I know those lights work because I plugged my router in a few months ago to an ungrounded extension cord which slowed my connection speed to a crawl. The only way I knew it wasn't grounded was because that light didn't go on.

    Basically, you need to buy a tool from a hardware store to do it, be it a surge bar or something else, or risk electrocuting yourself.

    p.s.
    If you're going to buy a surge bar for that much money, make sure it has a socket for telephone, cable, ethernet, or whatever it is you use for internet. Make sure that absolutely _no_ electrical paths exist into your computer without surge protection.
    Government is like fire - a handy servant, but a dangerous master - George Washington
    Government is not reason, it is not eloquence - it is force. - George Washington.

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  3. #3
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    Thanks Striek, I'll find a good a surge bar for my PC.

    But... - "Properly grounding your computer isn't worh s**t anyway unless there's a good surge bar there" - I always thought that a properly grounded PC doesn't even need a surge bar, since any electrical surge (is that the correct term) will be quickly absorbed by the ground (earth). Well I may be wrong but hey I'm no hardware expert.

    Peace always,
    <jdenny>
    Always listen to experts. They\'ll tell you what can\'t be done and why. Then go and do it. -- Robert Heinlein
    I\'m basically a very lazy person who likes to get credit for things other people actually do. -- Linus Torvalds


  4. #4
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    That might work for a toaster. Your computer is a little more sensitive.

    Grrounding, as far as I know, is in place to prevent a short circuit, or a curcuit with no actual load placed on it. This is generally what causes electrical fires. The ground will carry a current only when the other path (the normal one) has more or less melted, or a least generates a higher resistance than ground due to the heat increase. After that, the ground will then carry the current to the ground, which acts as a load, providing resistance to prevent the wires from heating any further. Until that time, however, the normal path is the path of least resistance and therefore the path which the current will follow. The ground really prevents fires and electrocutions, not surges. If you've ever noticed your lights flicker when you turn on the dryer or the washing machine or during a storm it might make sense. Your lights are grounded just fine, but they're not surge protected. So if your ground gets used, your equipment may be fried, but at least your house isn't.

    By the time your ground becomes effective, your computer is toast.
    Government is like fire - a handy servant, but a dangerous master - George Washington
    Government is not reason, it is not eloquence - it is force. - George Washington.

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  5. #5
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    Testing your grounding is not so difficult or dangerous as expected. If you know the correct wiring of your wallmount points and you know what yiu are doing... - disclaimer: I'm not responsible for toasted multitesters, fingers, young adolescents and other stuff that burns and smells bad - Normaly your ground wire is properly attached and indicated, you should test the ohm value on that wire, it should be as low as possible, this means that electrical conduct is better than the other wires, in this case your grounding will act as a safety guard, if it has a high resistance it will not work. Normally if you test your electricity outlet you should get power between the phase and neutral wire. To reach more stability for high precision stuff like Mark Levinson amplifiers for HiFi music or other very very expensive gear even this neutral / phase thing is important. There exist a lot of sites that explain proper power testing. http://www.metermantesttools.com/how...ec_outlets.pdf

    surge protection: http://www.cgemc.com/Member_Serv/Mai...Protection.htm

  6. #6
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    Oh Yeah.......................around 1100 Aps from someone asking questions like that....and a junior member?


    I would suggest that Jupiter Media Staff respect our intelligences?


    Not enough posts, too many points?


    See you in hell boy

  7. #7
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    Hi, I am advised that you are an OK person, therefore I obviously owe you an apology, I thought you were one of the JUPM people being "slightly less than honest"


    In answer to your question:

    Your computer will die a lot faster than your electrical system. I do not know the Island of Java that well, haven't been there for about 30 years If your electrical supply is unreliable, then your PC is at risk.

    "Grounding" or "Earthing" allows your machine to dissipate certain harmful effects, but not "brownouts" (sudden drop in power) or "surges" (sudden increase). This is why it is important to have key electrical equipment protected by voltage regulators. Typically these are slightly larger than normal multipoint extension leads.

    The basic problem is that "grounding" is for domestic currents, that drive your TV or "toaster", as has already been mentioned. Your PC is much more sensitive. In this country an electric coffee maker would run at 13 amps, a desk light at 5 amps, but I would have a PC running at 3 amps (I am talking the capacity of the fuse in the plug here) To have a PC running with a fuse of 13 amps makes no sense, as the PC would be toasted long before the fuse blew?


    If your electricity supply is very bad, you might consider a small UPS (uninterruptable power supply) and voltage regulator combination. This would let you power down in time? You would need no more than 5 minutes autonomy (the period over which the PC is self-sufficient)

    I hope that this information is of use,

    EDIT: It just came to me that your major priority should be to ensure that your electrical input source (main supply) is properly "grounded" Over here that generally means attaching a clip to one of the (copper) water pipes coming into the house. You may need to screw an earthing "grounding" rod into the soil outside your house. The principle is a bit like a lightning conductor?









    Cheers

  8. #8
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    Hey hey... thanks very much for your help, Striek, VictorKaum, and nihil (and also a senior who get my post balanced out... I've been here more than a year yet I don't post much, and that's the only reason I'm a junior. About the aps... let's never talk about aps anymore...

    Sorry if my question sounds so silly. I just read the other thread about the importance of a power supply in a PC, and thought that some people (me especially) need to be reminded the importance of grounding a PC. (And that leads to discussing the importance of a surge protector, I guess that's the beauty of a forum like this)

    Nihil, you're right. In the island of Java (to those who know Bali, just go west and cross the straits) the electrical supply is not that reliable. That's why very basic electrical things in your place aren't always there in homes, they may exist only in new, modern buildings. And as I said I'm no expert in hardware, and a pure software hacker like me normally doesn't care about those things. As long as I got a shell, I just go and hack around.

    Hope this explains everything.

    Peace always,
    <jdenny>
    Always listen to experts. They\'ll tell you what can\'t be done and why. Then go and do it. -- Robert Heinlein
    I\'m basically a very lazy person who likes to get credit for things other people actually do. -- Linus Torvalds


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