How Well Does aluminum work as a ground? - Team Camaro Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical.

 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 10th, 03, 01:29 PM Thread Starter
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I am in the process of mounting a electrical fan and thermostat switch. The instructions say to mount the thermostat into the heads for it to turn on the fan at the correct temp.. This is also where the switch apparently gets grounded. I got to thinking, I have aluminum heads so I am wondering how well the thermostat will be grounded (or if it will). I have never used aluminum as a ground.
Thanks!
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 10th, 03, 02:53 PM
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Solid alum wire was used to wire houses at one time. It's a good conductor for your useage...

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 10th, 03, 03:10 PM
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I could be wrong but I think Aluminum is actually a better conductor than Copper. The reason you don't see aluminum wire that much is due to corrosion problems which resulted in house fires. I wouldn't worry about the corrosion problem - I won't cause a fire. But if you are concerned about bad connections over time, dope the connection with some dialectric grease. I purchased a big fat tube of the stuff at my local auto parts store for about 3 bucks. Excellent stuff for automotive electrical systems. I pack connectors with it and everything.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 10th, 03, 09:45 PM
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actually, as far as conductivity, it goes silver(9.6), copper(10.4), gold(14), aluminum(17), as measured in ohms per mil foot of wire.
as dnult said, aluminum was discontinued in branch circuit wiring in houses (service drops and ranges still use it) because of corosion issues, when combined with copper wire or terminals. it also has a tendancy to heat cycle and loosen at terminations, causing high resistance and fires. it's still used a lot, especially for large conductors in residences, simply because its cheaper. i hate the stuff, other than it's easy to work with because its light and bends easily. most of the comercial industrial applications i work in spec copper wire only, and i prefer it for reliability and durabilty.
basically, you are good to go, plenty conductive for your application, but i do reccomend doping it with some type of anti sieze, which is wise with any dissimilar metals connection. sorry to get off on a tangent, BTW [img]graemlins/clonk.gif[/img] [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 03, 06:01 AM
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I have my thermosensor threaded in the aluminum manifold, it works perfect. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 03, 07:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by 68rs406:
actually, as far as conductivity, it goes silver(9.6), copper(10.4), gold(14), aluminum(17), as measured in ohms per mil foot of wire.
as dnult said, aluminum was discontinued in branch circuit wiring in houses (service drops and ranges still use it) because of corosion issues, when combined with copper wire or terminals. it also has a tendancy to heat cycle and loosen at terminations, causing high resistance and fires. it's still used a lot, especially for large conductors in residences, simply because its cheaper. i hate the stuff, other than it's easy to work with because its light and bends easily. most of the comercial industrial applications i work in spec copper wire only, and i prefer it for reliability and durabilty.
basically, you are good to go, plenty conductive for your application, but i do reccomend doping it with some type of anti sieze, which is wise with any dissimilar metals connection. sorry to get off on a tangent, BTW [img]graemlins/clonk.gif[/img] [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
I agree. Aluminum wiring in houses is just dangeous. It just compresses when tightened against something. If you have it in the walls, hire someone and have the connections properly fixed. It will start acting up.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 03, 08:21 AM
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I used to work in an old high-rise many years ago with old aluminum wire used as the main electrical feeder... every year we would have to shutdown the building (only 26 stories) and retighten the lugs to the copper buss feeding the floors, What a PITA, and each year we would find a few loose...As stated before stay away from aluminum wire in homes... [img]graemlins/sad.gif[/img]

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 11th, 03, 04:07 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys!! [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
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