CHARLOTTE -- Galvan Industries, Inc., an industry leader in ground rod manufacturing, is offering immediate delivery on the first galvanized ground rods listed by Underwriter's Laboratories. Galvan has earned UL listing for itıs new Gold Series rods eight feet and longer with nominal diameters of 5/8², 3/4² and 1².

With the UL listing, Galvan Gold Series galvanized rods are in full compliance with NEC and NESC specifications. The rods also meet the ANSI-Approved/NEMA GR-1-2001 specification. Galvan, virtually alone among U.S. rod manufacturers, has pioneered recognition of nationally accepted specifications for galvanized ground rods.

The newly UL-listed Gold Series ground rods offer the same physical characteristics as UL-listed copper-clad rods. Features include A-1035 cold-drawn steel cores for increased tensile strength and hardness, plus total interchangeability with standard threadless couplings. Drive-end chamfer and true conical tips make driving and coupling operations safer and easier.

Galvan Industries has been manufacturing ground rods for more than 40 years. In fact, Galvan is the only US manufacturer that produces both galvanized and copper-clad ground rods completely in-house. The company manufactures 304 and 316 stainless ground rods as well.

Galvan electrical products are used in a wide variety of residential, commercial and industrial applications. These include construction, cable TV, lightning protection, power generation, telecommunications and OEM markets. The company stocks its products at strategic sites around the country to assure prompt deliveries.

For more information on the first UL-listed hot-dip galvanized ground rods, or to place an order, contact Galvan Industries at 1-800-277-5678, Fax (704) 455-5215; e-mail: Online at

Response to Mike Holt’s Questions

Dear Mike, I will provide a brief response following each question to those issues you mentioned (in bold) resulting from the news release sent to you earlier. I do appreciate your asking for technical and not a commercial response, since Galvan offers both types of rods and has no preference (as long as good and sound engineering judgment is used).

Great information, but since galvanized ground rods are not required to be listed, what's the big deal?

In the past there was no specification for UL to test to. Galvan pioneered the specification with UL and received the first UL Listing for a galvanized rod in April of this year. UL has been a standard for copper clad rods and accessories for over 50 years.

  • The purpose for pursuing this standard and listing was to establish a minimum national standard for hot-dip galvanized ground rods. In the past some galvanized ground rods were 7 1/2 feet long, diameters ranging from 0.520 to 0.614 (not 0.625 minimum), steel cores from mesh quality steel which often mushrooms during the driving process, no chamfer (difficult to install the clamp after driving rod due to mushrooming of top end of rod), and often no conical point (sometimes a lancer point which can result in safety issues due to sharp edges).

What technical reasons are there for someone use a UL listed galvanized ground rod as opposed to a non-listed rod?

  • Paragraph 250.52.A.5 of the 2002 issue of the NEC Code states that if a galvanized ground rod is to be used it must 1) be 0.625 inches in diameter minimum and 8 feet long or 2) listed! Since nearly all manufacturers of galvanized ground rods have produced to an old and outdated ANSI C135.30 document, the diameters have been well less than what the code mandates. The UL Listed Galvan rod fully complies with the NEC Code. Further, it simplifies the inspection process as stated by inspectors we have talked to as the UL marking allows them to continue with other parts of the inspection process. Without this listing, the inspector must revert to measuring the various components and assuring that they meet the code.
  • There is much confusion regarding interpretation of the NEC Code from various electrical inspectors from around the country. Issues include reference to ferrous, non-ferrous, diameters which vary in equivalency from inches to mm in the same paragraph, and the like. Galvan submitted a code change to help eliminate confusion, and interpretation in the field, for the next publication.

What is the cost difference between a galvanized rod versus a copper rod (please don't give me inflated numbers)?

  • The copper rod is approximately 60% more expensive than a similar galvanized ground rod. The major difference is the application of the coating process. Stainless-steel ground rod prices are approximately 750% more expensive that a similar copper-clad rod.

You say your rods are in full compliance, but since galvanized ground rods are not required to be listed, what compliance are you referring to? Is this comment a little misleading?

  • Not misleading at all. We have strived through the NEMA organization to establish a specification that could be used as a manufacturing document as well as by an end-user who may not have much knowledge with these products. Prior to this there were many varieties of galvanized ground rods including electroplating and hot-dip. Our goal was to clean this up, simplify it for the inspector and user, and as leaders in the grounding market take leadership to develop a common specification good for everyone. The result is a rod meeting the strictest interpretation of the NEC Code.

What does "The newly UL-listed Gold Series ground rods offer the same physical characteristics as UL-listed copper-clad rods." mean?

  • The steel core in the 5/8 inch diameter copper-clad rod is the same as that used in the 5/8 inch diameter hot-dip galvanized ground rod. The copper rod has been used successfully for 50 years and was the basis for using this in the UL Listed galvanized rod. The only difference is the method of corrosion protection.

How is this possible if one is copper and one is galvanized?

  • Again, the steel core is the common element. The sole difference is the plating, which is applied solely to offer extended service life. The NEC Code implies that the galvanized rod is “ferrous” and the copper-clad rod is “non-ferrous” for some reason, unknown to many members on panel 5 I posed this very question to.

Help me learn something new so I can inform the industry. Please only respond by providing me with the technical issues, not marketing comments.

  • Galvan could not agree more with you with a focus on technical issues. For this reason we are promoting the technical and/or engineering benefits for each rod. There is more to service life than simply plating. One must investigate the soil conditions, what is in the ground adjacent to this electrode, and other important conditions, which vary depending upon where in the United States, or other, the unit is installed. You may want to access our web site and review the “white papers” offering more information.

Mike, we have other information which will be sent to your attention under separate cover. Should you have any questions or comments we will be pleased to discuss them with you at your convenience.


Roger J. Montambo, VP,

Electrical Products Division

Mike Holt’s Comment: If you have any questions on this product, please forward them to Roger Montambo.

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