New to electricity...

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by LearningElectrician, Aug 24, 2008.

  1. LearningElectrician

    Thread Starter New Member

    Aug 24, 2008
    Hi, i'm new to electricity and...i'm a beginner at best in most things science. I'm trying to learn as much as i can in between going to college and working full time. I read a bit so far and some things make sense intuitively and somethings i'm still have trouble grasping.

    The subject of grounding is a problem for me...I think I need to visualize what is actually happening in the circuitry to understand the concept of ground. I have an beginner's idea of the purpose, but not exactly the nature of the flow.

    I'm going to college and working full time so I know i don't have much time to dedicate to learning electricity in the way I would prefer, but I have a few questions i'll be asking maybe later today regarding electrical grounds. I read a couple threads on grounds so somethings are getting clearer...but I still have many unanswered questions...

    Right now i'm off to the movies with the family so when I get back i'll post a few questions. This post was just to introduce myself and express my goals.
  2. SgtWookie


    Jul 17, 2007
  3. hgmjr

    Retired Moderator

    Jan 28, 2005
    The members of AAC are here to assist you with any question you may have as you pursue your studies of the fascinating subject of Electricity and Electronics.

    You will want to take a look at the material in the AAC ebook at as a way to kick start your journey.

  4. PRS

    Well-Known Member

    Aug 24, 2008
    The power company connects one leg of its supply directly to ground. The other leg they send on a wire. On the user's end one leg of your service entrance is connected to ground and the other is considered hot.

    On a circuit board having its own supply ground is usually the negative terminal. Cars use the same convention today, but in the past some had a positive ground. I once had trouble starting a 47 Dodge truck that had been parked in an orchard years before and neglected -- that is, until the orchardist remembered it had a positive ground! I reconnected the battery and away she went!

    Good luck with electricity! ;)
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2008
  5. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
    Welcome to AAC!

    It might help to consider ground in a superficial scenario:

    Hopefully this part of our e-book should give you some feel for the significance of ground. The forums are always there for any other question or problem you may need assistance with.

  6. subtech

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 21, 2006
    Don't be surprised or discouraged when you get what seems to be conflicting opinions/answers when you ask questions about grounding/bonding/earthing.
    It is truly one of the least understood but most discussed topics in the electrical/electronic world. The key to understanding any topic is of course to ask questions and really listen to the responses, but study reference works for yourself as well. There are tons of good reference sources available to you, and some of the best ones are free! Make wise use of some of your free time and study these works as much as possible. They will help you make the "connection" with what you see on your job. Knowing why you do something is just as important (if not more so) as knowing how to do something. Always think before you act, and if you are not sure about something, ask before you touch.

    Best wishes and welcome.
  7. Electra Guy


    Feb 4, 2008
    One of the most frustrating things that I had to learn in getting my electrical contractors licence is the difference between grounding and grounded. So I know were your coming from, the all about circuits website is one of the best places I've seen to get all your difficult questions answered. By the way Sgt.Wookie's answer is right on target. He hit the bulls-eye;)
  8. PRS

    Well-Known Member

    Aug 24, 2008
    What I said above is the gospel truth.

    The term ground came from the power company's use of using the actual ground to supply power. Send and return is the concept. Stick one of our leads into the ground and send the other over a high wire, then at the recipient's end have them stick their reference into the actual ground and now we have a means of agreeing on the voltage without having to run 2 wires -- send and return -- to the consumer.

    And from that concept, ground became a word to mean "common." Common is a concept of having all voltages relate to that one common volatage which is arbitrarily called ground due to the power companies original terminology.

    I sure don't want to confuse you. If I did, let me know.
  9. ritajones


    Aug 28, 2008
    Just from being here a short while I agree completely. I am also a newbie to the electronics world so this is a great starting point for me as well.
  10. Externet

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 29, 2005