ABOUT BENTONITE
The recommended backfill for IONIC ELECTRODE ground rods is Bentonite.

Bentonite is an earth clay natural formed by volcanic action; it is composed of the Mineral montmorillontite, a hydrous aluminum silicate.

Bentonite has all the qualities of the ideal back fill for ground rods. It is easy to prepare, non corrosive, and highly conductive. When mixed with water it will absorb up to 13x its dry volume and it becomes a thick paste. This consistency will stick to anything that it contacts, and. This helps hold the Ground Rod in place and physically insulates it from the surrounding dirt.

In any and all environments bentonite absorbs whatever moisture is present into its structure and it will maintain its consistency. In direct sunlight the top few inches will become hard and seal itself off, but the rest of the bentonite stays moist and conductive.

Bentonite has a resistivity of 2.5 ohms-M at 300% moisture. This low resistance is a result of the electrolyte formed when water is added. The water held in the bentonite clay allows the minerals in the clay (soda, potash, lime, magnesia and other material salts) to ionize. The result is a strong electrolyte with a pH as high as 10.

One 50 lb. bag of Bentonite yields approximately enough backfill for one 15' ground rod on a 6" diameter hole.

INSTALLATION OF A VERTICAL GROUND ROD
SITE SELECTION

Rod may be installed indoors or outdoors.

Rod needs to be situated to allow breather holes at the top of the rod to remain clear to the surrounding atmosphere.

Rod should be located as near to the isolation transformer as possible.

Rod should have a minimum of 5' clear space around it.

Do not locate ground rod near watershed where flooding could occur.

SITE PREPARATION

Clear area to be drilled, and designate area for waste.

Auger a 6" hole into the earth 6" longer than the length of the rod to be installed.

The top 10" of the shaft must be 12" wide to accommodate the rod safety cover.

GROUND ROD PREPARATION

Unpack and inventory ground rod parts and dispose of any waste.

Remove rod protective covers.

Clean threads on rods and coupler.

Spray threads with WD-40 type of lubricant, and then assemble rods.

SYSTEM INSTALLATION

Prepare the bentonite soil conditioner.

Mix 4.5 parts water to one part bentonite. ( 14 gallons for a 50 lb bag)

Cover bottom of trench with bentonite slurry the consistency of pancake batter.

Lower rod into trench and center.

Fill shaft with BENTONITE slurry the consistency of pancake batter.

Fill to within 6" of the top of the rod.

INSTALLATION OF A HORIZONTAL GROUND ROD
SITE SELECTION

Rod may be installed indoors or outdoors

Rod needs to be situated to allow breather holes at the top of the rod to remain clear to the surrounding atmosphere.

Rod should be located as near to the Isolation transformer as possible.

Rod should have a minimum of 5' clear space around it.

Do Not locate Ground Rod near watershed were flooding could occur.

SITE PREPARATION

Dig trench into earth 3' deep and 12" wide at bottom, designate area for storage dirt.

Trench should have slight slope (2" over 5') away from head of ground rod.

The top 10" of the shaft must be 12" wide to accommodate the rod safety cover.

GROUND ROD PREPARATION

Unpack and inventory ground rod parts.

Remove rod protective covers.

Clean threads on rods and coupler.

Spray threads with WD-40 type of lubricant, and then assemble rods.

SYSTEM INSTALLATION

Prepare the BENTONITE soil conditioner.

Mix 4.5 parts water to one part BENTONITE. ( 14 gallons for a 50lb bag)

Cover Bottom of trench with BENTONITE slurry the consistency of pancake batter.

Lower rod into trench and center.

Cover ground rod with the remaining BENTONITE

Backfill trench with original dirt leaving rods vertical shaft exposed.

Fill BENTONITE in around vertical shaft to within 6" of the top of the rod.

4/20/12