|It does not take long for problems to occur, and then lengthy attempts at
repairs will need to be made. Thus, it is wise to begin your installation with
the energizer and the ground system. Do not cut corners, but instead follow all
the manufacturer’s recommendations! For example, the manufacturer may specify
that proper grounding will require three eight-foot ground rods which ought to
be copper-coated for maximum efficiency. They will need to be about ˝ inch thick
and should be placed about 10 feet apart from one another. If you are working
with rocky soil that prevents you from adequately installing such rods, you may
also bury a copper-coated pipe which should be more than 20 feet in length. Make
sure to bury it as deep as possible. Once you have your rod system in place, you
will want to connect it with galvanized wire – you may also use insulated cable
– with a ground-rod clamp. If, as was noted in the example, you just wrap the
wire around the rod, you will end up with a faulty connection.
If you fail to follow this advice, you will most likely end up with an electric
fence that does not adequately permit for the completion of the voltage circuit.
The energizer is supposed to compact the electric current to provide a
high-voltage pulse that will be felt by a horse that touches the wire fence. As
the electricity travels through the horse, it will eventually reach the ground,
where the ground rod wire will lead it back to the energizer. Thus, the animal
feels a slight shock. Yet if the ground system is inadequately installed, the
horse will feel a negligible shock or none at all.
A few words of warning should also be followed:
- Do not try to save time by grounding your fence with water pipes or utility
ground rods since this may permit voltage to enter your household water system.
Additionally, if you install your grounding too close to a utility ground rod,
you may put yourself at risk for lighting damage.
- The drier the climate in which you are living, the more ground rods you will
As you can see, electric fencing will be a good option for the horse owner who
follows the recommendations of the manufacturer and who ensures that the fence
will be properly installed from the get-go. Additionally, keep your and the
horses’ safety in mind, and frequently check that the fence is in good working
order with a voltmeter that is designed for use with electric fences.