if you look in your panel you will find you have a ground buss bar and a neutral bar. they are two differant entaties
if neutral isnt connected you will still have 110v to ground but not to neutral.
there are times when working on a condenser with 220v we use cheaters and go 110 to ground so we can use our pumps or other power tools. this works but can be unsafe if someone is inside working on other circuts. even with the breaker off on the circut they are working on they can get voltage back fead on neutral
no, you will not get 55 volts if you seperate the ground and the neutral at the main. you bond the neutral to the ground in the main panel to make sure they are both at the same voltage which will be zero. also this allows a crossover point for fault current. for example, suppose a short occurs in the wiring of the house. the current flows though the ground wire and travels back to the panel at this point the current crosses over to the neutal and flows back to the transformer (since there is no ground wire coming from the transformer to the house), and allows the appropriate breaker in the panel to trip.
The neutral is a grounded conductor. Its grounded by the Power Co. before it comes to the house. I've seen many houses with no ground at all and they still have 120v from ungrounded conductor to the neutral.
True, it SHOULD be OK, but I wouldn't trust my life to some unknown power company tech doing things right and nothing (i.e. backhoe) changing it thereafter. FOLLOW THE NATIONAL ELECTRIC CODE AND ALL LOCAL CODES SCRUPULOUSLY!
In reply to the original post, I have seen back feed on that order in 480V systems. It's a bit of a gut grinder to ground the connection to test it. LOTS of sparks with 480V! No sparks, it was back feed. Also, I always follow the example of our Navy veterans and hold one hand behind my back when probing a panel.
Just for kicks, if you didnt ground a nuetral at the box, then it would be..... ? Well it wouldnt be nuetral. And a wire hanging in the breeze would be a potentialy hot wire and if you were to read voltage to ground it would likley show 115 v.
I heard a story one time about a condenser not having a ground on it. The compressor went to ground, which wasnt there. This made the outside casing energized. A boy was playing hide n seek in the backyard & hid behind it, put his hand on it & was electrocuted.
So is this just some BS story that someone made up or would this happen if a condenser wasnt grounded???
Life is like a jar of jalapenos. What you do today might burn your ass tomorrow.