5 things you should know about wires and cables
Wires and cables are the basic unit of every electrical system that enable smooth transfer and supply of electricity. Additionally, wires and cables play a major role in ensuring the safety of your home and offices from accidents caused by electrical system failure. Since choosing the right wiring system can ensure your safety and peace of mind, here are 5 things you should know about wires and cables:
- Conducting material
- Current capacity
- Armour on the wire
- Quality, durability and performance
You will find two types of conducting material used in wires—copper and aluminium. Since copper is a highly conductive element, it is better suited for conducting electricity. Electrolytic grade copper is very ductile and has low resistance, which provides 100 percent conductivity. Aluminium, on the other hand, has 61 percent of copper’s conductivity, weighs only 30 percent of copper and is much more economical. Since such features make it easier to spread across, aluminium is widely used in manufacturing electrical wires. However, aluminium has a higher resistance and lower conductivity which makes it an unsuitable material for high quality wires. So even though aluminium is cheaper and lighter, it is not the ideal conducting material and can compromise on the safety of your electrical unit. Be sure to buy wires that use pure solid electrolytic grade copper only.
Current capacity of a wire is the amount of load that a conductor can carry in amperage before melting either the conductor or the insulation. The heat caused by the electrical current flowing through the conductor determines the amount of current that a wire can carry. One of the most common misconception is that the current capacity of the wire is stable at all times. But the current capacity differs depending on factors like depth of cable placement, ground and air temperature, etc. Keeping this in mind, choose a power cable/wire that can withstand extreme conditions and function optimally.
The amour used on the wire is the protective shield that defends the wire or cable from any physical damage. Generally, the armour is made of steel wires or tapes that ensure the cable is strong and durable. Although the armour is meant for protection of the wire, it does not protect the cable from water. Therefore, it is crucial that armoured cables are not exposed to water as they may cause physical strain and damage to the actual wire/cable. Wires with the protective armour ensure the safety and longevity of the wire by reducing the need for frequent maintenance.
Wires and cables are insulated with electrical insulators that are made of non-conducting materials. These insulators that act as a buffer between the cable and anything that comes in contact with it, ensuring utmost safety. Since humans are good conductors of electricity, the insulation prevents any accidents during installation. There are a wide range of insulation materials like rubber and plastic but a good wire should use flame retardant grade PVC (poly vinyl chloride). A wire with good insulation can help avert electrical hazards caused by voltage fluctuations and short circuits.
Wires and cables, once installed, should be resistant to physical damage, liquids, extreme weather and naturally occurring ozone in the atmosphere. Flexible conductor wires manufactured using high quality insulators are highly convenient and electrician friendly. The quality and performance of the wires and cables also depend on the brand and resellers selling them. There are many brands that manufacture wires and cables but only a handful that meet the required standards. Therefore it is crucial that you buy your wires and cables from genuine and recognised manufactures who prioritise on quality and safety.
At Goldmedal, we take pride in manufacturing some of the very best wires and cables in the country. We continuously evaluate our processes and facilities to make sure that you never have to compromise on the quality of wires and cables you use. Check out the wide range of wires and cables we offer at https://www.goldmedalindia.com/wiresandcables/