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What are electrical wires?

Electrical Wires are single electrical conductors, while cables are multiple conductors that have been encased in the sheathing.

Most wires are made of copper or aluminum, but they can also be made of steel. They may be bare or insulated, and they're typically covered in a thin layer of PVC. If they have a PVC sheath, then the PVC is colored to indicate whether the wire is a neutral, ground, or hot wire in your electrical installation. We discuss wire colors in their own section in this guide.

Cables contain at least a neutral wire, ground wire, and hot wire that are twisted or bonded together. Depending on its purpose, the cable may contain more wires. The wires in a cable are insulated in their own color-coded layer of PVC. The group of wires is then encased in an outer sheath to make up the single cable!

How to Identify Wires and Cables?

There are a few different ways to identify your wires and cables. The most common way is to look for the letters printed on the jacket of the wire or cable.

Each jacket will have information printed on it to help you choose the correct product for your job. A letter code provides the attributes of the wire, along with material, gauge, and voltage rating.

A common system used by the National Electrical Code is THHN, XHHW, THW etc…

THHN is the most commonly used type of wire in conduit and cable trays for services, feeders, and branch circuits in commercial or industrial applications. Below is some common lettering for residential wiring:

T: Thermoplastic insulation

H: Heat resistance

HH: High heat resistance (up to 194 degrees Fahrenheit)

W: Suitable for wet locations

Electrical Wire Color Coding

Color coding is an industry standard for identifying a wire's purpose. It can be used to help the next electrician coming to a job site and advanced DIYers who plan to do some electrical work on their own.

Black: Hotwire for switches or outlets

Red: Hotwire for switch legs and connecting to hardwired smoke detectors

Blue and Yellow: Hot wires pulled through conduit; blue is often used for three- or four-way switch applications, and yellow is for switch legs to control fans, lights, etc.

White: Neutral (can be hot if marked with black or red to indicate it's no longer a neutral)

Green and Bare Copper: Only for grounding purposes

What is the red wire in electrical?

Have you ever wondered what the red wire in your home's electrical system is for? You're not alone. Here's the scoop on what red wires are and how to use them safely.

Red wires are usually used as secondary hot wires. These wires carry a current when a device is switched on, but they do not carry a current when the device is switched off. This means that you can always tell whether or not there's power running through a red wire by testing it with a tester—if there's power flowing through the wire, it'll light up.

Red wires are also hot and should be clearly marked to avoid the dangers of electrocution. Red wires are commonly used when installing ceiling fans, where the light switch may be hidden above or behind them.

Wire Sizing

Choosing the right wire size is very important. It affects the safety of your electrical system, so you want to make sure you get it right.

In most cases, wire size is determined by two things: the current-carrying capacity of the wire (how much amperage it can handle) and what it will be used for.

When choosing a wire size, you'll need to know its AWG number, which is based on its diameter in thousandths of an inch (see table below). For example, if you're installing a new circuit for a home theater system, you'll want to choose a larger gauge wire that can handle higher amperages than if you were installing lights in your garage.

Where to buy electrical wire?

Selling your electrical wire and copper wire surplus can be a big help if you’re looking for some extra cash. It’s also an easy way to get rid of the old, broken, or out-of-date wire that you no longer need.

At International Recovery, we buy all types of electrical wire and copper wire—and we pay cash on the spot before we even leave your site! We make it simple to sell your wire surplus and turn it into cash that you can then apply to other areas of your business.

We Buy Electrical Wire And Copper Wire. Sell us your electrical surplus to get top dollar for your unneeded equipment.

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Helem Incogna

Helem Incogna

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