Aluminum & Copper wiring


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Old 11-29-03, 07:52 PM
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Aluminum & Copper wiring

Ok, doing some light electrical upgrading (sockets & switches) and noticed a mix of Aluminum & Copper wiring in the house. The house was originally wired with Aluminum wiring.
I have a few questions regarding mixing the two. Here's what i've found so far. I see either the aluminum wiring going directly to the outlets/switches themselves OR i see the aluminum wire "wirenutted" to the copper wire which in turn goes to the outlets/switches. In this configuration, there is this greasy substanced used on the wirenut connection where the aluminum meets the copper.
From my basic knowledge of electrical, i surmise if you hook aluminum directly to an outlet/switch, the device should be rated for aluminum. Also, can typical wirenuts be safely used to pigtail aluminum with copper?
 
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Old 11-29-03, 09:57 PM
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You need special wire nuts rated for copper to aluminum connections. You may not use ordinary wire nuts.
 
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Old 11-30-03, 04:49 AM
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TwisterŽ Al/Cu Wire Connector
About a third of the way down on the web site below.
http://www.idealindustries.com/wt/Tw...Connectors.nsf


Also read this article
http://www.homewiringandmore.com/aluminum/index.html
 

Last edited by HandyRon; 11-30-03 at 05:55 AM.
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Old 12-01-03, 05:51 PM
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Thanks alot for your help fellas. I'll be getting those "Purple" connectors to properly pig-tail the wires.
 
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Old 12-01-03, 10:49 PM
noxx
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For what the rotters cost you may as well yank out the aluminum wire. Which of course is a fine idea anyhoo.
 
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Old 12-03-03, 02:23 PM
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Is it ok to use regular wire nuts and the noalox (sp?) gel compound?
 
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Old 12-03-03, 03:17 PM
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Originally posted by clintmo10
Is it ok to use regular wire nuts and the noalox (sp?) gel compound?
From what the guys said here and from what i've read, no, it's not ok to use regular wirenuts with the compound when dealing with aluminum wire. The problem is the wires get loose over time and may heat up. Also, you really can't twist aluminum wire like you would copper. It's too brittle and may break.
 
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Old 12-03-03, 06:48 PM
brickeyee
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Look here:
http://www.inspect-ny.com/aluminum/pl2p12.htm

The COPALUM connection method is AMP proprietary and you cannot easily get access.

The IDEAL wire nuts are listed for copper to aluminum only.
If you have a receptacle in the box that is CO/AL rated, you can make the connection by using the receptacle itself.
Exactly what do you need to connect?
 
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Old 12-05-03, 08:17 AM
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What are your feelings about the method using the 3M scotchlock?
I will be doing some sidework sometime after the newyear's, and I have been told in advance a complete removal of the evil AL wire is not an option. That means I am going to replace all accessable Al in the basement, and need to splice CU to AL.
Would it be wise to keep all of the small size Al out of the new panel? The service needs an upgrade & new panel. My idea is use 4 11/16 boxes above or near the panel to convert the cables to AL, one of the reasons being the grounding conductors are very short by having been twisted onto the romex clamps. (one of my biggest petpeeves of old-fashioned ideas)

gj

( I have read the website posted that explains the problems of AL connections that has bee posted here, I agree with all of it.)
 
 

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