What to look for when buying electrical wire

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Old 03-20-13, 06:48 PM
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What to look for when buying electrical wire

Aside from UL listed and USA made...anything to look at when buying electrical wire spools.
 
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Old 03-20-13, 06:51 PM
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You would need to make sure the insulation was of the correct type for the environment it will be used in.
 
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Old 03-20-13, 09:06 PM
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Yeah......make sure the reels are strong and intact
 
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Old 03-21-13, 04:06 AM
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Ha. On the smaller stuff like 12 and 10, anybody still make these on wooden reels.

I still have some Belden 4 Wire 16 or 14 Shielded (lowv voltage application). A wild guess would be 100 foot reels...and even these were wooden reels and not the plastic of today that just so easily crack..
 
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Old 03-21-13, 06:22 AM
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Buying Wire

The wire gauge is sort of important.
 
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Old 03-21-13, 08:42 AM
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Wire gauge and jacket are obvious...

I'm not sure how much *offshore* products are offered in the electrical side of the world, but I generally buy my *copper* stuff domestic made, whether it be wire it not plumbing products...
 
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Old 03-21-13, 09:13 AM
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USA made is not important. Due to the cost of shipping, it probably will be. Being rated for the job you want to do is very important.

The UL listing means that it is rated for certain application(s). Buy THHN for use in dry locations and THWN for use in wet locations, for example. Buy wire that is oil and gas resistant if you're working on a gas station or under the hood of your car.

We once bought welding cable, and the special fittings required to connect it, for a job that included making a number of parallel runs along complicated paths that included open cable trays. The wire was rated for the use and location, and the flexibility and working ease saved us enough time to more than offset the additional cost of the materials.
 
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Old 03-21-13, 04:14 PM
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I thought UL listed was important ?

I was looking at Liquidtight - metal variant. Both looked the same from the same manuf. I believe the non UL listed was about 50% less.

I can't recall the pricing, but awhile back, when I was buying Carol SJ cord. They had the same gauge wire NON UL listed and it was quite cheaper. Both made in the USA as well..
 
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Old 03-21-13, 07:08 PM
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I was looking at Liquidtight - metal variant. Both looked the same from the same manuf. I believe the non UL listed was about 50% less.
The non-UL Liquidtight generally doesn't have the copper bonding strip made into it and usually won't pass a good inspection.
 
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Old 03-21-13, 07:14 PM
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I can't recall the pricing, but awhile back, when I was buying Carol SJ cord. They had the same gauge wire NON UL listed and it was quite cheaper. Both made in the USA as well..
Is losing your home worth saving a couple bucks?
 
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Old 03-21-13, 07:34 PM
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The UL listing means that it is rated for certain application(s).

I was responding to Nashkat's comment on UL listing.
 
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Old 03-22-13, 06:53 AM
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I was responding to Nashkat's comment on UL listing.
And I was talking about electrical wire, the topic of this thread.

I thought UL listed was important ?
It is.
Originally Posted by Nashkat1
The UL listing means that it is rated for certain application(s).
You can read the UL listing and find out what that product has been rated for, and under what conditions.

I was looking at Liquidtight - metal variant. Both looked the same from the same manuf. I believe the non UL listed was about 50% less.
If an electrical product has not been listed by the UL, it means one of two things: Either it wasn't submitted for evaluation - possibly because the manufacturer knew it wouldn't pass - or it was submitted and failed.

The UL listing is not just important, it is critically important in almost every case, IMO. The exception would be if I knew why it wasn't listed and that that didn't matter in the application I was using it for. If I was intending to pull a grounding conductor through a piece of Liquidtight, for example, I might find it cost effective, safe and code-compliant to use the all-plastic version of the pipe.
 
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