Different Types Wires and Their Uses


Have you ever wondered what are the different wires you see at home and what are their functions? It requires you to know the different wire types to work with the existing wiring at home because different wires are used for a different electrical device.

Electrical wire is a type of conductor that conducts electricity and they are usually insulated with a nonconductive plastic coating for safety precautions, except ground wires which are usually uninsulated.

Non-Metallic Sheathed Wires

This is also known as Romex. This cable consists of a current-carrying wire, a neutral wire, and a ground wire, wrapped inside a protective plastic sheathing.

This wire is used in most homes and it is relatively cheap with ratings for 15 and 20 amps. The protective plastic insulator is color-coded to indicate the different amperage ratings. Some examples include:

–      White sheathing indicates NM cable with 14-gauge conductors.

–      Yellow sheathing indicates NM cable with 12-gauge conductors.

–      Orange sheathing indicates NM cable with 10-gauge conductors.

–      Black-sheathed cable is used for both 6- and 8-gauge wire.

THHN Wires

THHN stands for Thermoplastic High-Heat resistant Nylon-coated wire. It is used to connect the branch circuit and appliances. This wire is designed to withstand very high temperatures, up to 194 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Low Voltage Wire

This type of wires is usually used for circuits with low voltage, typically below 50 volts. This includes the common things you see at home like bell wire, speaker system wire and thermostat wires. Such wire is only used for low-voltage applications and rarely will one encounter electric shocks with this low-voltage wire.

Phone and Data Wire

This wire is typically found in the household for transmission of data with eight wires wrapped together. It is used for both phone and data transmission.

It has a very low voltage of under 30 volts so it is pretty safe at home but you still should be cautious and not touch it with your bare hands because it may become dangerous when it comes in contact with household wiring. 

Coaxial Cable

A coaxial cable which is also known as heliax has a tubular insulating layer that protects an inner conductor. It is further surrounded by a tubular conducting shield, with an outer sheath for extra insulation. 

Coaxial cable got its name because the two inner shields have the same geometric axis. These cables are normally used for carrying television signals and connecting video equipment.

The various cables are used for different purposes. In the event where you are thinking of installing a new wire at home, you may want to consider contacting an emergency electrician Singapore to help you. Knowing the functions of various cables does not mean that you will successfully install the wires without getting electric shocks!

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