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Wire and Cable Blog

Posts tagged: power cable

Power Cable Accessories: 3 Things to Know Before You Buy

Power cable accessories are important tools that help to distribute power among devices in a safe and effective manner. However, because of the wide variety of these accessories, it can often be confusing to know which one is the one you need. When purchasing accessories, consider these three things, quality, location, and specifications.


  • Quality- Getting The Right Accessory

Each company that develops power cable accessories have their own strengths and weaknesses. This means that, despite having two similar products, one brand might be more suitable than another for a certain project. An easy way to determine what type of accessory you need is to find out which accessories are meant to be used in certain environments and what the different amounts of electrical current they carry. From there, a sales associate can assist you in fine-tuning your search more effectively and let you know which brand is the best for your needs.

  • Location- Where Will It Be Used?

So many people overlook location when they’re deciding on what type of power accessory to get. This is a major mistake! Location is one of the most important questions to ask yourself about before you purchase because everything else depends on it. For example, outdoor use cables will be more flexible and made from hardy materials that can withstand wear and tear from outside environs and situations.

  • Specifications- Wattage Rating And Other Concerns

All electrical cables and cords have small metal wires that are meant to conduct electrical currents. The thickness of the wire will let you know how much current, or wattage, a certain wire can carry. The wattage rating is the amount of wattage that a wire can safely handle. It’s recommended that you know this important number before you use power accessories, particularly if you’re powering multiple devices from one source.

Most of the information that you’ll need can be found on the labels and product specs of a particular accessory. However, if you’re uncertain or don’t understand, it’s always a good idea to ask for help from someone who is knowledgeable about the various products.


The Advantages of Using Portable Power Cord with EPDM Insulation

The acronym EPDM can stand for a lot of different definitions, but as rubber insulation, EPDM is defined as one of the best insulations for portable power cords in the industry. Portable power cord EPDM Insulation provides all of the following advantages:

  • Exceptional ability to resist damage caused by harmful ultraviolet rays and other weather conditions.
  • Can withstand temperatures from negative 200°C of up to positive 175°C.
  • Stable resistance to moisture and vapor
  • Thermal conductivity maintained at a stable low level
  • Does not absorb too much water due to its structure
  • Fire-resistant and self-extinguishes flames

There are many different types of Portable power cord EPDM Insulation that you can find online and most of these are manufactured both for indoor and outdoor use. The EPDM insulation on the portable power cords also provides better flexibility for the cords so that it can be used for industrial equipment that require heavy use, as well as for use as extension cords when needed in marine docksides, deep mines, for the sound equipment on a large stage, and many others. There are also portable power cords with EPDM insulation that are made specifically for use in vacuum cleaners, food processors, hand tools, other home appliances like washing machines, as well as medical and office equipment.

With all of the various ways in which portable power cords with EPDM Insulation are used, it is no wonder that it is priced heavily, from somewhere around $0.5 to $50 for every meter. Some of the more popular characteristics of the portable power cords that are insulated with EPDM insulation are:

  • High amount of resistance to solvents, oil, acids, as well as extreme temperature
  • These power cords do not tear or abrade easily
  • Retards flames easily
  • High resistance to the damage caused by sunlight and water
  • Great degree of flexibility and durability. The cords can be rolled into a neat bundle when not in use

If you are not sure whether the power cord that you have is EPDM insulated or not, you can actually test the insulator at home. All you have to do is heat a piece of the insulation in the Microwave for two minutes. If it does not emit any smoke or smell, then you can be sure that you have EPDM insulation on your portable power cord. This test would also prove the fact that the EPDM insulation can work on temperatures of up to 150°C.

If you need further information on EPDM insulation for portable power cords, or just need assistance from an expert technician about the product’s in-depth technical information, there are a lot of toll-free numbers on the internet that you can call. Most online stores do already list a few technical specifications based on the manufacturer’s information for almost every portable power cord that they sell, so there should be very little need for you to contact a specialist or personally go to a hardware store yourself.

Welding cable is a standard one conductor 600 volt power cable with EPDM insulation.

WesBell Electronics Inc
(800) 334-8400

Type W and Type G-GC Industrial Power Cables

If you need to carry a lot of current to a source and need added protection and durability for outdoor use then a Type W or Type G-GC cable might be the one for your application. Industrial power cables are enlarged SOOW cables with added protection, higher voltage and much higher ampacities that are portable for use on job sites that don’t currently have power available.

SOOW cable has sizes as large as 2 awg with 4 conductors and ampacities as high as 95 on the SOOW 2/3. SOOW and SJOOW are portable power cables for residential use such as portable generators and power tools. They come in 600 volts with a rubber EPDM jacket and flexible copper strands.

Type W is an industrial power cable as small as 8 awg and as large as 500 mcm 3 conductor. Type W comes in 2000 volts with the same rubber EPDM jacket and flexible copper strands. The type W power cable 8 awg 3 conductor carries 74 AMPS while the SOOW 8 awg 3 conductor only carries 40 AMPS. Industrial power cables have much thicker insulation for higher voltage and higher ampacities.

Type W comes with 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 conductors and one will be green to act as a same size ground wire. There are not any additional ground wires in Type W cable. Type G and G-GC cable come additional ground wires if you need them for your application.

Type G-GC is a 2000 volt power cable that comes in 3 conductors with 3 additional ground wires only. There will be 3 conductors in the same size with 1 yellow ground check and 2 green ground wires that get slightly larger as the cable gets higher in awg size.

Type G is the 4 conductor industrial power cable with 4 green ground wires. All of the Type W and Type G cables comes in 90°C and all of the ground wires are insulated with premium grade EPDM rubber insulation. They’re resistant to abrasion, oils, alkalies, heat, moisture and most chemicals. They’re UL, CSA, MSHA and RoHS compliant through an ISO 9001 compliant company, WesBell Electronics.

We’ve been analzing all of our online orders and phone calls in order to offer our customers the best service we can. We’ve found that offering Free Shipping over $250, cutting exact lengths and having quick turn around has not only gotten us more orders but made our customers greatful for doing business with us. It’s almost like they feel they’re taking advantage of us because there aren’t many distributors that offer such things.

If you have a unique situation then please let us know what we can do to help you make the most money on your particular job. We ship mostly from NH but if you’re on the west coast and need material the next day we’ll ship it from our manufacture location in CA for you at no extra charge. We’re here to assist our customers, not to tell them no, so please ask for exactly what you need and we’ll work with you as best we can. 

WesBell Electronics Inc
(800) 334-8400

WesBell Electronics – Electrical Wire and Cable Products

WesBell Electronics has been in business for over 20 years servicing electrical contractors, OEM’s and many other companies using wire and cable products.

Our products list starts with electrical wire and cable including THHN wire, Romex, UFB Cable, Tray Cable and many types of copper and aluminum MC cables. Each of these electrical wire products have their own specifications to be used in certain environments and we, at WesBell, can help you figure out which is best for your application.

Next is hook up wire and PVC electronic cables for appliances and small electronics. These include different voltage levels, temperature ratings and strand counts for flexibility. Of course the pricing will be different for each depending on the difficulty to manufacture.

About 2 years ago WesBell became ISO 9001 complient to be sure we follow strict procedures to best satisfy our customers. We cut and strip hook up wire and manufacture cable assemblies to specification.

Power cable is usually known as portable cord or rubber cables. SOOW cable, Type W and welding cable are all examples of rubber cables with high flexibility. These power cables use very fine copper strands to increase the flexibility and soften the cable. The rubber jacket has more protection than PVC and also helps with the flexibility.

Heat shrink tubing has become another big item here at WesBell Electronics because it goes hand in hand with many electronics projects. The heat shrink tubing is used to cover connections that could get in contact with the wrong things. So a piece of shrink tubing is placed over the connection and shrunk down to adhere to the wire. There is also adhesive shrink tubing available that has an inner lining of glue to make it more permenant.

If you have any questions about electrical or electronic wire and cable please give us a call and we’ll help you with your project.

Toll Free – (800) 334-8400

Information and Facts on Power Cable

Power cable comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, and can look complicated to the layman. These cables can be single-conductor, multi-conductor, as well as industrial strength or for personal use. Each type of power cable has its own advantages, which make them suitable for certain types of applications.

A power cable is categorized in three classes, 1) high voltage (for applications requiring load greater than 40,000V), 2) medium voltage (for applications requiring load between 6000V and 36,000V) and 3) low voltage (for applications requiring load below 1000V). These cables are used for feeders and other heavy machinery, along with branch circuits in electrical utility, commercial and industrial applications.

Single-conductor power cable is used in various applications such as stage lighting, locomotives, DLO and for welding purposes. Each single-conductor cable, depending upon its use, has a different rating for amps, voltage, flexibility and insulation, each having a different price-level.  

There are many multi-conductor cables; extensions cords, Type G-GC, Type W, SOOW and portable cords, each encased a rubber jacket for insulation. These cables are safe and flexible and when additional flexibility is required, there is a multi-conductor cable available for this need. The SOOW multi-conductor cable is similar to the extension cord (before the plugs are attached) and is generally used to supply power generators and tools in industries.

The least-expensive power cable of this group is the welding cable. Welding cable has a rubber jacket and flexible copper fibers and is rated to 600V. DLO cable also has the rubber jacket, is rated to 2000V and has tinned copper fibers. The DLO can carry more power and therefore has a higher corresponding price.

Remember, when installing power cable, it is recommended that you consult with your electrician. And when it is time to purchase your cable, some helpful hints include knowing the operating temperature, amperage, voltage, outer diameter (cable diameter + insulation jacket). Please call WesBell at 800-334-8400 for all your cable needs.

Installing THHN cable in cold weather

When the weather is cold, you can have problems not just with your heating bills and skin, but also with your cables. For example, the THHN cable is easily vulnerable to deterioration due to cold weather.

THHN cable is Thermoplastic, High-Heat Resistance, Nylon-Coated, therefore the name- THHN. Though it is versatile cable and does not fall under any specific application category, it is mostly used under Hook-up wire class.


THHN cable comes in a variety of strengths. And since it is made from thermoplastic material, it is easy to heat and cool this wire many times to change its shape. But there is a limit to the number of times this wire can stand heating and cooling. It has its lower and higher temperature limits and if the temperature changes cross this range, this wire can become unstable. Temperature range depends upon manufacturers.

When the THHN cable comes with ‘High Heat’ rating, it means that this wire can be used in high temperature scenarios. These wires come with various specifications, which determine the specific applications where these can be used. For example, “Nylon coated” means that a certain thermoplastic material is used in this wire.

Coming to installation of the THHN cable in the cold weather, there are some simple guidelines that you should follow. Keep this cable indoors, and not in the outdoor harsh environment. Generally, a temperature of 65°F works well.

If keeping the cable indoors is not possible, bring it inside for at least 24 hours, before you install it.

If the outside temperature is below 14°F, then do not install the THHN cable.

While installing the cable, take care that it is not dropped on the floor, as these impacts can cause cracks in the stiff cable material.

Make sure you do not bend the cable too much, because it can cause the cold and stiff cable to break.

            Once you have installed it, this cable will work properly in environments with temperature higher than 14°F.

            All you need to Know about High Voltage Cable

            If you want to transfer large amount of electricity, then high voltage cables are your safest bet. There are various forms of these cables, and all are used for different purposes depending upon voltage of electricity and the machines for which these are used. Three types of cables are: high, medium, and low voltage cables. Out of these, high voltage cables are used when the voltage is above 1000 V. These cables are heavily insulated to prevent any risks or hazards.

            • AC power cables

            These cables are used to transfer up to 2000 V of electricity. The composition of these cables includes cross section of cable, polyethylene insulation, and conductive material like aluminum or copper. These cables are highly flexible and work well both in low as well as high temperatures. The cable layers are fused together to avoid air seeping in, as this can cause electrical discharge, thereby damaging the insulation.

            • HVDC cables

            These are specialized cables that are designed for high voltage direct currents, and thus are called HVDC cables. If you have seen a power line, then it would be easy to understand, as a power line is also an HVDC cable. These cables are helpful in carrying large loads of electricity over longer distances. After reaching the transformer, their electricity is converted to AC form. Thereon it runs with lower voltage, and is transferred to businesses and homes.

            • X-ray cables

            These cables are used to link other high voltage cables with X ray machines. These are also used to connect high voltage cables to other scientific equipment that require higher loads of electricity. These are highly flexible cables. They have a braided cover of copper wires, and are insulated with rubber. These are fused to high voltage cable to provide safety, and to reduce the hazards of electric shocks.

            All these cables are not for home use. These are used to connect high power sources to other devices or cables. If you want to buy these cables, make sure you go for the best quality, as bad cables can lead to dangerous situations.

            Using PTFE wire for High Temperatures

            Wire insulated with PTFE, or PTFE wire, is very useful. If you have been using PVC hook up wire to fight insulation melt downs, then you will be pleased to use PTFE. It cannot even get affected by a soldering iron. It has been used since the 1960’s due to its excellent performance in high temperature scenarios. Some companies also use it in classification of surface electronics.

            PTFE wire has got copper strands, plated with sliver. The silver plating, along with PTFE insulation helps the wire to sustain extremely high temperatures. It is much better than basic hook up wire that suffers from melt downs in high temperatures. And due to its great heat withstanding ability, PTFE wire comes expensive. But in case your needs are about wiring places with extremely high temperatures, it will be a good investment in the long run.

            This wire is made by following many methods. Two of the more common methods are wrapping and extrusion. Extrusion is the most common one and is done usually in the standard sizes of 24 AWG and 22 AWG. There are also some smaller sizes, where space is an important factor. The covering comes in fused and wrapped types. PTFE is also used as the outer jacket of co-axial cables.

            PTFE wires also have great resistance to moisture, flame, damage from soldering iron, and thermal aging. Apart from that, the PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) coating is able to resist many harsh chemicals, ozone, greases, and solvents.

            You can install these wires at many places, as they are very easy to fix. It also has low degree of power loss, and thus is great for high frequency usage. Because these wires are small and slippery, they can be used almost anywhere.

            PTFE or Extruded PTFE hook up wire has 3 types: Type E (most commonly used, and rated for 600 V), Type EE (having thicker PTFE jacket, and rated for 1000 V), and Type ET (having thin cover, and rated for 250 V). All 3 of them can be used for temperatures up to 200o C

            Basics of Bare Copper Wire

            We all know that of all the metals used all around the planet, copper is the number one metal in terms of its usage. This is because it is the most versatile metal, and it touches the lives of people in one way or the other. It has a significant role to play in electrical engineering branch in various ways. It has great conductivity power, and thus is used a lot in making electrical wire. Although there are many other available metals as well, but none can beat the versatility of copper.

            Copper wire is available in both forms- with and without insulation. It depends upon the engineers- whether they want insulation or not. Depending upon where they are using the wire, they decide if it should have insulation or not. Both insulated and bare copper wires are used in different applications. They have their use in different engineering segments.

            The bare copper wire is also called ground wire, since it has no protection or insulation. This wire is generally used as the platform for various wires and cables.

            This wire can come either in solid form, or in small AWG sizes, wrapped to make some specific gauge. Experts say that using small AWG sized wire allows more flexibility to the wire, and it bends easily around the corners. Although flexibility is a good thing, but not in all cases, so a solid form bare copper wire is preferred in many scenarios. For example, electrical contractors require stiff wires, so that the wire could be sent through a conduit for longer distances.

            Green THHN wire is called ground wire, particularly when that wire has to be used outdoors. It is used for grounding purposes to safeguard people against hazards.

            So this is where bare copper wire is used. But before you purchase this wire, you must make sure that the company you are buying it from is a good and trusted one. One simple solution is to look for this wire online. You can find many trusted online companies that can provide you the kind of bare copper wire you want.

            Types of Insulation- Hook Up Wire

            If you are using PVC hook up wire for electrical purposes, you should know about the insulation that you can use with this wire.

            UL 1007

            This wire is a form of hook up wire, which is particularly used for 300 V PVC cable that runs at about 0.016 inches of thickness of the insulation material. The popularity of the term UL grew a lot because the UL confirms that a wire can withstand the voltage and temperature that it claims to handle. Therefore, UL 1007 cable is endorsed by UL to work at 300 V, as it is mentioned on its specification sheet.

            UL 1061

            UL 1061 is another PVC hook up wire that is quite similar to UL 1007. It has 0.009 inches of thickness of insulation material. Like UL 1007, it also supports 300 V. It is generally used with the appliances that need an outlet with smaller diameter.

            UL 1015

            Yet another PVC hook up wire, the UL 1015 supports 600 V, as opposed to 300 V supported by UL 1007 and UL 1061. Since it supports higher voltage, it needs thicker insulation. The thickness of insulation material for this cable is 0.032 inches. The range of this wire is from 10 awg to 24 awg- but before the UL type could change.


            PTFE is another type of hook up wire. It supports insulation at high temperatures going up to 200 degree Celsius. Other PVC insulations work up to temperatures of 105 degree Celsius. Apart from the temperature difference, PTFE has copper plated with silver, and not tinned copper. This feature also helps it to sustain high temperatures.

            These wires were some of the hook up wires that you could use while working on an electric application. Some of these cables cannot stand too much wear and tear, and so they are more suited for indoor works, while some cables are rough and tough, and so can be used outdoors as well as underground. Before you buy any type of wire, you must consult your electrician and take his opinion.