How to choose the correct size of wire and cable?


Importance of electrical wire gauge

Given that a cable’s gauge indicates the thickness of the conductor that carries the electron flow, the conductor also has to suppress resistance and support an improved transmission.

Knowing the gauge of wire allows industry professionals and homeowners to quickly and easily determine whether it is appropriate for a specific application.

A gauge helps users to know the current-carrying capacity of the solid, electrically conducting cables by using the cross-sectional area of the wire as a defining aspect.

Choosing Electrical Wire Size

You may determine the gauge based on the helpful pointers below assigned according to Wire Use- Rated Ampacity:

  • 18-gauge are used for low-voltage lighting and lamp cords in 10 amps
  • 16-gauge are used for light-duty extension cords supporting 13 amps
  • 14-gauge are usedfor light fixtures, lamps, lighting circuits with 15 amps
  • 12-gauge are used in kitchen, bathroom, outdoor receptacles, and 120-volt air conditioners supporting 20 amps
  • 10-gauge are used in electric clothes dryers, 240-volt window air conditioners, electric water heaters supporting 30 amps
  • 6-gauge are used for cook tops and ranges carrying 40-50 amps
  • 4-gauge are used for electric furnaces and large electric heaters protected at 60 amps