What is the right size of electrical wire?

electrical wire

Solar cables consist of several wires that are enveloped together using an insulating material to form a jacket. On the other hand, the cables inside the electric cable are used to transport electricity through currents from the solar panel to other electrical components. This, therefore, means that solar cables are made up of wires which act as transporters of electric current. There are different types of solar wires to choose from. Other than the type of cable, other factors to be considered when determining the kind of solar cable to install in your solar power system is the size of the cable. In this post, we discuss the factors to consider when determining the correct size of a solar cable and wire.

Importance of choosing the right size of solar cable and or wire

  • Using the correct size of a solar cable when connecting different elements of the solar power system ensures that the cables are practical. 
  • The correctly sized cable enhances the effectiveness
  • The correct size also prevents such issues as overheating
  • The right size of solar cables and wires helps to prevent energy loss
  • It also helps to avoid hazards like fires that may be caused by using an undersized wire or cable
electrical wire

Factors to consider when choosing the right solar cable size

a. The generating capacity

The generating capacity is the amount of current that can be generated through the cable. A larger solar wire can produce more significant amounts of current. On the other hand, smaller sized cables or wire generate more modest amounts of current.

b. The distance 

The distance refers to the amount of space between the solar panel and the loads. An electrical load is the component of an electrical circuit that consumes the power. On the other hand, the solar panel is the power source as it generates electricity directly from the sun. An example of an electric load is a power circuit. Therefore, the length of the cable is determined by the distance between the power source and the power load. 

c. Desired ohmic resistance

Ohmic is the SI unit of electric resistance. On the other hand, Ohmic resistance refers to electrical resistance. The ohmic strength is distinguished from inductive or capacitive reactance. The length of the cable determines the amount of ohmic resistance. This means that the longer the cord, the more the amount of ohmic resistance. 

d. The American Wire Gauge

The American Wire Gauge, popularly known as the AWG is a standardized system of measuring the size of electrical or solar wires and cables. The AWG number is found on every cable in the market. Reading and translating the size of the cable according to the AWG number may, however, be tricky. The bigger the AWG number indicated on an electric wire, the smaller the size of the wire and vice versa.

electrical wire


Insulation is a very crucial element in electrical or solar cables. The insulation properties of solar wires should be able to withstand both thermal loads and mechanical loads. The insulation materials, as well as the materials of the jacket, should also be resistant to weathering, UV-radiation, and abrasion. 


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