Is There a Difference Between PVC, Teflon and Hook Up Wire?

The term Hook Up Wire basically discusses the power hook up between two sources. The wire is the conductivity between the two sources. A lot of people think that hook up wire is a specific type of wire, but it isn’t. So this article will discuss the different types and how they differ from each other.

Usually when someone needs hook up wire they’re talking about a one conductor wire with PVC insulation. The copper underneath the insulation is usually different based on how flexible you want the wire to be. There’s solid and stranded bare copper or stranded tinned copper. The stranded copper is for flexibility and the tin is for easier soldering.

Teflon® wire is another type of PTFE hookup wire that’s a little bit more expensive. It’s also known as high temperature wire. It has the Teflon® jacket for 200 degrees Celsius compared to the PVC insulation at 105 degrees Celsius. It also has silver plated copper strands which helps protect the copper from the high temperatures as well.

PVC wire is the one that “hook up wire” most commonly confused with. PVC wire comes in UL1007 300 volt and UL1015 600 volt for the most popular sizes. The UL1007 has a thinner insulation than the UL1015, but they’re both made with 30 awg tinned copper strands. A higher strand count for the same gauge size will result in added flexibility. On the other hand, a solid strand of copper will be much less flexible and suited for applications that need the wire to hold its form.

PVC wire is a lot more specific but still has a few variations based on voltage, amps and flexibility. THHN THWN electrical wire has PVC insulation with a nylon coating over it to protect it against moisture when installed in conduit or in applications outdoors. It also acts as a lubrication to help push the wire through conduit.

Temperature, voltage and the environmental conditions are the main pieces of the puzzle when determining which type of wire will best suit your application. The price is affected accordingly when voltage or temperature ratings increase.

Make sure to ask about the wire you’re buying before actually buying it. That way you know you’re getting the right type of wire for your application. Anything more and you’re paying too much, but anything less and you don’t have enough wire. If you don’t have enough wire then it could cause bigger problems in the end.