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Customer Q&A:
COLD WEATHER CABLE

 

How Do Cold Temperatures Affect Cable?

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OUR SOLUTION      FOLLOW-UP QUESTION

 

 

HOW TO SELECT THE RIGHT CABLE

Extreme cold temperatures can cause cables to stiffen, crack, and even break. To avoid cable damage, select a cable with a sufficient cold temperature rating for your application.
 

Cable Temperature Ratings Celsius Fahrenheit
THHN-2/THWN-2 (thermoplastic) -10°C (14°F)
XHHW-2 (thermoset) -40°C (-40°F)

 

  • Thermoplastic products (THHN/THWN-2) may stiffen at temperatures colder than -10°C, while cables made of thermoset insulation (XHHW-2) are temperature rated -40°C.
     
  • XHHW-2 uses XLPE insulation instead of PVC. The cold temperature resistant polymer helps the cable maintain its flexibility, especially during cold weather installations that require the cable to be bent frequently.

 

RATINGS MATTER

Extreme cold temperatures can have adverse effects on your wire and cable, causing them to temporarily become brittle and inflexible. In these conditions, some cables will stiffen and even crack if they are installed below recommended temperatures.

This video shows THHN-2 snapping on the jobsite during a cold weather installation. The temperature caused the PVC insulation to stiffen, and the nylon jacket cracked when the cable was pulled. This not only destroyed the cable, but it became a safety risk to all involved—just one example of why selecting the right cable is critical.
 

 

UNDERSTANDING COLD TEMPERATURE RATINGS

Industry standards allow a variety of cold temperature ratings. This rating reflects the cable’s lowest recommended temperature for installation. Cables made of thermoplastic insulation (THHN/THWN-2) may stiffen at temperatures colder than -10°C, while cables made of thermoset insulation (XHHW-2) are temperature rated for -40°C.

Thermoset products like XHHW-2 have XLPE (crosslink) insulation instead of PVC. The cold temperature resistant polymer allows the cable to better maintain its flexibility during cold weather installations. Read “THHN vs. XHHW-2: What’s the Difference,” to learn more about thermoplastic and thermoset products.

 

White QuotationsService Wire always has stock with very competitive pricing and really good sales support.

 

White QuotationsYou always meet quoted ship dates and no one cuts and ships factory stock faster than Service Wire.

CABLE MANAGEMENT

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When working on cold weather installations, consider using Cable Management. Cable is housed in one of Service Wire’s three state-of-the-art facilities until you need it.
 

Benefits of Using Cable Management

  • Locks in Pricing
  • Ensures Product Availability
  • Reels Delivered on the Jobsite at Time of Installation

 

Ipad showing image of warehouse stocked with reels of wire and cable

 

ServicePro-X Single Conductors

SERVICEPRO-X®

No Pulling Lubricant Required
(#6 AWG and Larger)

  • XHHW-2 600V/1kV Copper
  • USE-2 or RHW-2 600V/1kV Copper
  • RHW-2 or RW90 1kV/2kV Copper

AVAILABLE:
#14 AWG - 1000 Kcmil
Tinned Conductors
VW-1 Rated
Wide Range of Colors
Silicone-Free

ServiceSolar Single Conductors

SERVICESOLAR®

Photovoltaic Wire (UL 1403)

  • XLP/USE-2 or RHW-2 600V/1kV or 2kV Copper
  • RPVU90 1kV/2kV Copper
  • RHW-2 or RW90 1kV/2kV Copper

AVAILABLE:
#16 AWG - 750 Kcmil
VW-1 Rated
Industry Standard Colors

XHHW-2 ServicePlex Prefab, Twisted Cable

SERVICEPLEX®

Prefab Twisted Single Conductors

  • XHHW-2 Inner Conductors
    600/1,000 Volt Copper

AVAILABLE:
#14 AWG - 750 Kcmil
2-7 Conductors
Built-In Grounds
Pre-Installed Pulling Heads
Wide Range of Colors
Silicone-Free

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THHN vs. XHHW-2: What's the Difference?

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