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Kevinuk1

Hook up cable 1.6mm or 2.5mm

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Hi 

 

I'm a little confused by what I have been reading, I always thought that for 16a cable you need 2.5mm and 1.6mm is 10a however I have seen many listings/companies claiming that their cable is 16a but the core is 1.6mm

 

Is this correct ?

 

Thanks in advance

 

Kevin

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I always thought that 1.5mm cable was rated at 16amp  and 2.5mm at 25amp and that the reason for using 2.5mm cable (say for a hook up) was the additional mechanical strength of the larger cable and possibly lower resistance on longer runs. :)

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The thinner 1.6mm cable is capable of carrying 16 Amps BUT only if air spaced and NOT if coiled up. However the 2.5mm cable is still the correct size to use, not only to minimise volt drop but also for its mechanical resistance to damage and reduced likelihood of becoming tangled.

I always use 2.5mm cables when on site but I also have a very short 1.6mm dia dedicated for use at home where the EHU is just 2 metres behind the RV, and I know it will only be used to operate the battery charger.

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From memory the volt drop for 1.5mm cable is something like 30mV/A/m and 2.5mm is 18mV/A/m.

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IEE Wiring Regulations state that the hookup cable be 2.5mm.

Even with using the recommended cable I have seen several that have melted as they were left wound onto a cable drum .

If those had been 1.6mm they would have caught fire. 

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Never really understood why the IET states 25 meters +/- 2 meters of at least 2.5 mm²? I personally see no problem using a shorter cable? If the hook up point is close enough of course.

 

But the same plug and socket can be used for other than caravans, there is no IET regulation in BS7671:2008 for tents, not sure about BS7671:2018 I have not got a copy.

 

And where there are no lights volt drop of 5% is allowed so if the caravan has no 230 volt lights it does not need to be 3% volt drop.

 

I think some common sense, even if blue means 230 volt and yellow 110 volt with red 400 volt having orange cable is far easier for people to see, and 2.5 mm² is easier to see than 1.5 mm² and 2.5 mm² would also be more resistance to damage.

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Not much point in economising really. A 25m length of 2.5 isn't much heavier, or cheaper.

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As others have said go for 2.5mm mainly for the mechanical strength, I also prefer to use 'Arctic Blue' cable too which remains very flexible even at very cold temperatures. Technically you should use orange coloured cables for visibility, Artic Blue as it's name suggests isnt orange, although I believe there is now an orange coloured version of it now.

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