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Which Cordset or Cable Material Should I Select for My Application?

By Pepperl+Fuchs |

When it comes to specifying a cable to use with your recent sensor purchase, you may notice a handful of options in regards to the cable quality and jacket material. You will see model numbers containing letter combinations, such as PUR, PVC, POC, PUR H/S, and even STOOW. What do these letters mean?  How do I know which one to select for my application?

Materials for cordsets and cables

These letter groupings represent the cable material, and when deciding which one is the best option, it is heavily based on the application requirements. Let’s take a little time to familiarize ourselves with the two most common cable material options, PVC and PUR, while looking at some of the advantages and disadvantages of each.

PVC- Polyvinyl Chloride


This would be considered the standard cable material for the electrical industry and is used in many general-purpose applications.

The advantages of PVC include:

  • Lower cost

  • Excellent flame resistance

  • Chemical resistant

  • Suitable for flexible installation

  • Resistant to ozone and weather

  • Easily strippable

  • Suitable for the food and beverage industry


The disadvantages of PVC include:

  • Limited resistance to oil and lubricants

  • Limited abrasion resistance

  • Not recommended for high-temperature applications (rated to 80 ºC)

  • Flexibility decreases at low temperatures

  • No environmental benefits


PUR- Polyurethane


This cable material is suitable for long-term flexible use in complex applications.

The advantages of PUR include:

  • High abrasion resistance

  • Resistant to oils, grease, and solvents

  • Extremely durable

  • UV resistant

  • Halogen-free

  • Flexible at low temperatures


The disadvantages of PUR include:

  • Higher cost

  • Low flame resistance

  • Not recommended for high-temperature applications (rated to 80 ºC)


After reviewing the two most common cable material options, you may notice that PVC and PUR are not recommended for high-temperature applications. When selecting a cable for use in a high-temperature process, the better options would be PUR H/S (irradiated PUR), POC, and STOOW cables.

PUR H/S - Irradiated PUR


This cable offers advantages that are similar to the conventional PUR cables but is also resistant to high temperatures. Irradiated PUR is usable up to 105 ºC and is suitable for welding applications.

POC


POC is another cable material best suited for welding applications. POC is very resistant to extreme temperatures as it is usable up to 150 ºC, which is the highest offered. It is also weld-slag resistant, flame retardant, and has effective resistance to oils or chemicals. These properties make it a very popular choice for the automobile industry.

STOOW


This cable material is an extremely resilient PVC mixture commonly used with Mini (7/8”) AC connectors. It is approved to a very high voltage, 600 V, as well as high temperatures, 105 ºC. It has an effective resistance to chemicals or oils and is rated above average for flame retardance. STOOW is also performance tested for outdoor use and has excellent resistance to weather conditions. It is used predominantly in the American market.

Cable material plays an important role in the success of an application. You need to ensure that you have the correct material for your environment and process. Selecting the right material will save you a lot of time and money. Now that you have a general understanding of the cable material options we offer, building a cordset model number should be quick and easy.
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