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Discussion Starter #1
Hell
I'm just posting this here, hoping that others
searching for info will find it.
I was doing a search for Automotive wire Made in USA
and there is plenty.
But I ran across a discussion on a few motor home
sites that said you could use Southwire THHN...
NO, NO, NO.. it is not rated for automotive use
you may void your insurance if you have an electrical
related fire.
This came up because of a price issue. THHN was
selling at $20 for 100 ft, and that was great for the guy
needing it. I looked into it, and just got off the phone
with Dave at Southwire... THHN is not rated for
automotive use...(period)
 

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If needed I like marine grade wire from west marine or such. They have a much grater verity of wire colors and with and without stripes also like the marine connectors better.
 

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Agreed, THHN is for houses and buildings. Most wire rolls packaged and on hooks at the auto parts store are GPT (85°C PVC) types, and are OK only for chassis wiring. Nothing near heat, fuels, or in the engine compartment. The 125°C or higher XLPE (polyethylene) types are for that, and I mostly use TXL for my stuff, as do most OEMs. Comparisons of the common XL types can be seen here, only for description. Check around for prices if shopping, as that guy's price for THHN is higher than I pay for TXL. :tup:

David
 

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If needed I like marine grade wire from west marine or such. They have a much grater verity of wire colors and with and without stripes also like the marine connectors better.
Ive used a lot of wire from West Marine just for that very reason. Marine rated, lots of colors, and very reasonable price.
 

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Ive used a lot of wire from West Marine just for that very reason. Marine rated, lots of colors, and very reasonable price.


That's fine for the chassis, and anywhere outside the engine compartment, as it's vinyl insulation is rated to 221°F (105°C). Your coolant gets hotter than that. ;) Not to beat a dead horse warning; but the automotive SAE standard is at least 257°F (125°C) for use in the engine compartment. Performance and racing spec's often use 302°F (150°C) for that nasty environment, which is much hotter than the typical marine engine compartment. Plus, places like Waytek and WireBarn have selections at much lower prices from 1/3 to 80% less (6 to 14 cents/ft), if ordering a convenience selection, up to roll quantities.

David

 

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Not sure what West Marine sells now but when I lived in Florida I had several within a 5-10 min drive of my house and work so it was very convienient when I needed a new spool or a different color for a new circuit. At that time (2002-2006) they carried SXL primary wire which is rated for automotive and marine engine compartments. I believe that has a 250ºF+ temp rating and meets SAE J-1128 requirement.
 
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