Everything You Should Know About EC & ACSR Wire

If you’ve watched our video series Harley Says, you know Harley knows a thing or two (and a little more) about recycling and recyclable metals.

We’re going to break down what Harley said about EC and ACSR wire a bit more so you know what can and shouldn’t be brought to the scrapyard.

What is EC Wire?

EC (electrical conductor) Aluminum Wire consists of clean EC aluminum, chopped or shredded, free of screening, hair-wire, iron, copper, insulation and other non-metallic items.

Features of EC Wires:

  • Lightweight
  • High thermal conductivity and high electrical conductivity
  • Often shielded with a rubber or plastic outer layer
  • Recovered by stripping apart its outer shield
  • Has an electrical conductor
  • Magnets will not stick to the wire

What is ACSR Wire?

ACSR (aluminum-conductor steel-reinforced cable) Wires are a type of high-capacity, high-strength stranded conductor and mostly used for overhead transmission lines.

Features of ACSR Wires:

  • Often used as bare overhead transmission conductor, as a primary or secondary distribution conductor or messenger support
  • The outside of the conductor can be made of pure aluminum material while the inside of the conductor is made of steel material
  • Steel is of higher strength than aluminum which allows for increased mechanical tension to be applied on the conductor
  • Magnets will stick to this wire

Where can you find each wire?

EC Wire is used for wiring power grids, including overhead power transmission lines and local power distribution lines, as well as for power wiring of some airplanes. They can be found inside different gauge wires.

ACSR Wire is suitable for use in all practical spans on wood poles, transmission towers, and other structures because of its dependability and strength to weight ratio. They’re typically used in overhead power lines, in earthing wire, and long-distance and river crossing works.

How do you get the best price for each wire?

For EC Wire, you can strip insulation from aluminum wires and cables manually or by using a stripping machine and end up with aluminum EC wire. It’s usually ready to sell at premium aluminum prices.

For ACSR Wire, you can strip the rubber coating of the wire and will get a better price because the scrapyard doesn’t have to do it. Cashin accepts it with the rubber coating still on it, but customers will get a lower price this way.

If you have questions about any of these wires or other recyclables, give us a call at 304-755-5187. And don’t forget to check out our Harley Says videos – he knows what he’s talking about!

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