ECN Electrical Forum - Discussion Forums for Electricians, Inspectors and Related Professionals

Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#73090 - 12/16/06 12:45 PM Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
wendel Offline
Member
Registered: 08/07/04
Posts: 55
Does anyone know if aluminum wire is appropriate for outdoor landscape low voltage lighting? Copper is getting a bit expensive so I thought in an outdoor, low voltage situation, aluminum might be a better way to go.
Top
Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades
#73091 - 12/16/06 12:53 PM Re: Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
LearJet9 Offline
Member
Registered: 04/24/05
Posts: 197
Loc: Millis, MA USA
AL wire is totally and absolutely useless for anything.
Top
#73092 - 12/16/06 06:30 PM Re: Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
PCBelarge Offline
Member
Registered: 06/08/03
Posts: 681
Loc: Dobbs Ferry, NY, USA
LearJet

That is just your opinion.

I certainly would not use Al wiring outdoors/underground.

For other applications, Al could be a cost effective way to install feeders. There are many ways to accomplish this, raceways, MC, etc...
_________________________
Pierre Belarge
Top
#73093 - 12/16/06 11:50 PM Re: Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
mhulbert Offline
Member
Registered: 10/19/04
Posts: 132
Loc: Anaheim, CA USA
If all of your runs were in PVC, and all your connections in above grade "power posts", with DB rated connectors, aluminum would be great.

For the typical LV, direct burial setup, I'd have a hard time trusitng it. Too bad, since LV lighting uses some heavy cable, the copper adds up.
Top
#73094 - 12/17/06 04:51 AM Re: Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
iwire Offline
Moderator
Registered: 01/05/03
Posts: 4391
Loc: North Attleboro, MA USA
I agree with PCBelarge and mhulbert.
_________________________
Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts
Top
#73095 - 12/17/06 07:32 AM Re: Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
Tom Offline
Member
Registered: 01/01/01
Posts: 1044
Loc: Shinnston, WV USA
Unless the manufacturer of the power unit for the system specifically allows a differant cable type or conductor type in their installation instructions, aluminum would not be permitted IMO.

In UL's White Book, under the heading of Landscape Lighting Systems, Low Voltage (IFDH), the conductors should be listed SPT-3 or SPT-2-W.

Under the heading of Flexible Cord (zjcz) in the first paragraph " All conductors are stranded copper."
_________________________
Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example.
Top
#73096 - 12/17/06 09:22 AM Re: Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant
Member
Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5316
Loc: Blue Collar Country
Learjet has expressed the feeling of "the trade" ... if not that of the wire manufacturers!

Aluminum, anywhere near the ground, can't help but have corrosion issues. Nor have I ever seen a landscape lighting transformer listed for use with aluminum wire. As far as I know, aluminum is not currently made in wire finer than #6. (I could be wrong on that).

Indeed, the only place I see aluminum used is in the PoCo service drops.

But, before I get my shorts in a know over "can I or can't I," I'd look to see if the stuff exists first of all.
Top
#73097 - 12/17/06 10:01 AM Re: Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
iwire Offline
Moderator
Registered: 01/05/03
Posts: 4391
Loc: North Attleboro, MA USA
Quote:
Learjet has expressed the feeling of "the trade"


No he has not spoken for "the trade".

Aluminum can be and is used without problem for many circuits.

Would I use it for direct burial?

Would I recommend it for a seaside installation?

No.

Inside a building for feeders yes it is a fine product.
_________________________
Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts
Top
#73098 - 12/17/06 10:52 AM Re: Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
luckyshadow Offline
Member
Registered: 01/04/05
Posts: 304
Loc: Maryland USA
Around here aluminum cable is used on 99.9% of residential services. The standard here is 4/0 Al. SEU service cable.
I have even seen some commercial feeders being run in aluminum .
Top
#73099 - 12/18/06 04:12 AM Re: Aluminum Wire For Landscape Lighting
Texas_Ranger Offline
Member
Registered: 12/17/01
Posts: 2391
Loc: Vienna, Austria
Most European power companies have been known to run Al underground feeders everywhere, so it must be possible. One thing though: they always use crimp splices and embed them in some kind of resin, so there is absolutely NO chance of moisture or air getting to the connections.
Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >

Member Spotlight
Member Since: 07/05/02
Posts: 8211
New in the Gallery:
SE cable question
Featured:

2017 NEC and Related
2017 NEC
Now Available!

Shout Box


Who's Online
0 registered (), 50 Guests and 11 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
 
New in the Gallery:
SE cable question
 
Top Posters (30 Days)
Admin 79
HotLine1 51
Ruben Rocha 29
gfretwell 25
Trumpy 20
 
Newest Members
clee512, Jdscott2005, FAIZAN, Regitest2, sureshazhagai

ECN Electrical Forums - sponsored by Electrical Contractor Network - Electrical and Code Related Discussion for Electrical Contractors, Electricians, Inspectors, Instructors, Engineers and other related Professionals