Off Grid Home Forums Technical Discussion Best 12v Cable for Indoor Lighting ? Re: Best 12v Cable for Indoor Lighting ?


Seeing the above comments gives me a sense that the correspondents generally lack any in-depth knowledge. 12V man at least know the rudiments of voltage drop as a function of current and wire length.

I highly recommend anyone wanting to run 12V wiring first read one of the books on RV and boat wiring which includes at least a whole chapter on the subject and also includes some of the wiring tables used to determine wire size for a given length and load amps. I have seen too many examples of someone using any old wire they happen to scrounge but forgetting basic safety principles.

Everything works fine until . . . . something unforseen goes wrong. In the absence of correct fuses in the right place, a short circuit can cause wires to overheat and melt the insulation. Most plastic wires are made using PVC which is highly toxic when melted. I know of one fatality where the owner was running some new wire and accidentally caused a short. The smoke from the melted wire overcame him before he could step six feet to the door and fresh air.

AS a marine electrician I have seen my share of fires started by poor wiring done by owners who figured they knew enough. Enough to be dangerous is more like it! There are any number of good books published and available at public libraries if you can’t afford to buy them. It might save you from having a fire or worse getting killed by faulty wiring. Data wiring such as computer cables and phone cables should not be used for power unless the power source has protective over current protection installed. Using inadequate wire sizes means incurring losses that are worse than the losses you are trying to avoid by not using inverters.