PVC Cable: A Comprehensive Buying Guide for 2023

PVC cable is extensively used in various modern electrical installations, pvc electrical  cable have good electrical properties and play a key role in modern electrical systems. Recently I wanted to buy PVC cables and thought to go through the various information related to PVC so that I can buy the right PVC cables for my application. Read this blog if you are also in the same scenario as me.

What is a PVC cable?

PVC cable means that an electrical cable that is insulated or sheathed with pvc material. PVC cable stands for Polyvinyl Chloride, a type of Synthetic polymer plastic. The PVC material provides several electrical performance, making it a popular choice for various electronic equipment, distribution system, and other applications requiring electrical connections. And external pvc protect the inner conductor from physical damage, moisture and environmental effects. PVC copper cable is safe and reliable in different application, and pvc cable size, color, types and other pvc cable specification will help you make decision about purchasing cable pvc. Now we will look at the different types of pvc cable.

What are common types of PVC Cables?

Most electrical cables will use pvc material to make it own the excellent electrical performance, there are different pvc cable types in electrical system that you can refered.

PVC insulated cable

PVC insulated cable refers to the use of pvc as the insulating material of the cable. PVC is used as the insulating material, which gives the pvc power cable excellent electrical properties. Compared with other electrical cables, pvc insulated cable is more flexible, and can be bent and wired in a narrow space and maintain its insulating properties, but also has the ability to resist abrasion, chemical substance corrosion and prevent moisture, so that pvc cable wire can improve the reliability of pvc cable in different environments, extend the service life, and reduce the cost of maintenance. Therefore, pvc cables can be used for wiring of power distribution facilities, various electrical appliances and mechanical equipment in buildings.

PVC insulated cable

PVC jacketed cable

Electrical cable that have an outer layer of pvc material wrapped around it as a sheath are known as PVC jacketed cable. PVC sheathing provides extra protection to the conductor and insulation inside the electrical cable, making pvc coated cable more durable. Since pvc sheathed cables have excellent resistance to a wide range of chemicals, abrasion and physical damage, as well as sunlight, rain and snow, people use PVC sheathed cable for outdoor lighting installations in public areas such as parks, as well as in network applications and communication systems for network data transmission and communication.

pvc jacketed cable

PVC control cable

PVC control cable belongs to an electrical cable used to transmit signals from the control of various equipment to the control center. PVC control cable have multiple conductors, each individually insulated and representing a different function and identified by color coding, and are bundled together and filled to a round shape with the filler, protected by a shielding and PVC jacket. PVC control cables are flame retardant, inexpensive and durable, and are suitable for industrial automation, robotic control systems, various instrumentation and air-conditioning systems, and others that require precise control to ensure safe and reliable operation of the control system.

pvc control cable

PVC flexible cable

PVC flexible cable is composed of a flexible sheath and insulation made of pvc that is wrapped around the conductor. The greatest advantage of pvc flexible cable is its flexibility, which makes it ideal for tight spaces where the wire must be bent or moved frequently without causing harm; Furthermore, it possesses a robust resistance to abrasion and insulating capacity, enabling it to endure mechanical harm and guarantee the secure transfer of electricity. And PVC flexible cable’s flexibility makes it simpler for users to install and operate, making it a popular option for inexperienced installers. PVC flexible cables are widely used for wiring inside the home, temporary equipment on construction sites, automobiles and medical equipment to transmit power safely and stably for people.

pvc flexible cable

PVC flat cable

PVC flat cable can also become flat ribbon cable, different from other round cables, it is flat shape, composed of multiple conductors parallel to each other, outside is flat pvc insulation on the conductor for fixing and protection; PVC flat cable has high flexibility, can be bent frequently, is a popular choice for wiring in narrow spaces and corners. PVC flat cable’s conductors can be arranged in parallel for multiple with multiple signals, so that multiple signals can be transmitted, easy to operate and handle; PVC flat cable shape is conducive to air circulation and heat dissipation, suitable for electronic equipment, automotive interior, medical equipment and automation systems within the wiring, can be effective for power and signal transmission.

pvc flat cable

All of the above are types of pvc wire. The pvc material provides better electrical properties to the electrical cables and the low pvc cable price, making it a cost-effective option. Let’s further analyse the advantages and disadvantages of pvc sheathed cable in the next section.

Advantages & Disadvantages of pvc sheathed cable

Every thing has two sides, pvc sheathed cable has electrical advantages and there will be disadvantages present, so you have to match your application when buying.

PVC cable advantages

  1. durability: pvc sheathed cables are highly resistant to abrasion, chemical corrosion and different weather conditions. pvc provides strong protection for them, making pvc sheathed cables more widely applicable;
  2. Flexibility: pvc sheathed cables have excellent flexibility and flexibility, easy to operate when wiring in narrow spaces, reducing the amount of tasks people have to install;
  3. Wide application: PVC sheathed cables have good electrical properties and can be used in many applications;
  4. cost: polyvinyl chloride material is low in price, compared with other types of sheathing materials, pvc cable manufacturing cost is low, it is more affordable choice.

Disadvantages of pvc cable

  1. Temperature: PVC sheathed cables are rated at 70 degrees Celsius and can withstand a limited temperature range. pvc sheathed cable is not suitable for high temperature environment and low temperature environment, in low temperature environment will affect its flexibility;
  2. Environmental protection: pvc in essence belongs to a kind of plastic, in the production and processing will cause pollution to the environment, and even combustion will produce toxic chlorine gas, harmful to the human body;
  3. UV radiation: pvc cable uv resistance ability is limited, after time changes, pvc sheath will be aging, affecting the performance of pvc sheath cable.

pvc sheathed cable is not suitable for high temperature environment and low temperature environment, in low temperature environment will affect its flexibility;

When we choose to buy PVC wire cable, in addition to the pvc cable’s carrying capacity, size and other specifications, we also have to consider these advantages and disadvantages to reduce the probability of danger, to ensure that the purpose of safe and reliable transmission of signals and electricity is achieved. After that, compare pe and pvc cable.

PE vs PVC cable

PE and PVC belong to two different plastic materials, both are used to make cable insulation and sheathing to protect the conductors of cables and provide different electrical properties. In order to help you better distinguish between them, the following from several aspects to analyze the difference between pvc and pe cable.

pvc cable vs pe cable

  1. Resistance: pvc cable has good resistance to wear and tear, chemicals and humid environment, indoor and outdoor have a wide range of applications, PE cable has good resistance to ultraviolet radiation, more suitable for outdoor wiring applications;
  2. Dielectric strength: PE cable has higher dielectric strength than PVC cable, more suitable for high-voltage applications;
  3. Flexibility: PE cable is more flexible than PVC cable, more suitable for narrow spaces or corners of the wiring;
  4. Flame retardant: PVC cable has a natural flame retardant, which can prevent the spread of fire, while PE cable does not have a natural flame retardant;
  5. Weight: PVC cables are heavier than PE cables in the same specifications.
  6. Price: The price of PVC cable is lower than the cost of PE cable, which can reduce people’s purchase cost;

In conclusion, PVC cable is more commonly used than PE cable, and the specific choice of which one to choose still has to take into account the ambient temperature, voltage, budget, and size requirements of the particular application. Most importantly all must comply with industry manufacturing standards and specifications. So let’s finally look further into undergrounding and waterproofing PVC cable.

Can pvc cable be buried and waterproof?

  1. Buried underground: pvc cables have the performance of moisture and soil acidity corrosion resistance, can be buried underground, but need to increase the conduit for additional protection of the pvc for cables; at the same time the depth of the buried is also worthy of people’s attention, must be deep enough in order to avoid the impact of surface activities on the pvc armoured cable; in addition, when burying power cable pvc, it is best to look for a professional next to the guidance to ensure that the safe reasonable underground wiring.
  2. Waterproof: Although PVC cable has certain waterproof characteristics, it does not mean that it can always be immersed in water, there are still limitations. In addition, during installation, PVC swa cable joints should be sealed and connected using waterproof junction boxes to prevent the electrical properties and physical damage caused by direct contact between the electrical cable and water.

Whether buried or other environmental applications, PVC power cables should be regularly inspected and maintained and cable problems should be resolved in a timely manner to ensure the smooth flow and integrity of the electrical, correctly installed in accordance with the production standards of pvc single core cable is a necessary condition for us to use electricity reliably on a regular basis.


As a result of my research, I have already grasp the PVC cable meaning, types and other related information. After that I will be in a better position to make a suitable choice for my application. There is also another blog on xlpe cable which also describes pvc cable vs xlpe cable available for you to have a better grasp.

It is essential to choose a reliable and good supplier of electrical wire and cable for power transmission, service life and maintenance cost, etc. ZW Cable meets all these requirements.

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About Me
Richard Zi
Richard Zi

Hey, I am Richard Zi, General Manager of ZW Cable and expert in cable industry for over 15 years. I would like to share my experience in cable field. ZW Cable is leading Chinese cable manufacturer. We can choose right size cable and solve all your cable problem. If you have any question, please feel free to contact me. I will try my best to give your cable solutions. View All My Posts >>

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