What is a phase wire?

In an electrical system there are quite a few names for different types of wires. In higher voltage systems, you will typically have either a single-phase system, or a three-phase system. The phase wires in these systems are the hot wires. Whenever the system has a power source, the phase wires will be hot so … Read more

What does the red stripe on a ribbon cable indicate?

Ribbon cables were once found in virtually every computer system, but more modern devices don’t use them nearly as much. While not as common, there are still millions of devices (both new and old) that use these cables to facilitate communication within various systems. When looking at a ribbon cable, you will likely notice that … Read more

What does it mean to ground a wire?

In most electrical systems you will find a hot wire, a neutral wire, and a ground wire. The ground wire is not strictly necessary for the operation of a device, but it is still an important feature. This wire is designed to provide a path for electrical current to travel if the normal paths aren’t … Read more

Is the black wire the hot wire?

If you are starting a project involving an electrical system, you need to make sure you know what each wire is so that it can be safely hooked up. While all electrical wires should be treated as if they were live until you can prove otherwise, it is the hot wire that is actually bringing … Read more

How are neutral wires identified?

Prior to touching any wires it is important to know what they are, and whether they have any current within them. This is important not only for safety while working with the wires, but also for ensuring the device you are working on works properly once it is powered up. Having the ability to identify … Read more

How are live wires identified?

When taking on any type of project involving an electrical system it is critical for safety to know whether the wires in the system are live or not. It is impossible to tell if a wire has current going through it just by looking at it, which is one of the things that makes them … Read more

What is the gray wire color used for?

If you’ve ever opened up or worked on an electrical system, you have undoubtedly seen multiple different wires within each cord. Each wire is a different color, and it is important to know what each of them means. The standard for 120-volt and 240-volt electrical cables is to have the gray wire be used for … Read more

What color(s) are used for ground wires?

When working on electrical systems it is important to learn what each of the different wires is so you can stay safe. In most systems there will be three separate wires, each of which are a different color. The wires in these setups are the hot wire, the negative wire, and the ground wire. The … Read more

How can wires be organized in a drawer?

If you are like most people, you have a drawer in your home and/or office that is filled with spare wires and cables. They are likely from a wide variety of different things, and while they aren’t in use right now, they are nice to have around in case they are ever needed. Simply having … Read more

What is the standard for labeling network cables?

Running network cables is a major part of many workplaces. These cables allow devices throughout a facility to communicate with each other, and to access the Internet or another outside network. Whenever installing network cables, it is important to label them properly to avoid mistakes. Properly labeled network cables also make it much easier to … Read more