Amongst the types of wiring, conduit wiring has apparently become the most preferred and commonly employed in most residential and commercial buildings.
The electrical conduit is an electrical piping system used for the protection and routing of electrical wiring. It is used for protecting cables, wires, and data links against heat, cold, tensile stress, pressure stress, and other external influences in the important mechanical and electrical engineering industry. Many different brands offer various conduit types for diverse applications with various technical requirements.
Advantages of conduit wiring
Some benefits of electrical conduit are:
- It provides very good protection to conductors from impact, moisture, and chemical vapors.
- It las a long lifetime. You can use it for years.
- It is easy to install. You can even install them by yourself.
- It prevents accidental damage to the insulation.
- It has a good appearance.
- Varying sizes and types of conductors can be pulled into a conduit. This function simplifies the design.
- Frequent wiring changes can be made simply and safely with the use of an electrical conduit.
- When installed with proper sealing fittings, a conduit will not permit the flow of flammable gases and vapors, which protects from fire and explosion hazards in areas handling volatile substances.
- Conduits have various types such as EMT (Electrical Metal Tubing), IMC (Intermediate Metal Conduit), GRC or RMC (Galvanized Rigid Steel Conduit), RAC (Rigid Aluminum Conduit), PVC (Rigid Polyvinyl Chloride). These types can be used according to the requirements of the projects.
- Electrical conduit may be made of the following materials: Polyamide 6, Polyamide 6.6, Polyamide 12, Polyamide 11, Polypropylene, Polyethylene, PFA, PVDF, PVC, Steel, Aluminum, and Bronze.
- Conduit wiring can run over the surface of the walls and ceiling or can be concealed under masonry work.
- The metal conduit can be used to shield sensitive circuits from electromagnetic interference.
- Metal conduits provide protection against fire due to short circuits.
- Both metal and plastic conduits can be bent to allow a good installation without excessive numbers of manufactured fittings.
- Conduit can be installed in very low and very high ambient temperature ranges.
Disadvantages of conduit wiring
Some weaknesses of electrical conduit are:
- The cost of the conduit is higher than other wiring methods.
- It is very hard to find defects in the wiring.
- Conductors in the conduit cannot dissipate heat. Therefore, the current capacity of each conductor reduces.
- It is impractical, and prohibited by wiring regulations, to have more than 360 degrees of total bends in a run of conduit.
- Metal conduit wiring requires more time.
- Metal conduit wiring needs skilled labor.
- While metal conduits can be used as a grounding conductor, the circuit length is limited.
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