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Topic Title: Switch Wire
Topic Summary: Colour of Switch Wire
Created On: 03 October 2013 12:57 PM
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 03 October 2013 12:57 PM
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deleted_1_AngelLaHash

Posts: 39
Joined: 27 September 2012

I'm putting in conduit, and using single cable 1.5mm for lighting, I just used the Brown for the Switch wire, is that ok. I did put some brown tape on it too at the switch.
 03 October 2013 01:29 PM
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daveparry1

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Yes that's ok but why did you put brown tape on if it was already brown?
 03 October 2013 02:11 PM
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mikejumper

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Originally posted by: daveparry1
Yes that's ok but why did you put brown tape on if it was already brown?

Probably not brown enough Dave.
Some 'brown' cable is more black than brown.
 03 October 2013 02:17 PM
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RB1981

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Originally posted by: AngelLaHash

I'm putting in conduit, and using single cable 1.5mm for lighting, I just used the Brown for the Switch wire, is that ok. I did put some brown tape on it too at the switch.


Not only is it OK to use brown - it is a requirement to.
 03 October 2013 02:22 PM
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mikejumper

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Originally posted by: RB1981
Originally posted by: AngelLaHash
I'm putting in conduit, and using single cable 1.5mm for lighting, I just used the Brown for the Switch wire, is that ok. I did put some brown tape on it too at the switch.


Not only is it OK to use brown - it is a requirement to.

What about grey and black?
 03 October 2013 02:55 PM
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RB1981

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Originally posted by: mikejumper
What about grey and black?


Should only be used for phases L3 and L2 respectively of a three-phase circuit surely?
 03 October 2013 03:16 PM
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dg66

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You can use whatever colour you want as long as its correctly identified at its termination, apart from G/Y singles which ncan only be used for earth.

-------------------------
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Dave(not Cockburn)
 03 October 2013 03:24 PM
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AJJewsbury

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You can use whatever colour you want

apart from plain green! (514.4.5)

- Andy.
 03 October 2013 04:02 PM
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dg66

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Is plain green still available to buy?

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Dave(not Cockburn)
 03 October 2013 04:19 PM
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normcall

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I tend to use light brown (aka red) or a different make as not every brown is the same.
Plan B is to use 1.0mm for switch wires (after I run out of red single).

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Norman
 03 October 2013 05:52 PM
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RB1981

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Originally posted by: dg66

You can use whatever colour you want as long as its correctly identified at its termination, apart from G/Y singles which ncan only be used for earth.


Although it is preferable that they are identifiable throughout their length. And why would anyone sleeve an incorrectly coloured single cable instead of using the correct (brown) one?
 03 October 2013 06:02 PM
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jcm256

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One nick for switch wire, two nicks for strappers, three nicks for an additional in between, lives no nicks, or use two whites twin & earth for strappers as marked on the drum for use off in a well known DIY store.
 03 October 2013 06:13 PM
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dg66

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Originally posted by: RB1981

Originally posted by: dg66



You can use whatever colour you want as long as its correctly identified at its termination, apart from G/Y singles which ncan only be used for earth.




Although it is preferable that they are identifiable throughout their length. And why would anyone sleeve an incorrectly coloured single cable instead of using the correct (brown) one?


Depends whats available at the time, but as i said earlier as long as its identified at its terminals any colour can be used,preferable doesnt mean compliant and apart from the two colours mentioned none are incorrect.

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Dave(not Cockburn)
 03 October 2013 07:15 PM
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OMS

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Originally posted by: dg66

You can use whatever colour you want as long as its correctly identified at its termination, apart from G/Y singles which ncan only be used for earth.


Not on my job you wouldn't regardless of how much heat shrink or tape you applied.

The correct colour is brown, for singles in conduit there is no reason not to use anything else.

and before anyone starts yelling about the practice of also including grey and black to differentiate switch wires and feeds for emergency lighting from switch feeds they also should be all brown - use alphanumeric ferrules if you want to know what is what

Regards

OMS

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 03 October 2013 08:23 PM
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dg66

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Originally posted by: dg66

Originally posted by: OMS



Originally posted by: dg66







You can use whatever colour you want as long as its correctly identified at its termination, apart from G/Y singles which ncan only be used for earth.








Not on my job you wouldn't regardless of how much heat shrink or tape you applied.







The correct colour is brown, for singles in conduit there is no reason not to use anything else.







and before anyone starts yelling about the practice of also including grey and black to differentiate switch wires and feeds for emergency lighting from switch feeds they also should be all brown - use alphanumeric ferrules if you want to know what is what







Regards







OMS




Well im not talking about your job, you can choose whatever you like in your specification, as i can do whatever i like in my specification, as long as an installation complies with the regs im happy. As for no reason to use anything else,in an ideal world i agree, but when the client wants some extras installing the same day and the required brown singles are not on site you use whats available. I would also wager that it has been done on one of your jobs as i doubt very much you have the time or inclination to check every termination at every accessory or point in the wiring system.


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Dave(not Cockburn)
 03 October 2013 08:54 PM
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leckie

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Is the initial question worth an answer? I think it's a wind up but I might be wrong.
 04 October 2013 08:05 AM
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Legh

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On one job, I remember, the standard single phase circuits were coloured Red Black and Grn/Yell. The emergency standard circuits were coloured Grey Blue and Yellow.

I think its therefore up to the designer, particularly on large complex projects where there are parallel supplies, emergency circuits, ELV and control to specify a non-ambiguous consistent code.
As all this would be documented and company policy training for the competent maintenance electricians would be provided then everybody should know whats going on...

However, you knew it was coming, , One must consider the asthetics when peering into a containment. Nothing worst than a monochrome layout.

Legh

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 04 October 2013 08:38 AM
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broadgage

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The regs would seem to say that the switch wire should be preferably brown, and if of some other colour should be identified brown at the terminations.

OTOH, alternative colours do in practice seem to be used without marking them brown (or red under the old system) No one seems to worry about 3 core and earth cable with the grey and/or black used for switch wires.

I would not be keen on use of black for a switched live conductor, lest it be confused with a neutral since black was used thus until fairly recently.

Grey is IMHO acceptable in practice. Everyone knows that grey is now a phase colour, and unlike black it has no recent history of widespread use for anything else.
In mainland Europe use of grey or black instead of brown is fairly common to distinguish different live conductors on single phase circuits.

The best choice in practice IMHO is to use different shades of brown for switched and unswitched live, as previously suggested.
In years gone by, I used to keep a stock of red singles in different shades of red for just this reason.
 04 October 2013 11:17 AM
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Legh

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The best choice in practice IMHO is to use different shades of brown for switched and unswitched live, as previously suggested.
In years gone by, I used to keep a stock of red singles in different shades of red for just this reason.


I think this method was attempted using the colour grey, albeit in another sphere of life. It has now become obsolete and manuals to such can be found cluttering up second hand book stalls.

Legh

-------------------------
Why do we need Vernier Calipers when we have container ships?

http://www.leghrichardson.co.uk

"Science has overcome time and space. Well, Harvey has overcome not only time and space - but any objections."
 04 October 2013 12:23 PM
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mikejumper

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Originally posted by: broadgage
In mainland Europe use of grey or black instead of brown is fairly common to distinguish different live conductors on single phase circuits.

And red, orange, violet and various other rainbow colours.

Why have we been stuck with dark indistinguishable colours when the rest of Europe has a kaleidoscope of colours to choose from?

I thought we were harmonised with them.
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