USA Flexible Cord Explain
XTW : parallel Integral, Decorative-Lighting Cords, 300V 105℃
CXTW : Twisted Pair & Single Conductor, Decorative-Lighting Cords, 300V 105℃
S(Service) : Heavy duty, rubber-insulated and rubber jacketed overall, 600V
SE : Same as S, using thermoplastic Elastomer in place of rubber
SEO : Same as SE, but with Oil resistance out jacket
SJ : Junior hard service, same as S but300V, thickness different
SJO : Same as SJ, but with Oil resistance out jacket
SJE : Same as SJ, using thermoplastic Elastomer in place of rubber
SJEO : Same as SJE, but with Oil resistance out jacket
SJEOO : Same as SJE, but with Oil resistance out jacket and insulation
SJEOW : Same as SJE, Sunlight and Oil resistance out jacket, wet location
SV : Vacuum cleaner cord, rubber insulated and jacketed, light duty in damp locations
SVO : Same as SV, but with Neoprene Oil resistance out jacket
SVE : Same as SV, using thermoplastic Elastomer in place of rubber
SVEO : Same as SVE, but with Oil resistance out jacket
SJT : Same as SJ, using Thermoplastic in place of rubber
SJTO : Same as SJT, but with Oil resistance out jacket
SJTOO : Same as SJT, but with Oil resistance out jacket and insulation
SJTOOW : Same as SJTOO, Sunlight resistance out jacket, wet location
SVT : Same as SV, using Thermoplastic in place of rubber
SVTO : Same as SVT, but with Oil resistance out jacket
ST : Hard service cord, Same as S, using Thermoplastic in place of rubber
STW : Same as ST, Sunlight resistance out jacket, wet location
SRD : Portable range or dryer cable, rubber insulated and jacketed, flat or round construction
SRDE : Same as SRD, using thermoplastic Elastomer in place of rubber
SRDT : Same as SRD, using Thermoplastic in place of rubber, 90℃
SP-1 : all rubber, parallel-jacketed, light duty cord use in damp locations, 300V
SP-2 : Same as SP-1, but heavier construction, 300V
SP-3 : Same as SP-2, but heavier construction, 300V
SPE-1,2,3 : Same as SP-1,2,3, using thermoplastic Elastomer in place of rubber
SPT-1,2,3 : Same as SP-1,2,3, using Thermoplastic in place of rubber
NISPT-1,2 : Nonintegral SPT-1,2 insulation and jacket all Thermoplastic
HPN : Heater Parallel Neoprene cord, use in damp locations
CL2 : Class 2 General Purpose remote control, power-limited cable, meets Vertical Tray flame
CL3 : Class 3 General Purpose remote control, power-limited cable, meets Vertical Tray flame
CM : Communication cable, meets Vertical Tray flame test
CMX : Outdoor Communication cable, meets VW-1 flame test
CMG : Communication cable General Purpose
CMR : Communication cable Riser, meets Riser flame test
CMP : Communication cable Plenum, meets Steiner tunnel flame test
SO cord is a popular choice and comes in many varieties, all of which are multiconductors, incredibly flexible and safe for indoor and outdoor projects.
While it’s used in all types of residential, commercial and industrial applications, it’s become particularly common in mines and marinas because of its ability to withstand harsh environments over long periods of time.
Decipher the Code
You can’t purchase cord based on the price alone. The specifications, safety features and longevity are all factors in deciding which cord is best for a particular application.
The many types of SO cord may appear confusing at first, but the varieties can be deciphered by an industry key:
- S = Service cord
- J = Junior service cord
- O = Oil-resistant outside jacket
- OO = Oil-resistant both inside insulation and outside jacket
- W = Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) designation for weather and water resistance
- T = Thermoplastic
- E = Elastomer
SOOW With a Thermoset Jacket
SOOW is the most popular type of SO cord, and it’s often used in industrial settings. It has a 600-volt rating but also comes as a junior service cord, SJOOW, which is rated for 300 volts.
SOOW is incredibly durable. Its thermoset rubber jacket makes the cord weather resistant, and the jacket hardens under a direct application of heat, which allows the cord to be unaffected by aging, abrasion, water, sunlight and ozone. Oil-resistant insulation and jacketing lend to the cord’s durability as well.
SOOW wire can be submerged underwater and is flame retardant; therefore, it’s safe for all indoor and outdoor projects. The thermoset rubber won’t melt when it comes into contact with hot surfaces or oils.
The cord is safe up to 221 degrees Fahrenheit, and it will even remain safe and flexible in temperatures as low as negative 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
The SJOOW version remains flexible and durable but is designed for indoor applications such as portable tools, equipment and motors. The choice between SOOW and SJOOW mainly comes down to the voltage required for the project.
SEOOW With a Thermoplastic Elastomer Jacket
SEOOW cord has a thermoplastic elastomer jacket. The thermoplastic material softens when heated then hardens when cooled. It is less durable than the thermoset material but is as flexible and lighter.
SEOOW cord has low temperature capabilities that outpace the SOOW cord. It’s safe to use in temperatures as cold as negative 58 degrees Fahrenheit.
It is also oil, water and weather resistant. It meets the CSA approval for outdoor use and is often used for industrial projects, construction tools and other electrical equipment.
However, it’s recommended that you don’t use SEOOW cord when it could come into contact with hot surfaces. Cords with thermoplastic elastomer jackets may not be designated by the CSA as flame retardant—you must make sure the cord has been marked as such to get the ultimate protection.
STOOW With a Thermoplastic Jacket
STOOW cord has the same oil- and water-resistant features as SOOW and SEOOW, and you can use it in both indoor and outdoor applications.
However, it has a thermoplastic jacket that is the least flexible of the three options and will deform under extreme heat or pressure. This type of SO cord should be used where it will have minimal exposure to chemicals, oil and extreme temperatures.
STOOW is common in consumer applications, portable lights and power extensions.
Through its many varieties, SO cord is incredibly versatile, making it the most popular electrical cord on the market. The different types of rubber or plastic jackets surrounding the multiconductors give you options for choosing the cord that will be the most safe and cost effective option for your project.