Plenum Cable Vs Non Plenum Cable: Which Is Best?

If you are in the process of constructing a building, which do you prefer the most, Plenum or non plenum? Well, if you are an expert with construction materials, you should know which material is the best. When choosing for the best capable, there are various options for you to choose. As time passes by, innovations continue to spread out throughout the industry. However, there is just one thing that will not change. Your choice should start whether to use or not plenum or non plenum cable. You should know the jacket around the cable and the cable specifications itself. If you know how to peruse both the jacket and the cable, it will help you decide the kind of cable to use for your job. One has to realize that plenum is not the same with non plenum cable.

Let us tackle a little bit about plenum cable. Plenum cable acquired its name from the HVAC industry which means plenum spaces. These spaces refer to areas where air can circulate within a building. Plenum cables aid in heating and cooling air. Since it is installed freely, it is required especially if there is no conduit used. The spaces in plenum help fire and smoke to travel fast. With a plenum rated cable installed, in case of a fire, toxic smoke is lower than normal.This is due because plenum cables are made of materials which Produce low smoke when exposed to flames.

These materials are called Low Smoke PVC, Flouropolymers and also Teflon®. These have superior smoke arresting properties that allow cables to emit less smoke compared to regular PVC cables. On the other hand, non plenum cables which are commonly called PVC (polyvinyl chloride) cable is not so costly between the two choices. Contractors usually opt for this type of cable to save or if they are reducing budget for their project. The decision though in choosing PVC solely lies on the owner or the contractors absent local municipality requirements. However, most schools & commercial buildings are required to install plenum reated cables by most municipalities in the United States and Canada, per the National Electrical Code. The cost of PVC cables is in fact about 30 percent less expensive than plenum rated cables and about 1/3 of Teflon® insulated cables. Plenum cables in general can offer less physical and secondary damages. It is highly preferred in establishments where many people are confined within such as schools and hospitals and commercial buildings.

The choice of using of plenum and non plenum cables should be on the contractor's point of view. The main factor that directly affects his decision is the cost. It is best to identify honestly if the project requires plenum rated cable or if PVC cables will do. After all, it is the quality, safety and longevity of the project that we are looking forward.

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