Copper VS. Aluminum Wiring

Most homeowners assume that their Minneapolis home uses copper wiring for the electrical system. In many cases, they are correct. But not all homes use copper wire. And when a homeowner discovers aluminum wiring in their home, they are filled with many concerns and questions about why copper was not used and if it is a safe alternative.

Copper VS. Aluminum Wiring

What Makes Ideal Electrical Wiring?

The material used for electrical wiring needs to conduct electricity well. The best conductors are non-magnetic metals like silver, copper, and aluminum. Silver happens to lead the pack as far as being an optimal conductor, but it is also the most costly. So you are not going to find a house with silver wiring. But you could come across many that use copper and a good number that use aluminum for the electrical wiring.

The Pros And Cons Of Copper

Copper has many things going for it when it comes to making electrical wiring. The metal is very malleable and ductile, making it very easy to pull into wire. And once annealed, it conducts 100% of the electrons that flow through it. The result is a piece of wire that is very durable and flexible, making it a good choice for long-term use, such as the installation in a home or commercial property.

The downside of copper is the price. While silver is still exponentially more costly than copper, copper is also much more expensive than aluminum.

The Pros And Cons Of Aluminum

Aluminum is a very lightweight and malleable metal. When you consider the weight of a soda can, you realize that this durable metal appears almost weightless. And that makes aluminum wiring very easy to work with. The large spools are easier to move and maneuver when wiring. And the extreme flexibility allows electricians to snake aluminum wiring throughout walls, floors, and ceilings of any home or other structure. Finally, at about half the cost of copper wiring, it is an economical choice.

The downside of aluminum is that it is very expansive. This results in aluminum wiring moving quite a bit when it heats and cools. The technical term is “cold creep.” And to prevent any danger from this movement, aluminum wiring needs to be installed using a slightly different process than copper. Expansion coils are often added to the installation to account for the movement and prevent the loosening of wire connections and the potential for a fire.

Why Relay On A Professional

When you have concerns about any electrical work in your Anoka home, it is always best to turn to the experts at Lumberjack Electric. Our team of licensed electricians is very familiar with all of the building codes and safety precautions required in the region. And they are also very intimate with all industry standards relating to both copper and aluminum wiring. Call 612-236-9052 to schedule an appointment with one of our experts to evaluate any wiring concerns you might have. And know that you will receive reliable and honest answers to your questions.

Lumberjack Electric

5720 International Parkway
New Hope, MN 55428