ÔĽŅ What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?

Author Topic: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?  (Read 1146 times)

Offline MrTeaIOT

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What is good wire to buy in bulk for 12v power supply to pixels light for power injection?  I like to centralize all the power supply to one location ie; Inside the Garage for easy monitoring and replacement.  For power injection, I like to use 14-16 gauge 2 conductors speaker wire stranded to about 50-75feet runs to the end of the pixel lights.  I cannot find any wires that is for power line at this gauge.  Will 2 conductor speaker copper stranded wires works great or any better wires to use for this application?  This is my first year doing this Pixel lights with controller. :)

Offline Emuney18

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2018, 02:37:52 PM »
Speaker wire will work fine as well as any other wire you find.  I have no idea what is the cheapest but that probably depends on how many feet you need.  It is best to stick with all copper and not CCA but to each his own.  There are online voltage drop calculators to help with the size calculation based on distance and current draw.


I must ask though, how many runs of wire do you have from your garage and how do they exit?  How many lights are you driving like this?  Every time someone posts about having it all in the garage I get so confused thinking about the bundle of wire I would have to have to do that, versus a handful of extension cords in the yard.  I would guess my own wire bundles would be a few of the really big pool noodles in diameter. I have no idea how I would get that out of the garage except for cutting a hole in the wall. 

Offline blantrip

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What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2018, 11:16:54 PM »
Having all of your power supplies in one central location and running wires from there to your pixels doesnít sound efficient to me.

If you havenít already, Iíd suggest drawing this out on paper and then determine how many wire runs youíll need to your pixels, including power injection. Remember two wires (positive and negative) for each. Then figure out the approximate lengths of each. Unless all of your pixels are near your garage I think youíll soon realize it would be better to locate your power supplies closer to your display elements.

Donít forget to fuse your wires.

Wire suggestions, lamp cord (zip cord) usually less expensive than speaker wire. If you have some old outdoor extension cords you could also cut the plugs off and use that.

If you are anywhere near CT I have tons of extra lamp cord wire that I donít use since converting to pixels.

Offline goverland

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2018, 04:41:53 AM »

I used 12/2 for the long runs and tapped into them multiple times with 16/2 to each injection. Thinking about just burying the 12/2 and putting some power distro boards through out the yard as I too like to centralize everything from my garage.  Landscape lighting has the right idea I think.




https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B0002YVWTW/ref=pe_861660_138883610_fxm_4_0_n_id
https://smile.amazon.com/Moonrays-11604-Connectors-Landscape-Lighting/dp/B0024NK0OM/ref=pd_bxgy_60_2




Greg

Offline MrTeaIOT

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2018, 06:28:58 AM »
Thanks for all your feedback.  I have not do any wiring yet since this is my first year.  I have 3 car garage house and corner lot with 2 story house.  I already got some power supply, pixels (will buy more) and now shopping for wiring.  I have no problem make a 3-4" pvc pipes hole exiting the garage via side bottom or side top.  For 12 gauge it is over kill for me vs prices.  I found the calculater.net webpage.  For power loss I can always bump up some 12v voltage to 13v to recover the voltage drop at the end of 50ft mark.
As for wiring I have plan to use this cheapest found https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B00R9DIKCG/ref=twister_B00RBFRKC8?_encoding=UTF8&th=1 since it is copper wires and have CL3 rating with outside sleeves.  The landscape wires does not have sleeves and did not indicate whether it is a copper or CCA wiring.  The low voltage indicate that cannot withstand for high watts/amperage use in Pixels lights.
For long term. I plan to put centralize power supply inside the garage since easy to monitor and not ugly boxes everywhere outside the house with AC cord more dangerous.  The most far run with be about 50 feet away.     Just like new house using PEX waterlines are centralize all to one junction for easy layout and changes but more runs on pipes..
« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 06:38:08 AM by MrTeaIOT »

Offline goverland

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2018, 11:05:44 AM »
The Coleman cable is copper and as it is landscaping power cable you usually won't find a sleeve as there is no need for we are talking low voltage (NEC 0-49v).  The CL is the rating of the jacket not the wire inside.  I had one primary run for my mega tree 800 pixels with 90 node star, this was 5v.  The other primary run was 12v with 3 mini trees 200 pixels each and 40 node stars.  I did catch Amazon when they had a really good sale on it and it was lower than 2/16 at the time.


Greg

Offline k6ccc

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2018, 12:49:13 PM »
For power loss I can always bump up some 12v voltage to 13v to recover the voltage drop at the end of 50ft mark.

Bad plan.  Since the current will fluctuate depending on how the pixels are lit, the voltage at the end of the cable will fluctuate.  That will result in pixels fluctuating with the voltage changes.

With some creativity, you can hide power supplies out of sight and safely.  For example, in the photo below (if it works), you can't tell that there is one 12V 30A power supply in the left brick column (and for Christmas there is three more various power supplies).  BTW, the photo taken during Police Memorial week - hence the blue lights and the flags at half staff.  What you are seeing is a good portion of my year round landscape lighting.  Note that the yard is in the middle of a major landscape project and was no where completed when the photo was taken (and still not completed).
Using LOR for all sequencing - using FPP only to drive P5 and P10 panels.
Jim

Offline MrTeaIOT

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2018, 08:28:21 PM »
For your hidden power supply (waterproof case) what wiring do you use to power the unit and how long the AC cable runs from the house?  You probability need 3 wires one for ground and buried underground.  That is the trade off.  I prefer running 12V with 2 conductors wires with the power supply in nice ventilate place inside the garage.

Offline k6ccc

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2018, 08:39:12 PM »
If that was directed to me, my power supplies are not waterproofed, the brick column is.  There are two 20A 120V AC circuits in conduit to the breaker panel.  I don't need that much power, but while I was pulling wire into the conduit it was just as easy to pull five wires as three.  This is used year round.



Offline MrTeaIOT

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2018, 08:48:49 AM »
Back to my original topic.  If I am running 12v to 50ft of wires, if I fused it 5A and the power drawn could go up to the max of my power supply 500W at 42A then this Coleman Low Power 12/2 cable only rated 120v/12w = 0.1A (from website).  For this solution, I might need 12 gauge wires using Speaker wires but not sure this wire rating.  I know that with the higher Amp the more the voltage drop at the end.    How do I get at least 300W just incase thru the end of 50ft wires for the pixels power injection? :D

Offline toml8345

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2018, 09:02:37 AM »
Just to answer part of your original post.  I use Monoprice speaker wire for all my DC lighting.  I typically purchase their 4-conductor wire like this: https://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=2817 - it comes in various guages from 18-12 and is pure copper. 

Offline MrTeaIOT

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2018, 10:15:06 AM »
That is what I plan to get.  Why you getting 4 conductors instead?  Do you running the data line too or from separate power supply?  What is the maximum watts you ever run on this wires and what is the amperes on the fuse?

Offline toml8345

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2018, 11:16:53 AM »
That is what I plan to get.  Why you getting 4 conductors instead?  Do you running the data line too or from separate power supply?  What is the maximum watts you ever run on this wires and what is the amperes on the fuse?


I do not use the Centralized Power plan that you are implementing, so when i want to run power and data from a controller, I pull one of the wires out of the jacket and have 3 conductor wire.  When I am doing Power Injection, I find I will typically have a couple of places to inject near each other, so I can run 2 sets of power through the 1 cable.  Sometimes when my PI points are a bit futher apart I will strip off several feet of the outer jacket and use my power drill to twist the wire pairs to keep them more manageable going to the different PI's. 


I typically fuse these wires with 5amp fuses, therefore I do not run more than 60W max on any of these pairs.  I use the thicker gauges for longer runs to reduce voltage loss and 18ga for my short runs to reduce expense.


FYI, I use AMP style connectors like THIS for most of my cabling connection needs.  You can get them cheap on ebay year round and they are standardized, unlike the Pigtails typically sold for this hobby.

Offline DaveM

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #13 on: February 14, 2018, 12:03:51 PM »
Back to my original topic.  If I am running 12v to 50ft of wires, if I fused it 5A and the power drawn could go up to the max of my power supply 500W at 42A then this Coleman Low Power 12/2 cable only rated 120v/12w = 0.1A (from website).  For this solution, I might need 12 gauge wires using Speaker wires but not sure this wire rating.  I know that with the higher Amp the more the voltage drop at the end.    How do I get at least 300W just incase thru the end of 50ft wires for the pixels power injection? :D
I'm not familiar with the Coleman wire but it sounds like something is off in the specs. If 12/2 means two conductor 12 gauge wire that should handle 20A and around 200w at 12v rather than the 12w you mention.

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk


Offline MrTeaIOT

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Re: What type of 12-16 gauge wires to use for Power Injection long run?
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2018, 01:22:41 PM »
That's why this wire call Low Power https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B0002YVWTW/ref=gno_cart_title_0?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A13RJIMC40OSS9.  See technical details section.  I prefer speaker wires anyway.

 

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