Wire Size Chart: Get the Right Size and wire gauge

Electric wires are conductive materials used to transmit electricity throughout your home. They are the “lifeblood” of your electric system since they connect electric power from the source to different areas. Choosing the right wire size and gauge is critical when buying electric wires since they determine how much power can run through (skip straight to the wire size chart).

Wire Gauge Chart - American Wire Gauge Wire Size Chart (AWG)
Wire Gauge Chart – American Wire Gauge Wire Size Chart (AWG)

You’ll be susceptible to electric issues if you get the size wrong. That’s why learning the right wire sizes is important. Fortunately, we have everything you need in our electric wire size chart and guide.

Let’s get started!

Jump right into the Frequently Asked Questions

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Table of content

Electrical Wire Size Charts

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AWG Size Conversion Chart

AWG stands for American Wire Gauge Sizes

Gauge No.InchesMillimeters
7/00.65130016.54
6/00.58004914.73
5/00.51654913.12
4/00.46000011.68
3/00.40964210.40
2/00.3647979.266
1/00.3248618.251
10.2892977.348
20.2576266.544
30.2294235.827
40.2043075.189
50.1819414.621
60.1620234.115
70.1442853.665
80.1284903.264
90.1144242.906
100.1018972.588
110.0907422.305
120.0808082.053
130.0719621.828
140.0640841.628
150.0570681.450
160.0508211.291
170.0452571.150
180.0403031.024
190.0358910.9116
200.0319610.8118
210.0284620.7229
220.0253470.6438
230.0225720.5733
240.0201010.5106
250.0179000.4547
260.0159410.4049
270.0141960.3606
280.0126410.3211
290.0112580.2860
300.0100250.2546
310.0089280.2268
320.0079500.2019
330.0070800.1798
340.0063050.1601
350.0056150.1426
360.0050000.1270
370.0044530.1131
380.0039650.1007
390.0035310.08969
400.0031450.07988
410.0028000.07112
420.0024940.06335
430.0022210.05641
440.0019780.05024
450.0017610.04473
460.0015680.03983
470.0013970.03548
480.0012440.03160
490.0011080.02814
500.0009860.02504
510.0008780.02230
520.0007820.01986
530.0006970.01770
540.0006200.01575
550.0005520.01402
560.0004920.01250
570.0004380.01113
580.0003900.00991
590.0003470.00881
600.0003090.00785

AWG Electrical Current Load Limits Chart

AWG gaugeDiameter (Inches)Diameter (mm)Cross-section area (mm2)Resistance (Ohms/1000 ft)Resistance (Ohms per km)Max current for chassis wiring (amps)Max current for
power transmission (amps)
Max frequency for
100% skin depth
Breaking force for Copper wire
00000.4611.6841070.0490.16072380302125 Hz6120 lbs
0000.409610.4038484.90.06180.202704328239160 Hz4860 lbs
000.36489.2659267.40.07790.255512283190200 Hz3860 lbs
00.32498.2524653.50.09830.322424245150250 Hz3060 lbs
10.28937.3482242.40.12390.406392211119325 Hz2430 lbs
20.25766.5430433.60.15630.51266418194410 Hz1930 lbs
30.22945.8267626.70.1970.6461615875500 Hz1530 lbs
40.20435.1892221.10.24850.8150813560650 Hz1210 lbs
50.18194.6202616.80.31331.02762411847810 Hz960 lbs
60.1624.114813.30.39511.295928101371100 Hz760 lbs
70.14433.6652210.60.49821.63409689301300 Hz605 lbs
80.12853.26398.370.62822.06049673241650 Hz480 lbs
90.11442.905766.630.79212.59808864192050 Hz380 lbs
100.10192.588265.260.99893.27639255152600 Hz314 lbs
110.09072.303784.171.264.132847123200 Hz249 lbs
120.08082.052323.311.5885.20864419.34150 Hz197 lbs
130.0721.82882.632.0036.56984357.45300 Hz150 lbs
140.06411.628142.082.5258.282325.96700 Hz119 lbs
150.05711.450341.653.18410.44352284.78250 Hz94 lbs
160.05081.290321.314.01613.17248223.711 k Hz75 lbs
170.04531.150621.045.06416.60992192.913 k Hz59 lbs
180.04031.023620.8236.38520.9428162.317 kHz47 lbs
190.03590.911860.6538.05126.40728141.821 kHz37 lbs
200.0320.81280.51910.1533.292111.527 kHz29 lbs
210.02850.72390.41212.841.98491.233 kHz23 lbs
220.02530.645160.32716.1452.939270.9242 kHz18 lbs
230.02260.574040.25920.3666.78084.70.72953 kHz14.5 lbs
240.02010.510540.20525.6784.19763.50.57768 kHz11.5 lbs
250.01790.454660.16232.37106.17362.70.45785 kHz9 lbs
260.01590.403860.12840.81133.85682.20.361107 kHz7.2 lbs
270.01420.360680.10251.47168.82161.70.288130 kHz5.5 lbs
280.01260.320040.08064.9212.8721.40.226170 kHz4.5 lbs
290.01130.287020.064781.83268.40241.20.182210 kHz3.6 lbs
300.010.2540.0507103.2338.4960.860.142270 kHz2.75 lbs
310.00890.226060.0401130.1426.7280.70.113340 kHz2.25 lbs
320.0080.20320.0324164.1538.2480.530.091430 kHz1.8 lbs
Metric 2.00.007870.2000.0314169.39555.610.510.088440 kHz 
330.00710.180340.0255206.9678.6320.430.072540 kHz1.3 lbs
Metric 1.80.007090.1800.0254207.5680.550.430.072540 kHz 
340.00630.160020.0201260.9855.7520.330.056690 kHz1.1 lbs
Metric 1.60.00630.160020.0201260.9855.7520.330.056690 kHz 
350.00560.142240.01593291079.120.270.044870 kHz0.92 lbs
Metric 1.4.00551.1400.015433911140.260.043900 kHz 
360.0050.1270.0127414.813600.210.0351100 kHz0.72 lbs
Metric 1.25.004920.1250.0123428.214040.200.0341150 kHz 
370.00450.11430.0103523.117150.170.02891350 kHz0.57 lbs
Metric 1.12.004410.1120.00985533.817500.1630.02771400 kHz 
380.0040.10160.00811659.621630.130.02281750 kHz0.45 lbs
Metric 1.003940.10000.00785670.221980.1260.02251750 kHz 
390.00350.08890.00621831.827280.110.01752250 kHz0.36 lbs
400.00310.078740.00487104934400.090.01372900 kHz0.29 lbs

Wire Ampacity Chart for Copper Wires

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kcmil or MCM Wire:mm2 (Diameter):Ampacity At 60°C (140°F):Ampacity At 75°C (167°F):Ampacity At 90°C (194°F):
250 kcmil (250 MCM)126.7 mm2215 Amps255 Amps290 Amps
300 kcmil (300 MCM)152.0 mm2240 Amps285 Amps320 Amps
350 kcmil (350 MCM)177.3 mm2260 Amps310 Amps350 Amps
400 kcmil (400 MCM)202.7 mm2280 Amps335 Amps380 Amps
500 kcmil (500 MCM)253.4 mm2320 Amps380 Amps430 Amps
600 kcmil (600 MCM)304.0 mm2355 Amps420 Amps475 Amps
700 kcmil (700 MCM)354.7 mm2385 Amps460 Amps520 Amps
750 kcmil (750 MCM)380.0 mm2400 Amps475 Amps535 Amps
800 kcmil (800 MCM)405.4 mm2410 Amps490 Amps555 Amps
900 kcmil (900 MCM)456.0 mm2435 Amps520 Amps585 Amps
1000 kcmil (1000 MCM)506.7 mm2455 Amps545 Amps615 Amps
1250 kcmil (1250 MCM)633.4 mm2495 Amps590 Amps665 Amps
1500 kcmil (1500 MCM)760.1 mm2520 Amps625 Amps705 Amps
1750 kcmil (1750 MCM)886.7 mm2545 Amps650 Amps735 Amps
2000 kcmil (2000 MCM)1013.4 mm2560 Amps665 Amps750 Amps

Ampacity Wire Size Chart for Aluminum Wires

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kcmil or MCM Wire:Ampacity At 60°C (140°F):Ampacity At 75°C (167°F):Ampacity At 90°C (194°F):
250 kcmil (250 MCM)170 Amps205 Amps230 Amps
300 kcmil (300 MCM)190 Amps230 Amps255 Amps
350 kcmil (350 MCM)210 Amps250 Amps280 Amps
400 kcmil (400 MCM)225 Amps270 Amps305 Amps
500 kcmil (500 MCM)260 Amps310 Amps350 Amps
600 kcmil (600 MCM)285 Amps340 Amps385 Amps
700 kcmil (700 MCM)310 Amps375 Amps420 Amps
750 kcmil (750 MCM)320 Amps385 Amps435 Amps
800 kcmil (800 MCM)330 Amps395 Amps450 Amps
900 kcmil (900 MCM)355 Amps425 Amps480 Amps
1000 kcmil (1000 MCM)375 Amps445 Amps500 Amps
1250 kcmil (1250 MCM)405 Amps485 Amps545 Amps
1500 kcmil (1500 MCM)435 Amps520 Amps585 Amps
1750 kcmil (1750 MCM)455 Amps545 Amps615 Amps
2000 kcmil (2000 MCM)470 Amps560 Amps630 Amps

Common Wire Sizes According to Application

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Wire GaugeRated AmpacityWire Applications
4/0 (0000)260 AmpsResidential electrical installations
3/0 (000)200 AmpsService entrance and feeder cable
1/0 (0)150 AmpsService entrance and feeder cable
2 Gauge95 AmpsLarge water heater elements
4 Gauge70 AmpsElectric furnaces, large electric heaters
6 Gauge55 AmpsFurnaces, cooktops and electric ranges
10 Gauge30 AmpsElectric clothes dryers, 240V window Air Conditioners, electric water heaters
12 Gauge20 AmpsKitchen, bathroom & outdoor outlets – 120V Air Conditioners
14 Gauge15 AmpsLight fixtures, lamps, receptacles, lighting circuits
16-Gauge13 AmpsLight-duty extension cords
18 Gauge10 AmpsLow-voltage lights and lamp cords

How to Choose the Right Electric Wire Size

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There are various considerations that can guide you in choosing the right wire size. Let’s briefly discuss them below.

1. Wire Type

The first thing to determine is the type of wire you need. There are two types of wire used for electrical applications; copper and aluminum. Copper is an excellent conductor used in various scenarios, but it’s expensive and pretty heavy. On the other hand, aluminum is much lighter and also a good conductor of electricity. Unfortunately, aluminum wires are less durable than copper wires.

2. AWG

The American Wire Gauge (AWG) is the dominant sizing system for wires in the US. The sizes help electrical professionals determine the right application for different wire sizes.

AWG is also responsible for providing the ampacity of different wire sizes. This aids in determining the right application for each wire. You can refer to the table on wire sizes and their applications in the previous section for clarification.

If you don’t use the correct wire size for your project, you could end up with an electrical incident. AWG wires are listed in reverse, meaning the smaller numbers are the thickest wires while the largest numbers are the thinnest.

3. Amperage

The size of the wire affects the amperage rating, which is why it’s important to know the right size for your needs (to use the wire size chart). If the wire has a lower current carrying capacity than the power running through it, it could overheat. So it’s essential to choose a wire with the electrical resistance that matches its diameter. Wire thickness also determines the strength of the wire. A thinner wire is weaker than a thicker wire.

4. kcmil Wires

Unlike AWG wires, kcmil wires are capable of withstanding 200 amps of current. As such, they are thicker since they can carry higher currents than AWG wires. kcmil also denotes the cross-sectional area of the wire, which helps establish how much power a wire can take depending on the gauge. Check out our kcmil wire size chart for more details.

Learn more about different types of wires and sizes (video)

Electrical 101: Wire Information (Size, Amps, Type) by DailyElectrician

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What size wire for 50 amp?

For a maximum of 50 amps, you’ll need a wire gauge of 6. Perfect for Furnaces, cooktops, and electric ranges. Fifty amp wires are most often used to power many different appliances 

2. How do I know what size wire to use?

The main way to determine the correct size of wire is to determine the amperage the wire should conduct according to the thickness of the diameter.

3. How far can you run 12 gauge wire on a 15 amp circuit?

Up to 70 feet.

4. How far can you run 10 gauge wire for 30 amps?

A 10-gauge wire can go up to 150 feet.

5. Which wire is good for house wiring?

Copper is the best for house wiring since it is more durable and offers better conductivity than aluminum wires.

6. How many amps can 16 gauge wire handle?

A 16-gauge wire can handle 13 amps of power.

7. What size wire for 100 amp?

100 amp sub panel wiring size requirement is #4 for copper wires and #2 for aluminum wires.

Conclusion

Choosing the right wire size can be tricky without a prior understanding of electric wiring. However, the right wire diameter isn’t hard to find when you know how much power you want to run through it. Once you know how much current you need to power your home, you can choose a suitable wire size from our charts.

Whether you use AWG or kcmil, you can find a good size for your needs. Comment any questions about this topic in the section below.

Picture in this post is by John Barkiple on Unsplash

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