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HomeTips & GuidesTransit Wiring: All You Need to Know?

Transit Wiring: All You Need to Know?

Transit wiring provides the safest cabling option in automobiles. 

But what differentiates transit cables from other sorts of wiring? Learn the critical details about transit cables, their properties, and why they are the primary choice for autos. 

What is a Transit Cable?

These rigid wires can withstand extreme conditions in mobile and immobile auto applications. They possess a special insulation that can withstand extremities such as: 

  • Acids and Corrosive Solvents Exposure
  • Abrasive Forces 
  • Chemical Exposure
  • Fuels such as Gasoline and Diesel

There are numerous types of transit cables, such as the following:

Also noteworthy is that some bodies govern transit cable and provide their primary standards. One of them is the Transit Authority’s specification.  Also, since they are useful in the railway industry, the Association of American Railroads regulates them. 

Transit cables are used chiefly by automobiles, such as cars, trains, planes, and ships. You will also find them in underground stations and subways.

Types of Transit Cable

Below are some of the standard transit cables you will encounter in the auto Industry:

Abrasion-resistant Cables

Teflon or PTFE. 

Teflon or PTFE. 

With a TFE cover (Teflon), these cables have excellent abrasion resistance properties. The TFE casing also makes them hardy even in extreme heat applications. 

They can withstand heat up to 260 degrees Celsius and lows of -65 degrees Celsius. Given their design for extreme heat conditions, their wires are usually copper-made but with nickel/silver plating. 

The above feature is cardinal in enhancing the wire’s resistance to extremely high temperatures. Also, they are available in various sizes, with the thickest measuring 8 AWG. However, thin profile cables measuring 28 AWG (lowest gauge) can also be found. 

Exane Transit Cables

Polyolefin Insulations. 

Polyolefin Insulations. 

They resemble the type above but feature a cross-linked polyolefin cover instead of Teflon. 

The material has excellent heat resistance features as it can stand temperatures of up to 125 degrees Celsius. Also, you can use them in freezing conditions of up to -55 degrees Celsius. In addition, this cable can withstand abrasion and come in many types, such as: 

  • Single Cable
  • Multiconductor Cable
  • Diesel Locomotive Wire (DLO). 
Underground railway tunnel infrastructure. 

Underground railway tunnel infrastructure. 

Look no further than this type if you’ve been looking for data transit cables. It is the material for voice and data transmissions in transport systems and underground railways. What makes them excellent is the polyolefin insulation, a material with zero smoke emission. 

In addition, polyolefin emits no halogens, even under fire, making it ideal for transit applications. 

Cross-linked PVDF Wires

They feature a Polyvinylidene fluoride insulation and thus guarantee exquisite resistance to solvents and temperature extremities. The material is also renowned for its great dielectric strength, while the cross-linking feature makes it tough. 

It is the cable of choice in wires with a thin casing. In addition to PVDF, the other popular transit cable in this category is cross-linked ethylene tetrafluoroethylene (XL-ETFE). Finally, this type’s temperature resistance range is between -65 and 150 Degrees Celsius. 

Types of Conductors in Transit Cables

There are three main types of conductors in the common transit cables. 


Copper Conductors. 

The Copper Conductors. 

Copper is the most common conductor thanks to its flexibility and easy joinery capacity. Nonetheless, it is not durable under extremely high temperatures, as it easily oxidates. Copper is also corrosive under heat (100 degrees Celsius) and damp conditions. 

Nickel Plated Copper

The Nickel coating on the copper is a significant input as it expands its temperature tolerance range to 260 degrees Celsius. However, working with the material is not as easy as you’d expect with pure copper conductors. 

Nickel Coating requires a unique flux. In addition, it is pretty tough, so you need to be a crimping expert to tackle nickel-coated copper. 

Silver Plated Copper

It’s the ideal alternative to nickel-plated copper, especially for soldering. It has the corrosion resistance of nickel-plated copper, but its heat resistance is lower at 200 degrees Celsius. In addition, it has excellent resistivity, making it a great conductor. 

Thermal Features of Insulation Materials

Hot Train Engine. 

Hot Train Engine. 

Insulation Cover NameCommon Name (Abbreviation)Primary Features
Zero-halogen polyolefin insulationLSZH POLow Smoke PropertiesTemperature Range: -40 to 90 Degrees Celsius 
Cross-linked polyvinylidene fluoride insulationXL-PVDFHigh Chemical ResistanceTemperature Range: -65 to 150 Degrees Celsius 
Tetrafluoroethylene insulationTFETemperature Range: -70 to 260 Degrees Celsius 
Cross-linked polyolefin insulationExaneExcellent Flame Retardance. Temperature Range: -55 to 125 Degrees Celsius
Cross-linked Extruded Ethylene Tetrafluoroethylene insulation.XL-ETFETemperature Range: -65 to 200 Degrees Celsius

Applications of Transit Cables

A High-Speed Train in Motion.

A High-Speed Train in Motion.

  • Transit cables are used chiefly by automobiles, such as cars, trains, planes, and ships. 
  • You will also find them in underground stations and subways.
  • Thirdly, the cables are handy in applications that involve extreme heat. Their high heat and abrasion resilience means they are melt-proof and don’t release harmful chemicals. 


Hopefully, you know better about transit cables. These are specialty cables used in wiring auto systems where high heat is inevitable. We hope you choose a transit cable for top performance when selecting cables for your car’s engine area. 

I am Lillian Yang, having been a sales manager for over 10 years.

I have received many positive reviews from customers. They have praised our excellent service, on-time delivery, and high-quality cable assemblies.

For your projects, please provide cable assembly files/images/smples, etc., so that I can send you a quotation within 24 hours.

Contact me now and let’s get started on building your wire harnesses!

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