The Different Wiring Cables You Need at Home

The Different Wiring Cables You Need at Home

Feature Staff

Getting your home situated with the correct wires and cables is a challenging task if you’re not familiar with cabling setups. To ensure you’re making the right selection for your home network and electrical needs, check our guide to the different wiring cables you need at home below.

The Difference Between Cables and Wires

The terms “cable” and “wire” are often used interchangeably. However, there are a few differences between the two that are worth noting. While an electrical wire is a singular cord that conducts electricity, a cable is comprised of two or more cords. Both are typically wrapped in a jacket for insulation and user safety.

Electrical Wires for at Home


Non-metallic (NM) wiring is the most common at-home electrical wiring. Though used for electrical wiring, NMs are technically considered cables since they usually have at least three separate conductors.

This type of wiring is often used for a range of appliances and interior electrical wiring. Light fixtures and outlets also utilize NM cords. Listed below are the different types of NM cables used for home purposes.

  • 6-gauge at 55-amp circuits
  • 8-gauge at 40-amp circuits
  • 10-gauge at 30-amp circuits
  • 12-gauge at 20-amp circuits
  • 14-gauge at 15-amp circuits

Common Cables Found at Home

The different wiring cables you need at home are going to be different for your network purposes. Here are a few popular Ethernet options for wired home networks.

Cat 5e

The Cat 5e cables are a smart choice for home use. They have reduced more crosstalk since their predecessor, the Cat 5 cables, and achieve speeds of up to 1000 Mbps.

Cat 6

If you are an avid gamer or have a home entertainment system, you might be looking for greater connection speeds. In that case, you may prefer Cat 6 cables. Compared to Cat 5e, they offer 10000 Mbps and are manufactured to perform well over longer distances.

Keeping Your Wiring Safe

In addition to reliable wires, you’ll need accessories to help keep your setup safe. Explore this guide to electrical tape to see which kind of tape will be best for your abundance of cords at home.