About Wire Harness Labels, A wire harness, sometimes called a wire bundle, cable harness, or wiring loom, is a bunch of electrical cables or wires stacked together using items like conduits, straps, or cable ties.
These wires transmit data or power to specific devices or systems, marking them as insufficient. Wire harness labels are necessary for identifying wires and cables for better safety, reliability, and easy troubleshooting.
Wire Harness Labels Understanding
Both wire and cable labels play a critical role in the construction of new buildings, aerospace or aviation equipment manufacture, and setting up an office network.
Such markings identify how a connection is set up and alert users of possible dangers or risks.
Also, technicians can update various systems safely and properly by looking at the labels, such as self-laminating wraps, heat shrink tubing, and cable tags.
What a Wire Harness Assembly Label Can Tell You
When it comes to labeling wires in accordance to wire harness assembly requirements, there are several ways of communicating the information, including:
- Barcodes: Numerous barcode formats, such as Code 128, Code 39 Full ASCII, and MIL-STD labeling, provide essential scannable data.
- Text: These are details like product ID number, date code, or other types of information that are printed on the label, which is then secured to the relevant wire or wires.
- Certification codes: Whenever a wire assembly consists of a UL-certified product, it can have a CSA or UL tag.
Why is Wire Marking Important?
Even though building a wire harness using different-colored wires is usually sufficient for some situations, not all organizations use the same pattern or process.
As a result, this can lead to several problems if you have to integrate a particle wire bundle into a second product.
With the help of wire harness labels, you can enjoy the following benefits.
Electrical wires can be dangerous if not properly labeled because people working on them can mistakenly unplug or cut the wrong ones.
For instance, there are certain situations where unplugging a ground wire can lead to a fire.
Whenever wires are marked correctly, technicians can avoid problems like unplugging the wrong wire, resulting in power outages, data transmission failure, or other issues.
A correctly labeled wire means that in case of a problem, technicians won’t have to spend hours trying to trace the wire causing all the issues.
Top 6 Types of Wire and Cable Labels
Heat Shrink Labels
These labels are a reliable and permanent solution to wire labeling because of their resistance to harsh environments.
They can slide over the wire or cable with a slight clearance and don’t terminate the wire using ferrules or crimping terminals before its application.
Self-Laminating Wire Labels
Usually, you’ll apply such labels on wires already terminated.
They consist of a white label that has a clear tail.
The white section has markings done with a printer, but in some cases, you can write them by hand.
Also, even though these labels may be easy to install, they can still unravel with age or if contamination or dust happened when they were first applied.
You can use tags on any wire size despite their being normally reserved for the larger ones.
The smaller versions of the tags have two holes that allow the wires to slide through.
Remember, though, that tags are only applicable on unterminated wires.
Cable Flag Labels
These labels are suitable for different lines of data and barcodes.
Despite adhesive properties, they’re not wrapped around the wire but rather adhere themselves and stand out like a flag.
However, due to their thinness around the neck of the material that encompasses the wire, these labels tend to be less durable than their counterparts.
These labels can stick to hook-and-loop components without the need for adhesives. It’s also possible to reuse or reposition them if necessary.
The Label Printers that Make It All Happen
Based on the kind of project you have, pre-print and print-your-own label printing can work, and each has pros and cons.
In the case of pre-print, you get to shop around for the kind of label you want and then place an order.
Then you have to wait for the delivery, which can be frustrating because it can take longer, and the quality may not be good.
For better efficiency at the job site, print-your-own works better.
And with a portable printer, you can carry it to site locations and print from there.
Also, using a conventional wire label printer, you can create, design, and print labels with the help of a state-of-the-art keyboard.
When attaching adhesive labels, you can use wire labeling machines to attach the labels onto wires, hoses, cables, and other items with the optional label printing function.
The system makes the process much easier, saves time, and increases productivity.
5 Considerations When Selecting a Wire harness label
Once you figure out all these questions, narrowing down on which labels you need becomes easier.
You can determine whether a wire is durable using the following criteria:
- Will they come into contact with water, oil, solvents, or chemicals
- Does it require self-extinguishing capabilities
- Are there any governmental regulations
- Are there any environmental factors to consider
Once you answer all these questions, it’s easy to determine marker durability.
Marker Material Options
Some of the top marker material options include:
- Polyofelin: This material can withstand wetness and is highly resistant to high temperatures and chemicals.
- Vinyl markers offer great dirt and oil resistance and are ideal when working with non-flat sub-surfaces.
- Nylon: It provides great resistance against various chemicals and cold and hot temperature ranges. It’s also excellent for curved surfaces and is remarkably strong.
Another important element to consider when selecting your wire marker is an application, which usually means asking yourself questions like:
- Do I need a permanent or temporary wire marker?
- Which is better, adhesive or non-adhesive?
- What is the quantity of information needed?
As expected, wire gauge size often plays a significant role when determining how well wrap-around or self-laminating markers perform.
It also helps to ensure the sleeve matches the wire one uses.
Therefore, based on the thickness of your wire, you might need to determine which sleeves or wrap-around labels to use so that they fit.
Another important consideration when picking wire markers involves determining whether you will mark the wire before or after termination.
- Before termination: When using the wire marker slides, you must slip them over the open end of a cable or wire; you can only utilize them before non-termination.
- After termination: With the wrap-around wire, you can use these markers before or after termination.
In the case of the wrap-around wire, the legendary label is visible from all angles since the marker wraps all around the wire.
For the self-laminating marker, there’s a clear section of the label that, if applied, will wrap around and then laminate, thereby shielding it from things like spills and crashes.
Even though a company can label its wire harness assemblies or seek third-party services, the bottom line remains that having a professional do the job affords you way more advantages.
At Cloom, we can add anything you want to be printed on your customized wire harness or cable assembly.
The following are some of Cloom’s wire identification options:
- Date codes
- Sequential numbering
- Serial numbers
- Custom writing/lettering