Choosing The Best Underground Tracer Wire

by | Oct 25, 2018 | Maintenance & Repair

Underground tracer wire is an important component of any utility service. When pipes go under the ground, it is essential to have a means of locating them. Known as locating wire, these small devices help utility and construction companies to locate the exact position of underground lines and pipes. They help to reduce the cost of finding pipes and lines later.

Considerations for Specifications

For too long, companies have not considered the need to be exact when purchasing and installing tracer wires. They have continued to avoid installing site and use specific wires. Many ignore the basics, including how important it is, when selecting wire for a project, be sure to consider the following characteristics:

• Wire Size or Gauge (AWG)

• Jacket coating color and type, e.g. HDPE, HMWPE

• Wire Material – Copper, Copper Clad Steel, Stainless

However, these are not the only factors a company needs to consider when choosing tracer wire. It is important to remember it is part of a system. It is essential to consider the following factors in positioning the tracer:

• Proper installation

• Correct location in relation to the pipe

• Termination of the wire

• Correct wire connections

These are all integral to the system. Failure to assess, install and connect all parts correctly may result in faulty operation.

Tracer Wire

When it comes to tracing the location of water, gas, oil and other pipelines, many companies tend to be lax. While the specifications of other components of their delivery and exit system are specified down to the tiniest detail, this has been lacking in regards to tracer wire. In fact, some companies still do not utilize tracer wires – even though they have proven their worth repeatedly. This needs to change. It is imperative that utility and construction companies use the right type of tracer wire on a project. This reduces the risk of expensive problems arising further down the road.

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