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Car Battery Cable Comparison

Product Guide & Information

Car battery cable: compare the flexibility, durability and ampacity between battery cable and welding cable.
car battery cable

Comparing Car Battery Cable and Welding Cable

car battery cable

For battery wire applications (e.g. battery-inverter connections in solar power installations) that require a cable that is highly flexible, durable, and can handle high amounts of current, welding cable is a popular pick over automotive battery cables. See battery leads types for more information.

Flexibility - The PVC and cross-linked materials commonly used for car battery cable insulation are stiffer than the EPDM and Neoprene rubber used for welding cables. Also, the higher the strand count in car battery cables, the more flexible the cable will be. However, welding cable has far higher strand counts than car battery cable (only SGX cable has comparable strandings).

For example, 6 AWG 133/27 is a common stranding for car battery cable. These numbers mean that the cable has a total rating of 6 AWG with 133 wire strands each sized at 27 AWG. In comparison, a 6 AWG welding cable typically has a 259/30 stranding - 259 strands each sized at 30 AWG. Only SGX car battery cable has comparable strand counts for 1/0 to 4/0 AWG cable sizes. See automotive cable gauge for more information on AWG.

Applications that require flexible cables:

Durability - Although car battery cable is better suited for handling oil and grease, welding cable is more resistant to physical wear and fires. Welding cable is designed for use in industrial welding where it is often exposed to sparks from bits of molten metal, run over by heavy machinery, and dragged around in workshops or outdoors. Some types of welding cable are also designed for use in shipyards and have better protection against water and salt corrosion.

Applications that require durable cables:
car battery cable
car battery cable
car battery cable

Ampacity - Welding cable can carry more amperage (current) than car battery cable. This is because car battery cables are often used with automotive batteries that deliver relatively low voltages when compared to welding machines.

For example, car battery cable is often connected to 12V batteries commonly found in cars, while welding cable is designed for use with machines that have outputs as much as 600V DC or AC. Below is a comparison of the amp ratings for some battery and welding cable you may find.

Applications where ampacity matters:

SGX Car battery cable

AWG Possible Stranding Amp
6 133/27 60
4 61/22 75
2 133/23 100
1 133/22 110
1/0 1064/30 140
2/0 1330/30 160
3/0 1627/30 200
4/0 2109/.010* 220
*2109 strands each with a diameter of 0.010 in.

Welding cable

AWG Possible Stranding Amp
6 259/30 115
4 364/30 150
2 625/30 205
1 778/30 240
1/0 990/30 285
2/0 1248/30 325
3/0 1586/30 380
4/0 2054/30 440

Call us at 877.474.8209 to speak with an application engineer about your project.