Cable ties are not created equal and they can be classified into different categories for various applications. According to the material, cable ties can divided into the following types: stainless steel cable ties, nylon cable ties, hook and loop cable ties.Stainless Steel Cable Ties—The stainless steel cable ties are high temperature cable ties made of a variety of high-quality stainless steel which offers excellent corrosion resistance, high temperature and durability characteristics. This sort of cable ties can withstand temperature ranging from -100 to +1000 degrees Fahrenheit. The stainless steel cable tie has a tensile strength of 100 lbs. And it has the capability to endure most chemicals that may cause corrosion. It can be used for the most extreme environment where additional strength, security and fire resistance are required. Self-locking Nylon Cable Ties—The most commonly used cable tie, also called zip tie is one-piece design with a lot of serration on the cable tie to lock the cables firmly. Nylon possesses an outstanding balance of properties, combined strength, moderate stiffness, high service temperature, and a high level of toughness. Nylon cable ties have higher UV resistance. They have a low coefficient of friction, and excellent abrasion resistance. But they should be stored in cool dry areas, out of direct sunlight, and sealed in the original packaging material. These measures will extend cable tie performance levels indefinitely. Nylon cable ties are the most common type and suitable for most applications.
Nylon Cable Ties
Hook and Loop Cable Ties—Made of strong, low profile hook and loop material, this kind of cable ties is also called ‘hook and loop cable ties’. They deliver high reliability by protecting against over-tensioning of high performance fiber cable and copper cable. These cable ties are adjustable, releasable, and re-usable to effectively support frequent moves, adds, and changes. They can be used to secure various sizes of cable bundles. Moreover, wide color choice allows for quick and easy color coding of separate cable bundles. The hook and loop cable ties help maintain the reliable, scalable, and aesthetic requirements of data centers.
Hook and Loop Cable Ties
Factors to Consider When Selecting Cable Ties
Since there are so many types of cables tie on the market, some people may feel confused about which one to choose. Here are some factors to consider when choosing the right cable ties for your applications.
Cable ties are available in different materials, each with its own specific properties. Plastic materials normally undergo property loss due to oxidation caused by exposure to high temperatures. Low temperature exposure will also make most plastics more brittle during the exposure, but little property loss occurs when the material is returned to room temperatures. Nylon ties can offer good resistance to weather and ultraviolet rays in low-temperature environments. For applications in harsher environments that require extra durability in the face of heat, chemicals and other corrosive elements, consider stainless steel cable ties.
Once you have determined that you need a certain material to meet your needs, think of the construction needed. Cable ties made of the same material can come in a variety of constructs. Nylon cable ties can be used for various applications such as managing and securing wire harnesses, strain relief and wire management in solar applications, desktop and video cable management, or even temporary child locks on your cabinets. There are also cable ties with a metal barb in the head which reinforces the locking mechanism. These tend to be used in applications that require infinite adjustment positions since it does not use griping teeth. Contour cable ties, which have teeth on the outside of the tie, tend to be much less abrasive to wire insulation under vibration and therefore a product of choice in the aerospace industry.
Cable tie length can vary greatly. Think about an application in which you have a wire bundle that is 4” in diameter, but you only have a 1” diameter cable tie. This would not work. You need to match the maximum bundle diameter of the cable tie with the diameter of the wire bundle. Always be cognizant of your application so that you do not purchase a tie that is too short. If they are a little longer, you can always cut off the excess tie length, but from an economical standpoint, choosing the proper length will provide the best value.
Will the cable ties be installed outdoors? Will they have direct exposure to sunlight? Are you working in a hazardous environment like a chemical plant in which the ties might get exposure to various chemicals or acids? Is it a high heat application in which flammability and thermal properties become an issue? All of these questions should be answered before choosing the cable tie. For instance, a standard cable tie is usually made of nylon 6.6. But there are many types of Nylon, and choosing the right one is essential. If your application includes exposure to the elements or high heat exposure, the weather resistant nylon 6.6 material, or a heat stabilized nylon 6.6 material would be ideal. With weather resistant nylon 6.6, you typically have a 7-9 year life expectancy with regards to UV resistance, as opposed to 1-2 years with standard nylon 6.6. Heat stabilized nylon 6.6 has a continuous temperature range of -76°F to 239°F, which is 54 degrees higher than standard nylon 6.6. It is important to know the temperature conditions in order to select the optimal cable tie for your application.
After making clear the above mentioned factors, now you can determine the strength of the tie that you will need. The way we measure cable tie strength is by obtaining its tensile strength. Tensile strength is measured in Newton or pounds and is basically the breaking point of a cable tie. The higher the tensile strength, the stronger the tie. This is an important factor to consider when you are securing mission critical wire harnesses.