What-Is-What: "Cable Assembly" and "Wire Harness"

"Cable Assembly" and "Wire Harness" have been confused by many people from different industries as being the very same thing. In this post, we'll explain the difference of this two.

First, it's important to recognize the definitions of cable and wire. A wire, is a single conductor which is mostly made of copper or aluminum. It's a low resistance and a low cost material. The thicker the wire, the higher risk of damage resulting from a burned fuse. Well, what is cable then? A cable is basically two or more wires in a single jacket to run together to a system. Most cables consist: a positive to carry the current, a neutral wire to complete the electrical loop and a grounding wire.

Wire Harness

A wire harness is basically grouping of wires that are designed to transmit signal or power. Generally, a wire harness has multiple branches -or ends- that may go off in a number of directions with several terminations on each branch.

Cable Assembly

Cable assemblies consist group of cables or wires that are wrapped in an outer layer of a different product to keep the cables together. The goal of cable assemblies is keeping wires and cables organized. So, unlike a wire harness which exposes a bunch of individually separated wires, a cable assembly encases all wires within one cable.