What Size Wire for a 60 amp Breaker? – A Simple Explanation

what size wire for a 60 amp breaker

If you’re a homeowner, then you may have wondered about all things regarding breakers. For instance, you may want to know the appropriate size wire for 60 amp breaker.

In this regard, the appropriate size wire for breakers with a 60 amps capacity is between the 6 and 4 American Wire Gauge (AWG). Though the size wire is dependent on multiple factors, these are the generally accepted size wires for 60 amp breakers.

If you want to learn more about what size wire for a 60 amp breaker, then head on and read more below!

Why Size Wire is Important for Breakers

Size wires are important in breakers particularly because of one reason: safety. To further explain, the total size of the wire critically determines whether the equipped conductors of a wire can handle the amperage that will flow through it.

And if a wire is unequipped to handle certain amperage, then it may accidentally melt and even burn — resulting in a fire disaster which could ultimately burn your home down.

For this specific reason, we must be carefully aware of the appropriate size wires and their capacity to carry amperage load.

As a rule of thumb, thicker and larger wire sizes are more capable of handling higher amperage loads, as they can mitigate the excessive heat produced by the electricity going through the cable.

Wire Size for 60 Ampere Breaker

wire-size-for-60-amp-220v

For 60 ampere breakers, electricians and professionals suggest using a wire size gauge ranging from 6 AWG to 4 AWG. All household wires have a rating of at least 600V, so only amperage really matters when it comes to determining wire gauge. Therefore, the wire size for 60 amp 220v, for example, is still 6 to 4 AWG.

However, some electricians hold the opinion that only 4 AWG wires should be installed for 60 amp breaker panels. They reason that this 60 amp sub panel wire size is the gold standard for 60 amp subpanels.

This is because 4 AWG can hold more amperage compared to 6 AWG. In particular, a 4 AWG copper cable can hold at least 70 amps of electricity before giving up. Meanwhile, a 6 AWG copper wire can only hold up to 55 amps before it falters.

Determining Proper Size Wire

Now that we’ve cleared that up, it’s for us to further our knowledge regarding wires by knowing how to determine the appropriate wire sizes for specific connections.

As we have previously mentioned, a 60amp wire size can range from 6 AWG to 4 AWG. But what if you’re finding wires for other amperages?

For easier viewing, I’ve created a chart detailing the corresponding amperage capacity of different American Wire Gauge cables. Note that the following measurements are used for copper cables. Aluminum wires will have different specifications.

15 amps 14-gauge wire
20 amps 12-gauge wire
30 amps 10-gauge wire
40 amps 8-gauge wire
55 amps 6-gauge wire
70 amps 4-gauge wire
85 amps 3-gauge wire
95 amps 2-gauge wire

The table that I’ve created above corresponds to the calculations made by expert electricians regarding the capacity of wires to handle specific amperes of electricity. Don’t hesitate to use this table for your wire installation purposes.

Conclusion

Knowing what size wire for a 60 amp breaker is truly a headache for homeowners with no prior knowledge of handling electrical maintenance. However, don’t fret! This guide was specifically curated for your perusal in determining the proper size wirings for breaker sub panel maintenance.

In this case, the proper 60 amp wire size copper is outlined to be wires with a specific gauge of 6 AWG to 4 AWG.

Hopefully, this article made it clear regarding the details of size wires. Thank you for reading!