PVC vs. Polyurethane Jackets

When reviewing the specs on any given cable we hear about the color, cores, and voltage, but we also hear about the outer jacket.  The most common types of jackets are polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and polyurethane (PUR).

The visible difference between the two materials is that PVC has a more polished look while Polyurethane is more matte.

Both materials are flexible, have good electrical properties, and are available with RoHS, VDE, CE, and other various certifications.  The most noticeable difference at first glance in comparing these two materials is cost.  But what are the actual differences?  PVC and PUR hold different properties that make them suitable for different applications.  PVC is used when a resistance to fire and ozone is of higher importance.  It does not rate as well on abrasion or weather resistance and does not have environmental benefits that relate to low smoke and halogen free.  Polyurethane, on the other hand, rates extremely well when it comes to high flexibility, tear & abrasion resistance and overall durability.  Its greatest downfall is its lower flame resistance and higher cost.

When selecting a jacket type on a cable, it is important to review the application in which it will be used and make the decision based on what the requirements are.  The staff at The Mueller Group can help decide what type of jacket for a particular cable is best for your application and offer a product from our vast inventory.


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