Which cable tie do I need?

Which cable tie do I need?

Our latest guide helps you to decide which cable tie you need for your next project and looks at the types available to you.

When we think about how many types of cable ties there are, deciding which one you need for the job in hand can be difficult. However, in domestic settings, we tend to use the same ones with specialist ties such as printed cable ties and metal detectable cable ties being used in a wide variety of commercial and industrial applications.

How to choose the right cable tie

Before deciding which cable tie you will need, thought should be given to the following:

Materials – cable ties are available in nylon 6/6 and stainless steel. There are also nylon coated stainless steel cable ties (we supply PVC- and resin-coated ties), metal detectable nylon ties and printed nylon cable ties.  

Locking mechanism – nylon cable ties feature a ratchet locking system with ridges or teeth at the pointed end of the tie. This is passed through a square head with a hole in it at the opposite end of the tie and is pulled tight to secure the tie. Stainless steel cable ties have a roller ball locking system where the roller ball secures the tie in place once the end has passed through the locking mechanism.

Environment and temperature conditions – will the cable ties be used indoors or out? In outdoor situations, consider UV exposure if the ties will be in direct sunlight. Where ties are to be used in an industrial environment, consider exposure to chemicals and acids. Moisture also affects the efficacy of cable ties but this can be minimised with correct storage (read Does moisture affect nylon cable ties?). Extreme temperature conditions will also impact cable ties, with extreme cold causing nylon ties to become brittle.

Length and strength – cable ties are available in a wide range of lengths and widths and should be long enough to accommodate the entire bundle of cables being secured once the end has been inserted into the pawl and pulled tight. Longer ties can be used and the excess cut off as necessary. In the absence of a long enough tie, smaller ones can be joined together. The tensile strength of a cable tie indicates how much weight the tie will bear safely without breaking and is important when securing heavy loads.

Nylon cable ties

At home, the type of tie used will depend on its intended purpose but with the majority of the almost 100 billion that are produced around the world annually being nylon cable ties, it isn’t surprising that these are the most frequently used in a domestic setting. Ideal for cable management, nylon cable ties are available as releasable cable ties where cables need to be added to or removed from a bundle. Coloured cable ties are invaluable where quick identification of different power sources is necessary and they can be used for a whole host of domestic uses, including creating colourful artwork! Where cables risk overheating, UV and heat stabilised cable ties will withstand temperatures up to 120°C and can also be used outdoors, for example in the garden. There are so many uses for cable ties beyond their original purpose, including some great hacks you’ll wish you’d known sooner.

If you are still not sure which cable tie you need, please do contact us via email at sales@cableties-online.co.uk or by telephone on 01623 412160 and our experienced sales team will be pleased to help.