6 useful tips for making better wiring diagrams

When drafting your connection drawings, keep these helpful tips in mind to help you construct better ones . . . . 

Click the images below each bullet point to see larger versions of them.

  1. Do not merge individual wires together for the sake of simplicity if they are not labeled (common with short intra-panel jumpers). You must preserve the distinctions between wires because landing the correct connections matters.sketch1
  2. Show the wire size, especially if adding jumpers. Unless there is already a note on the drawing that generally covers jumper size, make sure you indicate the size on your mark-up. It’s important for the electrician using your drawing as his map. Don’t forget to include the wire and its size in your materials list.sketch2
  3. Label the endpoint of any wire or cable leaving the page with, at a minimum, a destination. Examples of relevant information to include are the equipment description and a drawing where that end of the wiring can be found.sketch3
  4. Label both ends of an intra-panel jumper that aren’t shown as a single continuous line on the same drawing. It’s a common oversight to label one end but overlook the other.sketch4
  5. Label cables and conductors with their insulation color.
  6. Label terminal blocks with the conductor name that terminates to it. Usually one terminal block contains both the terminal block number and the conductor name, similar to what is shown in the figure below (click it to see a larger version). The picture shows the wire colors, the terminal block numbers, and the wire numbers of the conductors that land on each terminal (i.e. conductor X1 has red insulation and lands on terminal 1 of terminal block 1).