Low Voltage Wire Repair

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by Mack77, Jun 13, 2010.

  1. Mack77

    Mack77 LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 208

    Hi Guys,

    We were edging around a homeowner's property and they did not bury the LV landscape wire deep enough and we accidentally cut it while doing a mulch install with bed edging. What is the easiest way to repair this? There are two wires covered in black rubber. I'm not sure what type of wire it is, but it looks similar to this:


  2. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,645

    2 ways to repair-

    If you have no slack in the line, then you'll need a 18 inch section of same guage wire. it is probably 12 guage, but it could be anything from 16 to 8 guage. If it is 16 thru 10 guage, You can use the large 300 volt blue and red king connectors they sell at Lowes and Home Depot. You have to use the ones that have silicone or grease in them and are rated for direct bury. do not use the yellow ones or the red ones with no or very little grease. If you do, the wire will fail within 2 years . They are always very close to the zip ties and electricians tools in the electrical department, and seem to be on the bottom shelf at most stores. They cost around 50 cents each if you buy a package of 5. you will need 4 if there is no slack and you have to strip and add in the piece to join the wires back up. If you have slack and you can just strip and reconnect, then you only need 2. in the bulk wire department you can ususally buy low voltage wire in 12 guage.

    If your wire is 8 guage, you will need to go to an irrigation supplier to use tan grease wire nuts from King. they are a buck apiece or so.

    The other way is to use an ace connector and heat shrink tubing. these are also available in copper in the same area at Lowe's or HD. you thread on heatshrink tubing, about 4 inches, and put both of your stripped wires into the connector, and a screw locks them in. the heatshrink goes over this and 1 inch or more of the insulation on each wire and you shrink it with a propane torch or heat gun. don't use the aluminum lugs. Use copper ones rated for whatever wire size you have.

    and of course, bury the whole thing deep enough to not hit it again. good luck.
  3. Mack77

    Mack77 LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 208

    Thank you very much for your detailed response :)

    One question, how will I know which two wires get mated together? (There are two wires within the one, as seen in the link)
  4. emby

    emby LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Messages: 380


    A picture would be great. Are you sure that the wire is for the low voltage lighting?
    If so..look for these things on the outside of the wires.
    One will have raised ribs or lines and the other will be smooth.
    One will have lettering on it and the other will not. These letters could be printed in colour such as white or blue or just etched into the jacket.

    You are correct as you have to match the ends up as they were.
    Install PVC conduit or 1" irrigation piping (2 ft) over the line before repairing and once you have completed your repair slide the pipe over the wire where you will be edging and bury it. This will prevent your edging shovels damaging the wire again.
    Hope this helped.

  5. S&MLL

    S&MLL LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 751

    Call me and we will come fix it for your homeowner.

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