Repair sleeves

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Repair sleeves

Repair sleeves are an essential element when servicing electrical installations. With these sleeves you can quickly repair the insulation in electrical or ICT cables - without cutting the wires. Sleeves are used in telecommunications and electrical power engineering. Such elements are also used in water and gas pipelines to provide protection against corrosion and external factors.

Heat Shrinkable Repair Sleeves

Both electric sleeves and those for water or gas installations are made of heat-shrinkable materials. Such material is usually polyethylene. Its properties mean that under the influence of temperature it shrinks and adapts to the shape of the sealed layer. Thanks to that, after applying on a cable with damaged insulation, it is possible to obtain tight protection of the cable.

The repair sleeves are also called heat shrink sleeves. A set of such elements is an essential piece of equipment for every electrician and installer. Such sets contain heat shrink tubing in various sizes and colors, making it easier to service, for example, a home electrical system.

Composites used in repair sleeves can have various properties. If the installation is placed in extremely demanding conditions, sheets with increased moisture barrier are used. It is also worth looking at resistance to UV radiation and chemical agents. The thickness of the sheet is also important - the higher it is, the higher the level of resistance to mechanical damage. In this way the cable is protected against breaking or cracking.

Some sleeves are equipped with indicators made of thermochromic materials. These types of elements change colour when exposed to heat, indicating, for example, that the optimum temperature has been reached and that the seal is correct.

Heat shrink sleeves are also used to increase the strength of electrical installations. Such application can find e.g. in medium voltage switchgears.

When selecting this cable sleeve, the heat shrinkability coefficient should be looked at. It determines how much the diameter of the sheath can shrink when heated. For example, if a repair sleeve has a diameter of 12 mm and a ratio of 3:1, the sheath will be a maximum of 4 mm when heated. If the sleeve is used to seal parts of different diameters, the heat shrinkability criterion should be taken into account. The higher the ratio, the better it will adhere to the cable over its entire length.

Electrical sleeves come in versions with or without adhesive. In the case of sleeves with heat-shrink glue, you can count on better sealing of the cable sheath. The adhesive used in sleeves has very good adhesion to various types of substrates - steel, plastic or others. It should be remembered, however, that glued sleeves are much more difficult to remove during servicing.

How to use repair sleeves?

Although it is very common to use various insulating tapes when repairing a damaged wire sheath, repair sleeves are a much better solution. It is worth noting that servicing cables using heat shrink sleeves is very simple.

To seal the cable sheath, apply the repair sheet to the area to be insulated. The sleeve should then be heated - a heat gun or lighter can be used to do this. Care should be taken to ensure that the sleeve does not come into contact with fire or become overheated. Know the optimum heating temperature before heating. When in contact with heat, the repair sleeve will shrink. After sealing, wait a few tens of seconds for the heated seal to cool down.

A properly fitted repair sleeve should fit tightly to the material to be insulated. If there is any play, heat the repair sleeve again - until it is fully adhered.