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FAQs – Cable Assemblies for the Automotive Industry

October 6, 2015

FAQs – Cable Assemblies for the Automotive Industry

When it comes to the automotive industry, cable assemblies, otherwise known as wiring harnesses, are of paramount importance. As a customer of automotive cable assemblies, you might have several questions pertaining to these cable systems. This blog attempts to answer a few of the frequently asked questions.

General FAQs Answered!

The following are the general questions about the automotive wiring harness assemblies.

  1. What are the challenges faced by automotive cable assembly manufacturers today?
  2. Ans. Over the years, there have been several advancements in the design of electronic steering, satellite radio, infotainment systems, and Human Machine Interfaces (HMI) in vehicles. More the complexity of these elements, the higher are the demands for convoluted cable assemblies with several wires. However, the problem lies in insufficient packaging space to accommodate additional wiring. This calls for miniaturization of cables, and the entire cable systems. This in turn increases production cost, human labor, whilst consuming a lot of time in manufacturing.

  3. Are there any regulations or standards pertaining to the design and manufacture of automotive cable assemblies?
  4. Ans. Yes, there are.

    Several regulatory authorities call for testing (temperature, vibration, and environmental tests) automotive cable assemblies to minimize the risk of failure. Generally, cable assembly manufacturers conform to the guidelines and recommendations of UL, RoHs, PPAP, SAE, and ISO when designing and manufacturing wire harness.

  5. What are the important advancements happened in the automotive cable assembly manufacturing sector in the last few years?
  6. Ans. As mentioned earlier in the post, miniaturization is the latest trend. Miniaturization has revolutionized the way wiring harnesses are designed and assembled. Manufacturing of miniaturized cable assemblies requires extreme care and an especially clean environment to manage crimping and insertion of terminals to connectors.

    The other positive change is the widespread use of aluminum cables and terminals as an alternative to copper. Aluminum is found to be the best substitute to copper as it largely contributes in reducing CO2 emissions, whilst withstanding corrosion.

  7. What are the important factors a designer must consider when producing cable assemblies?

Ans. There are several parameters a designer must pay close attention to when designing wiring harnesses. The temperature level of the application, weight reduction, compatibility of wires to accommodate higher temperatures, material cost, etc. are a few amongst the many factors.

When procuring cable assemblies, it is important that all your answers must be answered before placing an order. When in doubt, contact the manufacturers. Like so, you can gain important information that leads you towards informed selection.

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