How many Amps can an 8-gauge Copper Wire Carry? (Can it handle 30, 40, 50, 60, 80, and 100 Amps)

Before using an 8-gauge copper wire a person should have proper information about how many amps it can handle. if you install it without knowing the wire will melt down due to exceeding the amps rating. So, this article will guide you about how many amps an 8-gauge copper wire can carry. 

How many amps can an 8-gauge copper wire carry? 

The following is a detailed explanation of whether they can carry 30,40,50,60,80,100 amps:

8-gauge Copper Wire
8-gauge Copper Wire

Can they handle 30 amps 

We should always prefer to use bigger wires than smaller ones because they can carry as much electricity without heating the wire. An 8-gauge copper wire is considered good to handle 30 amps which is low electricity. You can also use either material such as copper or aluminum to carry 30 amps as both can handle it effectively. 

Can it handle 40 amps:

An 8-gauge copper wire is mostly preferred use to carry 40 amps of electricity because it provides more flexibility and is safe. Using 8 gauge solid copper to carry 40 amps will not increase the temperature of the wire. If we compare the material of wire i. e copper and aluminum both can handle it but copper is considered a more preferred type in case of an increase of amps in the future. 

Can it handle 50 amps:

An 8-gauge copper wire can handle 50 amps of electricity but after some time it may start to get heated up. So for handling 50 amps of electricity you should have a bigger size of wire. For example, a 6 gauge wire is good to use to carry 50 amps as it will not increase the temperature of the wire. 

8-gauge Copper Wire
8-gauge Copper Wire

If you use an 8-gauge copper wire to carry 50 amps then the copper wire reaches 167 degrees F. And the material aluminum 8 gauge wire is not even able to handle it. So an 8-gauge copper wire should only be used for electricity upto 40 amps or less than it because if the amps increase more than 40 amps the temperature will increase and the wires will melt down. 

Can it handle 60 amps:

To carry 60 amps of electricity it is very dangerous to use an 8-gauge copper wire. you should not use a wire of less than 6 gauge to carry 60 amps of electricity. If you use an 8 gauge wire to carry 60 amps the wires will melt and which will lead to destroying the appliances and there is the possibility of catching fire. 

Can it handle 80 amps:

An 8 gauge wire whether copper or aluminum will heat up, melt and will lead to fire so to increase safety we recommend you use a 2 gauge wire for 80 amps as it will handle the electricity safely. A copper 3 gauge wire also can be used for 80 amps because the wire has better ampacity than aluminum. 

8-gauge Copper Wire
8-gauge Copper Wire

Can it handle 100 amps:

An 8-gauge copper wire is totally incapable to handle 100 amps.100 amps is a lot of electricity and you should use a proper size of wire such as 3 gauge copper wire. 

The standard temperature of the 8 gauge wire is about 140 F Or 60 C. And using an 8 gauge wire with 55 amps of electricity the temperature of the wire reaches upto 194 F so we can say that it is totally unsafe to use 8 gauge wire with more than 50 amps of electricity. 

AWG wire gauge chart:

The following chart will help you to know about standard copper wire and very AWG wire explaining the diameter, cross-section, and ampacity of the different wires. 

AWG NumberDiameter (inches)Diameter (mm)Cross-Section (mm2)Ampacity (at 75°C)
0000 (4/0) AWG0.4600 in11.684 mm107 mm2230 Amp
000 (3/0) AWG0.4096 in10.405 mm85.0 mm2200 Amp
00 (2/0) AWG0.3648 in9.266 mm67.4 mm2175 Amp
0 (1/0) AWG0.3249 in8.251 mm53.5 mm2150 Amp
1 AWG0.2893 in7.348 mm42.4 mm2130 Amp
2 AWG0.2576 in6.544 mm33.6 mm2115 Amp
3 AWG0.2294 in5.827 mm26.7 mm2100 Amp
4 AWG0.2043 in5.189 mm21.2 mm285 Amp
5 AWG0.1819 in4.621 mm16.8 mm2
6 AWG0.1620 in4.115 mm13.3 mm265 Amp
7 AWG0.1443 in3.665 mm10.5 mm2
8 AWG0.1285 in3.264 mm8.37 mm250 Amp
9 AWG0.1144 in2.906 mm6.63 mm2
10 AWG0.1019 in2.588 mm5.26 mm235 Amp
11 AWG0.0907 in2.305 mm4.17 mm2
12 AWG0.0808 in2.053 mm3.31 mm225 Amp
13 AWG0.0720 in1.828 mm2.62 mm2
14 AWG0.0641 in1.628 mm2.08 mm220 Amp
15 AWG0.0571 in1.450 mm1.65 mm2
16 AWG0.0508 in1.291 mm1.31 mm217 Amp
17 AWG0.0453 in1.150 mm1.04 mm2
18 AWG0.0403 in1.024 mm0.823 mm214 Amp
19 AWG0.0359 in0.912 mm0.653 mm2
20 AWG0.0320 in0.812 mm0.518 mm211 Amp
21 AWG0.0285 in0.723 mm0.410 mm2
22 AWG0.0253 in0.644 mm0.326 mm27 Amp
23 AWG0.0226 in0.573 mm0.258 mm2
24 AWG0.0201 in0.511 mm0.205 mm23.5 Amp
25 AWG0.0179 in0.455 mm0.162 mm2
26 AWG0.0159 in0.405 mm0.129 mm22.2 Amp
27 AWG0.0142 in0.361 mm0.102 mm2
28 AWG0.0126 in0.321 mm0.0810 mm21.4 Amp
29 AWG0.0113 in0.286 mm0.0642 mm2
30 AWG0.0100 in0.255 mm0.0509 mm20.86 Amp
31 AWG0.00893 in0.227 mm0.0404 mm2
32 AWG0.00795 in0.202 mm0.0320 mm20.53 Amp
33 AWG0.00708 in0.180 mm0.0254 mm2
34 AWG0.00630 in0.160 mm0.0201 mm20.3 Amp
35 AWG0.00561 in0.143 mm0.0160 mm2
36 AWG0.00500 in0.127 mm0.0127 mm2
37 AWG0.00445 in0.113 mm0.0100 mm2
38 AWG0.00397 in0.101 mm0.00797 mm2
39 AWG0.00353 in0.0897 mm0.00632 mm2
40 AWG0.00314 in0.0799 mm0.00501 mm2
8-gauge Copper Wire
8-gauge Copper Wire

Hence we can see the details of an 8-gauge copper wire and the wire suggestion:

8 AWG wire diameter (in inches):0.1285 inches
8 AWG wire diameter (in mm):3.264 mm
8 AWG wire cross-section (in mm2):8.37 mm2
8 AWG wire amps (ampacity at 75°C):50 amps

How far can an 8 gauge wire run? 

The following table explains the  maximum distance an 8-gauge copper wire and aluminum wire can run:

8 AWG copper wire:

VoltageMax Distance
120V62 ft
240V124 ft
480V249 ft

8 AWG copper wire:

VoltageMax Distance
120V53 ft
240V106 ft
480V213 ft


It is very important to maintain the temperature of wires because wires start to get heated up due to the increase in the electricity which will lead to damage to the appliances and also lead to catching fire. So use the 8-gauge copper wire accordingly to amps, distance, and voltage which is explained above.

Rick Costa

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