How to Crimp Electrical Wire

Written by laurie brown
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How to Crimp Electrical Wire
Crimping tool (cable cutters image by Albert Lozano from

Crimping electrical wire is the process of mechanically attaching a connector to the end of an electrical wire. Electrical connectors are designed so when you squeeze down on them, the pressure holds them onto the wire. The connectors come in various sizes pending the gauge of wire, as well as colours to help indicate the use of the wire whether its a neutral wire or "hot" with electricity.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Wire cutters/strippers
  • Electrical wire
  • Box of electrical connectors
  • Crimping tool

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  1. 1

    Cut the end off the piece of electrical wire. Using the wire strippers, strip off between 1/4 and 1/2 inches of the outer insulation on the end of the wire.

  2. 2

    Match the colour of the terminal, or barrel as they are sometimes called, to the colour die on the crimping tool, and insert the terminal into that die on the crimping tool.

  3. 3

    Insert the end of the stripped wire into the end of the terminal on the connector. Squeeze the two handles of the crimping tool together to press down on the terminal and clamp or crimp the connector onto the end of the wire.

Tips and warnings

  • You can purchase a crimping tool at your local hardware or electrical supply store.
  • Use caution when operating the crimping tool, and make sure your fingers are clear of the dies as you squeeze down to avoid injury.

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