I have bought a ceiling light manufactured in china. It's cable looks strange to me, it doesn't seem to be a copper wire and I'm not sure if is safe to use WAGO Copper connectors for it.

Here is the cable: cable photo 1 cable photo 2

The marking on the cable reads like:

CE ◁VDE▷ ◁?VE▷ CEBEC ? ? ? ? CCC 227 IEC 52(RVV) 300/300V 2x0.75mm2 N2024 GUO BIAO

Question marks are symbols that I can't read.

Because of the grey steel-ish color I suspected steel and tried applying strong magnet to this cable - no effect, it is not sticking to magnet.

I tried googling, but I couldn't find a comprehensive explanation to Chinese cable markings in any language that I can read.

I already considered replacing the cable completely, and inspected internal cabling: The light fixture has 16 G4 lamp sockets, each socket has pressed in cables, which look similar color-wise to the main cable in question, I googled for replacement G4 sockets, but all of the them seem to have same grey-ish cables, this renders my idea of replacing the cable useless.

So my question here is:


I cut the cable and took a photo of the cut. It looks a bit orange-yellow-ish, photo is taken under white light and with a non-bleached paper as background. Still not a saturated copper-color.

enter image description here

  • 1
    Probably aluminum or aluminum clad copper(doubt it). Need connectors made for aluminum or better yet get a new lamp with UL label. CE label is known to be fake and insurance will probably denied any claim if found.
    – crip659
    Mar 9, 2022 at 22:53
  • 4
    It could simply be tinned copper (or nickel-plated, or similar). Cut the wire and have a close look at the end; you may be able to see whether there's a copper-colored core.
    – Greg Hill
    Mar 9, 2022 at 22:55
  • see updated photo, I also scratched the cable threads with a knife, they do have copper-like color. That means it is either Nickel plated or alike, AFAIK that is safe to be connected with copper then. Can it be something else? I guess it is unlikely that steel or aluminum based cores will have orange/yellow-ish colors. Mar 9, 2022 at 23:54
  • 75mm is 18AWG, which is pretty standard for a cord. - Powder some and flame test it. If it burns green it's copper.
    – Mazura
    Mar 10, 2022 at 4:13
  • "Can Wago connectors be used on aluminum? With WAGO Alu-Plus Contact Paste, they can connect aluminum and copper conductors using WAGO's connectors – quickly, easily and reliably."
    – Mazura
    Mar 10, 2022 at 4:15

1 Answer 1


You're not allowed to leave it to chance

In North America: The electrical code has a rule about this: NEC 110.2. It says equipment used must be "Approved", which means by a Nationally Recognized Testing Lab (NRTL) such as UL, CSA or ETL.

In Europe: There are accredited 3rd party testing labs in Europe - the same ones certain countries always had, like TUV and BSI. However Europe generally relies on a self-certification called CE which is created by the EU. That only works if they have corporate assets inside the EU that the authorities could seize. With direct mail from overseas or a drop shipper like Amazon Fulfillment, the consumer is the importer, so no one is responsible for quality. So effectively CE is only as good as its "chain of custody".

This assures that the product is safe - from electrocution, and from fire, and particularly from the flammability of plastics - a) do they self-extinguish, or do they self-sustain and accelerate a fire, and b) do they emit poisonous smoke which will impede your escape? There's a lot to it. For instance North America's is spelled out in UL's "White Book" under UL 1598.

So the simple fact is, you should not have bought it, and it was probably illegal to sell it (at least, would be in a bricks-and-mortar store). The seller made an "error" by listing them. But you also made an error by buying it. It was sold direct from China (even if it comes through Amazon's warehouses as many eBay items do). Really, the only answer is to send it back.

  • 1
    the light itself has some sort of certificates, but not a NEC one, I don't know if it ever was supposed to be sold on "NEC territories", as I'm not in US - I'm in Europe :) I do agree with your statement about not leaving it for a chance, that is what I'm figuring out here. Mar 10, 2022 at 18:34
  • @Anton You didn't mention locale but you also didn't expect answers to take a hard left turn into jurisdictionality lol. I added a section about Europe; the CE self-certification is a small wrinkle but the basic concepts apply about the same. Mail order bypasses the government consumer protection scheme. Mar 10, 2022 at 20:51

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge that you have read and understand our privacy policy and code of conduct.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.