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What is Electrical Design Software?

By Erin J. Hill
Updated May 16, 2024
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Electrical design software allows an electrician or electrical engineer to draft diagrams, plans and graphics showing the placement of wires and other electrical components. These plans are used in the implementation of these devices in the wiring of buildings, electronics, or in the creation of any part of these items. Electrical plans can also instruct manufacturers on how to put together small electrical components used for the construction of wires, conduit and other materials.

Architects and electricians are the primary users of electrical design software in the drafting of wiring plans. They may draw a layout of where each wire will go, the type of wire used, the location of the breaker box and the placement of lighting fixtures and switches. This not only makes the organization and installation of these items faster and easier, but allows the designers to double check their work to ensure that proper materials have been recommended.

Specific types and sizes of wire must be used for powering certain elements of the building. For instance, the furnace or heat pump would require a much larger and higher wattage wire than a simple outlet or ceiling fan. Failure to comply with regulations and codes could result in an electrical system that experiences frequent power failures or even fire. Plans created using electrical design software help to keep all participants in the wiring and construction of a building on track.

Another use for electrical design software is the creation of diagrams for electronics. These graphics will show manufacturers or creators of electronic devices where each component of the piece will go and which wires will connect them. There may also be instructions on the installation of these elements and how they should be applied.

The benefits of using electrical design software are many. Before the invention of computers and computer software, designers of electrical plans had to draw each thing by hand. This was not only time consuming, but also left plenty of room for error. Issues that were discovered had to be corrected by redrawing the diagram or by taking the time to erase and rework portions of the original plans.

Early electrical design software was limited and did little more than provide a rough drawing of the plans. Today’s software has many additional options, allowing electricians and architects to customize each plan using color coded diagrams of wires and circuits and by specifying the exact materials needed for the job. This software is available virtually everywhere, with dozens of varieties being up for purchase on retail websites.

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Discussion Comments

By w123456789 — On Feb 22, 2013

I completed my engineering degree in electrical and electronics in June 2011. I don't have any idea how to search for an electrical-related job?

What are the different positions for newbies?

I don't have any clue what to do, or which course to take to get into it. Can anyone help?

By anon106850 — On Aug 27, 2010

I am interested on this job because it is a good job in my area.

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