Eliminating Waste in Panel Building Applications With Push-In Connection Technology

PB 26 Allied logo 400

July 20, 2022

By Berea Janzen, Product Marketing Manager – Contactors, ABB

Many manufacturers employ Lean Six Sigma process improvement methods aimed at eliminating waste and reducing variation. In this context, waste is defined by the pneumonic device “DOWNTIME,” which stands for defects, over-production, waiting, non-used talent, transportation, inventory, motion and extra processing.

In the manufacturing industry, the three most common types of waste are:

  •    –   Defects – When a product is declared unfit for use and must be scrapped or reworked, which costs both time and money.
  •    –   Motion – When people move more than is necessary (e.g., to get tools or complete tasks), which wastes time and increases the risk of injury. 
  •    –   Extra Processing – When people do more than is required to complete a task.

Efforts to reduce manufacturing waste range from major overhauls that can generate significant savings — up to tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars — to incremental changes that chip away at waste. But all waste reduction efforts boost manufacturers’ bottom line and, as such, are well worthwhile.

Eliminating Waste in Panel Building Applications


Manufacturing facilities feature many different types of applications with various purposes, processes and end products, but there is some consistent overlap. For instance, every manufacturing facility is equipped with electrical panels. So, panel building applications offer universal opportunities for waste reductions.

One of the easiest ways to reduce waste in panel building applications is to install devices equipped with push-in wire connection technology rather than traditional screw-in wire connection technology. Screw-termination connections require routine maintenance to ensure the safety and efficacy of the wire terminations, while push-in connections allow installers to simply insert wires into an entry hole where they’re terminated and held tight with a robust, high-reliability spring — even in high-vibration applications.

Push-in connections can typically accept solid wires and ferruled wires without any preparation and only require installers to strip a small amount of installation from stranded wires to accommodate insertion. By simplifying the wire termination process, push-in connections enable quicker, easier and higher reliability wire terminations that reduce the risk of installation errors while also reducing installer training requirements and, by virtue of saving time and eliminating the need for routine maintenance, save money. As such, they effectively reduce the three most common types of waste in manufacturing applications: defects, motion and extra processing.

Push-In Connection Pros and Cons

Push-in connections are a proven-robust and -reliable alternative to traditional screw-termination connections and are especially advantageous in panel building applications, which offer manufacturers a universal opportunity to reduce defect, motion and extra processing waste and, in turn, boost their bottom line.

Push-in connections feature clearly identifiable wire entry holes and enable quick, easy and intuitive wire termination, accepting solid and ferruled wires as-is and stranded wires after they’ve been stripped of just a small amount of insulation. This simple termination process can reduce installation time by up to half the time required for screw-termination, eliminates the need for calibrating torque tools and virtually eliminates the risk of wiring errors for even novice installers, which in turn eliminates the need for specialized training and frees up more experienced employees for more complex tasks.

Push-in connection technologies also feature a high-performance spring made of stiff, highly conductive, high-spring-force metals proven to reliably withstand stress relaxation, up to five or more pounds of pull-out force and shock and vibration per IEC 60068-2-27 and IEC 60068-2-6 for the lifetime of the component. In addition, push-in connections don’t require regular maintenance, unlike screw-termination connections, which have to be regularly inspected and retightened to prevent loose wires from causing panel fires or explosions.

The most commonly cited con for push-in connection technology is its cost. But while it’s true that push-in connections tend to cost a bit more than screw-termination connections, devices deployed in harsh-environment, high-vibration applications — like the electrical panels in wind turbines and oil rigs — almost certainly warrant the additional cost and, on balance, may even have a lower applied cost than devices with screw-termination connections that require much more time for installation and maintenance and introduce greater risk to the system.


Calculating the Benefit of Push-In Connections

ABB offers a free savings calculator that allows current and potential customers to quantify the benefit of choosing contactors equipped with push-in connections over those with screw-termination. Users simply enter a few data points about their panel building operations to see how much money they could save each year by specifying push-in panel devices over screw-termination panel devices.

For example, a user who purchases 800 three-pole contactors a year, spends about $400 on torque wrench calibrations and $0.03 per ferrule and reworks approximately 48 devices a year at a $50 per hour labor rate could save $6,011 a year by switching to panel devices equipped with push-in connections.


Related Articles

Changing Scene

  • Tri-Mach Announces the Purchase of an Additional 45,000 sq ft. Facility

    Tri-Mach Announces the Purchase of an Additional 45,000 sq ft. Facility

    Recently, Tri-Mach Inc. was thrilled to announce the addition of a new 45,000 sq ft. facility. Located at 285 Union St., Elmira, ON, this facility expands Tri-Mach’s capabilities, allowing them to better serve the growing needs of their customers. Positioning for growth, this additional facility will allow Tri-Mach to continue taking on large-scale projects, enhance product performance testing, and provide equipment storage for their customers. Read More…

  • HELUKABEL Group Builds New Facility for Automation Cable Solutions

    HELUKABEL Group Builds New Facility for Automation Cable Solutions

    The HELUKABEL Group recently announced it is going to build a new facility in Haan, Germany that will house its robotic dress pack and drag chain system subsidiaries under one roof. The new building will also serve as the headquarters of HELUKABEL’s Rhine-Ruhr sales branch, and is planned to be completed by 2025. Robotec Systems’ core business is robotic dress pack solutions and has been a HELUKABEL subsidiary since 2012 operating out of Duisburg, a suburb of Duesseldorf in northwest Germany. Read More…

Sponsored Content
Fire Protection for Lithium-ion Battery Energy Storage Systems

Lithium-ion storage facilities contain high-energy batteries combined with highly flammable electrolytes. In addition, they are prone to quick ignition and explosion in a worst-case scenario. Such fires can have a significant financial impact on organizations. Rapid detection of electrolyte gas particles and extinguishing are the key to a successful fire protection concept. Since December 2019, Siemens has been offering a VdS-certified fire protection concept for stationary Li-ion battery storage systems.

Click HERE to learn more.

For a Multiplied Value Unified


During the last few years, the Excelpro Group has welcomed AIA Automation, Envitech Automation and Conrad Lavoie Electrical, all of which have become ‘Member of the Excelpro Group’.

It was with great excitement that in November of 2022, Excelpro announced that these three companies officially became Excelpro. This decision is part of a strategy to enhance the Excelpro Group’s brand in its market.

These companies already collaborate on various client projects. This merger brings together the complementary strengths of the employees and ensures a global synergy of the activities throughout the Group.

Read More

Service Wire Co. Announces New Titles for Key Executives

Bruce Kesler and Mark Gatewood have been given new titles and responsibilities for Service Wire Co.

Bruce Kesler has assumed the role of Senior Director – Business Development. Bruce will be responsible for Service Wire’s largest strategic accounts and our growing Strategic Accounts Team.

Mark Gatewood has been promoted to the role of Vice President – Sales & Marketing. In this role, Gatewood will lead the efforts of Service Wire Company’s entire sales and marketing organization in all market verticals.

Read More

Modern Niagara Partners with Global Sustainability Platform Worldfavor

Worldfavor is a global sustainability platform, digitizing and automating the collection, calculation, aggregation and visualization for analysis and reporting of ESG data. Now, Worldfavor is proud to welcome Modern Niagara as a new customer. Modern Niagara is the first Canadian construction company to partner with Worldfavor.

“Worldfavor was founded to be the best platform for sharing, accessing and gaining insights from corporate ESG information. Worldfavor’s mission is to make sustainability mainstream and with that we offer solutions to accelerate sustainability through the value chain. Modern Niagara is the first Canadian construction company to partner with Worldfavor. 

Read More

JMP Parent Company, CONVERGIX Acquires AGR Automation, Expanding Global Reach

Convergix Automation Solutions has completed the acquisition of AGR Automation (“AGR”), a UK-based provider of custom, high-performance automation design and systems integration primarily to the life sciences industry.

Following Convergix’s acquisitions of JMP Solutions in August 2021 and Classic Design in February 2022, AGR marks the third investment in Crestview’s strategy to build Convergix into a diversified automation solutions provider targeting the global $500+ billion market, with a particular focus on the $70 billion global systems integration and connectivity segments. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Read More

Latest Articles