Bus bars are still widely in use today. Created to conduct electricity, there is a running debate on which metal, either copper or aluminum, is better for manufacturing bus bars. There is no clear cut answer, but here are some guidelines that may help you to better choose the best bus bar metal for your next project:


  • Copper is the traditional choice. Copper bus bars came into use several decades ago as the best way to move electricity through low voltage switchboards. Copper has a high level of conductivity and was thought to be the best choice for this type of application.
  • Aluminum is now also an option. Aluminum is also an option for bus bars. Experts have found that it is just as conductive as copper, and may even be more so, as well as being quite a bit lighter than comparable copper products. Aluminum also offers better heat dissipation, which is important so that wiring does not melt and cause a hazard.
  • Bus bars can be extruded. Both aluminum and copper are quite soft, which means that today bus bars can be extruded. Custom made dies can offer bus bars in a wide variety of shapes that can be used for many different industries.
  • Recycled aluminum can be a benefit when choosing a bus bar material. Copper can be more costly than aluminum and with the advent of recycled aluminum, the costs for creating custom bus bars can be reduced even further. Recycled aluminum can cost nearly 30% less than copper. In addition, because aluminum is not considered a commodity, the price does not fluctuate as much as copper.


To learn more about the best metal for your next bus bar project, call the experts at Vortex Metals. We can help you choose the right product for your next project based on cost and specifications. Call now!