How Do You Draw a Single Line Diagram in AutoCAD?

Are you new to AutoCAD and wondering how to draw a single line diagram? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! In this tutorial, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of creating a single line diagram using AutoCAD.

What is a Single Line Diagram?

A single line diagram, also known as a one-line diagram, is a visual representation of an electrical system or circuit. It uses standardized symbols to show the components and connections of the system in a simplified manner. Single line diagrams are commonly used by electrical engineers, technicians, and electricians for designing and troubleshooting electrical systems.

Step 1: Launch AutoCAD

Firstly, open AutoCAD on your computer. You can find the AutoCAD icon on your desktop or in your Start menu. Double-click on the icon to launch the application.

Step 2: Create a New Drawing

Next, click on “New” in the File menu or use the shortcut “Ctrl + N” to create a new drawing.

Step 3: Set Up Drawing Units

In order to ensure accuracy and consistency in your drawing, it is important to set up the appropriate units. Click on “Format” in the Menu bar and select “Units”.

  • Select “Decimal” as the Type.
  • Select “Millimeters” as the Insertion Scale.
  • Select “0” for both Length and Angle precision.
  • Click on “OK” to save the settings.

Step 4: Draw the Electrical Components

Now it’s time to draw the electrical components of your single line diagram. You can use various AutoCAD drawing tools such as lines, circles, rectangles, and text to represent different components.

For example, you can use a line to represent a conductor, a circle for a motor, and so on. Use the appropriate symbols as per electrical standards or your organization’s guidelines.

Step 5: Add Labels and Text

To provide clarity and make your single line diagram more informative, it is essential to add labels and text. You can use the Text tool in AutoCAD to insert text next to each component or connection point.

Select the Text tool from the Home tab or use the shortcut “Ctrl + T”. Create a text box by clicking on the desired location and enter the necessary information. You can also modify the font style, size, and alignment using the Properties panel.

Step 6: Organize and Group Components

To improve readability, you can organize and group related components in your single line diagram. This can be done by drawing boxes around sets of components or using different colors for different sections.

Select appropriate tools such as rectangles or hatches from the Draw toolbar to create boxes around groups of components. You can also change the colors of individual components or groups using the Properties panel.

Step 7: Save and Export Your Drawing

Lastly, don’t forget to save your work! Click on the “Save” icon in the Quick Access Toolbar or use the shortcut “Ctrl + S” to save your drawing. Choose a suitable location and provide a meaningful name for your file.

If you need to share your single line diagram with others who don’t have AutoCAD, you can export it to a commonly used file format such as PDF or DWG. Click on “Export” in the File menu and select the desired format.


Congratulations! You have successfully created a single line diagram in AutoCAD. By following these steps and using appropriate symbols, labels, and grouping techniques, you can create clear and professional-looking diagrams for your electrical systems.

Remember to practice regularly and explore more advanced features of AutoCAD to enhance your skills in creating technical drawings.

Happy drawing!