You slowly open the door to the closet. It creaks, and you step in. It’s worse than you could have imagined: cables twisted and tangled from floor to ceiling. You can’t tell where one ends and the other begins. Pull one wrong cord, and the whole system could come crashing down.
This is scary cabling. What better time than Halloween in October to discuss its causes and spooky consequences?
An unorganized low-voltage cabling system is damaging to the functionality and reliability of a business’s network, which can turn into a repair bill of thousands of dollars. Improperly maintained cabling can also lead to illegal practices.
The most obvious issue with tangled cables is how hard it is to figure out which one is which. When the network has issues, routine or otherwise, it’s hard to troubleshoot. The IT team can easily get overloaded trying to figure out how to fix the problem: they cannot quickly go through every cord. When you don’t have a well-planned system, it’s too easy to accidentally pull the wrong cable and bring down the whole network.
What many people do not realize is that messy cabling can cause a network to perform at a slower rate. Over time, as cables are stretched and plugged and unplugged, they stop performing at the same rate. Keeping old cable may save money upfront, but when there is an issue it is easier to pull new cable than try to fix what is existing. This repair bill can cost thousands in both money and time.
Not only is scary cabling bad for business, but it can actually be illegal. According to electric code, when moving into a new space, you are responsible by code to remove cabling that was abandoned by the previous tenant. Though it may be tempting to try and save that old cabling for future use, it can be a fire hazard, and inspectors are careful to look out for this.
This same code also states that cabling cannot be left on or above the ceiling. If there is a fire and the extra weight on the ceiling drops down, someone could easily become entangled in the cables.
Another issue to be aware of is whether you need a permit for low-voltage work. This goes along with the abandoned cabling code: cities are trying to ensure that businesses are installing cabling properly. Just like with any other type of work, make sure that your contractor is aware when they need to pull a permit.
Schedule a free cabling consultation
Do you need help with your structured cabling system?
Every project, from basic updates to complex networks, can benefit from the insights gained from design-stage planning and research. Contact Integrated Building Systems to schedule a free consultation. Our team will meet with staff at your facility to discuss your business needs, review existing telecommunication systems and future plans, and make recommendations for achieving your goals.