While running electrical wire through a home or facility, electricians are often instructed to run data cable at the same time. Data cables and electrical wires are very different and require different installation methods, which electricians aren’t always aware of. Whether you’re an electrician or just new to the field of fiber installation, make sure that you don’t make any of these common cable installation mistakes when installing Cat5e or Cat6 data cables.
Pulling Too Hard on the Cable
What’s the difference between electrical wires and fiber optic cabling? Copper wires are flexible and durable, while fiber cabling is fragile and easily damaged. This is because fiber cables are made of glass fiber, which can break if bent and pulled excessively. This makes cable breakage one of the biggest cable installation mistakes that first-timers make. While the outer covering of the cable is designed to protect the fragile glass fiber within, pulling too hard or bending the cable too tightly can create enough tensile stress to break the fiber.
Not Enough Ceiling Support
For cable installers who are not up-to-date on their training, this oversight may be one of the most often committed cable installation mistakes. It used to be common practice to simply pile up cabling on ceiling tiles during installation. The problem with this is that it’s very difficult to lift ceiling tiles near the telecommunications closet without a disorganized mess of wires falling out. That’s why the National Electrical Code established standards that dictate that cables should not be piled on tiles. However, this doesn’t mean cables can be attached to just anything. The tia/eia-569a regulation establishes specific pathways that cables should take when being installed. Any other methods are not adequately following BISCI guidelines.
Improper Cable Termination
What’s the number one threat to fiber signal, right after too much bending and pulling of the cable? Improper termination. To be properly terminated, a fiber cable has to be very carefully cleaned with a special solution to remove any dirt, dust, or other residue. A representative from JDSU–a leading company in designing and manufacturing products for optical communications networks–stated at a 2008 BICSI Conference that “Contamination is the number-one reason for troubleshooting optical networks.” Properly cleaning each endface every time they touch their connectors is essential for maintaining a strong fiber signal.
Get in Touch with FiberPlus
FiberPlus has been providing data communication solutions for over 25 years in the Mid Atlantic Market for a number of different markets. What began as a cable installation company for Local Area Networks has grown into a leading provider of innovative technology solutions improving the way our customers communicate. Our solutions now include:
- Structured Cabling
- Electronic Security Systems
- Distributed Antenna Systems
- Public Safety DAS
- Audio/Video Services
- Support Services
- Specialty Systems
- Design/Build Services
FiberPlus promises the communities in which we serve that we will continue to expand and evolve as new technology is introduced within the telecommunications industry.
Have any questions? Interested in one of our services? Call FiberPlus today 800-394-3301, email us at email@example.com, or visit our contact page.