Top 5 mistakes to avoid when running network cabling

Top 5 mistakes to avoid when running network cabling

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Given the nature of the digital age, it is important for any successful business, no matter its size, to have a fast, efficient and reliable network they can trust.

Having the right hardware is obviously an important part of ensuring your company is capable of installing a system that can handle its requirements, yet it would be naive to think that a solid network can be achieved simply by throwing pieces of hardware together.

Setting up a fully functioning network is something of an art and is often one that is easy to get wrong. Indeed, there are a number of common mistakes that are made when running network cabling and by knowing what not to do it becomes easier to avoid any subsequent pitfalls!

Here is our rundown of the five most common mistakes.

1. Always secure cables

It may seem obvious, but sometimes the pressures of having a new system up and running as soon as possible can leave some aspects of cabling installation to be overlooked. The consequences of leaving cables hanging may not be obvious, but over time these cables can become overstretched, which allows them to degrade in quality. Cables might not seem heavy, but the toll of being left to carry its weight for a prolonged period of time can have an effect on the speed of your network.

2. Never neglect cable management

Say there's a problem with your network and you need to check on your cabling in order to find the root cause of the issue. You don't want to be confronted with a mass of seemingly random wires. Tracking down any problem with your network requires an in-depth knowledge of its every inch, something that can only be gained through labelling and making a record of every component. The amount of time saved when looking to make repairs and upgrades to your system when everything is properly labelled can help to dramatically reduce the impact of downtime, protecting efficiency and productivity.

3. Never ignore regulations and laws

It should be an obvious point, but codes for cabling installation can often be overlooked for the sake of saving either time and money. However, it is always a risk that is never worth taking. Failure to adhere to codes and regulations for installations may not just harm the performance of your network, it could also present a safety risk for your workforce. For example, if PVC-jacketed cables are installed in a roof or crawl spaces they can present a risk in the event of a fire or other emergency as they become highly toxic. Even if no one becomes injured by such malpractice, companies leave themselves open to fines and may have to rip out the cabling they have installed.

4. Always test the cabling you have installed

Again, this is a part of the process that can sometimes fall down the list of priorities, but it is an essential part of installation. Always test your infrastructure using the proper tools. Make sure the transmission speeds will be supported by the cabling you have laid out and never ignore cabling standards.

5.Never run cables parallel to your electrics

A modern office environment is likely to include a lot of electrical cabling, so always ensure that data cables are never laid out parallel to your electrical wiring. As data cabling consists of twisted pairs, they hold a magnetic field that is generated by the small voltage that runs through them. If they are laid out parallel to those used for electrics, it heightens the likelihood of that magnetic field being interrupted, which could result in lower quality transmission.

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