Do you have Wires hanging down from your TV?
Cables running across the room because of the position of the socket?
Network cables which supply internet to other rooms littered at the edge of the wall?
Having wires in the open around your home can be dangerous, especially if you have kids. Even as an adult, there’s the risk of getting an electric shock from a little cut in those wires. Another reason to hide these wires is that they make your home look untidy.
If you have wires or cables of any kind running around your home, then you are in luck. The solutions I'll discuss in this article will show you how to cover those wires, make your home look tidier and eliminate the associated risks.
Before we start, I highly recommend hiring a professional to do any installation. But I’m just going to tell you what happens in the process. This means some aspects might be generalised.
However, if you have some experience with electrical installation, then you can give it a go.
If you’re going to take on a project like this, it’s important to get some safety gear. Here’s what I recommend.
The ideal way of doing it.
Utility sockets on plasterboard walls
The first thing to do is to plan where you’re going to install the wires. It's best to make a simple route from the starting point going directly up or down.
But you have to make sure there are no obstructions inside your wall, especially along the route you want to create. This is where the Stud Director comes in. Survey the work area with a stud director. This equipment will tell you if there are any live wires or metal pipes in the work area.
Another way to get a hint of what’s going on inside your plasterboard wall is to look at what's attached to it. But different builders use different Proses, so it's best to confirm this instead of taking a gamble.
After creating the route, you can then fit the Dry Lining BackBox at the desired location ready to feed-in the new cables.
Depending on the type of studs metal or wood you have in your walls; you may have to cut out enough plasterboard to gain access to it.
Use an Right Angle Drill Attachment to create a thorough hole for the cables you're planning to feed through.
Keep the hole at the centre of the stud. A good Jab Saw will also come handy in helping you achieve this.
Once that's done, it's time to fit in the appropriate wires. Consider wiring up the cables to test them. If everything is working perfectly, you can then patch the holes on the plasterboard, sand and paint it when it dries.
Utility sockets on Solid Brick Wall
Just like with plasterboard, you first need to survey the work area with a Stud Director to know if there're any live wires or metal pipe in the work area.
Once you know the path of the cables, set some dust sheets down. Next, you'll need to carve out a path for the wires. Make sure there are enough width and depth to accommodate the Protective Channelling and where the Metal Back Box will fit-in at the ends of the wiring path.
After you’ve carved out the channel, you’ll then need to fit-in the cables. Put the cables in place and hold them using the Protective Channelling. Then Screw the Protective channelling to the walls using Galvanised Nails. The metal back boxes can be fitted at this point too.
Next, you’ll need to wire up the cables to test them and ensure everything is working fine. If it works perfectly, then fill in the channels (also known as Chases) you created.
I will go into greater details on a later post, but here's essentially what to do.
First, put some paint and PVA bond on to the channels. This stops the plaster from drying up to quickly and end up with cracks.
Once that sets, apply the bonding coat plaster.
This will be on the channels only and should be around 3 millimetres. Below the wall surface, the finish coat plaster will take up space once the bonding coat has set-in. Use the remaining PVA bong for the top of the bonding coat.
After that, you’re ready to apply some finishing compound like ‘Easy fill plaster’. Only apply it around the socket edge and on the channels. The work area may be slightly raised by about 1 millimetre, but that shouldn't be an issue, as you can sand it to level once the compound is dried.
After that, all that you have to do to finish the project is to paint the walls and screw the sockets back on.
Cheaper Ways to Hide Wires around Your Home or Offices!
Here are some solutions I found that doesn't necessarily need a professional to install, but will still give you a clean look with the same functionality.
This is pretty straight forward. You can use the standard Wire Clip that has a nail as the mechanism to attach to the wall or wire clips with adhesive, so you don't damage the wall. When attaching the wire to the wall, leave a gap of roughly 25 cm /30cm and a lot closer when going round corners. This is to ensure that the wire has no sagging spots and has a clean and organised outlook.
Cable Tidy is a good way to tidy up the Spaghetti junction that usually accumulates at the back of a desktop computer or living room TV. With a Cable Tidy Box, you can get that minimalistic look without having to break out anything or use any tool.
Fitting PVC Trucking is an easy and fast way to hide cables. It also gives you easy access if you need to add new cables in the future.
Ethernet socket extenders
I found Ethernet Powerline Adapter to be one of the most efficient ways to get the internet to a room far from the router. With most modern Ethernet adapters, no configuration is required. Just plug in, and you are ready to use.