When working with data cabling companies regarding structured data cabling installation for your new office or business, it’s important that you refuse to be kept in the dark. So many homeowners and business owners make the mistake of leaving everything up to the company, from the method of installation to the minute cabling details. Which is understandable, considering it is their job.
However, ignorance can be damaging. Even if you’re not actually installing the cabling structure, it’s your responsibility to understand, to the best of your ability, what needs to be achieved and how it needs to happen.
Here some best practices for you to skim over before the technicians arrive at your office.
Keep Cabling Methods Flexible
Remember that every structured office cabling system is unique. Variations and adjustments will need to be made to account for the architectural structure of your new office, the function or purpose of your cabling installation, the kind of equipment that the cabling will support, and so on.
Manufacturer warranties and your own specific requirements will also dictate the setup for your telecommunications infrastructure system. Therefore, you need to keep an open mind and keep your methods flexible. If the professionals from data cabling companies have any advice or suggestions to make, take those into consideration.
Learn What Type of Cabling You Will Need for Your New Office Building
Make Sure You Adhere to ANSI Standards
Licensed data cabling companies will no doubt follow and maintain the standard practices set by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). They actually put out a series for the best designs, methods, and maintenance of cabling installations.
It’s important that you familiarize yourself with their guidelines and best practices to ensure that the data cabling company you’re working with follows ANSI standards religiously—for several reasons. Aside from guaranteeing consistency across the board and uniformity in documentation, abiding by ANSI standards also assures you that your system will conform to physical and transmission line requirements.
Know Which Principal Entrance Facility You Have
The entrance facility plays a crucial role in structured data cabling. In terms of structured data cabling, it essentially houses all the components needed to connect the actual cabling premises—in this case, your office—to the outside server facilities. These components include the service entry pathways, both the connecting and transition hardware, and even the cables.
There are four principal types of entrance facilities: underground, tunnel, buried, and aerial. As the names suggest, the type depends on the location of the entrance facility. Most data cabling companies will adjust their cabling methods accordingly. For instance, SP cables use an overhead route to provide service when it’s an aerial entrance.
Knowing which one you have or which would be best in respect to your building’s location is crucial.
Understand the Benefits of Structured Cabling vs. Point-to-Point
The typical method for cabling is often defined as “point to point.” This is the more conventional system that involves connecting the hardware components directly via jumpers or patch cables. In a way, this method works—as it has worked for centuries. However, if you’re going to choose structured data cabling, you should understand the benefits of the method so that you better appreciate what’s going on.
For instance, a structured data cabling system reduces downtime and time spent on cable and port tracing. It’s also far more organized than a point-to-point system. Aesthetically speaking, it looks cleaner and more efficient as well. Your technician or point person will be more than happy to explain more detailed benefits of this method.
Beware These Frequently Missed Requirements
Earlier, we mentioned ANSI standards for installation, and how these guidelines can help keep your system running safe and fully optimized. Aside from being familiar with the standards for installation and maintenance, you should also know basic requirements that so many people so often overlook.
One such requirement is for cables to not be installed in front of air ventilation grids since they can block the airflow and potentially overheat the equipment. You should also avoid placing multiple data cable bundles on top of each other. This can lead to performance degradation. Here are some others:
- Don’t overstress the cable by twisting it more than necessary
- Do not pull or stretch the cable beyond specified load rate
- Do not apply pressure with cable ties
- Avoid using patch cables as they can cause failure over time
- Ensure copper cables are twisted together for cancelling out Electromagnetic Interference, but no more than necessary
If you’re working with experienced data cabling companies, they no doubt know all this. However, it’s imperative that you, as the client, also understand the dos and don’ts of structured data cabling installation. This way, you can at least gauge how much the company knows and how safe, stable, and maintainable their installation methods are going to be.