More often than you would like, the need to run electrical wire through finished drywalls comes up. You could be remodeling or just trying to move your outlet. The problem is, running electrical wires can seem like rocket science to DIYers.
The easiest way to fish wires and cables through finished walls is to contact a professional electrician. In the meantime, here are the steps to fish like a pro.
Start by turning off the power to the area you are working in. Next, determine the path your wire will take, including the start and end of the location of the wire. Clear the area if needed.
- Using a stud finder, check the whole wall cavity for obstacles. These include duct beams, ductwork, abandoned headers and so on that can make your task highly frustrating if unnoticed. Mark the spots and avoid cutting a hole over any studs.
- Try to determine what the obstacles are, as this may affect your work. For example, if you have insulation in the wall it can make running the wire difficult. You also don’t want to discover much later in the process that pipes to the bathroom go through that wall.
- Measure and draw the lines for the hole you will cut through the drywall. Be sure to keep the piece as you would need it later.
- Drill a hole on the other side using a flex bit drill. This tool also helps you drill the hole from several feet away. Don’t drill too close to the wood and ensure the hole is wide enough to insert your wires.
- Shove in your glow rod and attach your wire to the eyelet at the end. Working with this tool makes it easier to see in dark areas. In choosing glow rods you must know the variation in sizes come with distinct advantages. Thinner glow rods are more flexible, especially in making sharp turns. Thicker rods are good for working across long distances.
- Feed-in more than enough wire to ensure there’s enough to hook on to. Once you grab hold of the wire on the other side, keep up to six feet extra while hooking it.
- If you lose your wire and can’t seem to find it, use an inspection mirror and flashlight with a lot of patience to find it.
- If you have to drill through studs or joists on the wall, drill through the center at least 1.25 inches from its edge.
- When wiring through unprotected holes or fire blocks, ensure to seal up the holes after with a fire-resistant caulk product.
As we mentioned earlier you can call up the services of an experienced electrician to help you do this efficiently. If any problems come up during your process, contact an electrician regardless.