Electrical Safety

Why use cable trunking to avoid electrical shocks?

Cable raceway systems organize, protect, and hide home wiring and electronic cables

With so many electronic devices now used in homes, a jumbled mess of cords and wires has become a common sight along walls, behind furniture, and under desks. It’s more than an eyesore and a tripping hazard — even low-voltage wiring can pose a potential safety risk to chewing pets and small children tugging on cords. Thin data and communications cables need protection too, from vacuum cleaners, rolling home office chairs, and foot traffic.

How can you hide, protect and organize wires in a home?

One solution that electricians use, especially in outdoor installations, is rigid EMT or PVC conduit — but you won’t convince many customers to install exposed conduit in their homes. Homeowners are more likely to rely on plastic clips or hook-and-loop fabric to wrap cords together. An inexpensive short-term fix, clips and wraps don’t hide bundled cables or protect them from abrasion and impact.

Electrical cable trunking, or raceway systems combine the protection of conduit with the flexibility of wraps and clips. Dexson from Schneider Electric has an extensive range of cable trunking that houses wires in U-shaped PVC channels, hidden by removable covers and connected with various elbow and tee fittings. On an interior wall, an installed Dexson raceway looks like a simple strip of decorative molding.

Dexson trunking products come in various sizes and compartment configurations to fit different wire gauges and multiple cables — as with conduit, a raceway should never be packed tightly with wires. Dexson can be installed almost anywhere in a home — and even outdoors — but there are several situations where it works especially well:

  • Wall-mounted TVs: For safety and a tidy installation, hide that dangling tail of power and communications cables inside a vertical cable trunking strip.
  • Home offices: Protect and organize computer, printer, modem, and other cables strung along walls or under desks. The Dexson range includes raceways with two parallel compartments to minimize interference by physically separating power and communications cables.
  • Wall-mounted lighting: Secure household 14/3 wiring inside trunking — instead of cutting into the walls.

What advantages does trunking offer for electricians and homeowners, compared to other wiring and cable management approaches?

Cable trunking is surface-mounted

Where drywall has already been installed, there’s no need to open up walls, which saves time and avoids renovation mess. For solid brick or concrete walls, where cutting into a wall is expensive and impractical, a surface-mounted raceway is more aesthetically appealing than conduit.

Installation is fast and easy

For many cable trunking systems, the only tool you need is a hacksaw to cut channels to length. Even in a room with lots of corners, joints and corner fittings allow trunking to wrap neatly around almost any architectural feature. And attaching Dexson products to interior walls can be as simple as pressing peel-and-stick adhesive strips in place.

Affordable

PVC cable trunking is an affordable option; the materials cost about the same as a rigid conduit, but installation is much faster. Homeowners value a quick, mess-free installation that means lower labor costs in a renovation. Electricians benefit because they can give more accurate time estimates, work faster, and move on to the next client.

Versatile and easily modified

In modern homes, electronic devices are updated frequently. To swap out a cord or add a new one, just pop off the raceway cover, lay the new cord in the channel, and snap the cover back on.

Paintable and aesthetically appealing

Many cable raceways can be painted to match walls or trim, so they blend in seamlessly, whether a home’s style is traditional or modern. Trunking can be tucked up along the ceiling like crown molding or positioned along the top edge of baseboards so it’s visually unobtrusive.

Yes, cable trunking systems are code-compliant

Electrical codes generally recognize cable trunking as a safe alternative to conduit, even for household power cables — as long as the wires inside are within the specifications for the size and type of raceway installed.

Many homeowners aren’t familiar with cable trunking and how it can be used for safe, clutter-free cable organization in the home. That’s an opportunity for electrical contractors and electricians to build more business and satisfy customer needs — easily and cost-effectively.

Dexson from Schneider Electric has a range of PVC cable raceway and trunking products in multiple sizes and compartment configurations. For more information, please visit our Cable Management Systems page.


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