AV Wiring – Part 5: Documentation Makes a Differencestaff
AV Wiring Documentation – Why Proper Documentation Matters
Designing and installing the wired backbone for integrated home electronics is a specialized skill developed only through experience. It requires detailed knowledge of connected equipment and clear understanding of desired end-uses. It is a false economy to leave this critical part of your project to an electrician or other trade just to save a few dollars. Nowhere is this truer than with respect to labeling and AV wiring documentation.
Once the walls are closed, it is time-consuming and costly to figure out where else in the home each cable sticking through a hole in the drywall may go. So it is important that all cables are documented and tested – something only professional technology integrators (like us) are trained and equipped to do.
Professional system documentation should include:
- The positions and type of all outlets, marked on an architectural plan drawing of the property
- A schedule of cables describing cable type, termination type and locations of both ends of the cable. Labels on each cable should tie in with the identifications on the plan drawing.
- Ideally, a schematic drawing or wire map showing the topology and connections of all installed cabling
Fixing a fault in the beginning is much cheaper than fixing it at the end. Professional integrators also test their wiring for continuity, shorts, and other issues before construction proceeds.
Basic labeling for basic systems is generally included in the installation price, but don’t be surprised if your integrator charges a documentation fee for more complex installations. Preparing quality documentation takes time. It also ensures that final installation goes smoothly, makes it easier to add new capabilities, and greatly enhances the value of the home to potential buyers down the road.
These days, technology in the home is a significant investment. Involve qualified home technology professionals from the beginning to design, install and maintain your system, and get the most from this investment now and in the future.