5 Tips to Improve Rack Cable Management
1. Label your Cables
Save yourself the headache of sorting through cables by labeling them right off the bat. Every cable should have a label at both ends, regardless of size or type. This will save you a lot of trouble down the road when you are having to test circuits or can’t remember default cable locations. Be sure to have a good label printer on hand to make this process easy!
2. Color Code
There are a few different ways you can color code your cables:
- Cable Type – Having one color for CAT5, one for Fiber, and so on, will make it easy to determine the type of cable with just a glance.
- Cable Purpose– Using a specific color for internal wiring, wiring to go to user equipment, and wiring that goes outside of the building can be an effective strategy, especially in some larger areas.
- Cable Destination– For some buildings, it makes sense to have cables color coded based on which floor or office area they are going to.
Here is an example of a RackSolutions customer that utilizes different colors to designate different networks.
3. Create Pathways
When you are creating pathways for your cables, it is important to think ahead. Don’t just plan for the cables you have now, think about future growth! Below are some different products that can help with pathways for your cables!
- Ladder rack
- Cable Tray
- Horizontal Cable Management
- Vertical Cable Management
4. Plan for Expansion
It is extremely important to plan for expansion and growth within your data center. When you are planning for growth, make sure all of your cable trays and ladder racks can support up to 50% growth after the first instillation. It is important to make sure your cables are long enough and aren’t stressed around corners or racks. Also keep weights mind, your heaviest cables should be at the bottom of the tray or separated from other cables. This will ensure that the heavier cables aren’t putting stress on the lighter ones. A good way to prevent damage to the connectors from the weight of the cables is to use a strain relieve bar like this
5. Use a Cable Comb
A Cable Comb is used by professionals to ensure that large cable bundles not only look good but are easy to maintain. Cable Combs are jigs that hold cables in place during the installation so no tangles occur. The result is a clean, organized professional installation.
Separating different cable types will make organization and function much easier. It’s always a good idea to keep the different cables grouped together and separated from other types. Also, be sure to keep your cables snug and properly connected!