Any tips for running cable (speaker wire, Cat5) behind drywall?

I have an attic and no basement and there is blown insulation all over. I am an electrical engineer but that only helps with the planning part. The actual work is something I plan to get help with from one of my electricians. Any tips would be helpful and appreciated.

Frollard is pretty much right on. The only thing I would add is to make sure you aren't using the same chase as the the Electrical wiring. You may find at least a little interference if you run speaker wire or CAT-5 near the live wire. Unless of course you have the High End stuff that is completely shielded.
110100101108 years ago
if you have a duct conect thin plastic wire to a plastic shop bag (or piece of) and stuff into the duct (air tight but not too tight to move). go pull from the other end with a vacuum cleaner
frollard8 years ago
Pick up a fish tape from your local home depot. The smallest one is good for regular joes like us. It'll set you back about 10-15 dollars, but worth every penny. It's a spring-steel 'cable' that is really good for 'pushing' thru things like blown insulation. Decide where you want connections, and decide if you want the cables run IN the walls, or run on the surface in plenum/tracks. Plan the route of your cables, measure and buy/scavenge enough for the job. In-wall looks really good, but is harder. Knowing the stud-design of your house helps. Generally its studs on a measured distance, 12, 14, or 16 inches, and have horizontal 2x4 plates at the top and bottom (will need a hole thru this plate to get into the attic from the wall). A stud-finder is useful for finding where to make holes. Low-voltage plastic wiring boxes are cheap, and easy to use as templates for cutting holes in drywall - and making strong safe and 'code' connections. Check your local hardware store and they'll show you the options. Universal cover plates with punchdown connections are easy to install, and come with the punchdown tool (levitron brand at least) Pulling the wire is best to have a person feeding on side to prevent kinks, and a person pulling communicating with one another. Pull an extra meter on each end, coiled in the wall, (its cheap) and when you inevitably have to re-wire the connection, or move the box, it comes in VERY handy. *just dont go over the cat-5 distance limits. Using one of those coil-in-box cables are awesome, they self unwind and don't have any twist in the cable, otherwise, fashion a holder out of a broomstick, and two chairs so that the cable unwinds as you pull. You can reel together as many cables as you need, and pull them all at the same time. Lastly, when pulling, pull a strand of strong poly-twine. (the tie-down stuff you get when you buy stuff at ikea, etc). Tie that off at both ends so in the future if you need to add a wire, its as easy as pulling the existing threaded wire :D
keydogstony8 years ago
I'm sure your electrician will know what to do. You'll need a fish tape to get the cable down the wall. I have also purchased toilet chain to fish the walls with. If you have insulations in the walls, you will need a fish tape. Your electrician should have one or you can purchase at Lowe's or HomeDepot.