Running RG6 coax in parallel with electrical wire (romex)
Just looked in my basement and noticed that my contractor has run RG6 coax in parallel, same joist holes, with two 15 amp 14-2 circuit home runs. I have heard that running stereo wire in parallel with electrical wire can cause some kind of signal disturbance, but I have no idea if this applies to shielded coax.
The contractor is a friend, and we have a mutually beneficial arrangement, so I don't want to create work for work's sake. However, if this will be an issue down the road, perhaps causing fuzzy picture, poor sound quality, pixelation, etc., I'd rather fix it before we rock the ceiling.
I only posted here because I've seen a few serious AV debates among those in the know, so I'd rather start here than join an electrical or AV forum that I'll use once. Also, note that I appreciate that it may not be to code in certain areas to use the same hole, but these are centered in 10" joists, plus 1/2" gyp, so you'd have to have a heck of a nail to spear the cables and introduce 120 VAC into the cable system. That is, I really only need to know about disturbance.
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is it a quad shielded RG6? it also depends how far away the RG6 is from the Romex
you wont cause a fuzzy picture, pixelation or poor sound. you could get a noisy interference, but it all depends on how the wires are situated.
personally when i do installs, i would never do that. but then again i come from a a/v background and not a electrician background
if they are in the same hole like you said, you will have problems.
Last edited by IH8Rice; 07-29-2009 at 01:44 PM.
Originally Posted by Sandwich
i schralped bus stop with a rear flat faster than jonkranked does it on his pretty expresso
Shielded coax should be immune to induced curent from AC in a perfect world due to the structure of the coax.
In the real world, there are imperfections in the shielding foil and cable junctions that can and do allow for induction.
Certainly would not be my first choice to run them together.
I wouldn't install them together in the same hole personally, however it will be fine because;
1.) Your using Shielded RG6 and not something older.
2.) Its 14-2, not something that's actually carrying a load. (If it will be, then I'd really start questioning hiring your friend.)
3.) The signal its carrying a very high frequency. If this was speaker wire for your sound connections, which is a low frequency (in addition to not being shielded), then you'd be having problems.
The code issue I think your thinking of would come into play by having more power (wires) in the same hole than it would be rated for. This isn't even close. Nails wont be an issue either. I concern myself more with people stapling and crushing wires, or bending and kinking the coax.
To your other points, I think they may make sense. Sure, I can drill some other holes in the joists, but then I'd have a structural engineer saying I'm doing it wrong, instead of the A/V or electrical guys.
Originally Posted by Sghost
Per your above comment, though, I'm sure you mean a load ever in excess of 15 amps, or frequently close...
Yeah, if it was run along with a much, much higher amperage load. You don't have to worry about any other frequencies being able to cause problems.
- Rep Power
As a rule of thumb, I always allow a minimum separation of 12” between any com/media wire and any high voltage wire (even 14/2 may carry constant loads if feeding lights), but I come from more of a high voltage background. If you drill one more ¾” hole or (2)½“ holes, say 13” to the right or left of your 14/2 @ center of joist, your engineer will have no issues. I would never share the same hole with 120v+… try to minimize close clearances at perpendicular crossings as well, the potentially minor performance problems aren’t worth it, for how easy of a fix it is at this point.
I’d pull them out, go buy a cold 12 pack, and just tell your friend that it was making you nervous and you want to re-pull them.