While a mess of cables at home can be annoying, a mess of cables in an office or at work can quickly become a nightmare. Not only are out of control cables unsightly, but they also make work less efficient and they can be a safety hazard. Thankfully, there are several great cable management products you can use to corral your cables and keep them under control.
Hook and Loop Cable Ties
Hook and loop cable ties are a popular and effective cable management products that business owners use to bundle cables together neatly. They are inexpensive, easy to use and replace, and fully customizable to any size of cable bundle, whether large or small. Hook and loop cable ties feature a length of hook on one side and length of loop on the other side. The tie wraps around cables and then the leftover material lays back onto itself for a secure hold.
Because hook and loop ties are flexible, soft and reusable – they are ideal for home and office environments. For example, the alternative solution might be the use of a plastic zip tie. However, if you wish to add or remove cables to a wire bundle most of zip ties must be cut off. Cutting ties off cables is both time consuming and potentially hazardous.
Hook and loop ties come in many different shapes, colors and sizes and are made from different raw materials. Most hook and loop ties are made by ‘marrying’ the hook to the back of the loop using adhesives. While you would never be able to tell this on a store shelf, post-installation, ties made with this type of raw material tend to ‘delaminate’ over time. This is where the hook starts to separate from the loop section.
Industrial users and more quality conscious retailers prefer to buy or sell hook and loop ties that are made from a different process. Specifically, VELCRO® brand ties and SPEEDWRAP® brand cable ties are made from Velcro® brand ONE-WRAP® material. This material is some of the finest on the market and yields a superior cable tie.
Identification of wires and cables is an important part of cable management. Because hook and loop ties come in various colors, they can help you identify cables and cords.
Hook and Loop Tape
Growing in popularity are hook and loop tapes. Like hook and loop ties, the tapes are made out of hook and loop fabric with hook on one side and “fuzzy” loop on the other. Because the product comes on a continuous roll or larger reel, users can cut the tape down to fit almost any size of cable bundles. Installers simply wrap the cut length around the wire bundle for a secure hold.
Hook and loop tapes come in various widths and are sold on reels as short as 5 yards or as long as 25 yards. Additionally, there are different tape thicknesses that affect their pricing and performance. For example, on the lighter or thinner side, VELCRO® brand Bundle Tape is great for plants and vegetation, whereas, industrial grade SPEEDWRAP® brand hook and loop tape is better suited for cable management applications.
Hook and Loop Cinch Straps
Another great cable management option are hook and loop cinch straps. This cable management solution is made out of both hook and loop materials and include a plastic or metal ring sewn or welded onto one end. Installers simply need to tighten the strap, bring it through the ring and fasten it back to itself.
Why would you use a hook and loop cable tie versus a cinch strap for cable management? Because of their plastic or metal ring, cinch straps are better for ‘cinching down’ on a bundle of wires and cables. For example, if you need the bundle to be especially tight then a cinch strap is a superior cable management product.
Due to their lower price, range of colors and ease of use, hook and loop ties are probably a better option for your home or office cable management needs. However, if you need to cinch down on your wire bundle, then hook and loop cinch straps are the superior cable management product.
If you need to position a cable on a flat surface, and using a one-piece solution, then hook and loop cable hangers may be the cable management product you are looking for. Cable hangers have a sticky side that attaches to the wall and hook and loop tie section that grasps the cable and keeps it in place.
If you need to mount a larger bundle of wires or cables or heavier wires, to a flat surface, then plastic tie mounts are the best candidates. Made from plastic, these low-profile fasteners can be mounted using adhesive or screwed to almost any surface. You can then use almost any section of hook and loop tie or tape in conjunction with the mount, to hold the wires and cables to that surface. The largest selection of tie mounts designed specifically for hook and loop ties and tapes are SPEEDWRAP® brand Tie Mounts.
For cables that need to be suspended above the ground, the new line of SPEEDWRAP® Suspender Straps are a great cable management solution. These straps are made from industrial grade hook and loop tape and employ a carabiner clip that allow you to attach one or several cables to almost any object. For example, electricians or tradesmen working on a site, can wrap the strap section around a ceiling rafter and then insert the power cables leading to and from their equipment, into the suspender’s clip. This keeps those cords above the ground, protecting flooring, cleaning up a site and improving worker safety. If you need cable management solutions to help make your work environment safer, the SPEEDWRAP® Suspender Strap or Rip-Tie Cable Carrier may be perfect for you.
If you are looking for cable management solutions, those made using hook and loop might be perfect for your application. First determine whether you need a permanently applied fastener or if you may need to access those cables later? Do you want a cable management product that helps with identification? Should the product be gentle on the wires and will you be using the product indoors or outside? If these answers lead you to a hook and loop cable management product, choose an industrial grade one like those represented in the SPEEDWRAP® and VELCRO® offering.
For advice on how hook and loop can help with your cable management project, contact the VEL-PERTS™ at Speedtech today at 800-771-3896 or firstname.lastname@example.org