Do i really need to buy CL2 rated cables - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 33 Old 06-14-2007, 05:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi,i seen one of the forum sponsors(Mono price) sells HDMI , component cables that are CL2 rated and which are close to 3 times the price of non CL2 cables,i am going to wall mount my PDP and run the cables about 4-6 feet in a non insulated interior wall and than out at the bottom, should i buy these or go with the non CL2 rated cables,(which im sure most people use) feed back welcome.... i will be running 2 HDMI and i component,which I alll ready have.
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post #2 of 33 Old 06-15-2007, 07:12 AM
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You can use anything you want. But when you have a fire and there is non in-wall rated wires in the wall and your insurance adjuster voids your entire claim, it won't seem like a very cost effective move.

Also. depending on your local municipality, running non in-wall rated cable in the wall could make you fail an inspection that stops you from selling your house etc.

aLso, you don't have to use CL2 rated cable, you could use CL3.
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post #3 of 33 Old 06-15-2007, 07:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fletch999 View Post

Also. depending on your local municipality, running non in-wall rated cable in the wall could make you fail an inspection that stops you from selling your house etc.

If I were buying a house and saw non-inwall rated cable used inwall, I'd start wondering what other shortcuts were used that I can't find.
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post #4 of 33 Old 06-15-2007, 07:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Hey thanks for the feed back,i was told to day that they are exactly the same except for something that they don't put in the CL2 cables sheathing, i forget what it was but he said it was something to do with the release of a chemical ,any way for peace of mind il buy CL2 rated cables most likey 12 ' s ,thanks again,im sure thou 90% of people use regular cables.
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post #5 of 33 Old 06-16-2007, 05:08 AM
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This is kind of a subject I have been wondering about...

I see sooo many people say that you have to use certain cable for inwall instllations, etc.

But, don't codes vary by state, or city? Also, I know there is waaaayy more to code than cable types.

In my case its not a big deal. All my inwall runs are from bluejeanscable, and on their site they say all their cables that I use are rated for inwall installation....well except my S-video run, but I am not about to rip things apart on account of one cable.

Lastly, off subject, but not really: I live in a neighborhood with new "cookie cutter" homes that have unfinished bonus space in the attic. Several of my neighbors finished them out themselves, yet did all the work themselves, pulled no permits, and had no inspections done...What is up with that???

-Alan
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post #6 of 33 Old 06-16-2007, 07:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FirebirdTN View Post

But, don't codes vary by state, or city? Also, I know there is waaaayy more to code than cable types.

Yes, but most are based on the National Electrical Code (NEC). Many municipalities or Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJ), will add requirements to the NEC when adopting their local codes. To make it more complicated, the NEC is updated every few years, but some AHJ's are slow to adopt the new standard or modify it. Most info you see on these boards is usually at least loosely based on the last couple of publications of the NEC. Some of the interpretations are good ones and some are not. It's a complicated document and even those who use it daily will disagree on interpretations.


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Originally Posted by FirebirdTN View Post

Lastly, off subject, but not really: I live in a neighborhood with new "cookie cutter" homes that have unfinished bonus space in the attic. Several of my neighbors finished them out themselves, yet did all the work themselves, pulled no permits, and had no inspections done...What is up with that???

-Alan

Being able to work on your own house varies a lot from location to location. I can do anything to my property with the exception of working on the septic system and there is no body to issue me a permit or do an inspection. There are other areas where you cannot legally replace your own outlet or wall switch. Usually work of the scope you describe would require a permit. People don't get them because of cost, the hassles involved with getting inspections done (inspectors seldom work weekends), and possibly knowing that their work would not pass inspection. There is also the issues that when you let your local government know you have improved your house, that the taxes may increase and that people really don't like being told what they can and can't do with their own house.

Mike

An avid DIY'r and a proponent of Firewire
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post #7 of 33 Old 06-16-2007, 08:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FirebirdTN View Post

Lastly, off subject, but not really: I live in a neighborhood with new "cookie cutter" homes that have unfinished bonus space in the attic. Several of my neighbors finished them out themselves, yet did all the work themselves, pulled no permits, and had no inspections done...What is up with that???

-Alan

And almost certainly, they will have problems when it comes time to sell the home if they did not get the space permitted. My parents just went through this when they tried to buy a home that had a finished upstairs. The homeowners had done it own their own and had not permitted it. Once the home inspector discovered this and had uncovered many code violations (unventilated hot water heater, one circuit feeding an entire upstairs, undersized HVAC), my parents withdrew their offer and the sellers were in some deep trouble with the city. Their only recourse was to pull all the drywall down so that the electrical could be inspected, replace the HVAC, repipe/duct the hot water heater, and lots of other stuff. Not a very nice day for those sellers, nor the selling agent who had advertised the home knowing of these issues. I cringe everytime I hear of people circumventing the permitting process to save a few $.
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post #8 of 33 Old 06-16-2007, 11:25 AM
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post #9 of 33 Old 06-16-2007, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by fletch999 View Post

You can use anything you want. But when you have a fire and there is non in-wall rated wires in the wall and your insurance adjuster voids your entire claim, it won't seem like a very cost effective move.

I have to disagree with this. Most homeowner's insurance that I've seen will cover you even in cases where you did your own work in an unsafe condition. I'm talking replacing fuses with pennies, running #18 zip cord for AC compressors, etc.

I would check your own policy to be sure, but I am sure that you are going to be surprised.

Quote:


Also. depending on your local municipality, running non in-wall rated cable in the wall could make you fail an inspection that stops you from selling your house etc.

While this is true, it really doesn't matter one bit.

When you go to sell your house, take 3 minutes to pull the wire out, DONE!. If you can't pull the wire out, cut it off and bury it, then spackle over the couple holes- 10 minutes tops.

In the end, I always recommend using in-wall rated wire just because it's considered "right". However, if you don't use it, it won't make a difference.
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post #10 of 33 Old 06-16-2007, 08:32 PM
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Thanks for the info guys, I really appreciate it. Eventually I want to finish my bonus space upstairs and do alot of my own work, or contract it out myself, but I have *no* issues with pulling permits, or having inspections done. I am very nitpicky in my quality of work, so I want to do it right, but I was just curious about the fact I have all these neighbors finishing out their attics and not pulling a single permit.

I don't pretend to know any of the code, but I am confident that all the work I have done (which only consists of adding some wallplates and running some cable from behind the TV over to the wall plates) would pass inspection; all but the S-video run I have from Bluejeans which they says is not inwall rated, but the rest of my cables are.

The only thing I was a little concerned with is when I hung my speakers, I placed them symetrically around the room, ensuring the cableing would not run down the same chase that any electrical ran down (code violation I'm sure, but seems common sense to me). What I didn't realize was one speaker run was right in front of an unused gas line (for gas stove). Too late now though, otherwise it means relocating a pair of speakers, and repairing drywall in those areas.

-Alan

PS There are also some pretty stupid code requirements as well. At work I ran all the phone wiring for a new comercial building that went up, and the inspector failed it because the wiring wasn't affixed to the studs (stapled). How dumb is that? And sure enough after the construction was complete, I had one bad cable that had to be replaced. You know how hard it is to rip up a cable that is stapled to the studs?!?!?!?
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post #11 of 33 Old 02-07-2008, 06:04 AM
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does not your house have to be inspected first by the town. If the house burns so do you so i would use the safest cable i could buy. I thought CL2 means shielding and thickness. RG6 F Type Quad Shielded Coaxial 18AWG CL2 Rated 75Ohm Cable
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post #12 of 33 Old 02-07-2008, 09:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dagger666 View Post

does not your house have to be inspected first by the town. If the house burns so do you so i would use the safest cable i could buy. I thought CL2 means shielding and thickness. RG6 F Type Quad Shielded Coaxial 18AWG CL2 Rated 75Ohm Cable

Wow, resurrected an old post!

CL2 is a flame rating from a UL standard and only refers to the safety of the cable in terms of fire and smoke etc. It has nothing at all to do with how well the cable will perform.

Carl

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post #13 of 33 Old 02-07-2008, 01:10 PM
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so are cat 5 cables like phone cables and dont need any sort of CL2 rating to be run in walls?

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post #14 of 33 Old 02-07-2008, 01:13 PM
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Originally Posted by ragedogg69 View Post

so are cat 5 cables like phone cables and dont need any sort of CL2 rating to be run in walls?

The mere fact that cat5 has an outer jacket makes it CL3 rated.
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post #15 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 05:36 AM
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all cables have an outer jack that you plug into to. We have cable in Florida and each place has a wall jack to plug a cable into, how else would you do it.
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post #16 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 05:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dagger666 View Post

all cables have an outer jack that you plug into to. We have cable in Florida and each place has a wall jack to plug a cable into, how else would you do it.

Not outer 'jack', but outer JACKET. He was referring to the insulation that surrounds the cat5 cable that makes it CL2/CL3 rated.

Bottom line, if you are running cables in a wall you must use riser rated cable which is CL2 or better rated. Doesn't matter the voltage or what you are using it for. It is purely to ****** the spread of fire (fire racing along your cables to other rooms), and to prevent toxic fumes from poisoning the inhabitants as the insulation burns.
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post #17 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 06:30 AM
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Originally Posted by mylan View Post

The mere fact that cat5 has an outer jacket makes it CL3 rated.

No, no, no. Not all Cat 5e is rated for in-wall use. You need to make sure it has a CM, CMR, CL2, CL3, CL2R, CL3R (one of these) rating.

Carl

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post #18 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 06:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ragedogg69 View Post

so are cat 5 cables like phone cables and dont need any sort of CL2 rating to be run in walls?

ANY cable run in-wall needs to have a NEC flame rating. This includes Cat 5e.

Carl

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post #19 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by fedders View Post

No, no, no. Not all Cat 5e is rated for in-wall use. You need to make sure it has a CM, CMR, CL2, CL3, CL2R, CL3R (one of these) rating.

Carl

Very true...Stranded Cat5 used in patch cord making is often not CL rated.
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post #20 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by robertmee View Post

Very true...Stranded Cat5 used in patch cord making is often not CL rated.

In addition, it is not enough to just have CM or CMR (the standards that apply to communication cables) on the cable. It must also have UL or ETL or some other nationally recognized testing lab (NRTL) listed on the cable. The UL listed cables will have an e-number for the manufacturing company. The ETL listed cables will have an ETL identifying number from the manufacturing company.

Believe it or not, I've seen several import cables that say CM or CMR, yet they are not printed with UL or ETL. Some of the importers don't even know what these mean and just print it on the cable...

Carl

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post #21 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by fedders View Post


Believe it or not, I've seen several import cables that say CM or CMR, yet they are not printed with UL or ETL. Some of the importers don't even know what these mean and just print it on the cable...

Carl


That's pretty unbelievable. You'd think there would be some regulatory agency to prevent that.
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post #22 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertmee View Post

Not outer 'jack', but outer JACKET. He was referring to the insulation that surrounds the cat5 cable that makes it CL2/CL3 rated.

Bottom line, if you are running cables in a wall you must use riser rated cable which is CL2 or better rated. Doesn't matter the voltage or what you are using it for. It is purely to ****** the spread of fire (fire racing along your cables to other rooms), and to prevent toxic fumes from poisoning the inhabitants as the insulation burns.

Robert,
In non multi dwelling residential applications you do not have to utilize "Riser Rated Cables" for all in wall installations. There key word here is "Riser"
Look to the bottom of this Q/A page:

http://www.genesiscable.com/FAQ.htm

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post #23 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 10:43 AM
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CMP=Plenum Rated
CMR=Riser Rated
CMG= Genral Purpose
CMX= Residential almost imposible to find
Most cities you can substitute down the table. Just not up.

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post #24 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 11:02 AM
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Originally Posted by function12 View Post

CMP=Plenum Rated
CMR=Riser Rated
CMG= Genral Purpose
CMX= Residential almost imposible to find
Most cities you can substitute down the table. Just not up.

Other way around (unless I mis-understood your comment). For instance, you can sub Plenum for Riser, but not the other way around. Plenum is a higher rating.

Also, there is no longer CMG - it is just CM.

Carl

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post #25 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 11:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CVanMeter View Post

Robert,
In non multi dwelling residential applications you do not have to utilize "Riser Rated Cables" for all in wall installations. There key word here is "Riser"
Look to the bottom of this Q/A page:

http://www.genesiscable.com/FAQ.htm

Granted you can use Riser Rated "CL-2R and CL-3R" cables throughout your home, but you will be paying a good deal more.

Agreed - in most homes it is not required to use "riser" rated products. Riser products have the "R" on the end of the rating as you note.

But, for the most part, CMR (riser-rated) jackets are only a little more expensive than CM. Plenum-rated (CMP), on the other hand is significantly more expensive. Perhaps that is what you were thinking?

Carl

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post #26 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fedders View Post

Other way around (unless I mis-understood your comment). For instance, you can sub Plenum for Riser, but not the other way around. Plenum is a higher rating.

Also, there is no longer CMG - it is just CM.

Carl

Correct. CMP can sub for anything. CMR can sub for CMG or CMX. Ect... CMUC can not be sub for anything. CMUC under carpet. CMG is still in 2008 NEC. LC has not been added yet and you will need a wavier before you install.

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post #27 of 33 Old 02-08-2008, 11:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fedders View Post

Agreed - in most homes it is not required to use "riser" rated products. Riser products have the "R" on the end of the rating as you note.

But, for the most part, CMR (riser-rated) jackets are only a little more expensive than CM. Plenum-rated (CMP), on the other hand is significantly more expensive. Perhaps that is what you were thinking?

Carl

Sorry about that .... I had typed a comment regarding if people felt they had to find Riser Rated Pre-Fabricated cables "HDMI, Component...." and if they could be found, how much more they would cost. I decided to cut that part out but accidently left the comment about costing a good deal more ...

Again ... my mistake so I deleted that part from my post

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Lets resurrect this thread yet again. A quick call to my cities building department revealed that regular speaker wire can be used. I asked if I need CL2 Rated in-wall or plenum and he said no. For low voltage you can use just regular speaker wire...So with that said which of these is really better?
http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2
http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2
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post #29 of 33 Old 05-15-2008, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by smakovits View Post

Lets resurrect this thread yet again. A quick call to my cities building department revealed that regular speaker wire can be used. I asked if I need CL2 Rated in-wall or plenum and he said no. For low voltage you can use just regular speaker wire...So with that said which of these is really better?
http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2
http://www.monoprice.com/products/pr...seq=1&format=2

The person you talked with at your city's building department did not know what they were talking about - or they don't know the NEC. Did you just talk with the receptionist?

Carl

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post #30 of 33 Old 05-15-2008, 08:38 PM
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I actually spoke with the building commissioner because the lady was not sure...she said oh I dont know why dont I just have you speak with the commissioner. he will know...

Unless I am confused myself now, is CL2 and plenum rated similar? because my understanding of plenum wire is that it is mostly needed in commercial buildings where the air goes up into the ceiling over drop ceiling and get circulated from there. The plenum rating has to do with the way it burns and the smoke it produces...allegedly it is not toxic and does not produce as much smoke...The truth is, in the end of it all, if your house is going to burn down, I can highly doubt it was a result of your low voltage wiring, and if it catches fire the speaker wire isnt going to determine whether the house burns to the ground or not. But I suppose for 20 bucks you can buy what people preach and say to get, but I just dont quite get it, and I think it is overkill in a home theater application. But again I could be way wrong, which is why I havent decided which cable to buy yet.
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