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100' VGA cable in 3" conduit with water

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
This isn't actually in a home; it's in a church. Today, we ran a 100' VGA cable through about 85' of 3" metal conduit. After pulling the snake and then cable through, we noticed there was definitely some water somewhere in the conduit.

The cable is this cable.

Is it okay to use this VGA cable in this conduit since there is water in it?

The cable will go from a laptop to a VGA splitter then out to a projector.

post #2 of 10
Probably not a good idea. Most coaxial cables are water resistant not water proof. There can be pin holes in the sheath. Pulling the cable can add or enlarge holes. And water vapor can even migrate through an intact sheath. The cable will not perform as well once moisture enters.
post #3 of 10
Short term, depending on the condition of the cable, you will be fine. However, depending on the location of the conduit (can it freeze?) and the amount of moisture I would recommend an outdoor rated cable, as long term as Colm said, it probably will fail.

A quick Google didn't bring up any outdoor VGA cable, but you may want to consider using outdoor rated CAT5e cable and VGA/component baluns.

The one thing I can say from experience, is that I've installed 1000's of feet of outdoor CAT5e in buried conduits filled with mud and water, as well as outside of any conduit in the elements and I've never had a problem. You just need to use the right type of cable.
post #4 of 10
I would try to get the water out of the conduit. If this is new construction it may have gotten in somehow and hasn't had the opportunity to evaporate.

Not exactly sure how, maybe put a string of towels through the conduit until it starts coming up dry.
post #5 of 10
Perhaps use a lot of Air-pressure to get the water out?
post #6 of 10
What kind of pressure/volume would you need to provide enough air to clear a 3 inch line. I mean it takes a really big trailer unit just to winterize my 3/4 inch irrigation system. That is why I was thinking of the low tech approach.
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the tips everyone!

The building is actually about 5 years old, and the conduit was unused until we ran this cable. Is it even possible for water to stay in conduit for that long? I'd hate to go to the trouble of getting the water out of there (somehow?...low tech approach may work), only to have more water get in there.

Short term, we'll use the cable that's in there. However, I think, long-term, we'll likely go with a solution such as using outdoor rated CAT5e.

As long as the only concern now is the cable deteriorating, I'm comfortable using it as is for now.

Thanks again!
post #8 of 10
How long can water stay in a bottle? water at the middle of a 100 ft pipe is "kind-of" like that. Without air circulation evaporation would be at a snails pace.
post #9 of 10
I wouldn't lose any sleep over it, you got the cable in place, enjoy!, if something happen's which i ever doubt, worry about it then.
Remember the cable is in plastic sheath, the indivual wires are encased in there own plastic type covers, worst thing to worry about is possible corrosion, like i see in car's.
post #10 of 10
Depending on the installation, water can certainly remain in buried conduits for years.

Before bothering to remove the water, I would ask a few questions:

What is the weather like were the church is located? (Frost, heavy rain, etc)

Is the conduit buried (I assume it is) if it is, is the conduit PVC, rigid or EMT? What type of couplers were used if the conduit is metal?

If the soil the conduit is buried in drains poorly and/or you have a high water table, depending on how well the conduit was put together (I've seen everything including unglued couplers on buried PVC) you may never get the water out.

Personally, I would plan on replacing the VGA cable with outdoor CAT5e and extenders.

If you want to get the water out (at least temporarily) you will have to pull the cable out first. (use the cable to pull in a pull string) Get some conduit plugs (or foam carrier) and pull them through a couple times.

You can also make your own plug with some stiff wire, 2" washers and some foam.
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