The actual wiring of the outlets for a central vacuum cleaner system is a snap; the hard part is getting the low-voltage wire from the central vacuum cleaner power unit’s location to the individual wall outlet locations. Fishing the wire through finished walls, floors and ceiling can be challenging even for the pros because you never know what kind of obstacles you will encounter along the way.
Running the Low-Voltage Wire
The easiest way to run the low-voltage wire is down into and through an unfinished basement or basement crawlspace. With the wire in position there, all you have to do is drill up into the wall spaces where the outlets are to be located. In the absence of an unfinished basement or basement crawlspace, an alternative method is to run it up into an unfinished attic or attic crawlspace and then down into the wall spaces where the outlets are to be located. In the absence of either, remove the baseboard trim and run the wiring behind the baseboard. Any of these methods are quicker and easier than fishing the wire blindly through finished walls, floors and ceilings.
Securing the Wire
The low-voltage wiring can be run next to the vacuum system tubing and secured to it with nylon wire ties. Alternatively, the wire can be secured to wall studs, floor beams or ceiling rafters using insulated staples at intervals not exceeding 4 1/2 feet.
Cutting the Wire
When installing the wire in each of the vacuum outlet boxes, cut the wire long enough so that it extends 6 inches from the front of the outlet boxes. Remove the wire's outer jacket and strip 3/4 inches of insulation from the end of each of the wires. Depending on the style of the outlets you are installing, you may have to make open loops in the stripped ends of the individual wires.
Connecting the Outlets
Some outlets use screw terminals like those found on wall receptacles and switches, while others use compression terminals like those found on circuit breakers. With screw terminals, place the open loop under the screw in a clockwise direction and then tighten the screw down on the wire. Always place the wire around the screw in a clockwise direction so the wire is pulled in against the screw as you tighten the screw down on the wire. With compression terminals, place the straight end of the wire through the hole and tighten down the screw onto the wire.
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