What Documentation to Expect From Your Cabling Installation Contractor

What Documentation to Expect From Your Cabling Installation Contractor

There are certain sets of documents that you should require from any contractor that you have doing work for you in your building. Some of these documents can be expected of any contractor, whether they’re installing electrical strength and lighting, plumbing, HVAC, or a cabling system. However, a cabling contractor should be able to supply you with some additional documentation that other contractors won’t need to give you.


Every job should have a set of prints. These are the guidelines that the contractor should use during the installation course of action. They should show where you want everything to be installed and should also include a section with special instructions, if applicable. When an installation crew is good, they will truly “red-line” the prints they’re using to give better detail than the original prints. These red-lined prints should be sent back to the shop and turned into what are known as “As Builts.” A set of as built prints shows where the crew ran the cabling, to extent. It will also show any corrections to the original print caused by conflicts with other systems being installed, such as plumbing and HVAC. The as built should also include cable labeling information. This method that the label that was placed on the cable will be listed on the print showing where it goes; what office or piece of equipment it serves.

Closet Layouts

In small installations, this isn’t as imperative as it is in larger installations with dozens of fully populated racks in multiple telecommunications closets. Not having a closet layout, for every closet, can average that the person sent to figure out why the second floor HP Laserjet printer isn’t communicating with the network can use a few hours just figuring out what panel and port is it connected to and in which rack that patch panel is installed in. Additionally, not only should a master list be supplied, showing the layout of every closet involved in the build, but each closet should have a layout conspicuously posted in it. The better contractors are truly going to supply a variety of layouts when they finish their job. These will include a large layout of the whole room, one for each individual rack, and when multiple rows of racks are used, a layout posted at the beginning of each row.

Testing and Certification Results

For mission basic systems, or longer cable runs, this may be the most important piece of documentation you should get from your contractor. Testing and certification results prove to you that the cable plant was properly installed and meets or exceeds the specifications you set for it. You should review these results very carefully, in conjunction with the prints. The prints can sometimes explain certain readings, like when some of the readings are borderline, which is easier to overlook when the cable run approaches the maximum length allowed under the stated standard. However, borderline results from shorter cable runs method less than optimal installation practices which could rule to data transmission issues and these should be rectified prior to job acceptance.

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