Your new wall-mounted flat-panel television is a picture of sleek modernity, displaying gorgeous images while taking up no floor space. The problem now lies with what to do with the trunk of cables leading from your entertainment rack to the back of the television. If you have conventional plasterboard walls, you can take the normal path of hiding these wires behind the wall itself. However, stucco, brick and concrete walls make that impractical or impossible. Fortunately, there are solutions that maintain the slick look of a flat panel without having to invade the wall space.
Bundle your wires together using a plastic zip tie every four inches. For applications where the wires are not overtly visible but are otherwise loose and tangled, bundling the wires then covering the trunk with plastic wire loom lends a finished and organized appearance.
Consider a cable raceway, a plastic tunnel through which the wires are routed, if you cannot penetrate the wall surface. Measure the distance from the base of your mounted television down the wall leading to your equipment rack. Measure the distance precisely following the path along the wall where the wires will travel. Cut the raceway to these specifications, using a table or hand saw. Press the wires in place into the enclosed half of the channel, then press-fit the cover over the top. Paint or stain the raceway to match the mounting surface.
Install an outlet kit to conceal power cords and other cables in the wall. Consult a qualified electrician to install the kit if your local ordinances mandate it. Cut a hole in the wall directly behind where the flat panel sits on the mount, with a corresponding hole 12 inches from the baseboard or level with other outlets. Screw the AC cable into the upper plate, then drop it through the wall and out of the lower opening. Screw the other end to the back of the other plate. Plug the TV's power cord into the upper plate. Plug the included extension cord to the lower plate, with the other end into an adjacent outlet. Route the HDMI cable from the rear of the set through the opening on the upper plate, through the wall and out of the lower plate. Tighten the Phillips screws on each plate until the legs on the rear of each plate grab the drywall.
- You can hide the mass of low-voltage cables like HDMI, component video and others inside the wall while using a thin length of raceway solely for the power cord. This measure avoids the potential expense of hiring an electrician to hide a single wire.
- It is against most electrical codes to use a power cord inside a wall. Even if all other wires pass through the wall, you must add a separate AC outlet or outlet kit to maintain code requirements.
Items you will need
- Plastic zip ties
- Wire loom
- Measuring tape
- Plastic channel wire raceway
- Table or hand saw
- Paint or stain
- Drywall saw
- Phillips screwdriver
- Kraig Scarbinsky/Digital Vision/Getty Images