Unless you’re a musician, a roadie, or work on a television crew, you may not have proper experience handling and storing cords. But you don’t have to be in the Industry to learn how to tackle tangled cords. Electronic cables are expensive; extend the life of your cords with these simple solutions.
Every home depends on countless electrical cords every day – appliances, technological gadgets, televisions, desktop computers, phone chargers, stereo equipment, and on and on. According to the Consumer Electronics Association, the average American household spends $1,400 annually on new electronics. We’re constantly adding more cord confusion to our lives. And until technology advances us into a cordless world, homeowners need to find a way to cope with the cords.
Gold Medal Service always keeps the safety of our customers in mind. Avoiding frayed wiring and overloaded outlets is a big part of electrical home safety. That means knowing what and when to unplug and how to maintain cord quality. This guide will help you do more than just avoid trips and tangles. It will help you maintain electrical system safety and get organized.
How to Wrap Them
The Over-Under method –
This is the most popular method for musicians and sound junkies alike. Smaller or thinner cords will benefit from this cord solution. You can even apply this method to your headphones, another cord that’s constantly tangled!
Learn How to Coil Cables from the London School of Sound in this fun video, below:
For Step-by-Step photo representation, visit WikiHow’s Coil Any Kind of Cord.
The Contractor’s Braid –
If you work in HVAC as we do, this is the go-to way to coil our cords. The Contractor’s Braid allows for the seamless unraveling of longer, bulkier cords and the braiding technique looks quite aesthetically pleasing, for a bundle of cords!
See this method demonstrated by Paul’s Tool Box, below:
Step-by-Step, courtesy of Art of Manliness:
- Connect the male and female ends together
- Make an overhand knot at the end
- Make a chain of successive slip knots
- Put your hand through the loop of the overhand knot that you just made and grab the two strands of cord beneath it
- Pull the two strands through the loop and form another loop
- Put your hand through the loop that you just made. Grab the two strands of cord beneath it, and pull it through the loop to form another loop. Repeat until you get to the end of the cord.
- Tie off the end
- Voila! Hang up your contractor’s braid coil to store and access neatly.
A quick tip: If your cord is longer than 50-feet, double-up your cords and perform the same steps. Your braid will be shorter, as will the braiding process itself.
This is an old school way, and it is recommended that you do not use this method due to the kinks that can form in the cords, thus decreasing their lifespan and damaging their natural coil. Also, the bundle will not seamlessly unravel as with the above methods.
How to Store Them
1. Tie it up! – When you are done coiling your cord, tie a Velcro cable tie, or a sturdy string, around one chunk of the coil, perhaps best near the plug. Cable ties even come multicolored to organize your cords by category. You can stack many tied-up coils on top of each other and they will store neatly. When it’s time to use the cord, you undo the tie. Any tie can be used, but it’s best to opt for a reusable option, although a zip-tie will do the job as well. If you have hooks or tool hangers on your garage wall, you can hang your cords in this method.
2. A 5-gallon bucket – Already the shape of your coiled cords, storing them in a 5-gallon bucket will keep them from unraveling. You can cut a fist-sized hole on any side near the bottom of the bucket in order to better access a desired length of the cord. You can store many bundles in one bucket – this is a compact and convenient solution.
Watch the guys from This Old House demonstrate these two methods:
3. Stylish Storage – If interior design is your thing, and you’d like to store your cords with some serious panache, check out these stylish solutions from Amazing Interior Design.
For more information on home electrical safety and services, visit our Electrical Page.