This post was originally published on DIY Network’s blog Made + Remade in January 2015.
Whether you’re baby-proofing (yes), trying to tidy up cords dangling behind your bedside table (yep, this too), or just tending to that snarled nest of wires hidden behind the media console (hand raised), mastering cord management will make your home feel and look more organized.
There are lots of different approaches to the art of camouflaging and organizing your electrical cords. What tools work best for you?
When it comes to installing electronics like a flat-screen TV on a mount or a speaker system, a popular approach is to run the cords vertically between the joists behind the drywall, so when I set out to get our TV permanently mounted, this is the approach I took. The cords aren’t hardwired into the electrical circuit (code violations!), but plan to have them pop out nearby an outlet so that the hole in the wall can be easily concealed by a TV stand or side table. A product like Legrand’s pre-wired cord and power kit will help simplify your wiring needs, and seal up those gaping holes, making the finished effort look professional.
On a related note, make threading the cords through the wall easier by pre-drilling the tip of a thin, flexible dowel, and screwing in a hook. Paint the end of the dowel a bright color, which will help you spot it as it approaches the opening. Use a glow-in-the-dark paint for bonus points.
If you don’t want to bore holes in your drywall (yes, those were big, gut-wrenching holes!), other products exist to help disguise cords that dangle freely behind wall-mounted televisions. A few to check out: a paintable cord cover kit like this one from Legrand, or this model sold at The Home Depot for <$10.
When it comes to cord organization, sometimes you just need to get them off the ground and reduce the trip hazard. Here’s a secondary use for those holiday light gutter clips: use them indoors to secure long cords. The clips I own attach perfectly to the baseboard radiators.
Most lights and electrical devices come with a curiously long electrical cord, and in many cases, I don’t need to use the full length to supply power to my product. Case in point, the radio and speakers on my shelves left me with 6′ of slack, so to grasp and hide it from plain view, I used a cord management product from Command. As you can tell, it neatly binds my mass of wire, and carries the weight of a power adapter too. It’s earning its keep!
What are your other favorite products for organizing the cords in your home?