How to run speaker wires under carpet

Written by camela bryan
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How to run speaker wires under carpet
Flat wire speaker cable has a very flat profile. (flachbandkabel, flachbandleitung, flat cable image by Sascha Zlatkov from Fotolia.com)

Standard speaker wire cannot be run under carpet. It creates unsightly lumps that can be a tripping hazard and is not designed to stand up to traffic wear. Flatwire is wide flat wire that is specifically designed to be run under carpeting. This allows you to place speakers in the centre of rooms away from the walls, where audiophiles and stereo experts say they deliver the best sound.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Flat wire speaker cable
  • Wire cutters
  • Carpet cutter
  • Pry bar
  • Flat wire tape or adhesive
  • Wire stripper
  • Flat wire speaker connectors
  • Mallet

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Place your speakers in the desired location. Lay out the flat wire to plan its pathway across the room. Cut the wires to the required length including the distance from the floor to the connection and an extra inch on each end for wire stripping and ease.

  2. 2

    Cut a slit in the carpet 1 inch behind the speaker. The slit should be 1/2 inch longer than the speaker wire is wide and it should run parallel to the back of the speaker. Also cut through any padding beneath the carpet. If the sound system is not against the wall you will also have to cut a slit in the carpet for the other end of the wire.

  3. 3

    Use the pry bar to pull the closest corner of the carpet off the tack strips. Tack strips are strips of wood studded with small tacks that are used to hold carpet down. Fold the carpet and any under padding out of the way and tape the speaker wire to the subfloor, following the path you laid out earlier. Make sure the wire is as flat as possible. Run the end of the wire through the slit in the carpet, making sure the right amount of wire is sticking out.

  4. 4

    Lay the carpet back into place. Use a wire stripper to strip the plastic off the ends of the wire and install the flat wire speaker connectors according the manufacturer's directions.

  5. 5

    Connect the connectors to your speakers. Use the mallet to pound the carpet edges back onto the tack strip.

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