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We are first time home owners and trying to learn basic things. We mounted our TV ourselves yesterday. I'm now trying to hide the wires. There is already a rugged conduit (something like this) behind the wall to pass the cables to the other end where the switchboard can be seen (bottom right in image)enter image description here

I took a 6 feet long HDMI cable. First, I tried to put it down from the top of the pipe. The entrance to the pipe can be seen right below the TV.The cable goes in about 4 feet and then gets stuck. After that, I tried same thing from bottom. I pushed the cable up and after about 4-5 feet, it again got stuck. I'm not sure how to get the cable through other end. I tried with another TV cable as well that wasn't as sturdy as HDMI and that got stuck at the same point. Thanks.

Update: I already tried the vacuum approach. I cannot put a vacuum cleaner pipe on either side. On top, the vacuum cleaner pipe wouldn't go because the conduit is vertical and my Vacuum cleaner is a longer end, unable to tilt into that tiny opening of pipe. On the bottom end, there are other wires and insulation and I'm worried that would be damaged by the suction of vacuum..and also same problem of longer vacuum end. This is my vacuum cleaner and the black solid pipe at the end isn't detachable or flexible. enter image description here

  • maybe get a cable withh micro HDMI at one end and use a micro-hdmi to hdmi adaptor, – Jasen Apr 26 at 19:43
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Vacuum a string through the conduit. Literally put a vacuum cleaner sucking on one end and feed string in the other until it comes out.

Then PULL the wires (all of them, at once) into the conduit with the string. That works easier if you make the front end of the cable bundle somewhat smooth as you attach the string, generally by wrapping tape to cover the connectors, etc that will want to catch. You can have your helper push a little as you pull.

Stagger the connectors (put one behind the first one, and the next one behind that) so they don't make a big fat lump right at the end.

  • I cannot put a vacuum cleaner pipe on either side. On top, the vacuum cleaner pipe wouldn't go because the conduit is vertical and my Vacuum cleaner is a longer end, unable to tilt into that tiny opening of pipe. On the bottom end, there are other wires and insulation and I'm worried that would be damaged by the suction of vacuum..and also same problem of longer vacuum end. – clever_bassi Apr 26 at 15:59
  • updated my question to show you my vacuum cleaner and why it won't work. – clever_bassi Apr 26 at 16:01
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    wow, I don't own a fish tape and I rewired a whole factory all in conduit. – Harper Apr 26 at 16:10
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    On the wicked fancy end you can use hollow braided polypropylene rope and expand it over the connectors. Practically speaking, any string you have that doesn't break when you pull the cables through will work, and it really does not matter - jute is fine if that's what you have. Beware of "tiny but strong" fishing line, it's a pain to attach and it can cut conduit, though that's unlikely for this short of a pull. Butcher's twine would be fine. You can pay more money you don't need to for pulling tape (with length graduations even) or a bucket of far more poly twine than you'll ever need. – Ecnerwal Apr 26 at 19:35
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    nylon builders line is good string, but really all it needs to be is flexible and reasonably strong, the worst that can happen is that is snaps and you get to try again, parachute cord would be overkill – Jasen Apr 26 at 19:40
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There are two problems here.

Gnarly connector ends don't like going down conduit

First, you are trying to get the gnarly end of a lumpy cord-with-connector to come through on its own. That's not realistic. You need to get something practical to come through. If it were really smurf-tube all the way through, I would say "tissue tied to string, using vacuum cleaner nozzle and your hand to help make the seal". Alternately, a heavy smooth object would do, e.g. a fishing bobber weight.

Once the string is through, you can tie it onto the gnarly connector and try to use the string to help tease it through. Protip, add another string to help pull the next one through.

If nothing else works, you may need to lump it all up with electrical tape to make it smoother and less likely to snag. If the conduit diameter is close to the connector width, it ain't gonna happen so the installation was not proper. I can't imagine that's an issue because anyone who builds those conduit kits knows how wide an HDMI connector is.

You cannot put AC power in that conduit

Code disallows this for several reasons. This is a good reason to have the electrician fit an AC receptacle behind a future TV location. The better "hide the wires" conduit kits actually provide for this by supplying a mains outlet separate from the conduit behind the TV, and a mains inlet down near the floor, with the outlet-inlet cabling done to Code.

However, there's another trick that'll bring you up to Code. From this angle, it looks like your TV has a "power brick" in its cord. One side plugs into the wall, the other side is low-voltage (12V, 18V, 26V etc.) to power the TV. Low-voltage power is allowed in that conduit. It may be harder to find an extension cord for the low-voltage plug the TV uses, but that is the way to do that thing.

  • Thanks Harper for the detailed explanation, its super helpful. I'm trying to put only the low-voltage end into the conduit so as per your answer that should be okay. Its long enough too, so I may not need extension cord.. Th – clever_bassi Apr 26 at 16:53
  • Posting again here: Everyone is talking about using a string, is there a particular type of string I should be using? I was using a jute string but I don't think that's right – clever_bassi Apr 26 at 16:55
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    Something smooth, I use nylon. – Platinum Goose Apr 26 at 19:26

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