Your workplace has a lot of different elements that are vital to the safety and performance of your team. Constructing a building takes a tremendous amount of work, and one of the most important elements is the cabling. In order for your business to run as it should, it’s vital that your cabling does its job. But how can you make sure everything is in order when you can’t even see the cables behind your walls? That’s where cable testing comes into play.
What is Cable Testing?
Cable testing is a basic yet incredibly important test that can help predict potential faults in your workplace. This testing can make sure that your cables are able to handle the amount of electricity that you require, and if there is a potential for a fault, your electrical engineer can address the issue before it becomes a more serious problem.
Importance of Cable Quality Testing
First and foremost, cable testing is important as a preventative measure. Often, an electrical engineer can identify the early warning signs of a fault with a simple visual inspection. Then, they can fix the issue before a fault occurs. If you do encounter a fault, you could potentially be left with expensive repairs or equipment replacements, the risk of injury to your employees, or fines if you’re found in non-compliance with OSHA regulations.
Cable testing can help you save money in the long run. After a fault, you might have to repair your workplace or replace your equipment. However, if a fault risk is addressed early on, you can often solve the problem with a much less expensive approach. And, of course, you won’t have to worry about paying workers’ compensation or OSHA fines in the case of an emergency.
How is Cable Testing Performed?
When you hire an electrical engineer to perform cable testing, they’ll conduct a thorough investigation to make sure everything is in proper working order. They’ll compare your cables to industry standards to ensure that the specifications are in order (meaning that you’re using the proper cables for what your building requires). They’ll also look at the condition of the cables for any damage, perform an insulation-resistance test on every conductor, and check any bolted electrical connections for high resistance.
Then, your electrical engineer will proceed into specific tests that may vary depending on the type of cabling you’re using (whether it’s copper or aluminum).
Types of Cable Quality Tests
No matter what kind of cable you have, your electrical engineer will perform a conductor resistance test and assess the thickness of the insulation. They may also perform a measurement of the overall diameter in some cases.
Beyond these initial tests, there are several broader categories of tests that will be performed. To start, fire testing is important in the case of an emergency. This test will demonstrate how your cables would function during a fire. Cables run the risk of producing lots of smoke and heat during a fire, which can make it difficult to evacuate.
Of course, electrical testing will also be performed. This testing ensures that your cables can safely and efficiently carry the amount of electricity that you need them to. Your electrical engineer will look for potential defects and ensure the quality of the insulation.
Material testing involves looking at the insulation and sheathing, typically by exposing the cables to a high temperature for an extended period. These tests make sure that your cables will continue to function in high-heat scenarios and that the material is safe and reliable.
Electrical Services from MTAEE
During the regular maintenance of your workplace, be sure to add cable testing to your list. This testing may seem easily deferred, but it is incredibly important to ensuring the safety and comfort of yourself, your employees, and your customers.
While you’re scheduling maintenance for your building, consider working with MTA Electrical Engineers. We are proud to be a trusted name in the electrical engineering industry throughout San Diego, Southern California, and the West Coast. We offer a wide range of electrical testing services such as power system evaluations, short circuit analyses, coordination studies, arc flash analyses, and more. Contact us today to learn more about any of these services.
Mark Thomas & Associates Electrical Engineers (MTAEE) is proud to be a trusted resource for electrical testing throughout Los Angeles, San Diego, and the West Coast. We are happy to provide testing and advice for all your electrical needs, helping to ensure your workplace is safe and functional for your employees every single day. Some of our most popular services include Power System Evaluations, Electrical Testing, Coordination Studies, Electrical Drawings, and more. For additional information about our services or to schedule an appointment, contact us today!