• You've been granted Beta access to this site, allowing you to explore some of the new features while they're still under construction. More information can be found in the Beta forum.

Custom Home Build - Wiring Plan Check

martincc

New Member
Hello, been reading lots and currently planning a our next home build and want to make sure I have the low voltage sorted prior to starting. First attempt at a home this size, our last one was inner city and had very basic low voltage wiring.  This house is ~5300sqft over 3 levels (walk out basement) with 1100sqft garage. We plan to live in this house 1-2 years and sell and build again, so treating it as a spec home vs a dream home. I want to run a decent amount of wiring to cover off the basics of a home this size and ensure we have systems in place to ensure decent resale value of a home in this range. Please give any feedback on my plan outlined below.
 
Whole Home Audio:
Plan: to use SONOs connects and an multi channel amp. I plan to rough in for 42 in ceiling speakers which could be spread over 16 zones. Realistically I will likley complete 6-7 zones, and likely not install all the speakers (bedrooms mostly).   
Wiring: I planned to use 16/2 from speakers to volume box (not to be utilized) and a cat5e & 14/4 bundle to utility room in basement (home run). This way the system is covered for keypad use.
Questions: Can I connect the 2wire to 4 wire runs in the concealed box in the wall. Would I be better running the 14/4 from the furthest speaker to home looped through a low voltage box and a separate cat5e left in the low voltage box behind drywall?
 
Security:
Plan: Use an ELK M1Gold for the system with hardwired sensors (door, window, glass break and motion). In total with all the doors, garage doors, opening windows, glass break and motions I would have roughly 42 zones plus the smoke and CO detectors. Plan keypads in garage entry, and master bedroom.
Wiring: Keypads to home: Cat5e and 18/4 speaker wire. Sensors to home: 22/4 AWG all home run from each zone.
Questions: Is it common/necessary to wire second floor windows with sensors? Glass breaks should be in every room? Motions for line of site? Anything else I should pre wire relating to the ELK?
 
Cameras:
Plan: System not selected, but thinking PoE IP system which can be tied into an APP which controls security, camera, and automation. Cameras at garage doors, front entry door, inside garage and at rear decks.
Wiring: Plan to future proof - Cat5e, Coax and 18/2 power in a bundled cable home run from each location.
 
In Wall Touchscreen:
Plan: Provision for ipads in walls in kitchen and master bedroom, most likely for security camera but also for Sonos control.
Wiring: Cat5E to be converted to PoE with PoE to USB adapter to charge Ipad in flush wall mount. home run.
 
Blinds
Plan: Not sure on a brand yet. House has large windows (7' and 9' tall) which face SW. Would like motorized blinds on these. Same with master bedroom
Wiring: 14/4 home run looped through an electrical box.  
Questions: Anything else? I need to research systems and cost a bit more.
 
Cable/Phone:
Plan: cable/phone to all major rooms.
Wiring: Cat5e/RG6 bundle to each room. Double Cat5e to Rec Room, Flex Room and Loft where TVs will be installed.
 
Thermostats:
Plan: Wifi thermostats (likely Insteon). Main floor and upper floor thermostats.
Wiring: Cat5e + thermostat wire for heat, AC, and humidifier home run.
 
5.1 Surround
Plan: Pre wire for inwall speakers
Wiring: 16/2 wire with wall plates back to central location in the room below TVs.
 
Automation
Plan: Nothing to start but likely add Insteon switches if we stay. I planned to purchase the Elk M1g, m1xep, ISY994i, 2413s Ins PLM and an IOS app to integrate alarm, camera, lights, thermo, irrigation and use above Ipads to control.
 
Anything else I am missing? Again focus is this is a spec home which we will live in for at least a year, but could be more so want to future proof. My quotes for rough in wiring have been in the 7-12k range for the wiring of a very toned down version of the above. I think based on cost of wire I have estimated I will attempt the wiring myself and apply the savings to the hardware and hopefully create a bit of value.  Anything anyone would correct or add? Thanks very much for any help.
 
 
Given your initial criteria, of being a few year house, I wouldn't go to crazy on what you put in the walls.....you're not going to see the resale or any added bonus as you're not building off a "system" such as C4, AMX, or Crestron, with basic wiring. You're (not intended to bash) leaning towards primarily consumer level hardware, except in the case of the M1. What you plan on your "spec" is and or would differ significantly from what someone else could or might do.
 
My suggestion, especially with an open basement, would be to only get wiring or raceways to areas that you can't get to after the fact. That means from whatever head end area you propose to the attic and from areas that aren't typically accessible (1st floor ceiling).
 
The rest can easily be retrofitted and unless the construction details don't permit it, the cost to retrofit isn't usually different than putting the wiring in during the construction stage.
 

martincc

New Member
Thanks for the reply. This will likely be a 2 year house but you never know with how things change. The basement will be finished so wanted to make sure we had the basics covered off.
 

LarrylLix

Senior Member
Insteon thermostats are not WiFi. I haven't seen an Insteon thermostat, yet, that I would use for my main house thermostat. I have two wireless units and they are not great quality. I use them for humidity control, monitoring and an anti-freeze up backup heater only.
 
Venstar T5900-T8900 units are reported to be easy to control from ISY994i or other HA as they have issued their complete user API.
 
Top