Hiding Flat Screen TV Cables

Posted by John on July 31st, 2012

So on Monday we shared our experience mounting a flat screen TV to a wall. Today, we’re going to show you how to hide the TV’s cables to get a totally sleek look. This is the second TV we’ve done this procedure to at Mike and Dana’s house and this version seemed to work better than the first, which used a slightly different product. In my opinion, this modification isn’t very difficult to do and can probably be done by anyone with a little bit of DIY experience.

We last left off with the TV hanging on the wall to test the bracket out. It had to come down in order to hide the wires. To hide these cables, Mike bought a Powerbridge from Best Buy.  (This current model is no longer available from Amazon, but you can try Option 1 or  Option 2 as they are essentially equivalent).  This device consists of two plastic boxes that get inserted into the wall. One will be located behind the TV and the other will go behind the TV stand. Between the two, the wires will be run in the wall for the power and whatever audio or visual cables are required.powerbridge-1024x682


In order to install these two Powerbridge boxes so you don’t see them, we need to make sure we’re putting it behind the footprint of the TV. Before we took the TV off the wall, we marked the perimeter of the TV with a couple of post-it notes. The boxes will need to stay within that area AND since the Powerbridge box is fairly large, it will need to sit roughly in the middle of the area between two wall studs.flat-screen-TV-mount-1024x682


We used those magnetic wall stud locators we discussed in our last post and then marked our wall with the wall template that was provided with the Powerbridge. We needed to mark the wall for both the top box and the bottom. The bottom was pretty much directly below the top box and low enough to be out of view behind the TV stand.powerbridge-template-1024x682


With the templates marked, Mike used a drywall saw to cut the openings for the boxes. You need to be careful whenever cutting into a wall so you don’t actually cut into a gas line or a power cable.drywall-saw-1024x682



After the holes were cut, Mike inserted the top Powerbridge cable and fished it through the wall. This was apparently an exciting moment for him. The boxes stay in place by pop out wings that are tightened with screws. Very simple. Before we connected the bottom box, Mike pulled through a couple HDMI cables.fishing-cable-e1343788365105-836x1024


The power cable that comes with the Powerbridge is connected with a unique click together fastener.  We actually needed to fix it before we made that connection as one of the wires was visibly detached, but that wasn’t very hard.  After you snap the connector together, the cable slack gets stuffed into the wall and the bottom plate gets tightened to the drywall.


The photo above shows it all completed. The Powerbridge comes with an additional cable to plug into a nearby outlet that gets run to the bottom box.Flatscreen-TV-mounted-1024x682


All told, it took a little over an hour to get this project done. Mike and Dana really like the new look and Lisa and I are considering it for our family room at some point.

Any upgrades coming to your TV? Cut any holes in your walls lately?

***Full disclosure:  Lisa and I are members of Amazon.com associates.  If you purchase a Powerbridge, we get a small kickback.  If you’re interested in joining Amazon Associates, go to Affiliate-Program.Amazon.com ***

Posted in Drywall,Electrical. Tagged in ,, , , ,

  • I'm in the early stages of building a media center with cabinetry and the TV hung up on the wall. I'm thinking of embedding a fat corrugated plastic tube (~2" in diameter) between two plates to run all my cables through. I'll leave pull string permanently in the tube so that I can pull additional cables in the future. It's very similar to your solution but may span multiple stud bays. Hiding the cables is definitely the way to go.

    • John_OHFScratch

      That\’s a clever idea Jeff.

  • Hanging wires are one of my biggest pet peeves. It makes me so happy when people go that extra step to hide them so Im loving this. Too bad not all walls are made of drywall…i have a tv on a wall back directly with cinderblock and I can't seem to convince my husband to jackhammer a channel in it 🙂

    • John_OHFScratch

      Plaster and masonry walls are a bit of a challenge!

  • Love it! I don't think that it will work with my set up, but I'm going to remember it for a future home.

  • You guys are so handy! It looks so good without those pesty wires showing 🙂

  • I like it; good job

  • Danielle

    Hi there! I did the same thing for a TV project last year; but when I showed it to my contractor (for another project), he told me that: NEC National Electric Code
    does not allow flexible cords that carry electricity to be in or through
    a wall. If your house catches on fire, your homeowner’s insurance WILL
    NOT pay for a damage claim since their investigators will determine a
    code violation.

    So please please check about that! I finally bought a cord concealer from Wal Mart, and it’s discreet and does the job…

    • John @ Our Home from Scratch

      Danielle, not exactly.

      The NEC does indeed permit audio, video and power cables to be run inside walls depending on the rating of the cable.

      That being said, power cords or extension cords are not permitted to be run inside walls. However, the product we used for this project uses Romex to carry the TV power. Romex is specifically designed and rated for in-wall use.

      So I would say your electrician is only partly correct. Whenever you purchase a product like the on we used, be sure to verify it uses NEC approved wiring for in-wall use.

      I hope that helps!