Cheap cable is no bargain! Cable that is significantly lower priced than what you are accustomed to paying should raise a red flag. Most likely, it is counterfeit – EVEN IF it is labeled with a brand name, a UL number, and/or an ETL logo.
Counterfeit cabling causes the communications industry many problems. At the very least you can count on poor performance; even over shorter distances. In most cases, this is a result of the cable being made of copper-clad aluminum conductors with twists not to spec. However, more seriously, cable counterfeiters are notorious for passing a riser cable as plenum rated. These combustible cables burn with such ferocity that loss of property and even life are legitimate dangers.
And let’s not forget about the financial ramifications. As a contractor, if you install faulty cabling – whether you knew it or not – you could face tremendous penalties for damages, fraud, and breach of contract. Jail time is also a potential consequence for using sub-standard cabling.
Tips for identifying suspicious cable
1. UL Number: None, fake or illegitimate
2. ETL Logo: Counterfeiters use them whether earned or not
3. Printing: Is the printing poorly done on the packaging or cable?
4. Color: Does the color match previously purchased cable?
5. Jacket/Construction: Does the cable look and feel like previously purchased cable?
6. Weight: Certified cable is heavy due to the high copper content. If a box feels light, compare it to a box you know is compliant.
There is simply no justification for using counterfeit cable. DCO distribution is committed to helping our customers avoid the troubles of counterfeit cable by only supplying cable from reputable manufacturers that have earned our trust through years of successful partnership.
If you would like more information on counterfeit cable, click here to read the Communications Cable & Connectivity Association’s white paper