Trick for finding thermostat wire behind wall?

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Old 09-30-13, 09:26 PM
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Trick for finding thermostat wire behind wall?

I am a fool. We just finished hanging all the drywall in our addition and I noticed that I never poked the thermostat wire through, so its hidden somewhere behind the drywall. Of course i have photos of everything except that part of the wall, so I'm not exactly sure where the wire is. I poked a hole and fished around, but couldn't find it. Is there a trick for locating it so I don't have to rip apart the wall? It was stapled with a long rolled coil against the stud at about shoulder height. I just can't remember exactly which stud or how high and there are some regular electrical wires back there too that I don't want to disrupt.

Any tips for saving this situation?

Thanks!
 
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Old 09-30-13, 09:48 PM
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Got a basement? Call a heating and air guy and see if they have an audible toner.
 
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Old 09-30-13, 11:15 PM
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Many electricians carry them too. I carry three.

If you can't find one to borrow... a new one is pretty inexpensive from the depot.

Ideal TRACETone Cable Wire Tester and Locator-62-140 at The Home Depot
 
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Old 10-01-13, 06:24 PM
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IF you just finished hanging the drywall I am assuming it is not taped. Unscrew the sheet where you think it is and look. Otherwise most stats fit a standard single gang hole pattern. Cut a hole in the wall to fit a low voltage ring and stick your hand inside to retrieve the cable.

** note: read the reviews of the one from Ideal. Not exactly great. **
 
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Old 10-01-13, 07:23 PM
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Or just run new wire. It's cheap and might save a lot of time and aggravation.
 
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Old 10-01-13, 07:42 PM
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Just as an aside..... I read those reviews. The units use four LR-44 batteries in each unit which are fairly inexpensive and easy to find. I buy them in a 10 pack for 7.00 Then he went on to say that it was hard to tone out a wire connected live to a network switch. Many toners won't work correctly into a powered or terminated circuit.

One other guy wrote it's hard to locate a wire in the wall. Then went on to talk about RJ-45 jacks. That would suggest he's toning out Cat5 cable which can be hard to hear in a wall. The RJ-11 plug it comes with will work in RJ-45 jacks.

I've used the Ideal one.... it's not as powerful as a more expensive one but it will locate thermostat cables in the wall with no problem.
 
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Old 10-01-13, 08:53 PM
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Thanks everyone! Unfortunately we did already tape, mud and prime so I'm not able to pull the sheetrock off, and the run for the wire is pretty long and twisted so that might not work either. It sounds like the audible toner might be my best bet...followed by a slightly larger hole if that doesn't pan out. I hadn't come across the audible toner yet and it would probably be good to have one in my toolbox for the next time I forget a step.

appreciate the help!
 
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Old 10-02-13, 07:49 PM
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I've used the Ideal one.... it's not as powerful as a more expensive one but it will locate thermostat cables in the wall with no problem.
Good to know. I might check one out!
 
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