Preventing water ingress from underneath outdoor cabinets

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We are all aware of the need to protect electrical installations from the weather, and with the increasing use of electronic equipment in external, and often remote, locations, most enclosure manufacturers provide adequate protection from the elements for the internal products.

One section which may not receive as much attention, however, is the base of the outdoor enclosure. In the past, this has not been of significant importance, but with the increased risk of flooding, especially in places not previously thought to be vulnerable, there is an obvious need for effective sealing of the base of the enclosure to prevent the rise of floodwater, should a disaster occur.

This need to effectively seal the bottom is hindered by having to bring cables in from underground, normally via trunking, to terminate inside the enclosure. For years, a resin based compound was mixed with hardener and then poured into the base after completion of the wiring. This provided an excellent seal, but a nightmare for any additional work which might be required.

Rittal’s solution is to provide gland plates, rated to the same IP55 as the cabinet to which they will be attached. These plates can be removed, drilled and re-fitted to the cabinet floor over the cables, fastened back down to seal the edges. The cables are then “sealed” in place with IP rated cable glands, prior to termination within the enclosure. The advantage of this is that should further cabling need to be installed, the gland plate can be drilled, raised by loosening the cable glands, and the new cable fed though before re-fastening the plate(s) and re-tightening the glands.

Gland plates are included as standard in many of Rittal’s “CS” outdoor enclosures, and available as options for the rest.