Loose wires and cables are a ticking time bomb. Even if you have a minimal setup of just the basic laptop and monitor situation, it can still get messy under the desk.
So we have here a list of the best under-the-desk cable management trays. Let’s also talk more about why you really need these first.
Why do you need a cable management tray?
This is perhaps one of the more important accessories that you can buy with your standing desk.
You need a tray to organize all your loose and hanging wires and caves. No matter if you have a mineral setup or a more elaborate one, you can benefit from a cable management tray
- Messy wires are an eyesore
A clean workstation will help you have a clear mind so you will be able to be more productive. We have never heard of anyone who would prefer to work on a messy desk than a clean one. Even if the wires and cables are basically under your desk, they can still affect your mood.
- Messy cables can cause accidents
They are not only an eyesore, but they can also be a cause of injuries or accidents. Especially if you have kids or pets around, hanging wires and cables are a ticking time bomb. And even if you are sitting at the desk, you can accidentally kick the hanging wires.
Kids can stumble on the loose wires and land on the floor. Your pets can also trip over it. And loose cables are more inviting to chew, doggo can get into an electrocution accident if you try to skip on this.
So having a clean desk is also a way to make your home office a safe zone.
You can also move your legs out and about without having to worry if the wires will entangle. Untangling spaghetti wires can eat up your time and it can be frustrating.
- It protects your wires and cables from damage
When your cables are hanging loose or hanging on the ground, they can be exposed to friction and damage. These can and will destroy your cables soon. So one or later you will need to replace them. Also, exposed wires and cables can cause electrical shock. So there are a whole lot of reasons to invest in a cable management tray.
- It frees the space on the floor
This allows you to enjoy all that free space under your desk. You may be able to stretch your legs without having to worry that you’ll kick the wires and disconnect them from the power source. You can also make use of the space below as storage.
The free space will also give you a sense of liberty.
The 3 Best Cable Management Trays you’ll love
The Signum can be best described as a very simple cable tray that can either be very useful or not depending on your setup. The brand claims that it can bear a maximum weight of 10 kg. This isn’t too shabby and it even has more muscles than other more expensive ones such as Fully. But the dimensions of the Signum will best serve those who do not have much wire and cable to organize. It can be a bit narrow.
And of course, you also have to be careful not to overload the rack. It’s decently sturdy but it’s not full of metal, it’s more of a wire mesh or a basket type of tray. As such, it’s not too aesthetic but it would suffice if you’re just looking for something cheap yet sturdy to organize your messy cables.
And with the dimensions and weight capacity, big surge protectors or even medium-sized ones might not be able to fit into it. But it makes it easier to organize your messy under-the-desk situation. Installing it is easy too. Just take into consideration that you have to drill this into your desk.
Fully Steel Cable Tray & Cable Management Kit V1
Fully has a very aesthetic and sleek-looking metal cable tray. So if you’re up for a more posh-looking unit, you will not be disappointed. But keep in mind that it’s not encapsulating, or it’s semi-open. So this might not be the best option if you want to hide and organize chunky wires and cables.
Also, this is not a heavy-duty option as it has a less than 10 lb weight capacity. So this can be best for a minimal setup.
So the best thing to do is to use zip ties and cable clips to ensure that the wire and cables stay concealed. This also ensures that you’ll have no wires left hanging because once it gets caught while the desk is moving, it might still be enough to break the tray.
Flexispot CMP502 tray
It is similar to Fully in the sense that it’s not fully encapsulated. But it differs in the design. While Fully has a full-on metal tray, this one has perforated holes that allow for more airflow. While this can look less aesthetic than Fully, it is easier to maintain since there is less risk of dust accumulation.
It can also make it easy to add cords and cables. Will it be able to handle a power surge? A large one, no. But you can try to squeeze in a small or medium-sized surge protector and it can happen. Just expect it to be a bit cramped.
It is also decently sturdy and has a higher weight capacity than Fully. It’s also easier to install, but it can be a bit short for straight laptop power cords. So that is one thing to consider if you have your eyes on this.
And the Homemade cable management tray
If you don’t want to splurge on a tray, there is an easy cheat sheet to tame your messy wires with the use of zip ties and 3m cable clips. Though you have to have a knack for organizing. Otherwise, it can still look pretty messy.
You may also be able to use zip ties to secure large surge protectors to the back of your desk. You will just need to use a whole lot of zip ties and cable clips. To see if a DIY route will be feasible, you also have to consider the type of desk that you have.
For instance, Deskhaus standing desks often are easier to do a DIY on. The rubber grommets leave a tiny gap all around between the frame and the desktop.
As for the 3m cable clips, make sure that you’re buying authentic ones. Fake clips tend to have a weak adhesive and might not work on all types of surfaces.
You may also be able to get a variety of cable clip sizes depending on the size of your cables. With the right technique and organizing skills, you will be able to tidy your desk.
But since these are plastic, make sure that you’re not frequently opening and closing them. This ensures that everything is nice and taut.
Another way you can make your DIY cable tray is to get generic ones from an eCommerce website and pair it with zip ties and cable clips. There is an array of choices. But keep in mind that it’s best to get the measurement of your desk first before buying a cable tray. The challenge with getting a different tray from the desk brand is compatibility. You have to ensure that you will be able to drill the tray into the standing desk.
Bonus: What are the types of cable trays?
Cable management trays come in a variety of types. They vary in design and versatility. Let’s take a look at some of the more popular types.
These are like wire mesh cable organizers. The perforated design allows for more free airflow to keep your wiring cool.
- Solid bottom trays
These have metal on one side. And the other side has a small opening where you can chuck in your wires and cables. This is also a more aesthetic-looking tray. But the downside is, it has limited space and you might not be able to use it for chunky cables and wires.
- Wire mesh
These trays are quite versatile and easy to install. These are quite similar to the perforated ones, except that this one looks wirier. It might not be the best in looks, but you can unobtrusively organize your wires. You can also find cheap ones of this type.
To select the suitable tray, keep the following in mind
There are different types of cable management trays. And if you are not much into details and aesthetics, you have a myriad of options. But you also have to consider other factors such as usability or versatility, the installation process, and the weight capacity.
And it’s often best to measure the desk first and ensure that the tray is compatible with what you have.
And there are a lot of options that can fit into your budget. So you don’t have to skimp. Also, If you have a knack for organizing things, you may be able to do a DIY using cheap materials.