FAQ’s

Do You Need a Punch Down Tool to Terminate an Ethernet Jack?

While a punch down tool is really the best way to get perfect terminations consistently there are a couple of alternatives that one might consider, especially if he or she only needs to terminate a small number of locations. These alternatives are using small installation tools that are sometimes included with Ethernet jacks or using an included dust cover and a pair of channel lock pliers to push the conductors into the pins of the jack.

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How Far Can You Run Ethernet Cable?

The maximum length of an Ethernet cable from one network device to another is almost always 100 meters or 328 feet. This effective max distance of Ethernet is the same from category 5 through to category 8 Ethernet cable but can be reduced because of a hand full of external factors. These factors included electromagnetic noise in the area, the quality of the installation, cable temperature, and the number of terminations across a single cable. Anyone who needs to extend their network beyond this limit can do so by using a network cable type designed for the increased distance or by installing a network device at some point along the run to boost, or extend, the signal.

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Can You Plug a Phone Line Into An Ethernet Port?

Most of the connectors that are commonly used in phone networks can be used to plug a phone line directly into an Ethernet port. This is a great option for anyone who would like to send phone signals down an Ethernet cable. However, you can not send Ethernet signals down a phone line. Ethernet cables are backward compatible with most phone equipment but Ethernet equipment will not work well over a voice-grade cable. It is also important to know that you should never plug an active analog phone line into any Ethernet network equipment as this can damage the Equipment.

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Do Electricians Run Ethernet Cable? Choosing a Contractor to Build Your Home Network. 

While it is common to find an electrician who knows what he or she is doing when it comes to networking, you do not need to know anything about networking at all to get an electrician’s license in most states. A much better way to know that you are hiring the best contractor for your home network is to find someone who carries a certification specifically targeted at networking, such as those provided by BICSI. Another great way to make sure you hire a competent contractor is to ask them a few key questions before you hire them.

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Determining if You Need Plenum or Riser Cable for Your Home Network

One of the best ways to save money when installing a physical home network is to use riser-rated cable rather than plenum-rated cable. In most homes, there is no reason to use anything but standard riser cable as long as it is installed correctly. There are however some situations where plenum is not just recommended but required by building fire code.

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Can You Run Ethernet Cables Through Vents in Your House?

Ductwork can be a viable pathway to get your network cabling from one part of the house to another but there are a few important things that you should consider before trying it in your own home. First filling your air vents with cabling can make them harder to clean and cut down on their efficiency. Second, a special type of Ethernet cable, called plenum, should be used for this application and it can be more expensive than normal cabling. And finally, a cable popping out of a floor register is not the most professional look. In many cases you can fix this and make everything look nice and professional, but this will take extra work and could turn what was originally thought of as a great cabling shortcut into just as much work as running the cable through an attic or crawl space.

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