CAT5/6 Tips

  • Posted on: 22 November 2013
  • By: jimusik

Thinking about Running CAT5 in your home or church?  Here are some tips and tricks to help get the job done.

  1. Know the different IEEE standards for plugs -

    It's really easy to just to make up the color code on the cable you're running but what about when someone comes along to modify or upgrade the system, following regular standards will assist them in figuring out what you did.  The IEEE standards with RJ45 plugs are T568A and T568B and look like this:

    Pick one of the above standards and use it consistently through your install.  This will save you time and money in the long run and the person who follows you will be able to know what you did and continue the pattern you started.
  2. Install a Wall Jack -

    So many people simply run the cable directly to the device you are trying to wire which ends up looking horrible and ultimately does leave much room for expansion or change.  Instead, installing wall jacks cleans up the cable clutter and reduces problems down the road for troubleshooting.  If it's in the wall and installed properly, you can rule it out from breaking.  If it's hanging from the ceiling and getting plugged into a device, the chance of the plug going bad from wear and tear is pretty good.

    Spend the extra money and run the wires properly, you'll save yourself and your organization a lot of headache and money in the future.

  3. Leave a Pull Line -

    Anyone who has tried to fish wires through walls knows the joy of finding a pull line.  It is so simple to pull a line along with your cable and leave it in the wall or ceiling for future use.  It also is really handy if something goes wrong with your install and you need to add another wire or redo what you have already done.  I like to use pink Mason Twine because of its strength and color but it's probably overdoing it.  Any bright color will help for finding it in the future.

  4. Use Plenum Cable - 

    Any CAT5Cable that's going through a wall should be Plenum.  Now, you've probably looked at the difference in cost but let me explain why.  Most Code requires specific fire-resistance on cables that run through a building and normal CAT5 does not meet these standards.  Plenum Cable will meet those standards and lets be honest...adding wire to your building that might escalate a fire is not a smart idea.  Spend the extra money and buy the box of Plenum CAT5.