Wiring a house for Phone, Internet & TV

Discussion in 'Computers and Stuff' started by Scuba_Dave, Jan 21, 2009.

  1. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    Not sure where this should really go
    I was going to put it in electric, but.....

    I'm working on rewiring my 1950's house, electric is mostly done & inspected. Now I'm looking at the phone, TV & Internet

    I have CAT3 & CAT5e cable -so I will be using that
    I do not have any TV cable yet
    We have Verizon FIOS phone, TV & Internet

    I was going to run the CAT3 for phone
    In the past I have simply connected these all together using that wiring block that was available at Radio Shack. You ran each wire in & wrapped the wire around a screw & tightened them down
    I know now that a lot of people use a punch down block
    What is the benefit of this? We will only have one phone line, I want all the jacks to be connected to the same line. Is that easily achieved with the punch down block?
    I plan on running about a dozen phone connections thru-out the house, basement & garage

    [​IMG]

    For CAT5 I'll be using a 12 port punch down block
    I will probably need a 2nd 12 port block
    I do have wireless, but I want some hard wired points around the house. Patch cords will then be used to connect to the hub. The hub from Verizon only has 4 ports. I may need to buy another hub to allow most of the jacks to be active for Laptop use

    I have easy access to the 1st floor from the basement
    And I have a chaseway to the 2nd floor for wiring
    The 2nds floor has the walls open - so I want to run stuff before the sheetrock goes up

    [​IMG]

    TV I was going to run home runs to the centralized area where this will all be setup. I figure I can just activate the runs I will be using. But we have 4 TV's now & I can see a 5th being added in the addition. Currently I have a 4 port splitter, is it OK to split one of the 4, or should I buy a larger splitter? And should it be a powered splitter with a signal boost?
    I am going to use the modular wall plates that will allow multiple runs & different configs with CAT5e, Cable TV or phone inserts

    [​IMG]
  2. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    I traced back the wiring to 5 rooms on the 1st floor for the phone & one on the 2nd floor. The main room is connected & that is the only wired phone we are using. I'm going to connect the remaining 4 rooms on the 1st floor & test to make sure the jacks work. I'll rewire the 2nd floor - 3 runs CAT3 for phone. I had a ton of old alarm system CAT3 wiring that I had to trace down & pull out

    The kitchen run can wait until we redo the kitchen
    I want a jack in the basement too
    Then when the addition is finished I'll run additional phone runs
    I may even run one out to the pool cabana
  3. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    Has anyone used CAT3 for a whole house speaker system?
    Intercom system?
  4. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    Local $ store had jacks for .50 each....nice
    That's the 5 downstairs jacks done
    Just need to run some wire in the basement & test tomorrow
    Then I can run the 2nd floor CAT5 & CAT3
  5. rgsgww

    rgsgww New Member

    Messages:
    53
    Location:
    Ia

    I haven't wired those systems but...I have worked with speakers. It depends on the gauge of the wire and the distance from the amp.
  6. rgsgww

    rgsgww New Member

    Messages:
    53
    Location:
    Ia
    Yes

    You can split one of the four, but you need to know how strong or weak your signal to the house is before you do so. It would be better to just put a 5-way in down the road.
    I would see how the tv signal is before you ever get a booster, you can overpower a tv.

    How is your cable grounded at entrance? I see alot of problems with the cable company doing bad grounding jobs.

    What coax are you using?rg/59, rg/6, quad? What connectors are you using to terminate your coax.
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2009
  7. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    I'm going to buy the RG6/U Quad
    I'm up in the air on termination
    They have the twist-on - no tool required
    The push-on connector - no tool required
    It would be nice not to have to buy another tool that I may only use "once"

    The compression fit - you need a tool
    I'm not a big fan of the crimp method

    I'm also wondering why someone would buy a low voltage orange box for $1.66 when a blue box is .25 cents? Seems easy enough to cut a hole in the blue box with a hole saw & smooth the edges
  8. rgsgww

    rgsgww New Member

    Messages:
    53
    Location:
    Ia
    If the price on rg/6 quad vs. rg/6 is minimal, then go for it. There is not a big signal difference between rg6/quad and rg/6.

    I use compression connectors, they work great. Your not going to get them off though.

    If anything, don't even try twist ons, try crimps. Twist ons just cut up the shield.

    I use the blue box sometimes, but just go for any low voltage ring.
  9. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    Thanks
    I have 10 runs done - the entire 2nd floor + 1st run on the 1st floor
    I'm not too worried about getting the 1st floor done as I have easy access from the basement. Plus everything is working right now with patch cables thru the floor. But I needed to get the 2nd floor done before I start to insulate & then sheetrock
    Pretty sure I'll need another 500' of CAT5 when I go to wire the addition.

    The difference for quad is only another $20 or so
    I guess I'll go with the compression fit
    I wasn't too impressed with the idea of a twist on ;)
  10. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    I think I'll stick with the 4 way for now - worry about it later
    I'm wondering if I upgrade to a 6-way splitter (no 5 way I could find), can I add an 1-1 amplifier in front of the 6 way splitter to boost all signals?
  11. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    I guess it doesn't really matter if I go with 568A or B
    A seems to color code so that if someone wants to plug into a phone setup the colors will make sense.

    I picked up a 24 port patch panel for the network wiring
    I've already planned on enough wires to fill it :eek:
    So I'll have 4 CAT5e that will not be punched down for now
    And another 3 wires that I'll run in the basement only if needed
  12. CarlH

    CarlH New Member

    Messages:
    175
    Location:
    Northern VA
    How is this a problem? I'm assuming that you are speaking of the bit of shield that is exposed when you strip the jacket off. I don't see any problem with using twist on connectors except that they take more time to install than a crimp type. You will run into problems if you try to use RG59 twist on connectors on a RG6 cable.
  13. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    I guess I'm trying to figure out how the twist securely "attaches" the connector? I'd hate for one to pull loose inside the wall
  14. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    I'm thinking of just using a terminal block (at bottom)
    2 incoming wires at the top, connected to the jack/phone in use
    Then the rest of the wires down each side - 2 wires per terminal
    I'd have plenty of wire to connect to a block if I ever needed to
    I could even crimp a connector on each wire

    [​IMG]

    Each wire labeled
    I can then just run a jumper wire down each side to activate all jacks

    [​IMG]
  15. alternety

    alternety Like an engineer

    Messages:
    671
    Location:
    Washington
    The reason to use punch down blocks is performance. Blocks, cables, and the connectors are all rated for the maximum speed of the signal. Phone stuff mostly does not matter. If you are using Cat 5e wire, then you should be using only hardware that is rated Cat 5e or above. Instructions for trimming wires in connectors, how long, how much to untwist all matter. You have not said what the Cat 5 is for so I assume it is a LAN. It would be good for 100 Mbps without any problem. Might do a gigabit.

    Cat3 for speakers is probably not a real good idea. I would just get some inexpensive #18 if you are just going to use simple low power audio. I used #14 for my house. If you don't want sound in all the places to be the same you have to run separate pairs for the respective zones and speakers. You will also need volume controls designed for this (not a simple pot) in each room (and an off switch).

    All wire that is going into the walls needs to be rated for that use. Don't use staples or anything that compresses the sheath of the cables for either the Cat5 or the RG6. No sharp bends. Try not to parallel power wires. Low voltage wires should not use the same holes through studs and things. Be aware that the compression connectors for RG6 and RG6 quad are a different diameter. And get a tool. They are pretty cheap.

    Splitters - one port of a 4X will get 1/4 of the power entering the splitter, on a 6X 1/6. One port on a 2X splitter connected to a port on a 4X will get 1/2 of 1/4 of the base signal (1/8). Ports that are not used should have a terminator plugged in. 75 ohms, radio shack will have them. The FIOS people can set the signal levels if there is a low signal problem after you are finished.

    I assume you understand that the LAN wires are not simply tied together at the panel. You need a router. Drop cables are not wired the same as the ones in the wall.

    You can also get a cheap little box with phone RJ 11 connectors to handle the phone wires at the hub. It is a little neater.
  16. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    The terminal block connection is just for the phone
    We will probably end up with 3 hard wired phones, then some wireless. But as long as I'm wiring I might as well run the wire
    Someday I may go back & use a punch block

    All CAT5e wire has been run for the Network
    I have a 24 port CAT5e patch panel & CAT5e quickport connectors for the other end. Verizon supplied the wireless router, everything has been up & running for over 2 years. I'm building an addition & finishing up the 2nd floor dormer
    So it was time to run the low voltage wiring before the insulation goes in

    I will still have access to most areas after the drywall goes up
    But it's easier to do it now, and its cold out so I'm doing inside work

    Thanks
  17. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    The terminal block is in & the wires I have run so far are connected
    Plugged in our 2nd phone - working
    I'll check the rest of the plugs tomorrow

    Now I can start Terminating the CAT5e runs in the basement

Share This Page