How to Wire a House With Cat 5

Written by kenny soward
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How to Wire a House With Cat 5
Cat 5 Cable (Computer cable image by amlet from

Cat 5 cable (otherwise known as category 5) is the industry norm for creating connections between home computer networks as well as connections to the Internet. To run cat 5 cable you must appraise your cable lengths, cut the cat 5 cables to the proper lengths and crimp the cat 5 cables with RJ-45 plugs.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Cat5 cable spool
  • Wire cutter
  • RJ-45 plugs
  • RJ-45 crimper
  • Cable ties
  • Cable covers

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  1. 1

    Determine the method with which you want to run your cat 5 cable, with a source and target location in mind. Sources include DSL modems, cable modems or routers. Run cat 5 cables through within the walls just prior to drywall placement in a new construction, through ceiling tiles or even along baseboards.

  2. 2

    Pull cat 5 cable from the source to the target destination (such as a PC), leaving one foot of slack in case you must tuck the cable somewhere or recut the cable due to a malfunction in terminating the ends.

  3. 3

    Cut the cat 5 cable with wire cutters after pulling the cable to its full length.

  4. 4

    Strip away 2 inches of the PVC jacket from the cable ends. Note that the interior wires are separated into coloured wired pairs.

  5. 5

    Divide the coloured wired pairs into white-green green, white-orange orange, white-blue blue and white-brown brown.

  6. 6

    Separate the wires for standard cat 5 A connections---EIA or TIA 568A---as follows: (left to right) white-green, green, white-orange, blue, blue-white, orange, white-brown and brown. Straighten out the pairs of coloured wires and trim the ends about a 1/2-inch in order to even them out.

  7. 7

    Separate the wires for a standard cat5 B connection---AT&T 568B---as follows: (left to right) white-orange, orange, white-green, blue, white-blue, green, white-brown and brown. Straighten out the pairs of coloured wires and trim the ends about a 1/2-inch in order to even them out.

  8. 8

    Hold an RJ-45 plug bottom side up and push the coloured wires into the RJ-45 plug while keeping separation and order between the pairs.

  9. 9

    Affirm the ends of the copper-wire pairs reach to the ends of the plug, and crimp the RJ-45 plug with a crimping tool to seal the connection.

  10. 10

    Walk the length of the cable and secure it where it is exposed. Tuck the cat 5 cable into cable covers which may attach to baseboards; attach cable ties to keep bundles of cable orderly.

Tips and warnings

  • Cat 5 cable is relatively delicate, so avoid stepping on the cable or twisting it to avoid breaking the copper wires inside.

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