The most common use for coaxial cable in the home is to connect the video and audio signal between devices or to feed the signal from an antenna or satellite dish to a television set, converter box or satellite decoder. Sometimes the down cable from the antenna or dish isn't quite long enough to reach the receiver and you'll need to extend the length of the cable. Use a high-quality connection because poorly joined cables can result in signal loss that leads to grainy video and missing television channels. Joining two coaxial cables to create one cable of sufficient length is a straightforward job that you can accomplish with basic household tools.
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Things you need
- "Male" coaxial cable connector
- "Female" coaxial cable connector
- Wire stripper
- Self-amalgamating tape
Strip off the outer plastic or resin outer casing on the end of each of the two cables by about a half inch. Use wire strippers to remove the casing.
Pull back the copper or silver-coloured wire mesh at the end of each cable to reveal the plastic-coated inner wire.
Strip the plastic coating from the inner wire on each cable end by about a quarter inch to expose the copper core wire.
Place the collar of each coaxial cable connector over the end of each cable. Position the collar so that it's just below the pulled back wire mesh.
Push the male cable connector onto the end of one cable and the female cable connector onto the end of the other cable. Secure both connectors by screwing them to the collars. Ensure that the wire mesh does not come into contact with the core cable. This shouldn't happen if you've stripped back the cable properly.
Insert the male connector into the female connector. This joins the two coaxial cables.
Wind a length of self-amalgamating tape around the join. This prevents moisture ingress that can degrade the signal.
Tips and warnings
- Alternatively, use a coaxial cable adaptor to join two cables with existing female connectors or two cables with existing male connectors. Plug both cable connectors into the adaptor to create a longer cable run.
- Switch off and disconnect all TV and video equipment from the main power supply if it's attached to one of the coaxial cables you're joining.
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