How to Wire a Phone Socket

Updated March 23, 2017

A telephone jack is a flat faceplate that mounts on your wall over an outlet that contains the house telephone wiring. This wiring connects to the back of the faceplate, and the cord from the telephone plugs into a socket on the front of the faceplate. Each telephone line requires a positive wire known as the tip wire, and a negative wire known as the ring wire. The installation of a telephone jack requires you to connect each telephone wire to the correct terminal on the back of the jack.

Examine the gold pins in the back of the telephone socket. The socket has six pins numbered 1 to 6, reading from right to left. The pin numbering is backward because you are looking at the back of the telephone jack. Pin 1 is the tip for line 3, pin 2 is the tip for line 2, pin 3 is the ring for line 1, pin 4 is the tip for line 1, pin 5 is the ring for line 2, and pin 6 is the ring for line 3.

Trace the wires that connect the socket pins to the terminals on the back of the telephone jack. Label each terminal with the number of the pin to which it connects. The terminal that connects to pin 1 is terminal 1. The terminal that connects to pin 2 is terminal 2, and so on.

Determine the terminal to which you will connect each telephone wire. The traditional colour code for telephone wiring requires you to connect the white wire to terminal 1, the black wire to terminal 2, the red wire to terminal 3, the green wire to terminal 4, the yellow wire to terminal 5, and the blue wire to terminal 6.

Strip 1/4 inch of the insulation from each telephone wire with a pair of wire strippers. Loosen each terminal screw with a screwdriver and wrap the bare end of each wire around the correct screw. Tighten the terminal screw to hold the wire in place.

Mount the telephone jack over the telephone outlet so the hole on the jack aligns with the holes in the telephone outlet. Fasten the jack to the wall with the screws that came with the jack.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Wire stripper
  • Modular telephone jack
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About the Author

James Marshall began writing professionally in 2006. He specializes in health articles for content providers such as eHow. Marshall has a Bachelor of Science in biology and mathematics, with minors in chemistry and computer science, from Stephen F. Austin University.