Cat6 Cable Pulling Technique
Do you ever take a look at your workspace or home and seem amazed at all the electrical cords plugged in? There’s a cord for the cellphone, laptop, tablet, lamps and just about anything else electronic. On occasion, these wires get tangled and test your patience if you must unravel them. Or maybe you need to unplug one of these items, and you get frustrated figuring out which cord belongs to what item. Consider using the Cat6 cable pulling technique to help you alleviate these problems.
Get the Wires Ready
Also called Category 6 cable, Cat6 cable is a standard twisted pair of cables. You use the cable for Ethernet and other networks that are compatible with Category 5/5e and 3 cable standards.
Since Cat6 wire usually comes in boxes of 1,000 feet, you must make sure it stays straight. The wire loops around itself inside the box and comes out near the front of the box, where natural loops are smaller. These natural loops can turn into kinks when you pull them into a hole. Pulling too hard can damage the wire and prevent it from conducting a signal. Go slowly, so you can make sure to avoid kinks or tension in the wire.
If you need assistance, ask someone to help you carefully feed and pull the wiring through holes. You can also pull from several boxes at a time if you have a large wiring job. In addition, if you have multiple drops going into the same box or room, you can buy several boxes of wire and pull them at the same time. It’s best to pull in groups ranging from two to eight wires at a time.
Label the Wires
Another vital step is to label the wires. You don’t want to finish pulling the wires and not know where they belong. You can either print out labels or write them on pieces of fish tape. Put one label on the end and another on the box you’re pulling the wire from. Once you finish pulling the wire, place the label at the back end of the wire before cutting it.
Secure the Wires
Once you finish pulling the wire, you should secure it. You can use staples and tape to hold the wire straight against the wall. By doing so, drywall team members can do their job quickly and efficiently. For wires that go through studs, place metal plates on the studs to protect the wires from drywall screws.
Mark the Gang Box
If you plan to put a gang box in to house your electrical components, make sure you use a staple on the wire right before the box. The staple prevents the wires from sliding back into the box during the drywall process.
From there, figure out where you want to mount the gang box. Draw the lines on the wall to fit the box, and use a hand saw to cut the space. The hand saw should cut through the dry wall pretty easily. After you cut the space, put the gang box in the hole and screw in the clamps.
Connect the Wires
If you plan on putting a plug at the ends of the cables, make sure you have an Ethernet crimping tool. This tool lets you connect the wires to jacks and patch panels. Many jacks and patch panels have diagrams that include wire colors. Make sure you use the same color for both ends. To punch the wires down, you can use a small screwdriver or punch down tool. After you connect all the wires, mount the patch panel and click the jacks into the wall plates. You can also screw the wall plates into gang boxes.
Test the Connection
You should test the connections before declaring a success. You can use a network tester or plug a short patch cable from the patch panel into each port. Take another patch cable and laptop and plug them into the port in each space. Check the switch after each port to make sure the link indicator stays on. You can also double-check the labeling to make sure the label matches on the patch panel.
Check Building Codes
Before you finish pulling the Cat6 cable, check with your city about building codes. Most cities don’t require inspection for communications wiring, but some do. You might want to check the standards needed for the type of wire you used.