Code Changes for phone and cable

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yergi

Member
I have heard that there are proposed changes to make it mandatory to home run all phone and TV cable wires within a home. does anyone know about this change or why they are making it? where might i find the details of this proposal.

THANKS!
~Yergi
 

tom baker

First Chief Moderator
Staff member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

Its probably comning from an industry group. I read an article about it in Cabling Installation and Maintenance. It was a proposal for the 2005 NEC, and I'm sure it will be rejected. You'll be able to see the CMP comments in July when the ROP comes out.
Remember the NEC is a minium standard, what telecom cabling is installed if any has to be subject to the NEC, but the NEC does not require it to be installed.
 

bphgravity

Senior Member
Location
Florida
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

I do not seeing anything like this in the Report of Proposals for CMP-16.

This would be more of a design issue than a minimum safety requirement as stated by Tom.

:)
 

dereckbc

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Plano, TX
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

For business, industrial, and commercial applications that is standard practice to home run all communication cables to a central location. But there is no code requirement to my knowledge, nor should there be.

As others stated its a design issue, not code.
 

hurk27

Senior Member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

I know most cable companys require the cable (RG6U) home run to a place by the service but phone only has to be home run if there is going to be any networking and even then it would be a seprate run. other that that there is no problem to daisy chaining the phone lines with cat 3,5 or 6. but it would be a good idea if you are still using the old 4-wire multi-colored phone wire.
as it allows cross talk when the second pair (yellow black) is used for a modem or even a second line.
 

yergi

Member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

Ok, thanks for the help thus far. Is it not true that it is a minimum requirement to run cat 3 or better for phone as of the 1999 code? this isnt a saftey issue, why would it matter? also, can anyone tell me why daisy chain is better or preferable? and why the strong response that IT SHOULD NOT BE IN THE CODE. Is this just because it doesnt effect saftey? or do you prefer daisy chain? or do you just not like regulations that you see as unnecessary?

thanks guys, i am really enjoying your opinions.

~Yergi
 

don_resqcapt19

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Illinois
Occupation
retired electrician
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

The code does not require Cat-3, but I think there is a FCC rule that does. As far as these things not being in the code, they are outside of the scope of the code.
90.1 Purpose.
(A) Practical Safeguarding. The purpose of this Code is the practical safeguarding of persons and property from hazards arising from the use of electricity.
(B) Adequacy. This Code contains provisions that are considered necessary for safety. Compliance therewith and proper maintenance will result in an installation that is essentially free from hazard but not necessarily efficient, convenient, or adequate for good service or future expansion of electrical use.
Don
 

dereckbc

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Plano, TX
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

YERGI, the code is not concerned with design issues, only safety as Don pointed out. Whether the design works or not is not the primary concern of the NEC.

From a design perspective I would use Cat 5, Cat 5E or Cat 6 cable with home runs to a central location. This will give the most felxibility to expand and configure networks, and afford the highest level of technical operation.
 

tom baker

First Chief Moderator
Staff member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

The FCC does require CAT 3 as a minimum, but this rule is virtually unenforceable.
However, Cat 5e has been adopted as a standard which means Cat 5 is essentially obsolete, and now that Cat 6 is now been adopted as a standard, 5 e will be on its way out.
Yergi, good points, but this is simply not a NEC issue.

[ June 02, 2003, 02:35 PM: Message edited by: tom baker ]
 
A

a.wayne3@verizon.net

Guest
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

Have to intervine , since the 2002 code article 800.6 is the real key to lv installations no matter what type wire is used you have to adhere to 300.4 d so be nice to the ec and do your jobs
 

tom baker

First Chief Moderator
Staff member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

Let me rephrase my comment, the NEC does not require communications wiring in a building, that part is not an NEC issue. If the wiring is installed it is done per the NEC.
 

jrdsg

Senior Member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

re: category upgrades

cat5e is pretty much the standard for both residential and commercial projects now, and costs about the same as cat5. cat6 cable is expensive, more exacting to install and terminate, and would offer no appreciable increase in performance to most users, since few have the electronics to take advantage of the increased bandwidth. cat5e can handle 1Gb/s where most networks are currently running at best 100Mb/s. incoming telco is generally cat3 or below, with the exception of the odd fiber to premise install.

this whole technology race is driven by the manufacturers rather than end users, most of whom would have to invest heavily in electronics to build faster premise networks.

yes, the best practice is to home run everything to an adequate central enclosure since this offers the owner the most flexibilty in future. more homeowners are installing business telephone systems, for instance, in place of traditional intercom systems.

our typical residential prewire is now two cat5e's and two rg6 quad-shield cables to every room. hope that helps.
 

macmikeman

Senior Member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

Let's not forget that once the phone lines reach the phone company demarc box at the exterior of the residence the cat 5,6,7 whatever lines are terminated on posts connected to the non twisted old style underground telco cable most of the phone company's have in service.( with a few exceptions). At that point all the special terminations you made to ensure cat 5 compliance are out the window. My feeling is a large scam was pushed out by the cable / equipment manufacturers to sell high priced cat 5 or better rated equipment, so thence the hype, training seminars, etc.
 

hbiss

EC, Westchester, New York NEC: 2014
Location
Hawthorne, New York NEC: 2014
Occupation
EC
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

My company is mostly involved in telecommunications. We do premises wiring every day so I think I can speak with some authority here.

There are a couple of reasons why you don't want to do anything but home run wiring for communications. The first is that you and the guy who comes after you knows where the end of a cable is. If everything is grouped together in the basement or attic, you don't have to move furniture and remove wall plates all over the house to make a jack in another room work. You don't have to pull your hair out trying to figure out how it was run room to room.

The other reason is that many homes now opt for some kind of telephone system or at least more than one line. Voice, in this case, as well as data cabling has to be run individually from a central location where the hub and control units are located to each jack.

Although the recommendation is to use CAT 5 for everything, we like to use 4 pair CAT 3 wire for voice for no other reason than it is quicker to terminate. You don't have to untwist each pair like you do with CAT 5. The time saved in a large installation can be significant. CAT 3 is also easier to "tone out" when identifing the runs because it isn't twisted as tight. CAT 5 is overkill for voice anyway.

The home run standard is an industry standard and has nothing to do with the NEC nor should it.
 

jrdsg

Senior Member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

macmikeman echoed my gripes about manufacturer-driven "category 5+" marketing. however one advantage of using cat5/5e cable in your prewire is that it provides the owner with more flexibility in how that premise network is configured in future. if the whole place is wired cat5 or better then every jack is a potential network outlet.

for instance, we often use cat5+ wiring to transmit video signals for surveillance systems. some whole-home audio systems also use cat5 wiring.

the design idea is to give the owner as much flexibility as possible to reconfigure the system to suit in future.

at this point the price difference between cat3 and cat5+ is only $20-30 per 1000'. not really significant in a residential application.
 

yergi

Member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

Guys, thanks for all the insight. I work for a company that manufacturers residential cabeling products and completely agree with and realize the merit of home run wiring, my question was meerly does the NEC mandate it. I was quickly disuaded by you fine people. In my search for the answer i did find the FCC mandate that requires CAT-3 of better. it is FCC 99-405 released Jan 10, 2000. If anyone cares. I am told that somewhere around this document is also the mandate for Star Topology. This mandate is was proposed to help contractors lessesn their exposure to lawsuits for inferior communication instalations.

Also, can anyone give me a good argument FOR daisy chaining telephone from an installer's point of view. I am sure they are out there. I am in training and i like to know what the arguments are.

I also wanted to clarify something. The opinions of people on this message board are NOT a fair representation of the practices today. i see people loop wiring telephone (bell wire) and Coax almost every day. the simple fact that you are on a computer and on a website and discusiing this topic puts you WAY ahead of the typical person working in a home today. people that are not fimiliar with the needs of communication dont see the need to be preparing for the future. Home Deopt still sells 2 pair USOC bell wire so they put it in. I would love to have more electricians like the ones on this board.

Thanks for your help guys. If anyone wants to bite my head off for that i can be reached at info@resi-link.com .
 

jimwhitend

New member
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

The only reasons to loop residential network and telephone wiring (rather than home run) are that it 1) is easier (saves time and money) and 2) uses less material (saves money). It will always result in a substantially less functional and flexible pre-wire.

The only exception to this (that I can think of)is a very large facility where the Ethernet loop length limits come into play, a problem that is easily solved with switches or other repeaters.

Another argument in favor of IDFs (not looped wiring in general) is to reduce the number of conductors requiring protection when going between buildings.

Regarding hbiss's comment about a difference between Cat3 versus Cat5+, there is no requirement to untwist Cat5+, the standard simply limits the amount of "untwist" you can do. Our time to install a Cat3 jack and a Cat5+ jack is identical, and is virtually the same as that to install a 6p6c jack. The bend radius requirements of Cat5+ are another matter, however, and we can't stuff a box full of excess Cat5+ wire and expect to certify it.
 

hbiss

EC, Westchester, New York NEC: 2014
Location
Hawthorne, New York NEC: 2014
Occupation
EC
Re: Code Changes for phone and cable

Jim, the installation methods and materials for voice (telephone)can be different than for ethernet. At least we feel that they should be since we are a telephone interconnect company that sells and installs business telephone systems and also network cabling.

While you certainly can use CAT 5 UTP for voice, the installation for voice is far less stringent. Because there is no need to maintain a twist up to the termination point we find that CAT 3 is easier and faster to cut down particularly on 66 type blocks that are the telephone industry standard. I can wire a 110 type jack in about 50% less time with CAT 3 than with CAT 5 because I don't have to untwist the pairs or keep it tight to the jack.
 
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