Introduction: Hard Wire a Deco M5 Mesh Router
We upgraded our WiFi to a most wonderful TP-Link Deco 5 mesh, but I hate to have yet another desktop gadget just sitting on table tops, wires dangling, wall warts..etc. And the unit doesn't have any wall mount holes!
So what to do?
*** WARNING ** Going fwd will most likely void your warranty or destroying your device! Proceed at your own risk
Step 1: Open the Unit, Disconnect LED Status Light, Remove Heat Sinks & Circuit Board
Tools & supplies you'll need: multiple nylon spudgers, small screwdrivers, spool of low voltage wires, electrical fish tape, soldering iron, heat shrink, heat gun, utility knives, multimeter, small gauge wire nuts.
Take you spudger, dive deep into an opening, pry & wedge all around until you snap it open like a clam. Disconnect the LED ribbon cable & 4 Wifi antenna boards, unscrew & pry gently to remove the top heat sink plate, board, and bottom plate.
Step 2: Measure & Drill Hanging Holes
Pencil the plate outline, mark when the heat sink boundaries, drill small & big hole, use utility knife & cutoff excess, resulting in a mounting hole. Extra credit if you can line up the front logo when it hangs upright.
Step 3: Remove the Charger Barrel, Solder on Extension Cables
This step is essential, skipping it will result in your unit not powering up.
Reason is that the Deco M5 is a "switch jack" connector that will short out contacts if you don't connect the external adaptor. I solder and tested multiple times before realizing this!
Unsolder the 5 pins and remove the connector. Note the pin layout in picture. Strip your extension cable and solder in. Positive lead should be red & on middle terminal.
Step 4: Splice Extension to A/C Adapter and Test
Deco M5 has a ribbon table. Cut off the connector, use multimeter to find which lead is center positive. Temporarily connect with wire nuts and test for unit boot up. When unit starts up (YAY!!), undo connections, drill another center hole in back plate, thread in new wire & reassemble everything. Slip on heat shrink sleeves and solder in extension cords to your AC wall outlet.
Step 5: Run & Hide Your Extension Cables
Finally, use fish tape & snake thru wherever you want to hang this baby. I picked basement center, thru A/C ducts, and thru our heating vent to a hidden outlet. This is almost 30' run.
Step 6: All Done!
Now patch up the holes, repaint, & enjoy the simplicity you've created.