Replace a Cat5e Connector

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As wired internet becomes more and more popular, there will be more and more cables throughout your house. These cables, called cat5e, or ethernet, are what is responsible for the internet from your provider to your router. The ends on the cables can go bad from time to time, whether it be dirt or water. However, it is not necessary to call your internet provider if this happens; the ends can be replaced through a fairly simple process. By working for a local internet company this past summer, I replaced multiple cat5e ends every day. I will now walk you through the steps to replace them so that you may save time and money in the future.

Supplies:

  • Crimper Tool
  • Cat5e/Ethernet Cable
  • RJ45 Connector/End

Step 1: Remove the Old Broken End

The crimper tool shown earlier is capable of cutting off the broken end of your cat5e cable. Simply put the cable through the tool like shown and squeeze the handle to cut it with the blade. It does not matter where you cut the cable, just be sure that the cable will be long enough to fit your needs. If you need to make two cables out of one, just cut the cable in half and put two new ends on.

Step 2: Strip Back the Wire

Much the same as cutting the old end off, the crimper tool can also strip the wire so that the eight inner wires are accessible. Place the wire through the tool, making sure the wire is contained in the semicircle so that it does not get cut completely. The blade should not clamp the cable, but just touch enough to cut the outside. Make sure that about two inches of wire in sticking out the other side so that you have enough to work with and squeeze the tool. While squeezing it all the way, rotate the crimper so that the blade completely cuts all sides of the wire. Rotate it completely a few times to ensure it cut all the way around. Then, pull off the outer wire that you cut, leaving just the eight colored wires available.

Step 3: Unwind and Straighten the Wires

Next, simply unwind the wires so that there are eight individuals, not 4 intertwined. This next step is not completely necessary, but it makes the remaining process so much easier. Straighten each wire as best as you can, this makes putting them in the right order a much easier process and you will not have to repeat it a hundred times (I learned the hard way).

Step 4: Orient the Wires

Now for the hard part. The eight wires need to go in a specific order to be able to function. If you look closely, there are four colors: orange, blue, green, and brown. There is one wire of each color that is solid, and another wire that is white with the color stripe. For example, there is a green wire and a white wire with a green stripe. The striped wires are referred to as white - then the color (e.g. white-green, white-brown). The correct order of the eight wires is white-orange, orange, white-green, blue, white-blue, green, white-brown, brown. It is easiest to take the first wire, the white-orange, and pull it to the left, making it as straight as possible. As you go down the order and add more wires, use one hand to hold them in place and the other to add wires to your left hand.

Step 5: Cut the Wires to Length

This step will take some time and repeated trials (also learned the hard way). The wires will need to be cut so that the shielding-the outer shell protecting the colored wires-is crimped inside the end you are about to put on. This will take some practice, but I've learned that the colored wires should be cut to about the length of your fingernail. The wires can be cut using the blade on the crimper, in the same manner that the old end was cut off.

Step 6: Put on End and Crimp

The last step is to actually put the end on. This is the shortest step simply because you will most likely have to repeat all the others. If you look closely at the new end, you will be able to see 8 pieces of metal, one for each colored wire (obviously). With the end of the cable pointing away from you, hold the end of the cable with the white-orange, orange on the left. The connector goes on with the tab down, and all the cables should fit into each channel. It will take some force to get the end all the way on, as shown in the two pictures above. Make sure that the order did not get messed up. It is also very important to make sure each colored cable goes all the way through the connector and touches the end. Cut the wires shorter if needed. If the wires are not long enough to touch the end, you will have to strip back more wire and repeat from step 2. When the connector is on and all wires are touching the end, put the end in the slot shown above on the crimper and squeeze the tool. Make sure the end is completely in and be sure to squeeze all the way; I usually squeeze the handle two or three times. Now, if done correctly, you should have a working ethernet cable!

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    13 Discussions

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    christochandy

    15 days ago

    Thank you for the post. But, the cable order you have shown here are wrong at 2 strands. The third blue cable should be fourth and green-white should be at third.
    The order (from left to right) should be as OrWhite+Orange + GreenWhite+ Blue+ BlueWhite +Green + BrownWhite + Brown.

    cable.jpg
    1 reply
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    kwalletjechristochandy

    Reply 14 days ago

    Well, actually, that is not necesarily so. It actually doesn't matter which order you use, as long as you do the same at the other end. Heck, all strands can be the same color, that just means you'll have to test each and every wire to know which is which...

    Ofcourse that would make it harder if someone else has to make a repair to that same cable, but if you're the only one that ever touches them? Who cares...

    By the way, there are plenty tutorials on this subject on the web, so I don't think this one stand out that much...

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    jef400dread

    15 days ago

    I've made/fixed a few ethernet cables in my career, but never been a "cable-guy" so I don't know the correct names...but there are RJ45 jacks, and a certain style of crimpers that will allow the wires to pass through the ends of the jack - and the crimpers snip the excess wire. With these, you don't have to have even wire lengths to shove into the jack. You can also send them through far enough so that the cable sheath is up inside the jack when it gets crimped. Changing to these cut the time to reterminate a cable in half.

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    PeterH293

    15 days ago on Step 6

    It's good, but if the connector has a sheath then Step 1a is to slide the sheath onto the cable before embarking on Step 2

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    ArnoldO1

    Question 15 days ago

    en que tipo de norma se aplica la conexion A o B porque ambas son diferentes

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    El Cuervo

    15 days ago on Step 6

    Muy bueno! Y con esta herramienta el trabajo es "Pan Comido"!!!
    Cuervo!

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    Phil_S

    15 days ago

    As @jimkyser says, watch out for the different standards. Equipment like network switches are tolerant of either standard, but it's best to stick to one or the other.
    I've made up plenty of RJ45 plugs and sockets and the only thing I could offer as advice is to use plugs that come with separate cable core carriers. All you do is feed the cores through the carrier and it keeps everything in place when you offer the cable up to the empty plug. They also make easy work of trimming the cores to the right length. As a quality control measure, have a look through the transparent plug to make sure you can see the copper core as well as the core insulation butted right up to end of the plug. I have had dodgy batches of cable where the core diameters are different - you soon find out if some cores go in easier than others. Lastly, invest in a good crimper. Manufacturers like AMP own tooling is frighteningly expensive, but a decent ratchet crimper can be had for a fraction of the cost grom the usual sources

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    Triphazard

    Tip 20 days ago

    You may want to change the picture if the wires to match the order you are stating. I make cables on a daily basis, but others may follow the photo and get it wrong.

    1 reply
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    bcarpenter1Triphazard

    Reply 19 days ago

    +
    I was going to suggest that too. I started out going by the photo but decide to double check with text... almost a fail on my part.

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    jimkyser

    Tip 20 days ago

    Great info. The only caveat would be that the wire order you specified is what's called T568B. There is also a T568A standard that goes white-green, green, white-orange, blue, white-blue, orange, white-brown, brown. Both ends of a straight through ethernet cable are wired the same (can be either standard, just need to be the same). If you use T568A on one end and T568B on the other you've created a crossover cable. A lot of the equipment made in the last several years have a capability known as Auto-MDI/MDIX which allow you to use straight through or cross over cables interchangeably, but not all do. It would be best to match the wire order to the end you are removing, unless you are intentionally converting a crossover cable to straight through or vise versa.