Wiring A Home Ethernet Network-(Practical Beginners Guide)

Wiring A Home Ethernet Network-(Practical Beginners Guide)

Wiring A Home Ethernet Network-(Practical Beginners Guide)

How to connect internet wall socket

Although creating a wired ethernet network is not expensive, it is time-consuming, basic DIY skills and clutter.

This is why it’s best done when you have a brand new construction or major renovation.

There are many ways to extend your current network without drilling holes in the walls or running ethernet cables. see how to extend a home network.

However, for those of you who are thinking about doing it yourself, or doing it yourself, I’ve put together these research notes that may help.


The first and most important part is creating a plan. you should keep in mind:

  • will you have a central distribution point? and where it will be located.
  • how many rooms will it connect?
  • what are the wiring routes?
  • how many outlets in each room?
  • plug locations?
  • ethernet cable – cat5, 6 or 7 cable? (cat 6 recommended)
  • will you use a patch panel?

Next, you need to make a list of what you will need.

  • basic tools, e.g. drills, etc.
  • network tools for crimping cables.
  • utp ethernet cable (cat 5,6 or 7)
  • plugs and termination connectors.
  • ethernet switch or switches.

ref: what are the requirements for a home network?

network component overview

cable – for home networks cat 6 is probably the best option today. cat 7 (latest version) is shielded which adds complications to the installation.

solid cable vs. stranded cable – see here. for backbone cabling use solid.

rj45 connectors: terminate the cable and connect to a computer/switch/socket.

wall plug: terminates the cable in a room and accepts rj45 connectors.

wall faceplates: cover the wall outlets.

keystone jacks these are female jacks that typically mount into a wall plate or patch panel. are part of a wall socket,

keystone plug is the corresponding male connector, usually attached to the end of a cable or cord.

Mix of cat5 cables, cat6 jacks and cables and keystone jacks. – the general consensus is that it should work, but try not to. For example: cat6 cable has thicker copper wire and insulation and cat6 connectors are made to take this into account.

types of patch panel and wall plug

Older type wall jacks and patch panels had the wiring connections as part of the jack/panel, while the newer ones tend to have keystone jack holes. if you watch a couple of videos, you’ll see these two guys.

home ethernet wiring options


There are two main options as shown in the schematic above.

You can bring the wires from all your wall outlets to a central location. this is the option shown in most home wiring videos on youtube.

The other option is to use multiple switches, perhaps one per floor, and connect those switches to a central location.

This results in a potentially slower network, but is the option of choice when cable routing is not inside the wall.

what’s in the central location

This is where all the wires from each of the outlets in the room come together and connect to a switch.

You have two options for the cable ends:

  • connect to a (more professional) patch panel
  • terminate with an rj-45 connector.

Using a patch panel gives you more flexibility, but is probably overkill on a small network.

need a patch panel?

The central location will probably contain your isp router (cable modem), but it is not required.


label the wires last in the central location, as you need to know which room and outlet they connect to.

wiring standards

This is the color of the wire connected to which pin on the connectors.

There are two cabling standards in use (568a or 568b -wiki). you should pick one and use it consistently everywhere.

568a is more common in Europe and Pacific countries

568b is more common in the us. uu.


example of estimated costs

house with 2 floors. 4 rooms 2 sockets per room (8 double sockets in total).

  • approximate cable length 12 m to each plug
  • 16 runs = 192 m
  • 8 wall plates
  • 16 connectors keystone
  • minimum 16 port switch, but 24 preferred.
  • 2 x 24 port patch panel allows expansion, optional
  • rj45 connectors
  • *16 or *32 connector interconnect cables (using patch panel)

if the wallplates are dual terminated, does that mean double the number of keystone jacks and double the cable?

2 rolls of 100m cable £37 each = approx £74 wall plates *8 @ £4 each = £32 keystone jacks *16 @ £8 pack of 8 = £16 patch cords *16 at £8 per pack of 5 – £32 subtotal = approximately £154 optional patch panel*2 (24 ports) at £22 each = £44 patch cords (0.3m) *16 to £8 per pack of 5 – £32 total £230 other extras that may be required: punch and crimp tools, cable ties, drill bits etc.

useful videos

keystone jack and wall plate

how to connect a wall socket

the video shows a wall socket with the cable terminations on the back

terminate cat5 and cat6 cable using rj45 connectors

wall plate and keystone jack patch panel

solid vs. stranded cable

wiring a patch panel

wiring a patch panel

this patch panel uses keystone jacks


  • Frame Wiring: Home Installation
  • how to wire your home with cat5 or 6
  • wiring a home network from scratch

related tutorials

  • understanding home network speeds
  • configuring a home router
  • vlans in home networks
  • power over ethernet

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