AVS Forum banner

1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hopefully this is the right place...I'm not sure exactly where this fits in. And thanks in advance for any ideas or help!


I currently subscribe to a small local cable co. for internet and TV. We have their HD package (which sucks), but for as long as I remember it tiles and freezes, drops audio, and all in all makes it unwatchable. Yesterday I had a third technician come out and he pointed out that our interior house wiring is RG59. He thought that that was probably the problem - we took the digital cable box down to a drop they ran when I had the cable installed (there were no cable drops downstairs so they ran an RG6 cable for me) and there wasn't any tiling or freezes anymore. So that looks like that is what's wrong.


I've got a couple of things on my mind. First, I don't have any idea what it would cost to have someone come and rewire the 2-3 cable drops that I'd need to "upgrade". We just bought the house this last summer, it's a bi-level and the basement is finished. There's no real easy access to any of the wiring as far as I can tell. Do I just need to call an electrician (is that even who would do something like this?) and get an estimate? Will they do that?


Buuuuut, I'm wondering if it's something I could do myself. It looks like I can get a 1000ft spool of RG6 for ~$70, a crimper and some ends for reasonable prices, too. Could this be something where I snip off the ends, duct tape the current RG59 to new RG6, and pull the old out, pulling the new in through the walls? Would something like that even work? What about "snake" tools or something? I'm familiar with crimping ethernet cables - what is there to crimping coax cables?


Also, because I'm not very happy with the cable offerings, I've been thinking of switching to a dish provider. The previous owners had DISH, but the installers ran RG6 cabling around the outside of the house, drilled through the wall to inside, and just ran the cables that way. Unfortunately, the satellite cables they ran aren't where we want the TV positioned. I'm wondering if they wired it up that way because the house wiring was the RG59 and unable to handle the satellite feed? If the house was wired with RG6, could the dish connections use the "cable" wiring in the walls so it's not as messy?


If that's the case, it looks like I need to look at rewiring the interior anyway.....sigh. Thanks for any advice or pointers or help!


Pete
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
edmicman,


Making coax cable is a snap if you have done ethernet crimping...it's all in the right tools. Home Depot has a nice compression crimper and cable stripper. Make sure you get the heavy-duty compression sleeve-type fittings and not the "crimp" fittings. The tools may be $40 or more, but worth it if you have a lot of cable to make.


To your cable run question, I was faced with something similar, but had the benefit of an unfinished basement that I could get to wall spaces from. You can attach your new cable to the old and pull them, BUT, you may run into a situation in which the electrician who ran the original RG59 may have anchored it in places on the studs at various points. Try pulling on it slightly to see it you get resistance. If you do, then you have to move to the snake route. BUT, you have to have a clear shot for a snake to work. Braces, fire breaks, ducts, insulation, vapor barriers and other obstructions in wall cavities may prevent a clean fish.


Some people have successfully run cable on the outsides of their house to get them from point A to B, but that leaves them exposed and you have drill holes in your house. If you find yourself at this point, call a pro and see what he says. He'll give you an estimate and tell you how he would do it, and then you can decide for yourself it you want to tackle it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
795 Posts
An electrician can do it for you, the only problem is that he will cost a lot of money. CATV might be something easy that any homeowner can do, but a licensed electrician is going to charge you the same as if it were high voltage, and rightly so since his costs don't go down either.


Do you have access to your attic? If so, is your attic finished? If you have attic access, you can run an RG-6 on the outside of your house up into the attic, then run it down the walls from there.


There are many ways, the last of which is to just run the entire length of RG-6 around your house and drill in to every room that you need it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
795 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by basementman /forum/post/13007919


Some people have successfully run cable on the outsides of their house to get them from point A to B, but that leaves them exposed and you have drill holes in your house. If you find yourself at this point, call a pro and see what he says. He'll give you an estimate and tell you how he would do it, and then you can decide for yourself it you want to tackle it.

I'm willing to bet there's at least a million houses across the country wired this way, this is the preferred method for cable companies to wire up houses. It's cheap and easy, they usually make you pay more (and hire a real electrical subcontractor) when you want the wires ran inside the house.


The main problem with running outside the house are that they usually don't home run it, and the wires are usually ugly (sometimes just throw over lower roofs, etc.)


It can be done nice and neat, and give you many decades of use. The fact that it's outside and exposed to the weather is perfectly fine provided the cable is good quality and specified for wet and direct sunlight use. Remember, ALL overhead cable is ran outside from the pole to your house and down your house to the demarc. In my area they use the same tri-shield cable for the service drop as they do in the house.


As for the OPs question about satellite, simply make sure you "home run" the wires to a central point, that will leave you ready for satellite. If you run cable to one tv then split it, then run to another tv then split it there, then do the same again and again, that will not work for satellite, and it's not good for CATV either.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
485 Posts
Before you start running all new cabling, try re-terminating all the connections. Maybe some of the connections are junky crimp-on style with poor (or sloppy) workmanship.


Get some Compression fitting and the tool, and try to re-terminate the ens of the cables first and see if that clean up the signal some. If it doesn't work, then you just need to pick up some more terminators and some cable.


RG59 is not all that bad. I willing to get that maybe somewhere in all the existing wiring is 1 or more bad connections, or even a crappy splitter hidden inside the wall cavity.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Hi all, and thank you so much for the thoughts and advice!


I'm pretty sure the ends are good on all the connections. When I had the first cable tech out, he redid all the ends on the cables that we were working with, and I'm pretty sure he was using the compression tools.


The problem is I have really no idea what is going on inside the house. We bought the house this summer from the children of the owners after the owners passed away, so no one knew much of anything about when it was built. It does have cable wiring, although some of the coax jacks in some rooms don't actually go to the cable; instead I think they go to an aerial antenna connection, but I don't know where that is either! Sigh.......


It sounds like I should call one of the local electricians and at least see if they can come out and give an estimate and talk to them a bit. But the more I think about it the more I think I could probably pull it through myself some weekend with some buddies help. The specific drop in question I'm pretty sure I can see in our utility room and see where it goes up to the living room. There's another jack on the other side of the living room I'd like to replace as well if I'm doing it but I don't see that one....hopefully it would work the same way.


Are there instructions/etc for compression crimping coax somewhere? Like they have with the ethernet wire order?


Thanks again for all the help!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #7

Quote:
Originally Posted by basementman /forum/post/13007919


Home Depot has a nice compression crimper and cable stripper. Make sure you get the heavy-duty compression sleeve-type fittings and not the "crimp" fittings. The tools may be $40 or more, but worth it if you have a lot of cable to make.

Do you what the item is at Home Depot? I was just checking their site and the only compression crimper that turned up was "Paladin Tools SealTite Pro Universal Compression Crimper for RCA, BNC, and CATV "F" Compression Connectors" that was like $70. Looks like the compression ends are ~$30 for 50. Is that what I should be looking at?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
558 Posts
I definitely recommend upgrading all coax cables, I just did that a year a go when renovating the basement. We removed the old (circa mid 90s) RG59 and put in quad RG6 from Belken. The cable was inexpensive, I ordered it online somewhere, and the effort was quiet simple. I ordered all the tools from a site (cannot remember which one) for about $20, and it was very simple once i got the hang of it.


The only non-fun factor is rolling around attic trying to sneak cables in properly, fishing is kind of a pain, but once done properly it is very rewarding.


It's definably a DIY task, there is very little danger because its low voltage, it does not require an electrical permit. If drilling through walls, just be sure to stay away from live wires.


When running the new coax, also think of running Cat5e or Cat6, fishing is the hard part, so once you get the wire through, why not run this as well? Cat6 cable is also very cheap now a days.



Good luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by edmicman /forum/post/13008515


Do you what the item is at Home Depot? I was just checking their site and the only compression crimper that turned up was "Paladin Tools SealTite Pro Universal Compression Crimper for RCA, BNC, and CATV "F" Compression Connectors" that was like $70. Looks like the compression ends are ~$30 for 50. Is that what I should be looking at?

Check your local Home Depot; they have more than what's online. I have a DataShark compression tool. I think DataShark is made by Paladin, but I've seen the one I have online for less than $20. I also used DataShark Waterproof compression fittings. Search the web for DataShark CATV and you'll find several sites selling the tools. You'll want the one that compresses the fitting in one of the handle sides, not with jaws.


Instructions are very easy: strip outside 3/4 inch, strip inside 1/2. Pictures and instructions are on the inside of the package of DataShark connectors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
795 Posts
Here is what I do:


I use this stripper which is made under many different names. You can find it at Home Depot or Radio Shack. It doesn't look like the greatest thing in the world, but it came in highly recommended and mine is still going after a couple thousand strips. It should cost under $15:




I use this compression tool, again it's sold under different names (DataShark is one of them). You can find it online or at Home Depot. Since it's a compression tool, it doesn't have to be as super expensive and beefy as a hex crimper, all it has to do is a simple motion. The more expensive compression tools give you adjustability and the ability to change dies, but I never needed that, you won't either just to rewire your CATV. This also costs under $15:



For cable I use Belden 7915A. It's Tri-shield coax and IMO it's all you need (unless you live near a military base or airport). Quad shield is harder to pull and deal with, Tri-shield is perfect for home use IMO. The cable and satellite installers use this around here, and they really stepped up their materials to make sure HD and modems work well without them having to come back out many times, so I trust what they use these days. This is also good quality name brand cable, so it costs a little more than the stuff at Home Depot. It comes in a box which makes pulling it a breeze, no need to set a reel up like with many of the Home Depot offerings, just throw the box in any position and pull the cable out of it. You can find it here for a great price: https://www.tselectronic.com/belden/7915a.html


Finally, I like using PPC EX6 F-connectors. They are rated for dual or quad shield (so that includes tri shield too, apparently). They work great, they were highly recommended, and they are what the local cable and satellite installers use. You can find them for about $17-$20 for 50 connectors:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
520 Posts
Sad thing here with all the responses is that nobody even mentioned phone and network while replacing the cable. Video on Demand will be networked and you need a phone line if you want to order pay per view with Direct TV for instance.


Why don't you consult someone who does this for a living, an electrician pulls high voltage. It is not about getting a cable to the right place, it is about the right cable to the right place.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
520 Posts
Just take into consideration there are options you might not be aware of, thats all. Wireless does not always work that great, no way would I trust streaming HD on wireless. There just might be something that you were not aware of, and if somebody is already pulling wires it might be a no brainer.


And yes, I was at CES to see the various flavors of wireless video. It is not ready for prime time.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
21,425 Posts
posts deleted/ infractions issues


Please guys: just report the post: don't respond to or quote a problematic post (let the mods handle it)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
795 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by roddymcg /forum/post/13018891


Sad thing here with all the responses is that nobody even mentioned phone and network while replacing the cable.

In post #8 it was mentioned.


If the OP thinks he is going to use Direct TV in the future, it would be a great idea to run a Cat5 with the RG-6. If no Direct TV, then it's just a big waste of copper.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
771 Posts
Go to RG6 and hire a pro to do it. If you can't see the wires and you don't know how it's wired, it's not going to be easy. You lost me at duct tape :)... The old cables are stapled down so you can't pull the new cable with the old.


If you're going to the trouble to pull all new wiring, I would agree-run cat 5 with it and leave it in the wall behind. It'll come in handy someday.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Sorry to bring this back up everyone, just had a quick question before I hit the button: I'm looking at monoprice and they have both "standard shield" and "quad shield" RG6....but out of stock of the quad shield compression connectors. They've only got the standard shield compression connectors. Is "standard" the same as tri- mentioned above, or no? What level should I be looking at? Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
795 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by edmicman /forum/post/13088509


Sorry to bring this back up everyone, just had a quick question before I hit the button: I'm looking at monoprice and they have both "standard shield" and "quad shield" RG6....but out of stock of the quad shield compression connectors. They've only got the standard shield compression connectors. Is "standard" the same as tri- mentioned above, or no? What level should I be looking at? Thanks!

Standard (dual) shield will work on tri-shield cable.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top