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bdee1
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 9:44 am    Post subject: wiring my phone jacks Reply with quote Back to top

ok i initially posted this yesterday but for some reason when i looked today my post is not there anymore. it was late so maybe i didn't post it properly. anyway...

so i just got Vonage and have tried it distributed to all phones and it seems to work. but until my number is ported and my verizon line is killed i just have one phone coming straight out of the Vonage box, and the rest of the phones are still on my verizon line.

my problem is that even on my verizon line i have always had problems with the clarity of my calls - very often (on 2 of my 4 cordless phones) i will hear my voice echoing back into the ear piece. or i will hear buzzing or hissing. or sometimes the person i am talking to is just really quiet .

so last night i figured i would look at the phone jacks in my house and i opened one up and was surprised at what i found. I have the Quad style wiring in my house (see my previous post here for pics of my wiring) so from what i have read, since i only have 1 line i should only be using the red and Green wires. but when i opened the jack in my house i found that there were 8 terminals.
there were 2 wires coming in from the wall,each one with a red, green,yellow and black wire going to the 4 terminals on the bottom of the jack. so each of the 4 terminals on the bottom had 2 wired on it. the top 4 terminals had 1 wire each and seem to go to the jack itself. see the picture below:


so what i am wondering is:
1) why am i using all 4 wires for one phone line?
2) why are there two wires going to each terminal on the bottom?

i am brand new to phone wiring and trying to learn so any suggestions as to whats going on in my house would be appreciated.
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mundy5
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 10:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

bdee1,

First of all, I want to welcome you to Vonage.

Second, I am no expert in phone wiring but I do have some knowledge of it via reading things on the internet. So please allow me to respond to your questions.

you said,

Quote:
so what i am wondering is:
1) why am i using all 4 wires for one phone line?


You are not. If your Verizon service is for 1 line, you are only using the red and green wires. The other pair, the yellow and black are reserved in the event that you choose to use have a 2nd line go through your home. Let's say you purchase a 2 line phone, this phone can use both pairs of wires right away without having to mess around with it. In addition, if you want your children to have a 2nd line in their room, all you would have to do is to swap the pairs in the jack in their room and your children would have access to only the 2nd line. So that is the reason why they connect all 4 wires to each jack.

Quote:
2) why are there two wires going to each terminal on the bottom?


Here I am a bit confused because your pictures from a previous post appear to show a central location with wires leaving from the central location (i.e. I see 3 or 4 wires leaving the "quad" or what I would call a bridge going to 3 or 4 jacks around your house). But the picture in this post has a jack with 2 sets of wires which appears to me as this jack and the next one following it are connected in sequence. Older homes were wired in sequence (i.e. the wire comes into the home from the telco and then connects to the first jack. A second wire is connected from the first jack to the second jack in the sequence etc. That is why each jack, when connected this way, will have two sets of wires except for the last jack in the sequence (it will only have 1 set of wires).

Now in regards to your concern about the clarity of your phone calls already with Verizon, my suspicion is that your insider wiring is aging quickly and has also some interference issues with it.

I don't know how easy it would be to replace the wires but if they go through conduits, then the replacement would be well worth the time and effort and you could put in new cat5 wires which would be a superb set of wires. But that would be your call.

I know that low voltage wires like phone wires can be affected if it is nearby any 115 volt electrical wiring. Although I don't know what it would sound like and whether your line quality issues would be related to that or not. Perhaps someone else could comment on that.

I hope this helps, mundy5

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mbkerk
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 10:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Your phone jacks in your house are "daisy chained" meaning the 1 of the 2 pair lines feeds the jack in your picture, and the other goes on to feed the next jack elsewhere in the house. The bottom terminals are where the connections are made to the jack, the top 4 are where the jack itself connects to the adapter plate. (the bottom 4 and the top 4 are connected to each other via the plate itself.)

Try this experiment... un-hook one of the 2 pair lines from the bottom and find out which other phone jacks in your home quit working.

Many ( if not most) homes are wired this way. The alternative, and preferred method is to have a "home run" from each jack to a central connection point.

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bdee1
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 10:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

that makes perfect sense - thank you for clearing that up. as for the sound quality issues, i am sure that it would benefit me to replace the existing cables with cat5 but unfortunately that is easier said than done in my house because its a raised ranch where the bottom floor/basement is finished and the ceilings are all sheet rocked so in order to get at the cables i would have to cut a bunch of holes in the sheet rock and do a lot of patching after i am done.

plus we only plan on staying in this house for another 2 years or so. so in the next house we will have to make sure we have a basement with accessible ceilings and check out the cabling ahead of time.

at least now i understand whats going on with the wiring. thanks mundy5 and mbkerk.
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scerruti
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 11:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I lived in a rental house for a few years that had wiring problems, especially when it rained. I was able to disconnect unused segments of wiring to improve my situation.

If you have unused jacks and you might try disconnecting them as far upstream as possible.

Alternatively, since your are using Vonage anyway. You could invest some of your savings into a multihandset cordless system and avoid your wiring altogether.

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bdee1
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

scerruti wrote:

Alternatively, since your are using Vonage anyway. You could invest some of your savings into a multihandset cordless system and avoid your wiring altogether.


excellent point. i may just do that.
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tronixx
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

any recommendations on which cordless phone systems?
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scerruti
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 1:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

tronixx wrote:
any recommendations on which cordless phone systems?


This is getting to be one of the most frequently asked questions on this forum. I suggest you do a forum search for a complete overview. For a specific recommendation see, [url=http://www.vonage-forum.com/ftopic1930.html] Recommendation: Uniden TRU8860 5.8ghz cordless... awesome.[/url]

Some general considerations:

Do you want an answering machine built in or will you be using Vonage's voice mail?

Do you now or will you soon need to worry about interference with your wireless computer network?

Consumer Reports recommended the 900MHz analog Unidens, but they only support two handsets. Consumer Reports rates analog phones higher on voice quality when compared to digital phones. Consumer Reports did not have reviews of the new 5.8GHz Unidens.

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bdee1
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 12, 2005 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

so i was all set to get the uniden multi handset and skip my house wiring allthgether but then i remembered that i have the 2 tivos and neither in in or near the same room as my Vonage adapter

so what i was wondering is this - my adapter (WRTP54G) has 2 phone ports on it. so i wonder if i can pl;ug the wireless phoen set into port 1 and hook port 2 to the house wiring to feed the tivos. is that how it works or is the second port for if i had a second line with Vonage?
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someeyeguy
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 12, 2005 2:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

The second jack on your Vonage adapter would be for line #2, not merely a duplicate of the first phone line.

That would be nice for my setup though.

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