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Thread: Damn phone/DSL problems

  1. #1
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Damn phone/DSL problems

    Past several days my landline has been down and DSL spotty, working sometimes and not at all others.
    Worked fine for years.

    Finally had time to check the test port on the phone box, all good.

    Have loosened and re-tightened the phone/DSL pair on post one and pair on post 2.

    Will pull them off and clean the threaded posts next, but they look fine.

    Any suggestions? Seems weird that if the DSL works occassionaly, the phone should too, but even when I'm online the phone is dead.

  2. #2
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Just went out out right after my last post, came back up 26 minutes later...

  3. #3
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    You can check the signal levels in the DSL modem usually.. But there is obviously some issue, why don't you call the ISP and have them check it?

  4. #4
    Ft. Couch! morbidpete's Avatar
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    Rodents in the walls? Had that happen to a client last year. Took forever to figure it out. We decided to run new lines and saw the chew marks when using the old pair as a pull line.

  5. #5
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by morbidpete View Post
    Rodents in the walls? Had that happen to a client last year. Took forever to figure it out. We decided to run new lines and saw the chew marks when using the old pair as a pull line.
    Yup.

    Found a barley chewed spot right behind the phone jack.

    Replaced the jack and the cabling, all good

    Funny thing...when I ran this line 15 years ago I went straight up from the phone box, through the wall into the attic, down through the wall.

    Phone jack is basically 1 ft away from the phone box, just inside.

    This time I just drilled a new hole and ran 3 ft of phone line. Much easier.

    New DSL line can wait until tomorrow.

  6. #6
    Ft. Couch! morbidpete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Humboldt View Post
    Yup.

    Found a barley chewed spot right behind the phone jack.

    Replaced the jack and the cabling, all good

    Funny thing...when I ran this line 15 years ago I went straight up from the phone box, through the wall into the attic, down through the wall.

    Phone jack is basically 1 ft away from the phone box, just inside.

    This time I just drilled a new hole and ran 3 ft of phone line. Much easier.

    New DSL line can wait until tomorrow.
    Glad it was an easy fix

  7. #7
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Always something.

    Got the phone line replaced and works fine.

    Ran new DSL under the house yesterday but something's not right. Either solid green for everything except power (solid red), or green power but not anything else.

    I'm wondering if it's because I used terminated cat5e and just cut the connectors off. Would that make a difference, compared to regular cat5 in bulk?

    Thanks

  8. #8
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Double checked the connections, DSL still not working. Plugged in a phone and DSL filter, worked fine. All modem lights are solid green except power. No light at all. Tried another power cord, same. Suggestions? Thanks

  9. #9
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Even better. All solid green, except for solid red power. Bad modem?

  10. #10
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Humboldt View Post
    Always something.

    Got the phone line replaced and works fine.

    Ran new DSL under the house yesterday but something's not right. Either solid green for everything except power (solid red), or green power but not anything else.

    I'm wondering if it's because I used terminated cat5e and just cut the connectors off. Would that make a difference, compared to regular cat5 in bulk?

    Thanks
    Another issue that I wonder if it matters:

    The original cat5 I ran 15 years ago had solid core wires. Still twisted pair, but inside the jacket was one solid copper wire.

    What I bought and clipped the terminated ends off last weekend looked identical, but instead of a single solid copper wire it had maybe 10-12 fine copper wires.

    Stranded instead of solid core. Utter failure.

    Would that make a difference?

    I've replaced both with a temp 4 strand telephone line and it works steadily but the speeds are definitely slower.

    Thanks

  11. #11
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    In general, stranded Cat5 cables are more flexible, however only used for short distances. They have higher attenuation in long runs, and are more expensive to make. I wouldn't use them for long runs, they introduce more noise for some reason. On the other hand, stranded wires can carry more current than solid wires of same gauge, so they work well for power cords.

    I imagine there was some issue with that Cat5 you used, not because you cut the terminated ends, but either higher attenuation because it is stranded wires, or your new termination points have some issue. If you get new Cat5e, make sure it is solid copper wires, and NOT CCA (copper clad aluminum), those are bad for long runs as well.

  12. #12
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Philip View Post
    In general, stranded Cat5 cables are more flexible, however only used for short distances. They have higher attenuation in long runs, and are more expensive to make. I wouldn't use them for long runs, they introduce more noise for some reason. On the other hand, stranded wires can carry more current than solid wires of same gauge, so they work well for power cords.

    I imagine there was some issue with that Cat5 you used, not because you cut the terminated ends, but either higher attenuation because it is stranded wires, or your new termination points have some issue. If you get new Cat5e, make sure it is solid copper wires, and NOT CCA (copper clad aluminum), those are bad for long runs as well.
    Thanks Phillip.

    This run is about 30 feet.

    Since I have the stranded cat5, if I try it again, should I be manually twisting the strands at the termination points, or just leave them?

  13. #13
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    Not sure exactly how they're terminated, but I would twist the strands well either way.

  14. #14
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Philip View Post
    Not sure exactly how they're terminated, but I would twist the strands well either way.
    Thanks, just literally wrapping them around the posts on the phone box, and around the phone jack points.

  15. #15
    Ft. Couch! morbidpete's Avatar
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    Get yourself a proper punch down tool and a jack. either RJ-11 or RJ-45. If 45 just terminate the blue pair to the 2 center pins or you can terminate the whole jack and use just the blue pair at the Telco Demarc, this way you can use it as a network jack in the future if you need to. I wouldn't trust those old school screw down jacks

  16. #16
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by morbidpete View Post
    Get yourself a proper punch down tool and a jack. either RJ-11 or RJ-45. If 45 just terminate the blue pair to the 2 center pins or you can terminate the whole jack and use just the blue pair at the Telco Demarc, this way you can use it as a network jack in the future if you need to. I wouldn't trust those old school screw down jacks
    Good idea, sure I'll be doing this again at some point, though not sure what you mean (13 hour workday and beer). Would that be an Ethernet jack instead of a phone jack? How would I have input and output?

    Sorry, very long day on 4 hours sleep.

    When I'm connecting to the "Telco Demarc" does it matter where the brass washers are in regards to the (A) phone line cables and (B) DSL cables?

    Do I need to have brass washers between the two? I finally got everything running smoothly for 24 hours at great speeds, after messing around with it it daily for the past week.

    Wondering if it made a difference if the phone line was touching the DSL line instead of having a washer between them, although if they're sharing current don't see why it would.

    Seems like a good question to ask

    Thanks

  17. #17
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    The washers shouldn't matter much.. The best signal would be if all wires/termination points have the same impedance, so that there is less reflection of signals. If it's already working well I would just leave it at that

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