How To Make a Homemade Network Cable Tester

A network cable tester is a device that you can use to help you with your electrical wiring activities.    With a simple detection method by way of lighting up bulbs automatically, a network tester is useful to determine which cables are in good, working condition and which ones are not.  A network cable tester is also a vital tool to help you fix and correct any problems that may be caused by cross-wirings and faulty connections.

Do you have network cables lying around your house?  Do you want to find out which cables are ready for use without having to spend extra for a cable tester?  If so, read on to know how to make your very own.

  • Prepare the materials. To make your homemade network cable tester, you will need the following materials:  1.5 meters of network cables with adapter caps, wall jack, a 9-volt battery, wired light bulbs, a small wire stripper and electrical tape.  
  • Prepare the cables. Start making your network cable tester by getting your network cables.  Cut 1.5 meters of cable into 4 parts, allowing each part to be at least a foot long.  These cables can be the category 3 or category 5 kinds.  
  • Strip the cable wires. Once cut, get your wire stripper and strip both ends to expose the wires beneath.  Separate the solid wires from the striped ones.  The former will represent as the positive lead for your bulbs while the negative lead will be represented by the latter.  
  • Connect ends. Once separated, take the stripped network cable and connect its ends to each bulb.  Keep in mind to use the colored wire only on the positive lead.  Count how many wires you have in your cable and make sure you attach at least half of it with a light bulb.  Meaning, if your cable has 10 wires, for example, then 5 bulbs should be connected as well.  Attach the striped wires to the wall jack after by making 4 matched connections with the use of the screws at the back.  Like with the colored wires, keep in mind to connect striped ones only to the negative lead.  Continue until you finish connecting all the wires in their specific leads.
  • Seal connections. Once done, secure each connection with electrical tape and seal them properly to avoid the risk of having the wires fry each other out.  
  • Plug in. You are now ready to test your network cable out.  Plug both the cable with light bulbs and battery to a jack and wait for the bulbs to light out.  You will know that your network cable is good to use if three or more bulbs light up.  If not, then it is best to just throw the cable out.  

And there you have it, your very own network cable tester guaranteed to help you verify and configure your cables at home.  Make testers for different types of cables, may they be the short patch variety or the long ones.  Just remember to practice safety, first and foremost, to prevent any untoward electrical accidents in the future.


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