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Backside of a Residential Telephone Jack

Telephone Jack Wiring Color Code

Dear Mr. Electrician.  What is the telephone jack wire color code for my house?  I want to replace all of the old telephone jacks, but am confused by the tip and ring color code.  The new telephone jacks have red, green, yellow, and black terminals, but the telephone wiring in my walls have eight wires with different color stripes.  How do I connect the new telephone jacks? Answer:  I have put together a residential telephone wire color code chart to help you understand how to connect the existing four pair telephone wiring in your walls to the new telephone jacks.  The four pair wire is capable of having four separate telephone lines at each jack location.  However if you only have one telephone line for your house, you should use the same color pair for each new phone jack that you install.  NOTE: Text links below go to applicable products on Amazon.com Telephone Wiring Color Code for a Home "Tip" refers to that side of a two wire telephone circuit which is connected to the positive side of a battery at the telephone company's central office.  "Ring" refers to that side of a two wire telephone circuit which is connected to the negative side of a battery at the telephone company central office. Generally speaking the phone company connects the phone lines at their termination block in a certain order.  The blue pair is first, the orange pair is second, the green pair is third, and the brown pair is fourth.  So for one phone line, the blue pair should be the correct line to connect to. However there may be instances where the phone company found a problem with the blue pair and had to use the orange pair instead.  It is possible that there was a problem with all of the pairs going into you house and the phone company had to split between pairs of wires.  When removing the old telephone jacks, take note of which wires are being used on the old jacks. The blue pair is connected as the primary telephone line.  The solid blue wire is the "Ring" and gets connected to the red jack terminal.  The white wire with a blue stripe is terminated on the green "Tip" screw. One pair of wires is used for one telephone line.  The pairs of wires are twisted together to avoid cross talk between telephone lines.  This helps the sound quality.  When looping the bare telephone wire around the terminal screw, loop the wire in the direction that the screw will tighten (Clockwise).  This will cause the loop to close on itself and make a better connection. Tip + Ring - Green Red Black Yellow Pair 1 White with blue stripe Blue Pair 2 White with orange stripe Orange Pair 3 White with green stripe Green Pair 4 White with brown stripe Brown   The solid orange wire is the "Ring" and is connected to the red jack terminal.  The white wire with an orange stripe is terminated on the green "Tip" screw.   Amazon Sells Telephone Jacks and Adapters A splitter plugged into the jack will enable the use of two separate telephone...
Aluminum wire terminated under two screws that have overheated

USA Aluminum Wiring

Dear Mr. Electrician: I am planning to have the electrical service to my house upgraded. The licensed electrical contractor that I am using will be installing aluminum wire for this installation.  Is aluminum wire safe to use? Answer: Yes it is safe to use aluminum wire for new installations and for upgrades.  Aluminum wire does have a questionable past, and problems still occasionally surface to this day from improper installations that date back to the 1960's and 1970's.  However new types of wires, aluminum rated wiring devices, and equipment with an aluminum wire approval have all been tested to be safe.  Click here to read a short history of "Aluminum Building Wire" published on WikipediA.  NOTE: Text links below go to applicable products on Amazon.com Aluminum Wire Inspection If you own a house that was built in the 1960's or 1970's and it was wired with aluminum wiring throughout, there is no need to panic.  However you will need to take some steps to be sure that the wiring is currently in good operating condition and is properly installed.  It is possible that a previous owner took the necessary precautionary measures, but you have no idea if they were done correctly unless you investigate. The simplest thing to do is to have a look at your electrical switches and receptacles from inside.  This entails removing them from the wall with the power turned off at the circuit breaker box.  This must be done very carefully where aluminum wire is installed.  The old aluminum wire does not have the flexibility of copper.  Consequently it can break very easily upon the removal of a wiring device from the wall and make matters worse.  If you are not comfortable with doing this, please call a licensed electrical contractor to have a look.  Aluminum wire must be connected to a wiring device that is approved for aluminum wire.  It will have a Co/ALR designation somewhere on the switch or receptacle. Repairing Aluminum Wire Connections The best procedure to make your existing aluminum wiring safe at every electrical receptacle and wall switch is to pigtail the aluminum conductors with copper wire.  I usually use stranded copper wire for the additional flexibility.  Small aluminum conductors tend to break easily after only a couple of bends.  Repairing bad aluminium wire connections can be accomplished using one or more methods. The best and most recommended technique for aluminum wire repair is called the Copalum method.  Basically it is a specifically designed crimper for aluminum conductors.  It uses a crimp sleeve designed and approved for use with this tool and for the aluminum wire to copper connection.  Unfortunately the Copalum method is proprietary and the user must be trained and licensed by the manufacturer to use the tool and purchase the necessary supplies.  Consequently you must call a licensed electrical contractor who has been factory approved to do the necessary corrections to make your wiring safe using the Copalum method.  Not all electrical contractors have taken the time to get approved to use the Copalum method so it...