The Ultimate Guide to Waterproof RJ45 Couplers
If the Ethernet cable is not long enough to connect point A to point B, what will you do? I guess most of you may go out and buy a longer cable. In fact, an RJ45 coupler is a more cost-effective way to solve the problem.
RJ45 couplers can be classified into many types such as inline couplers, keystone couplers, shielded couplers, and outdoor RJ45 couplers (also known as waterproof RJ45 coupler) (See What is an Ethernet Coupler? for more about RJ45 couplers). But in this article, we will mainly talk about waterproof RJ45 couplers.
Waterproof RJ45 coupler
Waterproof RJ45 couplers can also be named as outdoor RJ45 couplers, which are a kind of RJ45 couplers. As you know, RJ45 couplers are used to connect two patch cables that are not long enough. And waterproof RJ45 couplers can be used to connect two short cables together outdoors or even in a direct burial situation for a long time. If you use common RJ45 couplers outside, your equipment will be damaged and data transmission can be affected. So the waterproof RJ45 coupler is made to stand up to the extreme environment.
Components of outdoor RJ45 coupler
Outdoor RJ45 couplers look like cylindrical connectors, which are composed of several important parts. The center connector unit is composed of two shielded RJ45 couplers and a waterproof gasket. There are waterproof connectors on each end along with waterproof aprons, which are designed to screw to the gasket. At the end of both sides, there are also two waterproof caps. When the Ethernet cable passes through the end cap and connects to the coupler, you need to tighten the end cap and it will offer an excellent seal. Also, the silicon apron is squeezed to seal the housing.
How to choose the best waterproof RJ45 coupler?
There are so many waterproof RJ45 couplers on the market, do you know how to choose the best waterproof RJ45 coupler? There are three factors that you should consider.
Quality is the first thing that you should take into consideration. A high-quality waterproof RJ45 coupler features a housing made of durable materials such as Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) or nylon. Also, an excellent waterproof RJ45 coupler usually comes with a silicon rubber apron for a firm cable connection. In addition, the contact pins are made of gold-plated materials for stable data transmission. The metal-shielded RJ45 coupler can also help shield external signal interference.
Cat6 or Cat6a waterproof RJ45 couplers are recommended for most people as they are backward compatible with Cat5 or Cat5e unshielded or shielded Ethernet cables. A Cat6 waterproof RJ45 coupler can support up to 250MHz bandwidth and 1000Mbps network speed, while a Cat6a waterproof RJ45 coupler can support up to 500 MHz bandwidth and 10Gbps speed. A good waterproof Ethernet coupler is also strictly tested to be suitable for PoE devices.
Waterproof RJ45 couplers are usually used outdoors, so they should be resistant to dust, water, and corrosion. Choose those RJ45 couplers that exceed IP67 requirements. “6” in “IP67” means the level of dust resistance and “7” indicates a high level of water resistance. IP67 RJ45 couplers or IP68 RJ45 couplers perform well in water and dust resistance, which provide a great protection for outdoor cabling and stable data transmission.
How to use Cat6 waterproof couplers?
Many people especially novices are not clear about how to use Cat6 waterproof RJ45 couplers. In fact, the waterproof RJ45 coupler is easy to use without any tools. The following video and pictures are the step-by-step guide for you.
Step 1: Take off two end caps and unscrew the two waterproof connectors, then you’ll see the central shielded coupler.
Step 2: Put the end caps over the end of the Ethernet cable and always remember this step or you will do it again.
Step 3: Feed the waterproof connector through the Ethernet cable and don’t forget to put the waterproof apron over the Ethernet cable jacket to seal the cable.
Step 4: Put the RJ45 connector directly into the waterproof RJ45 coupler.
Step 5: Screw the waterproof connector and the end cap.
Step 6: Repeat the same step to connect Ethernet cables with the other end of the waterproof RJ45 coupler.
Step 7: Last step: don’t forget to tighten the RJ45 coupler as much as possible to protect the network cable. But please note that don’t overtighten the coupler and don’t use any tools or the coupler may be damaged.
Keep in mind
- Remember the maximum length of Ethernet cables is 328 feet (100 meters)!
- Don’t use too many RJ45 couplers to elongate the Ethernet cable or it will cause signal loss.
- Never use the coupler to switch a shielded network cable to an unshielded network cable and it won’t be shielded all the way.
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