TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: How Long Can a Telephone Extension Cord Be?

Re: How Long Can a Telephone Extension Cord Be?

Fred Atkinson (
Sat, 13 Aug 2005 07:28:56 -0400

> Recently, at a Radio Shack store at the telephone accessories section,
> I noticed that telephone extension cords were available in lengths up
> to 25 feet (but I didn't notice any that were longer). Is that
> because 25 feet is the longest you can go before there's a significant
> loss of signal strength?

> And what about people who access the internet via 56K dial-up? For
> them, how long can the extension cord be and still have "clean"
> transmission for error-free downloads?

> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: I do not know what the rule is -- if
> any -- regarding the length of cords, but I do not think it has to
> do with any signal degradation; after all, you might be _miles_ from
> the central office building, or in the case of a DSL connection, up
> to several thousand feet. PAT]

I don't think there is any limit on how long the cord can be from a
realistic standpoint. But with extension cords, there is a practical
limit in that the darned things can be so long that they get tangled
and are otherwise awkward and cumbersome.

To that end, the longest cord I get is thirteen feet (a standard size
that you can buy over the counter). Go with twenty-five feet (also a
standard size you can buy over the counter) and you are always
struggling with managing the cord. It's a pain in the neck.

I have used a modular crimping tool to make ones longer much longer
than that when someone was insistent about it. But why do that when
you can just run standard telephone wire to an RJ-11 jack somewhere in
the vicinity of where they want their phone located? I still
discourage those excessively long telephone cords.

As far as the wire from the C. O. is concerned, I believe there is a
limit before the phone company makes it four wire most of the way to
the premises. But I don't remember what that length is. I'd be
willing to bet it is pretty long.



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