Keeping an ethernet cable protected is an important choice.
In some settings, leaving the ethernet cable unshielded is acceptable and will not impact how it performs. In other situations, you will have to consider going with a shielded ethernet cable to make sure it is not exposed to surrounding elements that could compromise its performance.
With this in mind, it becomes essential to learn how to shield an ethernet cable the right way.
To shield an ethernet cable, it’s important to consider the different types available. The most common solution is to use a foil shielded cable with an untwisted shielded pair. The foil helps protect the cable and sits under the jacket. Users can also used a screen shielded cable for similar results.
The best thing you can do is look at different options to see what works when shielding an ethernet cable.
It’s important to note that the average home is not going to require a shielded ethernet cable. This is often seen as overkill and not a good use of resources as there will be limited interference to the cable.
on the other hand, in a more commercial setting, it is best to have a shielded ethernet cable for added protection.
Here are a few tips on how to shield ethernet cables and what will work well in your situation.
Tips On How To Shield Ethernet Cable
1. Foil Shielded Cable + Foil Shielded Twisted Pair
This is one of the more common options when it comes to shielding an ethernet cable.
This cable works similar to a foil shielded cable with an unshielded twisted pair. The difference comes in the form of the twisted pair receiving additional protection inside the cable.
This particular type of ethernet cable looks to have a specialized aluminum foil shield that wraps around the cable. This will sit right under the jacket on the cable and will help offer comprehensive protection.
To add more protection, the twisted pair will also be wrapped with foil.
The reason for doing this is to make sure the pairs work well and deliver consistent performance. The foil helps with this. When the protection is secure, it will make it a lot easier to handle interference within the setting. This type of protection can become important in specific commercial settings and/or data centers.
2. Foil Shielded Cable + Unshielded Twisted Pair
This is a type of ethernet cable that is often the first thing a person will think about when it comes to shielded options.
When learning how to protect an ethernet cable, the foil shielded cable + unshielded twisted pair is common. This is a solution that is going to have an aluminum foil shield sit right under the jacket wrapping around the cable. This will ensure any interference is going to be thwarted and the data will pass through as intended.
This means any noise that is interfering with the cable is going to be transitioned to the ground.
The twisted pair is going to remain unshielded and there will only be one layer of protection around the cable.
3. Screen Shielded Cable + Unshielded Twisted Pair
This is a secondary type of shielded ethernet cable and is quite dependable assuming it is set up the right way.
With this, the protective layer is not going to be aluminum foil. Instead, it is going to be an aluminum braided shield, which is also known as a screen. This is going to sit in the same spot as a foil shield (under the jacket).
This is great for managing electromagnetic interference and does a good job when it comes to handling electrostatic potential.
The reason this type of shield is used comes down to radio frequencies. It also protects against that, which aluminum foil won’t. It is also noted as being easier to ground.
4. Foil and Braid Shielded Cable + Foil Shielded Twisted Pair
This is the final type of shielded ethernet cable and is quite effective.
This uses multi-layered protection with a focus on managing crosstalk, RFI, EMI, and ESD.
It works by having multiple layers (three) of protection. This ensures it is robust, well-made, and will handle any type of electromagnetic interference.
The only issue with this type of cable is its size. It is much thicker due to the additional layers.
Can You Shield Ethernet With Aluminum Foil?
Yes, you can shield ethernet cables with aluminum foil. This can be wrapped around the cable as a way to help protect it from electromagnetic interference.
These are the main tips on how to shield an ethernet cable.
To shield an ethernet cable, look at options such as a foil shielded cable + unshielded twisted pair. You can also look at using something more robust such as a foil shielded cable + a foil shielded twisted pair for added protection.
These are the options that will work well when it comes to getting the right amount of performance, efficiency, and safety.
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