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How to Extend Ethernet over 100 Meters?

Whether you’re trying to expand your network connectivity to another building or to connect cameras across a field, it’s easy to run into the limitation of a traditional Ethernet cable run. It’s universally acknowledged that Ethernet is limited to a maximum distance of 100m/328ft. Of course, that won’t be a problem when you’re only two workstations in a building. But if you try to extend your LAN beyond that limit to connect a distant apartment across buildings, you’ll inevitably experience a signal drop, leading to an unstable connection to your devices.

So what’s the solution to this common networking challenge? In this article, we’ll dig into your options to stretch your Ethernet to long distances over the existing twisted-pair cabling.

The 100-Meter Ethernet Cable Limitation

Ethernet cables are one of the most common cabling forms in data networking, and they can be classified into different categories such as Cat5, Cat5e, and Cat6 cables. And all of them follow a thumb of rule: a maximum cable run of 100 meters. When the recommended cable distances are exceeded, signal loss will occur, and possibly the overall speed and reliability of the network will be affected. So what causes the attenuation of Ethernet connections?

One possible reason is 1) electromagnetic interference (EMI) caused by nearby electrical devices. They can interfere with data transmission on a copper cable and cause downtime and crosstalk, which is usually the case in industrial facilities, while homes and offices normally do not generate high levels of interference that impact the Ethernet cable in a significant way. To reduce or eliminate the negative effect of EMI, shielded cables and connectors must be used. Another factor could be 2) temperature swings. Most cables remain operational when the surrounding temperature is around -40~75°C (-40~167°F), but anything above 20°C/68°F will start to increase attenuation on your cable. Besides, if you try to install the cable below -4°C/F (the lowest installation temp), your cable is likely to crack in your effort to run it. In addition, 3) sharp bends also attribute to reduced transmission speeds because they cause a discontinuity in the impedance of the line, which will lead to consistent packet errors and signal degradation over time.

So can you still get a reliable Ethernet connection over 328 feet? The answer is definitely yes as long as an Ethernet extender is added.

What’s the Ethernet Extender?

Ethernet extenders – also called network extenders or Ethernet repeaters – are devices used to extend the reach of an Ethernet network beyond its inherent limit of 100 meters. It allows network connectivity to be extended to locations that are physically far away from the main network infrastructure, such as remote offices, branch locations, or even individual devices in a home network. It works by amplifying and regenerating the Ethernet signal and transmitting it over longer distances over copper cables.

Whether you’re looking to connect two buildings across a campus or simply extend your home network to a remote location, Ethernet extenders can offer a secure, stable, and cost-effective solution. And some of the benefits include:

• As typically plug-and-play devices, Ethernet extenders are easy to set up;

• Provide reliable and high-speed connectivity without sacrificing network performance;

• Allow for seamless integration of remote locations into the main network;

• Can be used with different wire options to provide fast speeds over long distances;

• Used to connect external devices located in areas that are difficult to reach or that are subject to environmental factors such as temperature or humidity;

• Leverage existing cabling infrastructure, reducing the need for costly rewiring.

How Does It Work?

The technology behind Ethernet extenders involves a process known as “carrier extension”. The extender receives the Ethernet signal from the main network and converts it into a format that can be transmitted over copper wires. This signal is then amplified to compensate for any signal loss that occurs over longer distances. At the receiving end, the signal is converted back to Ethernet and delivered to the connected device. Ethernet extenders are available in different types and can be used in different cables such as twisted pair, coax, DSL and power line. The type of Ethernet extender used will depend on the specific requirements of the network system, so make sure the device you choose is compatible with your cabling.

Ethernet Extender Applications

Ethernet extenders are a useful device to extend your network range, especially in situations where running new Ethernet cables is not feasible or cost-effective. They are used in a wide variety of applications, and some examples are:

High-performance Ethernet Extension Kit from Fastcabling

Recently, Fastcabling has launched a Waterproof Ethernet Extension Kit to extend your network coverage outdoors, even in the most challenging environments. It includes a waterproof Ethernet extender and a power/PoE injector, and it’s compatible with a variety of devices, including IP cameras, access points, and network switches. Designed with a durable IP66-rated enclosure, this Ethernet extender is resistant to harsh weather conditions such as rain, snow, and extreme temperatures, making it perfect for industrial settings, construction sites, gardens, or any outdoor setup.

When daisy-chaining two Ethernet extenders, you can effectively extend the range beyond 300M. With a transmission speed of up to 100Mbps, you can enjoy high-speed data transfer, seamless video streaming, and lag-free online gaming. And the extender can be powered by a power injector, which eliminates the need for wiring a new cable for a power source since power and data can be delivered to the Ethernet extender simultaneously.

Rest assured, our waterproof Ethernet extender is built to last. It undergoes rigorous testing to ensure maximum reliability and durability, guaranteeing long-lasting performance and peace of mind. Additionally, this Ethernet extender offers unrivaled flexibility with its versatile mounting options. It can be wall-mounted, pole-mounted, or directly buried in the ground. Its compact and sleek design ensures a discreet and unobtrusive installation, blending seamlessly with any environment.

How to Install Ethernet Extenders?

Ethernet extenders are typically plug-and-play devices, so they’re easy to set up. If you only need to extend your network for another 100 meters, you can simply follow the instructions below:

a. Connect the Ethernet cable to the Ethernet port of your router;

b. Plug the other end of the Ethernet cable into the Ethernet port of the injector, and connect the injector to a power source;

c. Connect another Ethernet cable to the output port of the injector, and plug the other end of the Ethernet cable into the input port of the Ethernet extender;

d. Wait for the extender’s signal light to flash. When the connection is complete, connect the extender to the edge device.

If you want to extend the distance over 300 meters, multiple extenders need to be cascaded. Before the installation, you need to figure out how many Ethernet extenders will be needed. For a distance of 400 meters, you’ll need 3 in total and use one every 100 meters, which will inevitably increase the failure points over long cable runs. But by connecting the inputs of both Ethernet extenders together, the maximum distance between them can reach 300 meters so expand the reach to 500 meters with only two units.

a. Connect the Ethernet cable to the Ethernet port of your router, and plug the other end of the cable into the output port of the Ethernet extender;

b. Plug another cable into the input port of the Ethernet extender, plug the other end into the input port of the injector, and connect the injector to a power source;

c. Take a roll of 300-meter-long cable, connect one end to the LAN port of the injector and connect the other end to the input port of the second Ethernet extender;

d. Finally, use a network cable to connect the second Ethernet extender to the edge device.

Speak to the Experts

We understand the importance of a solid and reliable network infrastructure, and that’s why we offer a range of solutions to cater to your specific requirements. Whether you need to extend your network to a remote location or improve the performance of your existing network, we’ve got you covered. And we also provide free solution design for our customers. Reach out and find out more about the solutions we offer!

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