Surface Mount Jacks
What is a surface mount jack?
A surface mount jack is basically a surface mount box with a voice or data jack integrated into the mounting box. A surface mount jack is most commonly used at the home or business to create a voice or data connection outlet on the outside of a wall. Installing a surface mount jack is popular in areas where penetrating the wall to install cable and a wall jack is not an option. Having a jack pre-loaded in a surface mount box saves you time and money. Plus it allows you to buy 1 part instead of having to buy multiple parts and have to take the time to assemble them.
What is the difference between a surface mount box and a surface mount jack?
A surface mount box is just a box that has one or multiple blank ports on the box where you can install a wide variety of keystone jacks. A surface mount jack is a mounting box that has the jack already integrated into the box. Most surface mount jacks come with one or two RJ-11 Voice Jacks or Cat5e Jacks pre-installed.
How do I attach my cable to a surface mount jack?
There are multiple ways to attach cable to your surface mount jack. A surface mount jack comes in two pieces. You will have the base that includes the integrated jack, and the cover that is installed after you terminate your cables. When you get your surface mount boxes you will need to take the cover off so you have access to the jack’s connections. Many surface mount jacks require a 110 punch down tool to punch down each cable pair to the integrated jack. This is the just like you would do if you were installing a traditional keystone jack in the wall. Some surface mount jacks feature color coded screw down terminals that allow you to use a screw driver to screw the cable pairs into their correct location. The screw terminal type jacks are nice for people that do not own a cable punch down tool and are looking for a quick and easy installation. Both the punch down and screw down type jacks will provide documented color code diagrams for you to follow. Once your cable or cables are attached correctly to the jack you can then run them out of the box, put the lid on, and then mount the surface mount box on a wall or surface. Most quality surface mount jacks will have multiple knock out areas that allow you to run cables horizontally or vertically out of the box. This gives you more flexibility in our cabling.
How do I mount a surface mount jack?
A quality surface mount jack will come with both screw and adhesive tape mounting options. You can use one or the other, or both. It all depends on your surface and if you have the ability to screw into it. A good quality product will have strong double-sided adhesive tape that will provide a long lasting installation.
What kind of connections can I create using surface mount jacks?
Since surface mount jacks are pre-loaded there are just a few connection options. Most products just offer single or dual RJ-11 Voice and Cat5e connections. Usually surface mount jacks also only come in white and ivory. If you need something customized with different connections and/or colors then you will have to use empty surface mount boxes and then fill them with the jacks you need to support your needs.
Where is the best place to mount a surface mount jack?
A surface mount jack can be mounted almost anywhere. It really needs only a small amount of space to be mounted. Since it is taking the place of a traditional wall outlet you will want to mount it where you want your connections to be. Surface mount boxes can be mounted on the wall, furniture, desk, or any other flat surface where a voice or data jack connection must be placed.
What cables can I plug into a surface mount jack?
You have to match the cables with the connection types you are creating. Once your jacks are mounted you use premade telephone cables or Cat5e patch cables to connect to your equipment. If you need custom cables you can even make your own but you would need to buy raw cable and then terminate the ends on them. If making your own patch cables is for you check out the Platinum Tools 10054C EZ-RJ45 crimp tool. It will save you time and money while you make all your own custom tools!