What is Data Wiring? A Start to Finish Guide

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If you are upgrading your IT network or building out a new infrastructure from the ground up, you may be wondering about data wiring: what it is, what it’s used for, what types of cabling you need, and how to get a data wiring system installed. Here’s what you need to know about data wiring for your business.

What is Data Wiring?

Data wiring is simply the cables that support your business’s IT infrastructure. The wiring can be connected to a variety of different types of hardware including computers, security cameras, Wi-Fi, printers and copy machines, cable TVs, and more. A well-designed system of data wiring will be easy to maintain, highly organized, and effortlessly able to support your day-to-day internet and voice needs.

What is Data Wiring Used For?

Data wiring can transmit just about any kind of communication! This includes voice calls, video conferencing (such as Zoom calls), streaming audio or video, using the internet, and more. It is commonly connected to telephones and computers. Data wiring is also helpful for connecting to any kind of internet-enabled device such as printers, smart lighting, smart thermostats, and other equipment in the workplace.

Different Types of Data Wiring

Since there are specialized network cables for different applications, there is no “one size fits all” approach to data wiring.

Fiber Optic

Fiber optic cabling uses light to transmit data quickly over long distances. While traditional cabling has limited distance due to the way electrical signals diminish over distance, fiber optic cabling does not have the same limitations. It is constructed with a rubber outer coating, layers of protection and buffer, and a thin glass fiber core that can rapidly transmit data at speeds up to 100 Gbps or higher.

There are two main different core diameters, known as MMF and SMF, or multimode fiber and single mode fiber. Both can rapidly transmit data, but MMF is more common for short reach and SMF is more commonly used for long reach. These cables are commonly used in today’s business IT infrastructures, but optical fiber cabling can be pricey. If you don’t need long-distance, high-data-capacity cabling, then fiber optic may not be worth the extra expense.

Twisted Pair

Twisted pair cables are used for telephone systems and computer networks, and there are several different categories within this subset. It is often chosen for its affordability as compared to fiber optic cabling, but it is only applicable for shorter distances. The categories include Cat 5e, Cat 6, Cat 6a, Cat 7, Cat 7a, and more. Each category has a different maximum bandwidth, transmission speed, maximum distance, and more.

Twisted pair network cabling can either be shielded or unshielded (also known as STP and UTP). STP cables are enclosed in a shield that provides more protection from electromagnetic and radio infrequency interference, so it can often carry data at faster rates of speed. Unshielded UTP cable does not have the metallic shielding but it can be just fine for short-distance transmission, including telephones and computer networks with shorter cable runs.


Coaxial cables, also called coax, transmit radio frequency, or RF, signals. This type of wiring is constructed with a center conductor, insulating layer, conducting shield, and an insulating outer shield. It can be used for a variety of things like telephones, cable television, broadband internet, and connecting radio transmitters or receivers to their antennas.

If you have cable internet using coaxial wiring, then your internet service provider sends data signals through a coaxial cable to your modem. The modem is connected to your router via an ethernet cable, and the router can then broadcast a Wi-Fi signal. Your computers and other devices may also be directly connected to your modem via ethernet cables.

Coaxial is commonly used when both cable internet and cable television services are desired in the same building. One beneficial thing about coaxial cables is that they can deliver speeds evenly among each individual user.

Choosing a Professional to Install Your Data Cabling System

To ensure that your data wiring can handle your business’s needs, you need to work with a professional to design a structured cabling system that takes all your requirements into account. They will know the right types of cable to use and the best way to design an efficient, organized system for your business. Contact Telco Data today to discuss installing data wiring throughout the great state of Texas! We’d be happy to conduct a free site survey. Call Us Today! 512-977-0505 or email us at info@telco-data.com.

Data Wiring FAQs

What is data wiring?

Data wiring is a system of cables that can provide Wi-Fi, cable television, and phone service as well as connecting computers and other devices to a network. A well-designed system of structured cabling will give you the bandwidth and speeds you need to communicate with the utmost efficiency!

Do I need data wiring?

Today’s businesses need to be highly connected to the outside world while also gathering and storing data, utilizing web-based services, and more. For this reason, nearly all businesses and commercial buildings need data wiring, some more than others. If you are going to have computers, laptops, televisions, security cameras/CCTV, Wi-Fi, desk phones, or other devices connected to a network, then you need data wiring for your business.

How much does data wiring cost?

The cost will vary based on the size and floor plan of your office, the amount of bandwidth you need, the types of cabling you need, how many team members/workstations you have, and more! At Telco Data, we provide free quotes to Texas businesses. This is the only way to determine how much data wiring will cost for your unique needs.

Does data wiring need to be installed by a professional?

It’s always best to get wiring installed by a professional to ensure that your new system supports all your needs with speed and reliability. It can be too risky to do it yourself due to the standards, regulations, and complexities of data wiring. Having it done by a pro helps you avoid costly downtime and other issues. Plus, you’ll always have support when you need it!

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