I found out that if I want Cable internet at my house, I need to spend $2400 in construction fees run a line under ground to my house. I'm a pretty handy guy, and generally like doing these kinds of things on my own, so I was wondering what type of cable internet providers use run underground to go from the line to the house. I'd like to figure out how much this'll cost, and this is the only unknown for me.

  • This can't really be answered. It sounds like the distance is long since they would not charge for a normal residential service line. The size of the cable for a long drop might be RG11 but depending on distance they may need to extend distribution cable rather than use drop cable.
    – Tyson
    Nov 14, 2016 at 21:38
  • What distance do you need to reach? I've run RG11 for cable tv a few 100 feet form the pole to my house and it's not rocket science. I'd suggest you price some direct burial RG11 and see. As long as the cable is in place (and you didn't do anything silly like hit it with a spade or kink it) the cable tv/internet installer should be able to fit connectors on each end and you're done.
    – brhans
    Nov 14, 2016 at 21:51
  • @brhans the max RG11 run is about 300 feet, but the caveat is that it may be less than that depending on the location of the last amplifier in the system prior to the connection point (i.e if he's already at the end of a lateral). The limiting factor isn't usually the strength of the incoming cable signal but the strength of the outgoing signal required for 2-way communication. Before this can be answered it needs better specification from the cable company.
    – Tyson
    Nov 14, 2016 at 22:01
  • 4
    Direct burial is always a dubious choice. If you are going to dig a trench, put conduit in it. Trenches are expensive, conduit is cheap (comparatively) and conduit means never having to dig the trench again - pull out the cable, pull in fiber, pull out the fiber, pull in whatever comes next... Not a duplicate, but: diy.stackexchange.com/questions/66141/…
    – Ecnerwal
    Nov 14, 2016 at 22:11
  • 3
    Randall, what is the length of cable needed? What region of the world will this be in?
    – wallyk
    Nov 15, 2016 at 0:00

1 Answer 1


The price you've been quoted sounds as though they are going to pull feeder cable from their tap location. Feeder cable is typically 0.500 inch nominal outside diameter, frequently larger when including insulation and in the case of underground rated cable, a goopy substance used ostensibly to seal nicks in the jacket.

The stuff is seriously stiff, but can be pulled through conduit if the conduit is large enough diameter and uses sweeps at each end. Go beyond two sweeps and you may run into trouble.

Considering that you want to provide the labor, conduit is the correct way to go. Should you find yourself digging in the area in the future, a clunk of the shovel against PVC is preferred to a gash in the cable.

The cable company will likely provide you with the cable, called five-hundred, if you explain that you'd like to put in the conduit and cable in one sequence. They would suggest that you leave a few feet at each end for creating the terminations.

I've dug up too many feeder lines for repair purposes to say I enjoyed myself, but I had a good reputation on the device used to locate the break that the digging was more localized. With conduit, even if you drive a back-hoe blade through it, the need to repair becomes immediately obvious.

At the price you've been quoted, I'd guess that you have more than a couple hundred feet to travel.

  • Yes, it's about 600 feet.
    – Vandel212
    Dec 5, 2016 at 15:47

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