A telephone extension cable has been pulled from its socket. How do you rewire such a socket?

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  • Where are you located? Standard color coding in the US/Canada is Red/Green and Black/Yellow...
    – Steven
    Nov 11, 2012 at 19:59

1 Answer 1


We're having to make assumptions here that this is house wiring for an single analog phone circuit (POTS) as no specifics other than "it's a phone extension" are given.

This is a four wire cable with a green/red and white/brown circuit. POTS requires a pair of wires. Your house could be wired having up to two separate phone lines if this is the only wire used. Typically older houses are wired with four wire cables, newer houses with CAT4 or 5 have four pairs (8 wires) available for phone circuits.

If it's a single line phone circuit, the green/red wires should be the only ones that need to be hooked up. What's the difficulty with connecting them back up observing the color coding? This is assuming that the socket is using screw connectors, the straight on angle doesn't allow the connection method to be seen.

  • I can just make out screw connectors where the socket leads run to. However, red and green seem to be unrelated based on the lead locations. I would just reconnect all 4 wires, matching colors, at the screw terminals.
    – bcworkz
    Nov 11, 2012 at 22:31
  • 1
    Standard phone wiring Line one: Red for Ring, Green for Tip. The second line uses Yellow for Ring and Black for Tip. Tip is signal ground as it was less likely to draw sparks in the old manual phone exchanges. Alternate color in 4 wire cables for line two also can vary by the manufacturer. It's all based on color, not lead connection position unless someone miswired the Network Interface box leading into the house. Nov 11, 2012 at 23:25

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