I am trying to run CAT6 to a doorbell which is near 14-2 Romex triple gang box. It's on the other side of the wall about 6" from the 3 gang box on the other side of where the blue tape is marked. I believe the NEC requirement is 8".

What is the best way to go about this?

shielded or unshielded? If shielded is needed, how do I properly ground the cable?

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    I've never heard of a NEC requirement. I do hear a great deal of worry from networking people about crosstalk from power lines degrading the signal, and they claim distances like that. Commented Jan 18, 2022 at 9:46
  • @Harper-ReinstateMonica it is possible to induce a current in the UTP wire, so I believe there are distance requirements in the code book IF the UTP cable is not marked with a voltage rating. All the cat6 UTP I’ve worked with recently is rated for 600V so you can run it alongside mains wires. Commented Jan 18, 2022 at 16:19
  • @RibaldEddie that voltage rating is for the insulation on the cable and specifies what the highest voltage is which can come into direct contact with the cable safely. It doesn't have anything to do with induced current.
    – brhans
    Commented Jan 18, 2022 at 17:37
  • @brhans that’s what the electrical inspector said. I guess I shouldn’t assume he knows what he’s talking about then. Commented Jan 18, 2022 at 17:39
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    No you're not reading that wrong. Under normal circumstances data cables do not need to be separated from power cables. The insulation on both the power and data cables far exceeds the required amount to prevent any flashover between them. Also, following the NEC rules which mandate that a circuit's hot and neutral are never appreciably separated means that there's very little magnetic field produced which might induce currents in your data cable - and even then your data cable is a twisted pair which also mitigates any induced current (since it's induced equally in both wires of each pair).
    – brhans
    Commented Jan 21, 2022 at 17:49

1 Answer 1


If you know which side of the stud bay the 14/2 is on, you can run the CAT 6 on the other side of the bay. That will provide about 14" of separation. When the CAT 6 has to cross to be near the 14/2, it will be crossing, not running parallel and shouldn't pick up too much interference.

UTP cable (Unshielded Twisted Pair) is designed so the twists in the cables resist cross-talk between the pairs, but also to reject external interference. Running parallel to 120v main power could overcome the cable's designed in resistance, but crossing the cable, as described above, shouldn't be a significant issue.

I believe that shielded CAT 6 cable has to be terminated with a shielded RJ45 jack that has metal on the outside which is connected to the shielding in the cable and is then grounded by the router. I'm not certain if the router has to be specifically designed to handle shielded cable, but I'd say there's a high probability. I just looked at a residential grade router I've got sitting around - some of the jacks have a metal strip on the inside, some are all plastic. The metal strip might be grounded. You'd have to look at the documentation for your router to know for sure.

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