Running power over ethernet cables gives homeowners and businesses a flexible option for key applications.

Most homes and businesses have internet as a basic utility. What many don’t know, however, is that the same low voltage wires that carry your internet signal call also handle a sizable amount of power. You won’t be able to heat your house or charge your electric vehicle on this, but there are some key benefits that can be taken advantage of. 

What is Power over Ethernet?

Simply put, POE refers to the ability to send DC (Direct Current) voltage through a portion of ethernet cable. DC voltage is typically very low, making this type of power supply much safer when compared to typical AC (Alternating Current) power circuits. There are different capabilities based on equipment and cable types, but on the higher end up to 90 watts can be sent though up to 100 meters of cable. The key benefit to this technology is that you will no longer need power receptacles to operate your equipment!

Equipment that works with Power over Ethernet (POE)?

There is a wide variety of equipment that require internet, but really don’t take much power to run. Some examples that we run into most often are:

  • Security Cameras often aren’t located conveniently close to power outlets. Even if they are, the last thing you want is an easy external disconnect means for a camera that is designed to improve security. Having the ability to put cameras anywhere without the need for an outlet nearby allows for much better coverage. 
  • Wireless Access Points have impressive range but they can have trouble when tucked away in a corner office by the modem and power supply, or on the opposite side of obstructions like fireplaces. We often install POE for our clients for the sole reason of placing an access point in the ceiling at the center of homes to provide the best possible Wifi coverage without the need for boosters.
  • Voice Over Internet Protocol (VIOP) Phones are not considered a must in your typical household, but these internet-based phones are very common in businesses, hotels, offices, and schools. Rather than requiring a power outlet and a phone line, all that is required is a single ethernet cable. Only running one low voltage cable in new and retrofit builds does save a substantial amount of time and money. 

Although these are the most common uses, POE can also be used in a number of other applications including:

  • LED Lighting control
  • Intercom Systems
  • Card Readers
  • Point of Sale Kiosk
  • Digital Signage
  • Heating/Ventilation Control systems

In addition to these the latest versions of POE is even compatible with some Televisions and Computers. Tech companies are actively developing equipment to utilize POE more often. In the coming years we will likely see many more applications on the market. That said you don’t have to wait to take advantage of this technology. If any of these applications sound enticing to you please contact us with questions.

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